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Unique. INDIA religious rare ind Keshab Chandra Sen Brahma Samaj POSSIBLY UNIQUE
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Unique. INDIA religious rare ind Keshab Chandra Sen Brahma Samaj POSSIBLY UNIQUE:
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A fantastically rare CDV photograph of Keshab Chandra Sen from c1860-1880Keshub Chandra Sen (Bengali: কেশবচন্দ্র সেন; also spelled Keshab Chunder Sen; 19 November 1838 – 8 January 1884) was a Hindu philosopher and social reformer who attempted to incorporate Christian theology within the framework of Hindu thought. Born a Hindu in the Bengal Presidency of British India, he became a member of the Brahmo Samaj in 1857[1] but established his own breakaway \"Bharatvarshiya Brahmo Samaj\" in 1866[2] while the Brahmo Samaj remained under the leadership of Debendranath Tagore (who headed the Brahmo Samaj till his death in 1905).[3] In 1878, his followers abandoned him after the underage child marriage of his daughter which exposed his campaign against child marriage as hollow.[4] Later in his life he came under the influence of Ramakrishna and founded a syncretic \"New Dispensation\" inspired by Christianity, Vaishnav bhakti, and other Hindu practices.


Keshub Chandra Sen (Bengali: কেশবচন্দ্র সেন; also spelled Keshab Chunder Sen; 19 November 1838 – 8 January 1884) was a Hindu philosopher and social reformer who attempted to incorporate Christian theology within the framework of Hindu thought. Born a Hindu in the Bengal Presidency of British India, he became a member of the Brahmo Samaj in 1857[1] but established his own breakaway \"Bharatvarshiya Brahmo Samaj\" in 1866[2] while the Brahmo Samaj remained under the leadership of Debendranath Tagore (who headed the Brahmo Samaj till his death in 1905).[3] In 1878, his followers abandoned him after the underage child marriage of his daughter which exposed his campaign against child marriage as hollow.[4] Later in his life he came under the influence of Ramakrishna and founded a syncretic \"New Dispensation\" inspired by Christianity, Vaishnav bhakti, and other Hindu practices.
Early life and educationKeshub Chandra Sen was born on 19 November 1838 into an affluent Bengali Baidya[5] family of Calcutta (now Kolkata). His family originally belonged to Garifa village on the banks of the river Hooghly. His grandfather was Ramkamal Sen (1783–1844), a well known pro-sati Hindu activist and lifelong opponent of Ram Mohan Roy[6] His father Peary Mohan Sen died when he was ten, and Sen was brought up by his uncle. As a boy, he attended the Bengali Pathshala elementary school and later attended Hindu College in 1845.[7]
CareerIn 1855 he founded an evening school for the children of working men, which continued through 1858. In 1855, he became Secretary to the Goodwill Fraternity,[8] a Masonic [9] lodge associated with the Unitarian Rev. Charles Dall and a Christian missionary Rev. James Long who also helped Sen establish a \"British Indian Association\" in the same year.[10] Around this time he began to be attracted to the ideas of the Brahmo Samaj.[7]Keshub Sen was also briefly appointed as Secretary of the Asiatic Society in 1854. For a short time thereafter Sen was also a clerk in the Bank of Bengal, but resigned his post to devote himself exclusively to literature and philosophy.[11] On this, Professor Oman who knew him well writes, \"Endowed with an emotional temperament, earnest piety, a gift of ready speech and a strong leaven of vanity, Keshub Chunder Sen found the sober, monotonous duties of a bank clerk intolerable, and very soon sought a more congenial field for the exercise of his abilities.\" and he formally joined the Brahma Samaj in 1859.[12]
Brahmo SamajIn 1857 Sen again took employment in clerkship, this time as private secretary to Dwijendranath Tagore and joined the Brahmo Samaj. In 1859, Sen dedicated himself to the organisational work of the Brahmo Samaj and in 1862 was assigned, by Hemendranath Tagore, a stipendary ministry (Acharya) of one of its worship house.In 1858, left his home in Coolootola and took refuge in the Jorasanko House of the Tagore family when the patriarch of the family was then away. In 1862 Sen helped found the Albert College and wrote articles for the Indian Mirror, a weekly journal of the Calcutta Brahmo Samaj in which social and moral subjects were debated.[11]In 1863 he wrote The Brahma Samaj Vindicated. He strongly criticised Christianity and travelled about the country lecturing and preaching that the Brahmo Samaj was intended to revitalise Hindu religion through use of ancient Hindu sources and the authority of the Vedas.[11] By 1865, however, Sen was convinced that only Christian doctrine could bring new life to Hindu society.[13]In November 1865 he was caused to leave the Brahma Samaj after \"an open break with its founder Debendranath Tagore\" over Christian practices in Brahmoism, and the next year (1866) with encouragement of the Unitarian preacher Charles Dall he joined another new organisation, BharatBarshiya Brahmo Samaj, as its Secretary ( President being \"God\"). Tagore\'s Brahmo Samaj then quickly purged itself of Sen\'s Christian teaching, and encouraged being described as Adi Brahmo Samaj to distinguish it from Sen\'s deliberately eponymous version.[14]
ChristianityIn 1866 Sen delivered an address on \"Jesus Christ, Europe and Asia\", in which he proclaimed that \"India would be for Christ alone who already stalks the land\", and which fostered the impression that he was about to embrace Christianity.[15][14]Professor Oman writes \"From the time of his secession from the parent Society, Keshub by his writings and public lectures enlisted the sympathies of the Viceroy, Sir John Lawrence, who took a deep interest in the work of the native reformer, particularly as Keshub had spoken publicly of Christ in terms which seemed to justify the belief that he was Christian in all but open profession of the faith.\"[16]This drew attention to him and in 1870 he journeyed to England where he remained for six months.[15] The reception in England disappointed him,[15] as he records much later in a letter to Max Müller The British public ought to know how the most advanced type of Hinduism in India is trying to absorb and assimilate the Christianity of Christ, and how it is establishing and spreading, under the name of the New Dispensation, a new Hinduism, which combines Yoga and Bhakti, and also a new Christianity, which blends together Apostolical faith and modern civilisation and science. It is this christianity.[citation needed] Love for SovereignIn 1870 Keshub introduced a new doctrine into his Church \"Love for the Sovereign\". Perceiving Christianity as a model tradition from which the Indians could learn, Keshub became convinced that the British presence in India served a divine purpose for the Indian people. At his historic 1870 meeting with the queen he expressed his positive attitude towards British rule, which gained him plaudits from his audience. This theological stand against Indian nationalism (then being propounded by the Brahmos under Hemendranath Tagore\'s new doctrine of \"Brahmos embrace the co-existence of Brahmo principles with governance, but oppose all governance in conflict with Brahmo principles.\") made Keshub the target of tremendous criticism at home.[17] In 1868, Keshub laid the foundation stone of his new church, the Tabernacle of New Dispensation
Discord within the Brahmo Samaj of IndiaThe passage of the Special Marriages Act in 1872, caused great resentment among Brahmos that Sen had caused an inherent break with the Brahmo Dharma compiled by Maharshi Debendranath and forever associated with Tagore\'s Adi Brahmo Samaj. A powerful section of \"the Brahmo Samaj within the Brahmo Samaj of India\" and with reformist views more advanced than Keshub\'s, especially on women\'s education and upliftment, now openly complained that they were left with no religious status whatsoever other than to turn to Christ like their leader, which was distasteful to them or return to Brahmo Dharma\'s fold in disgrace. In 1873 Sen was caused to trenchantly counter this faction by the following speech: Whither is the spirit of God leading India? Towards the Brahmo Samaj? I say, No. To deny Heaven that is leading us onwards to his Holy Church would argue blind infidelity. You dare not deny that India is marching towards the Kingdom of Heaven. But the Brahmo Samaj, as it is, is not God\'s Holy Church; as it has no semblance whatever of the Kingdom of Heaven. Verily, verily, this Brahmo Samaj is a ridiculous caricature of the Church of God.[18]Annette Akroyd and the female emancipation controversyAround 1875 Sen was involved in a public controversy with Annette Akroyd a prominent feminist and social reformer who had sailed to India in October 1872. Akroyd was shocked by her discussions with Sen and felt that Sen, the rhetorician of women\'s education in England was a typical Hindu obscurantist back home in India, trying to keep knowledge from the minds of women. This dispute spilled into the native press and had its impact on the Bethune School. Akroyd was also dismayed with Sen\'s associates such as Bijoy Krishna Goswami, Aghore Nath Gupta and Gour Govinda Ray who were traditionally Hindu in educational background and resisting the education of women in British India. Mr. Sen had a strong prejudice against university education, in fact, against what is generally regarded as high education, of women. He objected to teaching them, for instance, such subjects as Mathematics, Philosophy and Science, whereas the advanced party positively wanted to give their daughters and sisters what is generally regarded as high education. They did not object to their university education and were not disposed to make much difference in point of education between men and women. There was no hope of compromise between two such extreme schools of thought, Accordingly, the radical party proceeded to start a separate female school of their own, called the Hindu Mahila Vidyalaya for the education of the adult young ladies belonging to their party. The successful manner in which they carried on the work of this school under Miss Akroyd, subsequently Mrs. Beveridge, attracted much public notice and was highly praised by the officers of Government. This school did excellent work for many years and was subsequently conducted under the name of the Banga Mahila Vidyalaya and was at last amalgamated with the Bethune College for ladies, to which it furnished some of its most distinguished students.[19]Mysticism controversiesHe developed a tendency towards mysticism and a greater leaning to the spiritual teaching of the Indian philosophies. He gave his daughter,[citation needed] Suniti Devi in marriage to Maharaja Nripendra Narayan of Cooch Behar; he revived the performance of mystical plays, and himself took part in one. These changes alienated many of his followers, who deserted his standard and founded the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj in 1878.[15]Sen did what he could to reinvigorate his followers with new ideas and phrases, such as \"The New Dispensation\", the \"Holy Spirit\". He also instituted a sacramental meal of rice and water similar to the Sikh system of Amrit (nectar) initiation for new converts.[15] He also attempted a wider appeal to Indians with a more mystical approach. The Ethnographer General writes:- From about this period, or a little before, Keshub Chandar Sen appears to have attempted to make a wider appeal to Indians by developing the emotional side of his religion. And he gradually relapsed from a pure unitarian theism into what was practically Hindu pantheism and the mysticism of the Yogis. At the same time he came to consider himself an inspired prophet, and proclaimed himself as such.[20]One example of his new doctrines were described by Professor Oman: In 1873 he brought forward the doctrine of Adesh or special inspiration, declaring emphatically that inspiration is not only possible, but a veritable fact in the lives of many devout souls in this age. The following years witnessed a marked development of that essentially Asiatic and perhaps more especially Indian form of religious feeling, which finds its natural satisfaction in solitary ecstatic contemplation. As a necessary consequence an order of devotees was established in 1876, divided into three main classes, which in ascending gradation were designated Shabaks, Bhaktas and Yogis. The lowest class, divided into two sections, is devoted to religious study and the practical performance of religious duties, including doing good to others.[21]On his return to India he established the Indian Reform Association, which had five areas of activity: inexpensive literature, female improvement, education, temperance, and charity. In two lectures delivered between 1881 and 1883 he shared his latest doctrines. They were \"That Marvelous Mystery – the Trinity\" and \"Asia\'s Message to Europe\". The latter is an eloquent plea against the Europeanizing of Asia, as well as a protest against Western sectarianism. During the intervals of his last illness he wrote The New Samhita, or the Sacred Laws of the Aryans of the New Dispensation. He died on 8 January 1884. His Hindu funeral was attended by over 2000 people.[22]
