Talk by Ku. Nivedita Bhide, Vice President of Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari on ‘Swami Vivekananda and his Contemporary Relevance’
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In commemoration of 125 years of Swami Vivekananda’s famous Chicago speech, the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF), New Delhi, invited Sister Nivedita Raghunath Bhide, the Vice President of Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari to dwell upon the subject of ‘Swami Vivekananda and his Contemporary Relevance’ as part of the Vimarsha session of public talks.

Sister Nivedita Bhide has extensively worked on the life and teachings of Swami Vivekananda and has also been engaged in social work for many years. For her contribution to the social work, she has been awarded with the fourth highest civilian award of India, Padma Shri. She has highlighted in great measure the relevance of Swami Vivekananda not only in the nation building of our nation but also in making India a world leader in spreading peace and harmony.

Dr. Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, in his opening remarks expressed his deep gratitude to Sister Nivedita Bhide for accepting the Invitation to speak on Swami Vivekananda. While highlighting the relevance of Swami Vivekananda in the contemporary times, Dr. Gupta said that today’s India was at the cusp of revival as it had been cited by Swami Vivekananda in his Chicago speech of 1893. India has potential power of youth which is crucial for the development of the nation. Swami ji in his Chicago speech told the people of his country and Western world that due to her rich spiritual heritage, India was and will be a world leader. And that is how we perceive India to be in future.

Commencing her speech, Km. Nivedita Bhide said that Swami Vivekananda’s teachings and personality is so vibrant and relevant across the globe that wherever we go, we are heartily welcomed and respected. Swami Vivekananda’s teachings have inspired people in such manner that they are contributing to the welfare of the society at larger scales, which proves his relevance in asserting peace and harmony internally and externally. His inspiration is relevant in contemporary time where everyone has become self-centered and has lost national consciousness. We seem to have forgotten the ethos of our existence that is the ‘Ideology of Oneness’. Swami Vivekananda, to arouse the national consciousness among us, has asked us to focus on the commonalities of Hindu Society that is ‘Notion of Oneness’. If this ideology is lost, an ethnically, culturally and religiously diverse India would be fragmented. Swami Ji stressed on changing the distorted systems which are disparaging to our ‘Ideology of Oneness’.

According to Swami Vivekananda, each soul is potentially divine and the goal of life is to manifest that divinity by controlling the human nature externally and internally. Moreover, while highlighting the Dharma preached by Swami Vivekananda, the speaker said that practicing our duty towards family, society and country is the real Dharma as we are a part of them and we have our duties toward all these collectives simultaneously. She further illustrated that Indian people since the ancient times have travelled to far lands, have always respected each and every local culture and traditions and integrated them. They helped in increasing the understanding of the locals with our repository of spiritual knowledge, peace and harmony. It also helped in broadening up the spiritual understandings.

While quoting Swami Vivekananda, Km. Nivedita Bhide said that “Not a single atom can move without dragging the whole universe with it”, that means, we are connected with the whole world but when we reduce the scope of our actions, the degeneration starts. In the teachings of Swami Vivekananda, ‘the primary purpose of our nation is to spread spiritualism and to lead world spiritually’. In her concluding remarks, she stressed on the relevance of Swami Vivekananda in arousing national consciousness, direction to national regeneration and its methodology remains crucial for wellbeing and consistency of our nation.

The talk was followed by the question answer session which further enthralled audience.

Event Date 
October 13, 2018

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