Emergence of Indian Renaissance

Reformist Groups during Indian Renaissance

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Reformist Groups during Indian Renaissance
The religious reformers and reformists groups played an integral part in the ushering in of Indian renaissance, though they also functioned at regional levels. Brahmo Samaj was the society formed by the ideas of developing a universal religion, whose ideology to a large extent was derived from the Isa Upanishad, a monotheistic Hindu scripture. Ideas behind Raja Ram Mohan Roy`s Brahmo Movement included abolition of caste system, abolition of dowry, and abolition of Sati and improvement of the educational system.

There were many other groups that developed during this period. Hindu Dharma Sabha was founded in 1830 by Raja Ram Mohan Roy to limit the intrusion of English culture in India. Sanatan Singh Sabha was the original Singh Sabha formed in 1873 by Sikhs in Amritsar to recover a distinctive Sikhism. Tattvabodhini Sabha was an essential reformist organisation, which was founded by Debendranath Tagore to popularise Brahmo Dharma or Brahmo faith. Paramahansa Yogananda founded Yogoda Satsanga Society in 1917 on the banks of the Ganga River at Dakshineswar Kali Temple. Vinayak Damodar Savarkar or Veer Savarkar formed the Ratnagiri Hindu Sabha in 1924, aiming to the preservation of Hindu social and cultural heritage. Nikhil Manipuri Mahasabha was initially a Hindu nationalist organisation of Manipur, formed by Maharaja Churachand Singh.

Keshab Chandra Sen founded the Sangat Sabhas, Believer`s Associations in 1860. These Sabhas comprised small discussion groups that met on a weekly basis, but his energetic disciples soon showed an inclination for action rather than mere discussions. Hitaishini Ganga Dharma Sabha was founded in Haridwar for the benefit of the cow, social order and the holy River Ganges. The Radhasoami Satsang Beas, based in Northern India, is a philosophical organisation, following the spiritual teachings of all religions. Manav Dharma Sabha was one of the earliest socio-religious reform movements in Gujarat and British India, founded on 22nd June 1844. Prarthana Samaj, or the Prayer Society in Sanskrit, is a movement for religious and social reform in Maharashtra that was based on previous reform movements and traditions of the state.

Nowrozjee Furdoonjee and Dadabhai Naoroji founded the Rahnumai Mazdayasnan Sabha and put in considerable efforts. The Sabha was meant for the purification of Zoroastrian religion, which was being prejudiced by Hindu elements.

India did not merely stand still, while Europe had gone on towards some bright goal during the renaissance period. India had moved and carried its history with it as well, not merely in books but in its thoughts and evolution.

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