Ramakrishna\'s influenceIn 1876 the then unknown Ramakrishna Paramhansa came looking for Sen and first met him at Sadhan Kanan. Ramakrishna\'s poor, rough, unconventional exterior had earlier repelled other Brahmo celebrities like Debendranath Tagore whom Ramakrishna had approached;[23] and even Sen initially showed no affinity towards Ramakrishna\'s mysticism, and was hostile. He was won over to Ramakrishna less by his teachings than by his manner, which Keshub Sen identified with the behaviour of an authentic saint.[24] When Ramakrishna met him, Keshub had accepted Christianity, and had separated from the Brahmo Samaj. Formerly, Keshub had rejected idolatry practised by his family, but after coming under Ramakrishna\'s influence he again accepted Hindu polytheism and established the \"New Dispensation\" (Nava Vidhan) religious movement, which was based on Ramakrishna\'s principles—\"Worship of God as Mother\", \"All religions as true\".[25] His acceptance of idolatry created factions within his organisation. He also publicised Ramakrishna\'s teachings in the New Dispensation journal over a period of several years,[26] which was instrumental in bringing Ramakrishna to the attention of a wider audience, especially the Bhadralok and the Europeans residing in India.[27][28] Ramakrishna too had deep respect for Keshub. Ramakrishna said of him shortly before his death that \"the rose tree is to be transplanted because the gardener wants beautiful roses of him.\".[29]
Universal religionSen\'s primary quest was for a universal religion or belief-system. Sen established a syncretic school of spiritualism, called the Nabo offerhan or \'New Dispensation\', which he intended to amalgamate the best principles of Christianity and of the western spiritual tradition with Hinduism.[citation needed]His opponents felt that he had rejected completely the tenets of Brahmoism settled by Rammohun Roy (as cited by J.N. Farquahar and other scholars), and in January 1881, the New Dispensation was formally announced in the Sunday Mirror of 23 October: Our position is not that truths are to be found in all religions ; but that all the established religions of the world are true. There is a great deal of difference between the two assertions. The glorious mission of the New Dispensation is to harmonise religions and revelations, to establish the truth of every particular dispensation, and upon the basis of these particulars to establish the largest and broadest induction of a general and glorious proposition.[30]Sen adopted a number of ceremonies from both Hinduism and Christianity, calling God \"Mother\", and adopting the homa sacrifice and the \'arati\' ceremony (the waving of lights) into Brahma ritual. He found spiritual nourishment in Durga Puja, and composed a hymn of praise containing 108 names of God, along with other forms of worship that echoed traditional Hindu prayers.[30]The Nabo offerhan school generated considerable antagonism among Brahmo Samajists, since Sen\'s followers represented that they were also Brahmos. Eight Brahmos of Sylhet (now in Bangladesh) including Raj Chandra Chaudhuri and Pandit Sitanath Tattvabhushan issued the following proclamation in 1880: Let us all, every Brahmo and Brahmo Samaj, combine to let the world know that the New Dispensation is not the Brahmo religion: That we have not the least sympathy for the creed: That the New Dispensation is totally opposed to Brahmoism.[31]This proclamation of the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj resulted in 1881 of the formation of the Brahmo Conference Organisation to publicly denounce and expose Keshub Sen and his Nabo offerhan movement from every platform as being \"anti-Brahmo\" in terms of the aforesaid proclamation.[31]While Sen\'s detractors opposed and condemned him, he found appreciation in others.Bipin Chandra Pal has succinctly summarised the evolution: To Keshub, however, was left the work of organising Rammohun Roy\'s philosophy into a real universal religion through new rituals, liturgies, sacraments and disciplines, wherein were sought to be brought together not only the theories and doctrines of the different world religions but also their outer vehicles and formularies to the extent that these were real vehicles of their religious or spiritual life, divested, however, through a process of spiritual sifting, of their imperfections and errors and superstitions.[32]Chittaranjan Das explained Sen\'s attempt to create a universal religion. Speaking in 1917 he said: The earlier religion of his (Keshub Chunder Sen\'s) life was perhaps somewhat abstract. But his religion in developed form, as we find it, in his Navavidhan, is full of concrete symbols of all religions....Every Hindu is conscious of the underlying unity of this universalism. Read the devotional poems of the Vaishnavas, read the devotional poems of the Shaktas and the other sects, you will find they were identical in this character. The life and work of Keshub Chunder Sen also point to attempt after attempt at this very universalism....The result may or may not be considered satisfactory. But I refuse to judge it by the results. I rejoice in the glory of the attempt.[33][citation needed]Personal lifeKeshub Chandra Sen was married to Jagonmohini Sen. The couple had ten children: five sons – Karuna Chandra Sen, Nirmal Chandra Sen, Prafulla Chandra Sen, Saral Chandra Sen,[34] and Dr. Subroto Sen; and five daughters – Suniti Devi (Maharani of Cooch Behar), Sabitri Devi, Sucharu Devi (Maharani of Mayurbhanj), Monica Devi and Sujata Devi. Classical singer Naina Devi (1917–1993) and actress and dancer Sadhana Bose (1914–1973), daughters of Saral Sen, were his granddaughters.[35] One of his grandsons, Erroll Chunder Sen (c.1899–c.1942) became a pioneer Indian aviator who served in the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force during the First World War. His other grandsons included cricketers Prince Hitendra Narayan, Maharaja Jitendra Narayan, Maharaja Rajendra Narayan and Prince Victor Nityendra Narayan. Jitendra Narayan\'s children Maharani Gayatri Devi, Maharaja Jagaddipendra Narayan, Indrajitendra Narayan, Ila Devi and Menaka Devi were his great grandchildren.[citation needed] Q1 What is the \"Brahmo Samaj\" ?
A1 The Brahmo Samaj, represents a body of men who are struggling, in India, to establish the worship of the Supreme Being in spirit as opposed to the prevailing idolatry of the land. The movement was started on the 20th of August, 1828, by Raja Ram Mohun Roy and his friends by opening a place of public worship on the Chitpore Road in Calcutta, and was duly and publicly inaugurated in January, 1830, by the consecration of the first house of prayer , now known as the Adi Brahmo Samaj. {NB: Sadharan Brahmo Samaj = General Community of Worshippers of the One God). The philosophy of Brahmo Samaj is contained in the Brahmo Dharma written in 1848 by Debendranath Tagore.Q2 Why was the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj formed ? ?
A2 The Statement of 5 Reasons, lists why the anti-Brahmo Keshub Sen was abandoned in 1878We owe to the general Brahmo Public a statement of the reasons that have led us to form a separate and independent organization. We beg to inform them by this declaration that up to this time there is no regularly constituted body in the Brahmo Samaj to represent the views of the general Brahmo Community, and as a result of this sad want, the Church is a prey to manifold and serious evils. It seems never to have formed a part of the aim and object of the Adi Brahmo Samaj to organize and represent the general Brahmo Church ; whilst the constitution of the Somaj founded more than 12 years ago under the name of Brahmo Samaj of India is not at all favourable to the attainment of that object. It does not appear that during this pretty long period the Secretary has ever acted under the instructions of, or in consultation with, an executive committee; nor does it seem that any code of rules has ever been framed for the regulation and management of the society, even so much so, that the very question who are its members and who are not, has often been quite a puzzle on occasions of referenceDuring this long period, every important work connected with the society, such as the collection and disbursement of funds the appointment or removal of missionaries, etc., has been done exclusively at the option and by the authority of the Secretary. What could be a stronger illustration of this arbitrary way of proceeding than the fact that no trust-deed has yet been drawn up of the public building erected so long as nine years ago, by public subscription, as the house of worship of the Brahmo Samaj of India, and this in spite of repeated efforts made by members of the Samaj in private, as well as in public meetings, to have a trust-deed drawn up and trustees appointed ? But all these efforts to have the Brahmo Samaj property removed from uncontrolled individual authority and placed under the legal possession of the general Brahmo community have hitherto failed, owing to the aversion or indifference of the office-bearers. Whilst there was this unconstitutional and arbitrary way of proceeding on the one hand, many erroneous and superstitious doctrines were also being silently introduced into the Church on the other.For fear of causing a division, we had so long passed over those breaches of constitutional conduct and the preaching of those corrupt doctrines. We have often seen the views and opinions of a few individuals given out and accepted as the opinions of the whole Church we have often heard many un-Brahmic doctrines preached in the name of the Brahmo Samaj of India, and as a consequence of the acceptance of these erroneous doctrines, we have also seen several members prostrating themselves at the feet of an individual, and many others leaving the Samaj in disgust and horror at such proceedings. We have often felt the whole Church, and ourselves with it, lowered in the estimation of the public on account of the foolish conduct of some individual members. But yet we have long, and in patience, suffered all this, in our anxiety to avoid an open rupture. But now, unfortunately, there have risen special causes to make independent action necessary on our part to preserve the purity and conserve the best interests of our Church Keshab Chandra Sen (1838-1884), a great intellectual and well-known Brahma leader of nineteenth-century Bengal, founded a new \'universal\' religion - Naba offerhan - in 1880 (New Dispensation). He was born into a \'modernist\' family and inherited his grandfather\'s organizational skills as well as his father\'s spirit of vaisnava devotion. This article focuses on the life and contributions of Keshab Chandra Sen to the UPSC Exams.Table of Contents Keshab Chandra Sen - Background
