Uniqueness of Baranagar Math in the Spiritual History of the World

Baranagar Math (1886 - 1892)
Baranagar Math (1886 - 1892)

Baranagar Math is the First Monastery of Ramakrishna Order!

In the spiritual history of the world, Baranagar Math has carved out a niche for itself as it was at this dilapidated house the tyagi disciples of the God Incarnate Sri Ramakrishna, went through unprecedented spiritual practices, meditation and austerity for more than five years.

The way Swamiji and his brother-disciples lived at this Baranagar Monastery, i.e. their days of unparalleled austerity, day-long spiritual practices, absolute renunciation of life for otherworldly pursuit will remain etched in golden letters in the history of Ramakrishna Sangha. All these formed the cornerstone of the Ramakrishna Order and the Baranagar Math was built on this solid foundation.

The intense love by which Sri Ramakrishna initially united his young tyagi disciples in his closest circle during his twilight years, ultimately coalesced and strengthened into a fraternity at this monastery. Under Swamiji’s able leadership, the monks gradually came to appreciate the catholicity of Sri Ramakrishana’s ideas; they gradually prepared themselves for the liberation of their own selves and welfare of the world at large. Their promptness in facing the opposition and remarkable alertness resulted in their all-round growth - spiritual, mental and intellectual.

The unprecedented austere lifestyle practised by the monks at Baranagar Math did not, in any way, insulate them from the sorrows and miseries of the downtrodden humanity at large. In fact, the realisation and teachings of Yugavatar Sri Ramakrishna are as deep as the ocean and as infinite as the sky. The inmates of the Math had, by then, realised that the advent of Sri Ramakrishna was not for the sake of India alone, but for the entire humanity.

It was at this first monastery that the tyagi disciples of Sri Ramakrishna ritualistically took sannyasa by viraja homa and from here Swamiji set out for his historic ‘Bharat Parikrama’ in 1889.

Sri Ramakrishna realised the ultimate truth from varied religions through spiritual practices during His life time. “As many faiths, so many paths” — “যত মত তত পথ”, the fundamental spiritual dictum of Sri Ramakrishna, the Guru of Swami Vivekananda, was practised by the apostles at Baranagar Math through observing the teachings of Buddha, Mohammad, Jesus Christ and other great religious personalities. Swami Vivekananda preached the Universal Religion and propagated the great message of harmony and equal validity of all the religious faiths.