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RAJA RAM MOHAN ROY AND BRAHMASAMAJ
In 1828, a man named Raja Ram Mohan Roy (1772-1833) founded an organization called Brahmasamaj. Indian historians consider this organization forerunner which paved the way for reformation in India and its establisher as the 'father of modern India'. Raja Ram was a Brahman from Bengal. He attacked some Hindu traditions and features among them caste system, child marriages, Sati - burning of the live wife over her dead husband's pyre, idolatry and other beliefs. He tried to change the popular Hindu traditions and claimed that the popular Hindu traditions were different from the real Hindu beliefs.
Raja Ram and his organization Brahmasamaj tried to change the social order of India. He established newspapers and schools all round India. He convinced the British in 1829 to outlaw Sati. But during that period there wasn't yet an Indian ethos among the Indians. Indians were never one nation but always a collection of different entities. They were used to different rulers including non- Indians. From their point of view the British were just another ruler over them. But the main contribution of the Brahmasamaj to the society of India was that it evoked issues that were common to people all around the Indian sub-continent. The notions of this organization were the inspiration for other organizations and various secular political parties, like the Indian National Congress, which were later on created in India
The Arya Samaj is a reform movement and religious/social organization which was formally established in Bombay in 1875. It's patron saint is Maharishi Dayananda Saraswathy. He started a new movement called Suddhi movement. He published his views through his work Sathyartha Prakash. His teachings were direct to the masses. This approach popularized the work of Aryasamaj among more people. His work was continued by Pandit Guru Dutt and Lala lajpat Rai.
Ramakrishna Parama Hamsa (1836-1886) a Bengali Brahmin by birth had an intense spiritual life. Among his disciples the most important one was Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902). He carried the message of Parama Hamsa all over the world. At the famous ‘Parliament of Religions' at Chicago in USA in 1893 he argued Vedanta as a religion of ball and not of Hindus alone. He founded Ramakrishna Mission and Monasteries. His supreme desire was to uplift India to a proper place among the nations of the world.
The theosophical society was founded by Madame H.P.Blavatsky and Colonel H.S Olcott in 1875 in USA. They came to Indaia and established the Theosophical Society of India in 1886. The success of the movement in India goes to Mrs. Annie Besant. In the beginning the society allied itself to the Hindu revival movement. Mrs. Besant started the Central Hindu School at Benares and later it was developed into the famous Benares Hindu University. Society took part in various religious and social reforms all over India.
Sir Syed Ahmed Khan (1817-1899) was the founder of the Aligarh movement. He viewed that education was the means of national awakening. He propagated the need for the cooperation between the Hindus and the Muslims in India. He published several books in science by translating into Urdu. He also founded the ‘Mohammedan Anglo Oriental College' at Aligarh in 1875 and later it was developed into the Aligarh Muslim University. It was a turning point in the history of Muslim education in India.