Keshab Chandra Sen - Ideology
Keshab Chandra Sen - Contributions
Keshab Chandra Sen - Women Upliftment
Keshab Chandra Sena and Brahmo Samaj
Schism between Keshab Chandra Sen and Others
Conclusion
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MCQsKeshab Chandra SenKeshab Chandra Sen
Background
Keshab Chandra Sen - Background Keshub Chandra Sen was born on November 19, 1838, in an affluent family in Calcutta. He was ten years old when he lost his father, Peary Mohan, and was raised by his uncle.
He was appointed secretary of the Asiatic Society in 1854. He also worked as a bank clerk, but the monotonous clerical work bore him.
His grandfather, Ramkamal Sen (1783-1844) was the first Indian secretary of the Asian Society, the compiler of the first English-Bengali Dictionary (two volumes published in 1830 and 1834), and one of the founders of the Hindu College (1817), the Calcutta School-Book Society (1818), and the Sanskrit College (1824).
He read Theodore Parker\'s works and was influenced by him as an American Transcendentalist, and he delivered speeches on religion and morality.
Sen was influenced by Christian teachings and sought to incorporate them into the Hindu framework. He believed that only Christian doctrine could breathe new life into Hindu society.
He was also impressed by the discipline of Christian missionary work, and he began to practice it himself.Other Relevant Links
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Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar Raja Ram Mohan Roy
Mahadev Govind Ranade Annie Besant
Syed Ahmad Khan Baba Dayal Das
Jyotiba Phule Dr.Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
Ideology
Keshab Chandra Sen - Ideology Throughout his life, Keshab Chandra Sen\'s ideology evolved, and he emphasized different issues at different times.
He placed more emphasis on religious issues at times, and less emphasis on social changes at other times.
Keshab Chandra took on the role of a religious Guru in the latter half of his life, preaching his vision of religion.
He had a charismatic personality, and the religious path he chose is known as new-Vaishnavism.
Even though he was responsible for many splits in the Brahmo Samaj, including the first schism, he was unquestionably one of the most discussed and popular social reformers in Bengal during the British period.
He also emerged as a pivotal figure in the history of socio-religious movements in India.Contributions
Keshab Chandra Sen - Contributions In his early years, he was involved in the activities of the British Indian Association. He joined the Brahmo Samaj in 1857 and was regarded as the movement\'s most youthful member.
During this period, in1860, the Sangat Sabha was founded–a society of fellow believers formed to promote mutual spiritual intercourse among its members.
This sabha sowed the seeds of new Brahmoism in syncretism with Christian tenets to create a truly universal religion. As a result, he significantly expanded and broadened Brahmoism.
He, along with the Brahmo Samaj of India, worked tirelessly for the upliftment and education of girls.
Sen was instrumental in the establishment of the Albert College in 1862, as well as the Bethune College for Ladies and several other schools.
He also spread the goodwill of their philosophy by extensively traveling throughout India, particularly in the south, as well as through the daily \"Dharma Tattwa\" and the weekly \"Indian Mirror.\"
He also developed a syncretic religious philosophy known as \"The New Dispensation,\" which promoted fraternity and love while condemning the evils that persisted and enunciating the ideology \"God is Conscience.\"
He also founded the \"Indian Reform Association.\" While many Brahmo Samaj members opposed it, many others praised it.
His detractors claimed that Sen had strayed from the Samaj\'s core ideologies, whereas his supporters claimed that he was realizing Raja Ram Mohan Roy\'s philosophy of a universal religion.
He was also considered close to Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and adopted many of his ideas.Women Upliftment
Keshab Chandra Sen - Women Upliftment Sen advocated widow remarriage and inter-caste marriages while preaching against child marriage. He was also a driving force behind the legalization of native marriages.
In 1870, he met the British monarch Queen Victoria and expressed his acceptance of British rule, which enraged the people of his home country.
His acceptance of British rule was theological, but he was harshly criticized in India.
He was chastised for marrying his daughter to the Prince of Cooch Behar. His daughter was only about 14 years old at the time, and the prince was about 15 years old.
His associates mocked him for his ostensibly anti-child marriage stance and his actual actions.Keshab Chandra Sena and Brahmo Samaj
Keshab Chandra Sena and Brahmo Samaj When Keshab Chandra Sen was appointed acharya by Debendranath Tagore shortly after the latter joined the Brahmo Samaj in 1858, the Brahmo Samaj experienced a new surge of energy.
Keshab was instrumental in popularizing the movement, and branches of the Samaj were established outside of Bengal, including the United Provinces, Punjab, Bombay, Madras, and other cities.Schism between Keshab Chandra Sen and Others
Schism between Keshab Chandra Sen and Others Debendranath did not agree with some of Sen\'s radical ideas, such as cosmopolitanisation of Samaj meetings by including teachings from all religions and his strong opposition to the caste system, including open support for inter-caste marriages.
In 1865, Keshab Chandra Sen was removed from the position of acharya.
In 1866, Keshab and his followers established the Brahmo Samaj of India, while Debendranath Tagore\'s Samaj became known as the Adi Brahmo Samaj.
Keshab\'s inexplicable act of marrying his 13-year-old daughter to the minor Hindu Maharaja of Cooch-Behar with all the orthodox Hindu rituals in 1878 caused another split in Keshab\'s Brahmo Samaj of India.
Earlier, some of Keshab\'s followers began to regard him as an incarnation, much to the chagrin of his progressive followers. Furthermore, Keshab was being accused of authoritarianism.
After 1878, Keshab\'s disgruntled followers formed a new organization, the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj. Ananda Mohan Bose, Sib Chandra Deb, and Umeshchandra Dutta founded the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj.
It reaffirmed the Brahmo doctrines of belief in a Supreme Being, one God, the belief that no scripture or man is infallible, and faith in the dictates of reason, truth, and morality.
Early Life
Keshub Chandra Sen was the son of Peary Mohan Sen and the grandson of Dewan Ram Kamal Sen. He was born into a deeply religious Vaishnava family and from his childhood he was surrounded by religious influences.From an early part of his life he showed an aptitude for influencing other people\'s minds and at the age of 17, in 1855 he established \"The British India Society\" where Rev. James Long and Rev. Dall - the Unitarian missionary took part. The society opened an evening school at the house of Sen.Keshub Chandra Sen and his wife At this age there was an incident during a college examination which left a deep mark on him. He married in 1856 and in his lecture \"Am I an Inspired Prophet\" he writes \"I entered the world with ascetic ideas; and my honeymoon was spent amid auterities in the house of the Lord\".Joining Brahmo Samaj
He joined the Brahmo Samaj in 1857 by privately signing the Brahmo covenant and took to studying mental and moral philosophy. He developed prayer as means of spiritual illumination and sustenance. He studied the writings of Theodor Parker and developed a society called \"Goodwill Fraternity\" in his house and developed lectures on moral and religious subjects. Debendranath Tagore gave Keshub a warm welcome and an attachment sprang up between them the like of which has seldom been seen. Hundreds began to flock into the services of the Samaj to hear them speak and the songs composed by Satyendranath, the second son of Maharshi was the talk of the town. This can be regarded as the second great revival of the Brahmo Samaj.In 1859 he set up the Brahmo School where weekly lectures were delivered and was greatly popular with the rising generation. In 1860 he began publishing tracts which was the trumpet call of the new Brahmoism and the first chapter was called,\"Young Bengal, this is for you\".Sangat Sabha
During this time in 1860, the Sangat Sabha was established - which was a society of fellow believers to promote mutual spiritual intercourse amongst its members. This sabha sowed the seeds of new Brahmoism. Keshub broke away from the mere intellectual assent and imbibed a new inspiration from the Western sources. A careful study of the Bible, works of Theodor Parker and Prof. Newman brought about the Christian spirit of repentance and prayer.Brahmananda
On 13th April, 1862, Debendranath elevated Keshub Chandra Sen to the post of Minister or Acharya of the Samaj. After the divine service he presented him with a Brahmo Dharma and a formal appointment letter and conferred upon him the title of Brahmananda - meaning one whose delight is God. However this was not looked upon well by the older members of the Samaj and some of them ceased to attend the services. On 26th July 1861, the eldest daughter of Debendranath, Sukumari was married according to the reformed rites of the Brahmo Samaj. Debendranath followed the ritual of the orthodox Hindu marriages but excluded the idolatrous bits. This was hailed as a great step towards social reform.The Schism
The flames of the conflict between the young and the old were heightened furtherP C Mozoomdar with the young protesting against the custom of allowing sacred thread - bearing Brahmins to occupy its pulpits. This led to Debendranath removing them from all office and power of the Samaj. To counter the Tattwabodhini Patrika, the young started the Dharmatattwa. He started the \'Indian Mirror\' as a fortnightly in 1861 and made it into a daily in 1871. In 1862 Keshub undertook the ministry of one of its branches. In the same year he helped to found the Albert College and started the Indian Mirror, a weekly journal in which social and moral subjects were discussed. In 1863 he wrote The Brahma Samaj Vindicated. He also travelled about the country lecturing and preaching. In 1865 Keshub delivered a lecture on Struggle for Religious Independence where he condemned the high - handed feelings of the Calcutta (Adi) Brahmo Samaj and a representation was sent to Debendranath signed by Keshub, P C Mozoomdar and others. On 11th November 1866 a meeting was held in the house of the Calcutta College and the Brahmo Samaj of India was formally established. At this time there were 54 Samajes in India, 50 in Bengal, 2 in North Western Province, one in Punjab and the other in Madras. After the schism, the Adi Brahmo Samaj quietly retreated to its position of Hindu monotheism - and Debendranath remained silent and never replied to any of the accusations. He also retired from active work of the Samaj and spent most of his time travelling and occasionally visiting Calcutta.The tenets of the Brahmo Samaj of India at ths time were the following: (1) The wide universe is the temple of God. (2) Wisdom is the pure land of pilgrimage. (3) Truth is the everlasting scripture. (4) Faith is the root of all religions. (5) Love is the true spiritual culture. (6) The destruction of selfishness is the true asceticism. In 1866 he delivered an address on - Jesus Christ, Europe and Asia, which led to the false impression that he was about to embrace Christianity.New Dispensation
