Short Report on the 150th Birth Anniversary Celebration of Swami Vivekanandaji
The Departments of Hindi and Philosophy, P.G.Govt. College for Girls, Sector-11, Chandigarh organized a lecture on “Life and Teachings of Swami Vivekananda”on 11th October, 2013. Swami Anupamananda ji (Secretary, Ramakrishna Mission Ashrama, Chandigarh) was the chief-guest of this program. The details of the progrmme is given below:
Dr. Anita Khosla (Head, Department of Hindi) first introduced Chief-Guest and gave a detail account of his activities. She mentioned in her speech that Swami Anupamanandaji served as the Director of Vivekananda Institute of Languages, which offers Indian and Foreign language courses to 7,000 students. He used to regularly interact and motivate the students. In June 2012 Swami Anupamanandaji took Charge as the Head of Ramakrishna Mission Ashrama, Chandigarh. Since then he has been visiting and conduction programmes. He directs the activities of the Ashrama, which include service activities in medical field, educational field, cultural and spiritual programmes. Dr. Beenu Dogra (Vice-Principal, PGGCG-11, Chandigarh) presented in the programme with her kind and motivational presence.
Swami Anupamananda ji delivered his lecture concentrating on Swami Vivekananda and Value Education. He added that remembering Swami Vivekananda’s unique contribution for the regeneration of modern India, the nation is celebrating his 150th birth anniversary. He has left an indelible mark on great thinkers of modern world. ‘Man’ was central to his philosophy. Since education plays major role in developing human personality, he has propounded a philosophy of education which has found universal acceptance. An important message of Swami Vivekananda, which was very relevant to the Indian condition, was that man is the maker of his own future. Man has the power to make him-self what he wishes to be. Man has immense possibilities. In spite of this if someone remains an ordinary person, he alone is to be blamed for this. Once a person decides the goal of his life he needs to labour under correct knowledge. This will take him to the goal. Swamiji’s this message brought change in the attitude of Indian people who had lost the capacity to take initiative. The ultimate goal of education is to acquire knowledge of one’s own real nature. “Each soul is potentially divine.” said Swami Vivekananda. We have forgotten our real nature. Hence we think ourselves weak and helpless. If we realise our nature we develop faith in ourselves. Swamiji wanted personality development through moral and spiritual education. “The very essence of education is concentration of mind.”, said Swamiji. The training of the mind is very important for Swamijis scheme of education. Comprehension and retention play an important role in education, which is not possible with an untrained mind. With a trained mind alone it is possible. So concentration becomes paramount to education. There are three dimensions to our personality, i.e. physical, mental and spiritual. A harmonious development of these three dimensions is essential for balanced development of personality. Swami Vivekananda repeatedly stressed the immediate need of mass education. He wanted education to reach backward, downtrodden rural Indians. Swami Vivekananda pointed out that spirit of service must be part of our life. Swami Vivekananda’s life and message have the power to empower our thought process, which will help us to inculcate self-respect, moral courage, social responsibility, creativity and patriotism. Thus Swami Vivekananda’s philosophy of education can help the younger generation to overcome the deficiency in the system of education and produce men and women of character, which is the need of the hour.
On this occasion a special issue on Value-Education of Milestone Education Review released in CD-ROM by Swamiji and it is also mentioned that the online version of this issue will be made available soon. This issue edited by Prof Nandita ( Chairperson, Deptt. of Education, P.U, Chandigarh & Coordinator, Centre for Swami Vivekananda Studies), Dr. Latika Sharma (Deptt. of Education, P.U. Chandigarh), Dr. Sudhir Baweja (Coordinator , Philosophy, Vivekananda Studies, USOL, P.U Chandigarh). Dr. Sudhir Baweja gave an overview of content included in this volume. He also emphasized on the importance of value-education in present times and contribution of Swami Vivekananda through his philosophy of education. Dr. Desh Raj Sirswal gave a report of events organised by the philosophy department to celebrate the Birth Anniversary of Swami Vivekananda and other student activities. He also informed students that being a part of this celebration Vivek-Vahini (a mobile-van for Swami Vivekananda’s literature) visit college campus in November and December too. Students can read and purchase literature from there.
In the end of the programme, Dr. Madhu Gosain (Department of Hindi) presented a thanking note. She beautifully presented her words of wisdom. Several faculty members from various departments of the college and students participated in this event and enjoyed the programme peacefully and thoughtfully.
Dr. Desh Raj Sirswal