Vedanta Societies

Vedanta Societies,

first and most influential Hindu organization in the West, founded by Swami Vivekananda (1863–1902), a disciple of Indian mystic Ramakrishna (1836–86). Vivekananda attended an international religious conference in Chicago (1893), and later established the Vedanta Society of New York (1894), an organization devoted to service and mysticism. Vivekananda returned to India and founded the Ramakrishna Order (1897) to administer the network of Vedanta societies and humanitarian and religious activities. There are 20 centers in the United States.


See J. Damrell, Seeking Spiritual Meaning (1977); C. Isherwood, My Guru and His Disciple (1988); C. T. Jackson, The Ramakrishna Movement in the United States (1994).

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References in periodicals archive ?
The Mission subsequently spawned Vedanta Societies similar to those that Vivekananda had established earlier in the United States.
She said that the Vedanta societies "do not proselytize'" and that most seekers "hear of Vedanta through word of mouth or through its well-known literary movement." Kenny also reported that in the last twenty years "about 500 various educational, inter-religious, scientific and non-denominational organizations have |had~ Vedanta representatives to lecture." Interestingly enough, Kenny's major claim is similar to Zen Buddhism's, that seekers "request information on activities and books" rather than come to "join" a specific religious organization.