On 24th January 1868, Keshub laid the foundation stone of his new church, theBrahmo Samaj of India Tabernacle of New Dispensation and the newly constructed chapel was consecrated on 22nd August 1869. Navavidhan Symbol He declared, \"we believe in the Church Universal, which is the respiratory of all ancient wisdom and the receptacle of all modern science, which recognise in all prophets and saints a harmony, in all scriptures a unity and though all dispensations a continuity, which abjures all that separates and divides and always magnifies unity and peace, which harmonises reason, faith and Bhakti, asceticism and social duty in their highest forms and which shall make of all nations and sects one kingdom and one family in the fullness of time.\" In the anniversary festival of 1879, Keshub announced the birth of the New Dispensation. He introduced into the church the Pilgrimage to saints, the Homa ceremony, the Baptismal ceremony, the Lord\'s supper, the Flag ceremony, the Arati, the vow of Poverty, the Savitri Vrata, the Nightingale Vrata, and other innovations. He mentions that this New Dispensation is \"...a Divine message sent to India... It comes not to destroy but to fulfil the law and the prophets.\" His most important contribution is the habit of daily devotion. He felt the necessity of daily domestic devotion and laid down the essential condition of domestic life in his Nava Samhita In 1869, universalism was further strengthened by publishing of four books - Gour Govinda Roys\' work on the Gita, P C Mozoomdar\'s book The Oriental Christ, Aghor Nath Gupta\'s study on Buddha and Girish Chandra Sen\'s Tapasmala - life of Muslim saints and his Bengali translation of Koran and Hadis. There was also a Pilgrimage to the Saints - special service held in the memory of great men like Moses, Socrates, Sakya, The Rishis, Christ, Muhammad, Chaitanya, Scientific men.Visit to England
1870 he paid a visit to England. The Hindu preacher was warmly welcomed by almost all denominations, particularly by the Unitarians, with whose creed the new Brahma Samaj had most in common, and it was the committee of the British and Foreign Unitarian Association that organised the welcome soire at Hanover Square Rooms on the 12th of April. Ministers of ten different denominations were on the platform, and among those who officially bade him welcome were Lord Lawrence and Dean Stanley. He remained for six months in England, visiting most of the chief towns. His eloquence, delivery and command of the language won universal admiration. His own impression of England was somewhat disappointing. Christianity in England appeared to him too sectarian and narrow, too muscular and hard, and Christian life in England more materialistic and outward than spiritual and inward. He said, \"I came here an Indian, I go back a confirmed Indian; I came here a Theist, I go back a confirmed Theist. I have learnt to love my own country more and more\". These words spoken at the farewell soire may furnish the key to the change in him which so greatly puzzled many of his English friends.Cooch Behar Marriage and the schism
Rani Suniti Devi & Raja of Cooch BeharIn 1877 there was a strong rumour that Keshub was giving his eldest daughter, Suniti, in marriage to the young Maharaja of Cooch Behar. The main reason for the controversy was Suniti was not yet 14, the minimum age according to Marriage Act, 1872 and the Raja a lad of fifteen. By 1878 the information received by the Brahmos was 1) The marriage was to take place immediately prior to departure of the prince to England, 2)It will be celebrated according to the Cooch Behar rituals with idolatrous portions expunged 3)Keshub\'s brother Krishna Behari Sen was to give away the bride as Keshub having lost caste would be excluded from the function and 4) Cooch Behar priests will be officiating the service and no Brahmo service or Brahmo ministers will have anything to do with the ceremony. 23 Brahmos signed a letter of protest but Keshub did not even read the letter far less reply to it. As per the official records of Cooch Behar, \"The rites observed were Hindu in all esential features though in deference to the religious principles of the bride\'s father, idolatrous mantras were ommitted and the presence of an idol was dispensed with. Care was, however taken to retain whatever the Brahmins considered essential to the validity of the marriage\". The constitutionalists had organised themselves in to a party called Samadarshi or Liberal in 1874 and started a paper called Samadarshi to voice their opinion. A lot of Brahmos and provincial Samajes voiced their concerns and as a result of the meeting held in the Town Hall on 15th May 1878, the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj was born.David Kopf mentions in his book, \"The indictment of Keshub for having married off his eldest daughter in violation of every Brahmo precept has generally been accepted in historical surveys, which treat the marriage as a disaster from every point of view and ignore the aftermath of the event.\" A fact that is often overlooked is that the marriage was not consummated until 1880 when Prince Nripendra Narayan and Suniti Devi were 18 and 16 respectively. It was an experiment under the guidance of the British officials (who arranged the marriage in the first place) opening the remote kingdom to the enlightening influences from Calcutta. Kopf writes \"...Thus whether the marriage was not performed strictly according to Brahmo rites seems insignificant from a historical perspective than the question about the subsequent career of the Maharaja,Brajendranath Seal whom Keshub sought to inspire as a Brahmo. The answer in large part can be found in the qualitative difference between the town of Cooch Behar before the accession of Nripendra Narayan to the throne in 1882, and the town Brajendranath Seal came to live in 1896 when he was hired at Victoria College. In those fourteen years alone, through increasing the annual revenue of state by 300,000 rupees, the king regularised the administration, established the first railway link to Bengal, improved communication throughout the kingdom with the construction of innumerable roads and bridges, created for the first time a city with a planned sanitation and drainage system, constructed the earliest buildings in the country dedicated to the principles of modern justice and administration, started a 1arge fully equipped hospital in the capital and public dispensaries in the countryside, and founded Cooch Behar\'s first public library, public parks and gardens, a girls\' school, college, and a public marketplace. He also abolished polygamy in the royal family and capital punishment throughout the kingdom\".\"Moreover, some years before Brajendranath\'s arrival in Cooch Behar, the king and his wife constructed the largest Brahmo Mandir in South Asia, primarily with government funds, and they provided an annual grant of 5,000 rupees to help maintain it. In 1888, the king declared Brahmoism of the New Dispensation as the state religion, and though it had no practical effect in spreading the faith beyond the small community of Bengali elite, it did suggest that the promise of the young man to Keshub was fulfilled. Not well known, either, is that Maharaja Nripendra Narayan, whom the critics of Keshub had looked upon as a jungly Hindu raja, left three wishes behind him shortly before his death at forty-nine years of age. The king asked first that he be cremated according to the New Dispensation Brahmo rites; second, that his ashes be put in the same garden in Cooch Behar where he had first learned to read and write; and third, he provided that \"his casket be placed in a monument of stone similar to the one which had been placed over the ashes of the late Keshub Chandra Sen.\"Relation with Ramakrishna Paramhansa
Ramakrishna ParamhansaAfter the Cooch Behar marriage Keshub took an important line of departure by entering upon a system of spiritual interpretation o fthe idol deity and her attendants. He also started visting the mystic saint Ramakrishna and it was Keshub and his party who were instrumental in bringing him to public notice. Ramakrishna was present in many Brahmo gatherings. David Kopf gives three reasons for this attraction which deserve attention. First, Ramakrishna was not susceptible to formal education, English or indigenous; this separated him from other Brahmos of whatever ideological bent. Secondly, Ramakrishna\'s Tantric way of sublimating the sensual drive for women into a spiritual drive for the Divine Mother appealed to Keshub Chandra. Third, Ramakrishna claimed to have experienced direct, intuitive contact with all major religious leaders in history. \"In this sense, the Hindu Ramakrishna was perhaps more universalist and Brahmo than most of the Brahmo ascetics, who were narrowly Vaishnava.\" These three aspects of Ramakrishna\'s career as a mystic were probably strong influences on Keshub from March 1875 onwards, when the two men presumably first met at the Kali temple at Dakshineshwar. Keshub was intrigued by the religious experiments performed by Ramakrishna, and wished to adapt them to his own use, especially those elements of the Sakto tradition in Bengal that emphasised the motherhood of God. The idea of differentiating the good and bad features within Saktism, and incorporating the good into Brahmoism, probably came to Keshub after his acquaintance with Ramakrishna. For, in the early 1860s, Ramakrishna had already performed experiments to purify Saktism and Tantrism.Contribution to Brahmoism
There were many important contribution to the Brahmo movement by Keshub Chandra Sen. These can be briefly stated as follows. The first noteworthy contribution is the enunciation and accentuation of the doctrine of God in conscience. The second great Nava Devalayacontribution was bringing of man\'s social life within the domain of his religious duty. The third was imbibing into the spiritual life of the Brahmo Samaj - the spirit of repentance and prayer. Next was his infusion of the bhakti or devitional fervour into the movement. Another was his sense of universalism of theism - he found that all the religious teachers were bound together by a common bond. Next was his faith in the Divine mission of the Brahmo Samaj. Another important contribution was the emphasis of the principle laid down by Rammohun Roy - service of man was the service of God.In 1883 soon after his arrival from Simla, with failing health, Keshub caused the foundation of his Nava Devalaya (his domestic chapel). The work was completed on 1st January 1884 and he was carried on the shoulders from his death bed to take part in the consecration ceremony.
1772 Rammohun born in Radhanagore, Bengal on 22nd May.

