"a successful renaissance and reorientation of the Hindu view of life and a guarantee
that India's future would be remolded on the basis of a synthesis of the east and the
west. However much some of the leaders wished to overcome social and other evils at the
earliest, they had to come to the conclusion that they would not make much headway unless
they went to the root and furnished a reoriented religious and spiritual back ground.
The Brahmo Samaj started in Calcutta in 1828. In Bombay, prominent
members of the Paramahansa Sabha, which was working for abolition of caste barriers, came
to the same conclusion and started Prarthana Samaj on the model of Brahmo Samaj in
Calcutta. Dr. Bhandarkar, an ardent social reformer and deep scholar of Sanskrit,
advocated the same view. He said, if social reform was to be permanent and beneficial to
Hindu society, it ought to be based on religious reform."**
English education in Bengal had received an enthusiastic beginning through the nucleus of
a band of selfless missionaries of Serampore from 1800. Other missionaries who pioneered
education, printing, medical relief and social services in different parts of the country
followed the illustrious Carey, Marshman and Ward. The beginnings of the Brahmo Samaj in
the hands of Raja Ram Mohan Roy and his followers were from 1815 and by 1830 the Brahmo
Samaj was well established and a Trust Deed was drawn up indicating the objectives.
** Paramahansa Sri Ramakrishna by R.R. Diwakar,
(Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 1956), p.19.
*** Paramahansa Sri Ramakrishna by R.R. Diwakar,
(Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 1956), p.34.