Staff Reporter

Releases biography of Swami Ranganathananda at Puranattukara

Thrissur: Only a spiritual renaissance can solve the problems of the world, Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha L.K. Advani has said.

He was addressing a meeting to release a biography of Swami Ranganathananda, former head of the Sri Ramakrishna Mission, at Puranattukara here on Sunday.

“Swami Ranganathananda was the greatest messenger of the teachings of Sri Ramakrishna and Vivekananda in the 20th century. The message of Swami Ranganathananda’s life was simple: passion for the divine and love for mankind. He told the world that the teachings of Ramakrishna Paramahansa and Vivekananda were reliable guides to tackle problems and challenges of worldly life. These problems can be addressed only through spiritual orientation,” Mr. Advani said.

He remembered his association with Swami Ranganathananda. “I knew Swamiji when he was head of the Sri Ramakrishna Mission in Karachi between 1942 and 1948. He was a great influence in my formative years. EverySunday evening, I would attend his lectures on the Bhagavad Gita.

“I was spellbound by his lectures and personality. I left Karachi in September 1947. The Mission found it difficult to continue its activities in Karachi and Swamiji returned to India with a heavy heart in early 1948. I was in constant touch with him when he later headed Mission units in New Delhi, Hyderabad and Calcutta. I met him for the last time in February 2005 (he died on April 25, 2005). He was fond of me,” Mr. Advani said.

He said Mohammed Ali Jinnah had once heard Swami Ranganathananda’s lecture and remarked, “Now I know how a true Muslim should be.”

T.I. Radhakrishnan, president of Swami Rangathananda Centre, presided over the function.

Mar Aprem, Metropolitan of the Chaldean Syrian Church; O. Rajagopal, Bharatiya Janata Party leader; Swami Sakrananda; Swami Prashanthananda; C. K. Chandrappan, MP; Therambil Ramakrishnan, MLA; and T.G. Ravi, president of the Cochin Devaswom Board; were among those present on the occasion.