1815 Rammohun settles down in Calcutta. Starts the Atmiya Sabha, translation of Vedanta published.

1816 Translation and publication of the Kena and Isha Upanishads in Bengali and English. Abridgement of Vedanta in English, Hindusthani and Bengali. Translation of Katha and Mandukya Upanishads in Bengali.

1818 A Bengali tract on Suttee. A tract explaining the meaning of Gayatri. English translation of the tract on Suttee.

1819 Celebrated verbal duel between Subrahmanya Sastri and Rammohun at the house of Behari Lal Chaubey in Barrabazar.

1820 English translation of the second tract on Suttee. The Precepts of Jesus, the Guide to Peace and Happiness published.

1823 Establishment of the Calcutta Unitarian Committee by Rammohun Roy, Dwarkanath Tagore, and William Adam

1825 Establishment of the Vedanta College for the teaching of the monotheistic doctrines of the Upansihads

1828 Establishment of the Brahmo Dharma on 20th August, 6th Bhadra 1234 B.E. at the house of Feranghi Kamal Bose which was rented for the occasion

1829 Lord William Bentinck passes the abolition of Sutte act on 4th December 1829. The orthodox Hindus go up in arms against Rammohun and Raja Radhakanta Deb formed a rival association called Dharma Sabha

1830 Rammohun Roy opens the door of the first theistic church on 23rd January 1830 (11th Magh 1236 B.E.). Leaves for Europe on 19th November.

1833 Rammohun Roy breathes his last on 27th September at Beech House in Stapleton Grove in Bristol

1839 Tattwabodhini Sabha, or truth-teaching society, started by Debendranath Tagore to arrest Trinitarian Christian conversions in Bengal.

1843 Debendranath and 20 of his associates are formally initiated in the Brahmo Samaj by Ramchandra Vidyabagish on December 21, (7th Paush 1765 B.E.). Birth of Brahmo Samaj when Debendranath institutionalizes Rammohun\'s ideology of Hindu reform. Vedanta accepted as the authentic scriptural source of Hinduism

1851 Akkhoy Kumar Datta convinces Debendranath to give up Vedanta as the \"book\" of the Hindus.

1855 Renewal of Unitarian influence on Brahmoism when Charles Dall, American Unitarian missionary arrives in Calcutta. The British India Society established with Rev. James Long and Rev. Charles Dall. Dall was the only non-Indian member of the Brahmo Samaj, to remain in Calcutta to his death in 1885

1857 Keshub Chandra Sen, charismatic theistic reformer, joins the Brahmo Samaj as disciple of Debendranath

1859 Tattwabodhini Sabha abolished after Pt. Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar, its famous secularist reformer and secretary, resigns in protest against Keshub. Keshub sets up the Brahmo School where weekly lectures were delivered and these lectures were widely attended.

1860 Keshub begins publishing tracts which were the trumpet call of the new Brahmoism and the first chapter was called,\"Young Bengal, this is for you\". Establishment of the Sangat Sabha.

