Dayananda Saraswati, Swami
(1930– )
   teacher and scholar of advaita Vedanta
   Swami Dayananda Saraswati has contributed greatly to the spread of knowledge of VEDANTA, by training hundreds of teachers and through his own study and teaching.
   Natarajan Iyer was born on August 15, 1930, the second son of Valambal and Gopala Iyer in the small village of Manjakkudi in Thanjavar District in Tamil Nadu, India. He was raised in a tradi-tional Brahmin family who primarily made their living selling coconuts. Described by family mem-bers as quiet, reflective, dispassionate, yet daring, Natarajan helped to manage his family’s small plot of land after his father died when the boy was only eight. An excellent student, Natarajan excelled in all subjects related to logic, including physics and mathematics. He was known to be a voracious reader, harboring a large collection of books in his small home, where he regularly read until early morning.
   Forced to grow up rapidly, and unable to afford college, Natarajan moved to Madras (now Chennai) to find a job that would allow him to continue his studies. He learned stenography and typewriting and began a career as a journalist with a job at a weekly, Dharmika Hind. When the paper seemed to be failing, he joined the air force as a combatant and was posted to the Ground Train-ing Station in Bangalore; after military service, he returned to journalism, with an interim period as campaign manager for an independent candidate for state assembly, when he fine-tuned his public speaking skills.
   In 1952 he was still waiting for his promised position with the prestigious newspaper Indian Express, when he accidentally met Swami CHINMA-YANANDA during a 41-day public teaching. At the end of the teachings Natrajan volunteered to orga-nize the feeding of the poor, which traditionally followed a period of study and sacrifice. Swami Chinmayananda, attracted to Natrajan’s earnest-ness and organization skills, informed him that he would return the following year for further teach-ings. The 22-year-old Natrajan was certain that he was meant to pursue these teachings and thus became an active member of the newly formed Chinmaya Mission, an organization inspired by the vision of Swami Chinmayananda. His previous experience in journalism and editing put him very close to Swami Chinmayananda.
   In 1957 Natarajan gave up his work to follow Swami Chinmayananda. In 1962 he was the sec-ond student to be initiated into SANNYAS (renun-ciation) by Swami Chinmayananda and was given the name Swami Dayananda Saraswati. He would later continue his development as a teacher under the tutelage of several teachers, including Swami Pranavananda of Gudiwada.
   Known today as an authoritative teacher of traditional ADVAITA VEDANTA and an accomplished scholar of Hinduism, Swami Dayananda has con-ducted six three-year residential courses in both India and the United Sates, producing well over 300 Vedanta teachers around the world.
   He has established three institutions: two in India, the ARSHA VIDYA GURUKULUM in Coimbatore, which offers three-year residential courses, and the Swami Dayananda Ashram in Rishikesh, a retreat center and place for continued studies, and the Arsha Vidya Gurukulam in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, which serves as a retreat center and venue for residential courses.
   Swami Dayananda is known for his scholar-ship, his depth of understanding, and his appre-ciation for Western culture, attributes that give him a wide appeal. He travels the world teach-ing in a variety of venues, including American universities and international conventions. He has presented papers at UNESCO and the United Nations, where he participated in the Millennium Peace Summit. In November 2001, in Delhi, he convened the First World Congress for the Pres-ervation of Religious Diversity, inaugurated by the Dalai Lama and former Indian prime minister Vajpayee. Swami Dayananda also actively par-ticipated in forming the Women’s Global Peace Initiative, which convened at the United Nations in Geneva in October 2002.
   In addition to teaching, Swami Dayananda emphasizes a commitment to peace and social justice. He instituted the All India Movement (AIM) for Seva, a public service organization that provides medical, educational, nutritional, and social support to villagers in remote rural Indian communities.
   Further reading: Padma Narasimhan, Swami Day-ananda Saraswati (Madras: TT. Maps & Publications, 1990).

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dayananda Saraswati (Chinmaya Mission) — Swami Dayananda Saraswati Swami Dayananda Saraswati (दयानन्‍द सरस्‍वती) (born August 15, 1930)[1] is a monk of the Hindu monastic order and a renowned traditional teacher of Advaita Vedanta. Contents …   Wikipedia

  • Swami Dayananda Saraswati — Note:This page is about the founder of the Arya Samaj. For others known by the same name, please see Swami Dayananda (disambiguation) Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati Born 12 February 1824(1824 02 12) Tankara …   Wikipedia

  • Swami Dayananda Saraswati — (hindi: स्‍वामी दयानन्‍द सरस्‍वती; * 1824 in Tankara, Gujarat, Indien; † 30. Oktober 1883 in Ajmer, Rajasthan, Indien) war ein reformistischer Gelehrter des Hinduismus. Leben Dayananda wurde in einer orthodoxen Brahmanenfamilie unter dem Namen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Dayananda Saraswati — Swami Dayananda Saraswati (hindi: स्‍वामी दयानन्‍द सरस्‍वती; * 1824 in Tankara, Gujarat, Indien; † 30. Oktober 1883 in Ajmer, Rajasthan, Indien) war ein reformistischer Gelehrter des Hinduismus. Leben Dayananda wurde in einer orthodoxen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Swami Dayananda Sarasvati — Swami Dayananda Saraswati (1930 ) is a distinguished Hindu teacher of Vedanta and Sanskrit in the tradition of Adi Shankara.After receiving sannyasa (formal renunciation) in 1962, he devoted his life to the study and teaching of Vedanta, Swami… …   Wikipedia

  • Swami Dayananda (disambiguation) — Swami Dayananda can refer to:* Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Hindu religious leader and founder of the Arya Samaj. * Swamini Dayananda Saraswati, Yoga leader president of International Yoga Federation and founder of the Purna Yoga Integral… …   Wikipedia

  • Swami Dayananda Sarasvati — Swami Dayananda Saraswati (hindi: स्‍वामी दयानन्‍द सरस्‍वती; * 1824 in Tankara, Gujarat, Indien; † 30. Oktober 1883 in Ajmer, Rajasthan, Indien) war ein reformistischer Gelehrter des Hinduismus. Leben Dayananda wurde in einer orthodoxen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Swami Shraddhanand — Born February 2, 1856(1856 02 02) Talwan Village, Jalandhar, India Died December 23, 1926 …   Wikipedia

  • Dayananda — Swami Dayananda Saraswati (hindi: स्‍वामी दयानन्‍द सरस्‍वती; * 1824 in Tankara, Gujarat, Indien; † 30. Oktober 1883 in Ajmer, Rajasthan, Indien) war ein reformistischer Gelehrter des Hinduismus. Leben Dayananda wurde in einer orthodoxen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Swami Indravesh — (Hindi:स्वामी इन्द्रवेश) (1937 – 2006) was a social worker, Arya Samaj leader and formerly Member of Parliament. He has done work in the field of education. He was born in Sundana village in 1937 in Haryana in a Hindu Jat family of Dhaka gotra.… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”