This is a representative selection of the published works of Swami Ranganathananda, offered as a Commemorative Volume marking his Birth Centenary (2008). The volume is designed to introduce readers to his strikingly original and pragmatic insights into almost every area of human excellence. The overall theme is dynamic spirituality which the Swami always emphasized as the indispensable precondition for peace and harmony in a world already globalized. As such the essays included here are on Sri Ramakrishna, the Holy Mother and Swami Vivekananda; on the Swmi's guru Swami Sivananda; various saints and sages, aspects of sadhana, scriptures (Upanishads and the Gita). And there is also a substantial selection on almost the entire spectrum of human excellence as the Swami formulated and practiced. In short, here is volume which is of immense relevance embodying the perennial values for contemporary (often extremely complex) contexts.
Swami Ranganathananda (1908-2005), the 13th President of the world-renowned Ramakrishna Order, represents one of its most remarkable figures. Initiated by Swami Sivananda, a direct disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, Ranganathnanda joined the Order in 1926. Ever since, he remained a dynamic spiritual and cultural exponent of India's eternal values, contemporizing them with a range and originality unique in its pragmatism.
The illustrious Swami worked at many centres of the Order which include Rangoon, Karachi, Delhi, Kolkata and Hyderabad (the centre where he stayed for the longest period). All these centres saw phenomenal growth in a comprehensive manner upholding the Ramakrishna tradition of renunciation and service. The Institute of Culture in Kolkata and the Vivekananda Institute of Human Excellence at the Ramakrishna Math Hyderabad, are concrete examples of Ranganathananda's dynamic spirituality.
Swami Ranganathananda was, moreover, a spiritual and cultural ambassador of India's vast heritage to the West. He undertook extensive tours covering the USA, UK Holland, Germany, Russia and many other countries. He addressed distinguished gatherings of intellectuals, scientists, and academics as also students on the areas of oneness and unity of mankind and the need for a balanced and total human development. As a great synthesizer, he won great respect and recognition, including the First Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration (1986). No wonder that the celebrated Swami evoked the respect and love of initiated disciples, devotees and admirers from all over the world.
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