1861 Keshub and the younger Brahmos try to convince older Brahmos of the need for practical social reforms and a mission society. Debendranath\'s eldest daughter Sukumari was married according to the reformed rites of the Brahmo Samaj on 26th July. Keshub starts a fortnightly called The Indian Mirror.

1862 Debendranath elevated Keshub Chandra Sen to the post of Minister or Acharya of the Samaj on 13th April and confers upon him the tite of Brahmanand.

1866 Formal schism between liberal younger Brahmos and conservative older Brahmos leads to creation of the Brahmo Samaj of India under Keshub at a meeting held in the house of the Calcutta College on 11th November.

1867 Brahmo missionaries first propagate the Hindu reformation across the subcontinent, making use of the railway system. Bijoy Krishna Goswami persuades Keshub to use Vaishnavism in the service of Brahmoism

1868 Keshub laid the foundation stone of his new church - the Tabernacle of New Dispensation on 24th January.

1869 Keshub consecrates the newly constructed chapel was on 22nd August

1870 Keshub visits England as a spokesman for the Hindu reformation. Keshub establishes the Indian Reform Association on 29th October, primarily to publish cheap literature for the poor, fight against alcoholism and to educate women.

1872 Marital reform among the Brahmo community finally wins approval of the government with the enactment of Act III, the Brahmo Marriage Act. The new tradition of reformed Hinduism is forcefully articulated before orthodox Hindu leaders of Calcutta by Adi Brahmo Samaj president, Rajnarian Bose, in a lecture entitled \"The Superiority of Hinduism.\"

1874 Liberal faction within Brahmo Samaj of India organizes the Samadarshi party to counter Keshub\'s growing conservatism. Keshub abandons Unitarian gospel of social reform, turning instead to the intellectual study of all major Eurasian religions. He and his disciples begin a series of elaborate seminars known as \"Pilgrimages to the Saints.\"

1876 Political-minded members of the Samadarshi party found the Indian Association in support of the moderate nationalist ideology of Surendranath Banerjee. The movement leads a decade later to the formation of the Indian National Congress.

1878 Marriage of Keshub\'s eldest daughter, Suniti, to the Maharaja of Cooch Behar, Prince Nripendra Narayan, in violation of the Brahmo Marriage Act of 1872, becomes exciting cause for a second major schism in Brahmo history. Samadarshi party reconstitutes itself as the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj.

1879 Keshub and his loyal followers inaugurate the Nava Vidhan, or New Dispensation Church, with Keshub as prophet of a universal religion.

1884 Death of Keshub followed by renewed factionalism within the New Dispensation between the Vaishnava-dominated Durbar and the Christian Unitarian group headed by P C Moozomdar

1886 Resignation of Bijoy Krishna Goswami as Missionary, indicative of factional struggle within the Sadharan Samaj between devout Vaishnava theists and the rationalist Vedantists led by Sitanath Tattvabhusan. Differences are reconciled, however, by Sivanath Shastri, Sadharan Brahmo Samaj spiritual leader.

1891 Brahmo philanthropy among Bengal\'s urban and rural poor considerably extended with the creation of the Das Ashram under the direction of Ramananda Chatterji

1893 P C Moozomdar invited by American Unitarians to help organize the first world Parliament of Religions in Chicago.

1907 Bengali Brahmos start the Society for the Improvement of Backward Classes, which is the earliest pioneering movement in India dedicated to ameliorating the conditions of Hindu untouchables.

1911 Rabindranath Tagore assumes leadership of the Adi Brahmo Samaj, and becomes charismatic hero of younger generation of Brahmos. His action arrests growing tendency of Brahmos to defect to revolutionary nationalism./td>

1912 According to Sivanath Shastri, the peak of Brahmo expansion is reached by this year, when 232 Samajes were reportedly active throughout the subcontinent.

1913 Rabindranath honoured with Nobel Prize in Literature for his work Gitanjali (Song Offerings).

1921 Rabindranath Tagore formally inaugurates Visva Bharati University at Shantineketan as an expression of Brahmo universalism.

1941 Death of Rabindranath on 7th August signifies end of an era and the decline of the Brahmo Samaj per se. But his philosophic program of fusing Hinduism with Brahmo ideas and ideals lives on among the progressive middle-class Hindus of contemporary India.The first Brahmo Samaj was set up on 11th Magh, 1236 (BE) or 23rd January, 1830. Ever since that momentous happenning 174 years ago Brahmo Samajes were being built all over India and the most prolific period was during the era of Keshub Chandra Sen.His apostolic zeal attracted many followers and resulted in Brahmo Samajes built across the length and breadth of India and even in Burma, now known as Myanamar.Though Brahmo Samajes were predominantly found in Bengal. According to Miss Collet\'s Brahmo Year Book there were 107 Samajes in 1877, with 61 in Bengal, 4 in Bihar, 3 in Orissa, 6 in Assam, 8 in North West Province, 2 in Central India, 4 in Punjab, 10 in Western India, 2 in Sind and and 6 in South India. In 1892 the number of Samajes, according to the annual reports of the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj rose to 233, with 124 Brahmo Samajes in Bengal alone. But in 1911 we find that there are only 182. The reason for this was the lack of missionary activity and and aggravated by the progress of nationalistic and political movements all over the country. At the time of Keshub\'s death in 1884, the center of religious attention in Calcutta had already shifted to Ramakrishna Paramhansa of Dakshineshwar and the Ramakrishna Mission founded in 1897. Also the advent of Gandhi and the nataionalistic movements also contributed to the general decline in Brahmo movement. But there are more Brahmos outside the Brahmo Samaj than within.
Report of Brahmo Samajes in India by 1872
Sl # Name of Samaj Presidency/ Province Year Estd. Sympathy
1. Adi Brahmo Samaj Bengal 1830 AS
2. Akna Bengal 1871 N
3. Allahabad North West 1865 AS
4. Allahabad (2) North West 1867 K
5. Agra North West 1871 K
6. Ahmedabad Bombay 1871 K
7. Brahmo Samaj of India Bengal 1866 K
8. Baranagar Bengal 1865 AS
9. Bhowanipore Bengal 1862 AS
10. Barasat Bengal 1870 K
11. Behala Bengal 1853 AS
12. Baruipur Bengal 1867 K
13. Boluhati Bengal 1857 AS
14. Burdwan Bengal 1857 AS
15. Burdwan Bengal 1867 K
16. Baganchra Bengal 1864 K
17. Bogura Bengal 1858 K
18. Boalia (Rajshahi) Bengal 1859 K
19. Barisal Bengal 1860 K
20. Brahmanberia Bengal 1863 N
21. Bareilly Oudh 1858 K
22. Bhagalpur Bengal 1863 K
23. Bangalore Madras 1867 K
24. Berhampore Bengal 1867 AS
25. Blacktown (Madras city) Madras 1871 N
26. Bunnoo Punjab 1866 N
27. Cachar Bengal 1864 N
28. Utkal Orissa 1865 AS
29. Cuttack Orissa 1868 K
30. Chittagong Bengal 1853 K
31. Chinsurah Bengal 1865 K
32. Chunapukur (Calcutta) Bengal 1869 K
33. Chandernagore Bengal 1860 AS
34. Chandernagore Bengal 1872 K
35. Dacca Bengal 1867 N
36. Dacca (2) Bengal 1871 K
37. Dehradun North West 1867 K
38. Dinajpore Bengal 1867 K
39. Etwa North West 1871 K
40. Faridpur Bengal 1857 K
41. Ghazipur North West 1871 K
42. Gaya Bihar 1866 K
43. Gournagar Bengal 1860 K
44. Gauhati Assam 1870 K
45. Goalpara Assam 1870 K
46. Harinavi Bengal 1868 K
47. Hazaribag Bihar 1869 K
48. Howrah Bengal 1864 K
49. Jamalpur Bihar 1867 N
50. Jabbalpur Central Province 1867 N

