“Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached.” Swami Vivekananda was a beacon of inspiration for the youth and a paragon of virtue and kindness.
National Book Trust, India (under Ministry of Education) organized an Online Lecture to mark the National Youth Day 2021 and Swami Vivekananda’s 158th Birth Anniversary — celebrated with great fervour throughout the country. The topic of the lecture was ‘Life and Message of Swami Vivekananda and the Relevance of his Message to the Contemporary Modern World’.
Swami Kirtipradananda, Registrar, Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda Educational and Research Institute (RKMVERI) and Chief Guest at the event in his address talked about the life and message of Swami Vivekananda and shared his discerning views on the glorious and inspiring message that was his life.
“Swami Vivekananda,” he said, “was the true architect of modern India. We live in a free and democratic country today, growing from strength to strength, yet still holding on to our national identity without foregoing the separate religious identities because of Swamiji’s vision.” Swami Kirtipradananda also shared in brief the story of Swami Vivekananda’s life since birth to the historic speech at the First World’s Parliament of Religions in Chicago, as he became India’s spiritual ambassador and pleaded eloquently for better understanding between India and the New World in order to create a healthy synthesis of East and West, of religion and science. In his country of birth, Swami Vivekananda is regarded as the patriot saint of modern India and an inspirer of her dormant national consciousness.
Prof. Govind Prasad Sharma, Chairman NBT in his welcome address spoke about how the assimilation and propagation of Swami Vivekananda’s life’s work is the need of the hour. He said that if one is to truly understand the essence of India then they need not go further than understanding Swami Vivekananda himself. Swami Vivekananda always stood for the nation, her progress and her awakening, with patriotism always in his head and heart.
Shri Yuvraj Malik, Director NBT in his closing address opined that Swami Vivekananda was the personification of the Indian knowledge tradition. He said that Swami Vivekananda’s message of fearlessness and abdication of self doubt should be inculcated by everyone in their daily lives. His life and teachings are of inestimable value, as relevant today as they were in the past. He was a true ambassador of the country for showing the world India’s strength through his innate devotion to the people and the society at large.