Reform Movements

  • Social reformers like Raja Ram Mohan, Dayanand Saraswati and Vivekananda were responsible for the social and cultural awakening in India.
  • Ram Mohan Roy established the Brahmo Samaj at Calcutta in 1828 to purify Hinduism and to preach monotheism.
  • He published Brahmonical Magazine in English, Sambad Kaumudi in Bengali and Mirat-ul-Akbar in Persian.
  • In collaboration with David Hare, he set up the Hindu College at Calcutta.
  • He urged Lord William Bentinck to abolish the practice of Sati legally.
  • He established the Atmiya Sabha (Society of Friends) and it was developed into Brahmo Sabha in August 1828.
  • Debendranath Tagore renamed the Amitya Sabha as Brahmo Samaj.
  • He intensified reformist ideal by founding the Tatta Bodhini Sabha and Tatta Bodhini Patrika to spread Brahmo Samaj ideas.
  • Keshab Chandra Sen joined the Brahmo Samaj in 1858 and became its Acharya or main preacher.
  • He was the Editor of the famous English journal, the Indian Mirror.
  • Adi Brahmo Samaj upheld pure Upanishadic ideals. Keshab Chandra Sen formed the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj.
  • Arya Samaj was started by Dayanand Saraswati in Bombay in 1875.
  • Dayanand wrote the book Satyartha Prakash which contains his ideas.
  • His motto was “Back to the Vedas”.
  • He was against idol worship, child marriage and caste system based on birth.
  • He encouraged intercaste marriages and widow remarriage.
  • He started the Shuddhi movement to bring back those Hindus who had converted to other religions, to its fold.
  • The first Vedic School was established at Farrukhabad in 1869 with 50 students.
  • It helped spread education by founding Anglo-Vedic College and helped to impart pure Vedic education by establishing the Gurukul centre at Haridwar.
  • Sir Syed Ahmed Khan founded the Aligarh Anglo Oriental College.
  • It later became the Aligarh Muslim University.
  • Caste system was the most inhuman system of Hindu religion.
  • Jotiba Phule - an activist, thinker, social reformer, writer, philosopher, and theologian was one of the first to raise his voice against the system.
  • He and his wife, Savitribai started the first school for Indian girls.
  • He initiated widow-remarriage and started a home for upper caste widows.
  • He established a home for new-born infants to prevent female infanticide.
  • He formed the Satya Shodhak Samaj (Society of Seekers of Truth).
  • Jyotirao Phule wrote the book Gulamgiri (Slavery).
  • Phule is also known as “The Father of Indian Social Revolution".
  • Narayan Guru was fondly known as Gurudevan.
  • He established the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP) in Kerala.
  • His main objective was to discard untouchability towards castes below the Ezhavas.
  • He built temples and devathanams and opened them to all communities.
  • He simplified Brahmanical rituals and marriages and funerals.
  • He organised some ‘temple entry protests’ for lower castes.
  • Veerasalingam published Satihitabodhini, a special magazine for women in order to enlighten women about their rights.
  • He organised Rajahmundry Social Reform Association.
  • It launched anti-nautch movement to discourage the hire of nautch girls for celebration.

 

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