Sl # Name of Samaj Presidency/ Province Year Estd. Sympathy
51. Kaligacha Bengal 1867 K
52. Kalighat Bengal 1869 K
53. Kalna Bengal 1868 AS
54. Kanpur North West 1865 N
55. Karachi Bombay 1869 K
56. Kishoregunge Bengal 1869 K
57. Konnagar Bengal 1863 N
58. Krishnanagar Bengal 1844 K
59. Kumarkhali Bengal 1849 K
60. Kusthia Bengal 1869 N
61. Lucknow Oudh 1868 K
62. Lahore Punjab 1863 K
63. Mandarah Bengal 1871 --
64. Monghyr Bihar 1867 K
65. Milapoor (Madras) Madras 1870 K
66. Midnapore Bengal 1846 AS
67. Meerut Bengal 1871 K
68. Mymesnsingh Bengal 1853 K
69. Malapara Bengal 1870 AS
70. Mangalore Madras 1870 AS
71. Nowgaon Assam 1870 K
72. Osmanpur Bengal 1870 K
73. Prarthana Samaj Bombay 1867 K
74. Puddapukur Bengal 1871 K
75. Puttakoti Madras 1865 --
76. Patna Bihar 1867 N
77. Pune Bombay 1870 N
78. Pratyahik Samaj- Calcutta Bengal 1871 N
79. Rajmahal Bengal 1868 K
80. Rawalpandi Punjab 1867 K
81. Ratnagiri Bombay 1869 K
82. Rangpur Bengal 1864 K
83. Salem Madras 1866 --
84. Sindh Bombay 1869 K
85. Sinduriapatty Bengal 1865 K
86. Serampore Bengal 1862 N
87. Santipur Bengal 1863 K
88. Shyambazar Bengal 1864 N
89. Sultangacha Bengal 1863 K
90. Sankharitollah Bengal 1868 K
91. Sylhet Bengal 1863 K
92. Shibsagar Assam 1866 K
93. Selidah Bengal 1867 K
94. South India Brahmo Samaj Madras 1864 K
95. Serajgunge Bengal 1870 K
96. Sat Sungat Punjab 1871 K
97. Taki Bengal 1869 N
98. Tipperah Bengal 1862 N
99. Tundla North West 1869 K
100. Tezpur Assam 1870 --
101. Tharvetuvo Burma 1871 --
102. Udunalapeti Madras 1864 --
KEY: AS = affiliated to Adi Samaj; K = Followers of Keshub; N = Neutral
SOURCE: Report of the Brahmo Mission Office, Brahmo Samaj of India, 1873
The following is a list of other Brahmo Samajes that were subsequently opened in other parts of the country, excluding those mentioned above and were in operation at the turn of the century.
Report of Brahmo Samajes in India by 1892
Sl # Name of Samaj Presidency / Province Year Estd.
1. Ahmednagar PS Bombay 1871
2. Amarpur Bengal 1884
3. Amragiri Bengal 1882
4. Arrah Bihar 1882
5. Bagerhat Bengal 1883
6. Bagnan Bengal 1879
7. Baguri Bengal 1888
8. Bahirgarh Satya Dharma Pracharini Sabha Bengal 1883
9. Bajrayogini Bengal 1887
10. Balasore ND Orissa 1865
11. Balasore SBS Orissa 1884
12. Banda North West 1863
13. Banda PS North West 1877
14. Bankura Bengal 1881
15. Bapatla PS Madras 1890
16. Barisa Bengal 1882
17. Barisal Bengal 1861
18. Baroda PS Bombay 1883
19. Bangalore (Regimental Samaj) Madras 1871
20. Bangalore Cant. PS Madras 1879
21. Benares Cant. North West 1883
22. Bezwada Madras 1886
23. Bhavnagar Madras 1876
24. Bhowanipore Prarthana Samaj Bengal 1877
25. Bolpur Bengal 1884
26. Broach PS Bombay 1876
27. Chaibasa Bengal 1891
28. Cooch Behar Bengal 1872
29. Cooch Behar North Bengal 1888
30. Chengalpalyem Madras 1887
31. Chengutia Bengal 1880
32. Chicacole PS Madras
33. Coimbatore Madras 1881
34. Darbhanga Bihar 1869
35. Darjeeling Bengal 1877
36. Deviganj Bengal 1881
37. Dharampur Bengal 1872
38. Dhenkanal Orissa 1887
39. Dibrugarh Assam 1887
40. Dumraon Bihar 1880
41. Feni Bengal 1884
42. Giridih Bihar 1874
43. Garbetta Bengal 1887
44. Gorabazar Bengal 1881
45. Golaghat North West 1886
46. Ghazipur SBS North West 1872
47. Ghurni Bengal 1880
48. Goori Bengal 1879
49. Goori Student\'s Samaj Bengal 1883
50. Gorabazar Bengal 1881
51. Gourifa Bengal 1875
52. Gwalior North West 1872
53. Howrah SBS Bengal 1892
54. Haldibari Bengal
55. Hooghly Bengal 1870
56. Hyderabad Sind 1869
57. Indore Central 1880
58. Jalpaiguri Bengal 1870
59. Jasir Assam 1889
60. Jhansi North West 1879
61. Jhinaidaha Bengal 1876
62. Kaira PS Bombay 1875
63. Kakina Bengal 1870
64. Kaliagunj Bengal 1883
65. Kanpur North West 1865
67. Karatia Bengal 1888
68. Katihar (Purnea) Bengal 1891
69. Khagole Bengal 1884
70. Khalipur Bengal 1886

