Iconographic representations of renunciation and activism in the Ramakrishna Math and Mission and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh

Beckerlegge, Gwilym (2004). Iconographic representations of renunciation and activism in the Ramakrishna Math and Mission and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. Journal of Contemporary Religion, 19(1) pp. 47–66.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1353790032000165113

Abstract

The growth of seva activities (organised service to humanity) in Hindu movements since the nineteenth century has been the subject of debate among both Hindus and scholarly observers. This article examines popular iconographic images within two such movements that claim to have developed modern forms of service rooted in long-standing Hindu principles. Through a consideration of popular depictions of the inspirational figures most associated with the creation of each of these movements, it will be shown that these iconographic representations reveal an unresolved tension between symbolism designed to inculcate social activism and constant allusions to an ideal of renunciation pre-eminently associated with the role of the sannyasi.

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About

  • Item ORO ID
  • 2883
  • Item Type
  • Journal Item
  • ISSN
  • 1353-7903
  • Keywords
  • Ramakrishna; Vivekananda; Golwalkar; Hedgewar; Ramakrishna Math and Mission; Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh; activism; renunciation; asceticism
  • Academic Unit or School
  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
  • Depositing User
  • Gwilym Beckerlegge

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