Sl # Name of Samaj Presidency / Province Year Estd.
71. Khatura Bengal 1869
72. Kheda PS Bombay 1876
73. Kidderpore Bengal 1875
74. Kolhapur Bombay 1875
75. Kulberia Bengal 1888
76. Kurigram Bengal 1880
77. Lait Kynsew Assam 1891
78. Madras - Thousand Lights Madras 1888
79. Maheshpur Bengal 1879
80. Majilpur Bengal 1881
81. Maldah Bengal 1875
82. Mangalgunj Bengal 1878
83. Manikdaha Bengal 1881
84. Masulipatnam Madras 1882
85. Matihari Punjab 1875
86. Mawrynkhong Bengal 1889
87. Moodially Bengal 1873
88. Mousmai (Cherraponji) Assam 1889
89. Mowkhar Assam 1886
90. Multan Punjab 1875
91. Munshiganj Bengal 1876
92. Muradnagar Bengal 1881
93. Muzaffarpur PS Bihar 1883
94. Nadiad PS Bombay 1878
95. Nalhati Bengal 1888
96. Naraingunj Bengal 1881
97. Natore Bengal
98. Navagram Orissa 1886
99. Navasari PS Bombay 1878
100. Nibadhai Bengal 1887
101. Nilphamari Bengal 1885
102. Nimta Bengal
103. Nongrim Assam 1890
104. Pabna Bengal 1867
105. Pachumla Bengal 1874
106. Pahowa Dharma Sabha Punjab 1884
107. Pandharpur PS Bombay 1874
108. Peddapuram Madras 1896
109. Pherozepur Bengal 1878
110. Phulbari Bengal
111. Purbapara Bengal 1888
112. Quetta SBS Sind 1883
113. Rajamundry PS Assam 1879
114. Rajkot Bombay 1873
115. Rampurhat Bengal 1874
116. Ranchi Bihar 1879
117. Rangoon Burma 1880
118. Rangoon (2) Burma 1883
119. Rangoon (3) Burma 1884
120. Rasapagla Bengal 1882
121. Rashpur Bengal 1887
122. Ratlam Central 1887
123. Shillong Assam 1875
124. Saidpur Bengal 1878
125. Satara Bombay 1874
126. Sibpur Bengal 1882
127. Simla Hills ND Punjab 1875
128. Sojitra PS Bombay 1878
129. South Suburban Bengal 1878
130. Sukkur Sind 1883
131. Surat Bombay 1875
132. Sylhet Student\'s Samaj Bengal 1879
133. Tangail Bengal 1887
134. Tezpur Assam 1870
135. Thana PS Bombay 1881
136. Tilli Bengal 1889
137. Tindharia Bengal 1886
138. Ujjain Central 1889
139. Velpur Madras 1883
140. Wandiwash Madras Brahmo Samaj (Bengali: ব্রাহ্ম সমাজ, romanized: Brahmô Sômaj, Bengali pronunciation: [bram.ho ʃɔ.b̤a]) is the societal component of Brahmoism, which began as a monotheistic reformist movement that appeared during the Bengal Renaissance.It was one of the most influential religious movements in India[1] and made a significant contribution to the making of modern India.[2] It was started at Calcutta on 20 August 1828 by Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Dwarkanath Tagore as reformation of the prevailing customs of the time (specifically Kulin practices) and began the Bengal Renaissance of the 19th century pioneering all religious, social and educational advance of the Bengali community in the 19th century. Its Trust Deed was made in 1830 formalising its inception and it was duly and publicly inaugurated in January 1830 by the consecration of the first house of prayer, now known as the Adi Brahmo Samaj.[3] From the Brahmo Samaj springs Brahmoism, the most recent of legally recognised religions in India and Bangladesh, reflecting its foundation on reformed spiritual Hinduism with vital elements of Judeo-Islamic faith and practice.[4][5]
Meaning of the nameThe Brahmo Samaj literally denotes community (Sanskrit: \'samaj\') of men who have knowledge of Brahman, the ultimate reality.[6] In reality Brahmo Samaj does not discriminate between caste, creed or religion and is an assembly of all sorts and descriptions of people without distinction, meeting publicly for the sober, orderly, religious and devout adoration of \"The Nameless, Eternal, Immutable Being who is the Author and Preserver of the Universe.\"[7]
DoctrineThe following doctrines, as noted in Renaissance of Hinduism, are common to all varieties and offshoots of the Brahmo Samaj:[8][9] Brahmo Samajists denied that any scripture could enjoy the status of ultimate authority transcending human reason and conscience.
Brahmo Samajists have no faith in Avatars (incarnations)
Brahmo Samajists denounce polytheism and idol-worship.
Brahmo Samajists are against caste system.
Brahmo Samajists took no definite stand on the doctrine of karma and transmigration of soul and left it to individual Brahmos to believe either way.Divisions of Brahmo Samaj Adi Brahmo Samaj
Sadharan Brahmo SamajAnusthanic versus Ananusthanic (Non-Anusthanic) BrahmosAnusthanic Brahmos comprise Adi Brahmos, Adi Dharmaites and many Sadharan Brahmos. Anusthanic Brahmos are exclusively adherents of the Brahmo religion and have no other faith.The concept of the soul is anathema to Anusthanic Brahmos, which they consider to have been ruled out by the \"1861 Anusthan\"[citation needed] and they instead refer to the soul as \"being\". Every \"being\", which they consider immortal, is a part of God, who they see as the singularity, author and preserver of existence. \"Beings\" are sent out by God for a mission, \"Kriya\" on completion of which the \"being\" reintegrates (re-absorbs) into God.For Anusthanic Brahmos the next step after death is this reintegration, re-absorption and renewal with God.This corresponds to the 2nd \"Adi\" Prime Principle:[citation needed] Being is created from Singularity. Being is renewed to Singularity. Being exists to be one again with Loving Singularity.Ananusthanic (Non-Anusthanic Brahmos) believe in the concept of immortal souls eternally progressing towards God. This implies a karmic and fatalistic belief, which is different to Kriayic Brahmoism.[10]
History and timeline
Brahmo SabhaOn 20 August 1828 the first assembly of the Brahmo Sabha was held at the North Calcutta house of Feringhee Kamal Bose. This day was celebrated by Brahmos as Bhadrotsab (ভাদ্রোৎসব Bhadrotshôb \"Bhadro celebration\"). These meetings were open to all people irrespective of religion, caste, creed, gender. The format of worship was defined by Raja Ram Mohan Roy - which included reading of the Vedas by two Telegu Brahmins, followed by an explanation of Vedanta and Upanishads in Bengali by Utsavananda offeryabagish, followed by Brahmasangeet composed by Rammohun or his friends. The songs were performed by top classical musical exponents Krishnaprasad and Bishnu Chakraborty and percussion was played by the country\'s top maestro Golam Abbas.[11][12]On 8 January 1830 influential progressive members of the closely related Kulin Brahmin clan[13] scurrilously[14] described as Pirali Brahmin (i.e. ostracised for service in the Mughal Nizaamat of Bengal) of Tagore (Thakur) and Roy Zameendar family, mutually executed the Trust Deed of Brahmo Sabha for the first Adi Brahmo Samaj (place of worship) on Chitpore Road (now Rabindra Sarani), Kolkata, India with Ram Chandra Vidyabagish as first resident superintendent.[15]On 23 January 1830 or 11th Magh, the Adi Brahmo premises were publicly inaugurated (with about 500 Brahmins and 1 Englishman present). This day is celebrated by Brahmos as Maghotsab (মাঘোৎসব Maghotshôb \"Magh celebration\").In November 1830 Rammohun Roy left for England. Akbar II had conferred the title of \'Raja\' to Rammohun Roy.[16]
Brief Eclipse of Brahmo SabhaBy the time of Rammohun\'s death in 1833 near Bristol (UK), attendance at the Samaj dwindled. Dwarkanath Tagore provided the funds for the upkeep of the Samaj and Ram Chandra Vidyabagish kept up the flame burning, and arrived each week to perform the divine service as laid out by Rammohun.
Tattwabodhini periodOn 6 October 1839, Debendranath Tagore, son of Dwarkanath Tagore, established Tattvaranjini Sabha which was shortly thereafter renamed the Tattwabodhini (\"Truth-seekers\") Sabha. Initially confined to immediate members of the Tagore family, in two years it mustered over 500 members. In 1840, Debendranath published a Bangla translation of Katha Upanishad. A modern researcher describes the Sabha\'s philosophy as modern middle-class (bourgeois) Vedanta.[17]. Among its first members were the \"two giants of Hindu reformation and Bengal Renaissance\", Akshay Kumar Datta, who in 1839 emerged from the life of an \"anonymous squalor-beset individual\", and Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, the \"indigenous modernizer\".[18]
First Covenant and merger with the Tattwabodhini SabhaOn 7th Pous 1765 Shaka (1843) Debendranath Tagore and twenty other Tattwabodhini stalwarts were formally invited by Pt. Vidyabagish into the Trust of Brahmo Sabha. The Pous Mela at Santiniketan starts on this day.[19] From this day forth, the Tattwabodhini Sabha dedicated itself to promoting Ram Mohan Roy\'s creed.[20] The other Brahmins who swore the First Covenant of Brahmoism are: Shridhar Bhattacharya
Shyamacharan Bhattacharya
Brajendranath Tagore
Girindranath Tagore, brother of Debendranath Tagore and father of Ganendranath Tagore
Anandachandra Bhattacharya
Taraknath Bhattacharya
Haradev Chattopadhyaya, the future father-in-law to Mahacharya Hemendranath Tagore[21]
Shyamacharan Mukhopadhyaya
Ramnarayan Chattopadhyaya
Sashibhushan MukhopadhyayaFoundation of the Brahmo SamajIn 1861 the Brahmo Samaj was founded at Lahore by Nobin Roy.[22] It included many Bengalis from the Lahore Bar Association. Many branches were opened in the Punjab, at Quetta, Rawalpindi, Amritsar etc.
First SecessionDisagreement with the Debendranath Tagore and Keshub Chandra Sen came to a head publicly between the period of 1 August 1865 till November 1866 and the followers of Keshub created the \"Brahmo Samaj of India\". This period is also referred to in the histories of the secessionists as the \"First Schism\".[23]
Brahmo Samaj and Swami Narendranath VivekanandaSwami Vivekananda was influenced by the Brahmo Samaj of India, and visited the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj in his youth.[24]
Current status and number of adherentsWhile the various Calcutta sponsored movements declined after 1920 and faded into obscurity after the Partition of India, the Adi Dharm creed has expanded and is now the 9th largest of India\'s enumerated religions with 7.83 million adherents, heavily concentrated between the states of Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. In the Indian census of 2001 only 177 persons declared themselves a \"Brahmo\", but the number of subscriber members to Brahmo Samaj is somewhat larger at around 20,000 members.[25][26]
Social and religious reformIn matters of social reform the Brahmo Samaj attacked many dogmas and superstitions. It condemned the prevailing Hindu prejudice against going abroad (Kala Pani). The Samaj condemned practice of Sati (burning of widows), discouraged child marriage and polygamy, and crusaded for widow remarriage. The Samaj attacked casteism and untouchability, though in these matters it attained only limited success. The influence of the Brahmo Samaj however didn\'t go much beyond Calcutta, at most, Bengal. It didn\'t have lasting impact.[27]After the controversy of underage marriage of Keshub Chunder Sen\'s daughter, the Special Marriages Act of 1872 was enacted to set the minimum age of 14 years for marriage of girls.[28] All Brahmo marriages were thereafter solemnised under this law. Many Indians resented the requirement of the affirmation \"I am not Hindu, nor a Mussalman, nor a Christian\" for solemnising a marriage under this Act. The requirement of this declaration was imposed by Henry James Sumner Maine, legal member of Governor General\'s Council appointed by Britain. The 1872 Act was repealed by the Special Marriage Act, 1954 under which any person of any religion could marry. The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 applies to all Hindus (including \"followers\" of the Brahmo Samaj) but not to the adherents of the Brahmo religion.
Second Secession
Differences arose between Keshub Chandra Sen and the band of young people who called themselves \"Samadarshi\". The difference arose due to the autocratic handling of the works of the Brahmo Samaj by Keshub Chandra Sen. The differences came to a head with the Coochbehar marriage. A meeting was called in Town Hall of Calutta on 15th May 1878 and the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj came into existence [29] with Anandamohan Bose as President, Shib Chandra Deb, Sivanath Sastri, Umesh Chandra Dutta, Gurucharan Mahalanobish serving as office bearers.


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