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Raja Ram Mohan Roy is regarded as the Father of the Indian Renaissance, though he opposed some customs which Hindu religions was following he stood up against the evil propaganda of missionaries. In 1820 he wrote a book entitled The Precepts of Jesus:Guide to peace and Happiness based on the bible. In this book he posed a question to the Christians that if God could be born as a pigeon why can’t He not have been born as Garuda? He told missionaries that their interpretation of the Hindu religion was false and misleading and that according to the Vedantic philosophy these was only one soul residing in all living beings.

After coming to Kolkatta in 1815 he set up an organization called Atmiya Sabha with the help of some well-wishers. Through this organization he wrote and published books and pamphlets whereby he carried on propaganda against evil practices of Hindu religion and idol worship and also against the evil practices of Hindu religion and idol worship and also against the baseless theories being propagated by the missionaries. He held the view that the real Hindu religion was based on the concepts of one God and universal brother hood. The effect of his propaganda was that a famous missionary named William Andam rejected this Christian theory of triple entities and accepted the monotheism of Rammohum Roy. Was this came as a shock to the missionaries and they now came to know that the Hindu religion was not mere idolatry and ceremonials but was based on Vedantic philosophy. Now the missionaries like Marsman and Kerry of Sri Rampoer started attacking Vedanta. However their knowledge of Vedanta was shallow and they foolishly wrote all that was irrelevant. But Raja Rammohan Roy had made a deep study of the Bible, Vedanta and other religions. He therefore very calmly and logically demonstrated the propaganda of the missionaries.

Rammohun Roy propaganda against idol worship superstition and evil practices also disturbed the orthodox Hindus. They set up a Dharma sabha under the leadership of Raja Sir Radhakant Deb. These people supported idol worship and were against the reforms proposed by Raja Rammohun Roy especially Sati Sahagamanam. The movement against the practice of Sati was carried on for twelve and was ultimately successful. The Governor General Lord William Bentick banned the practice of Sati by a law promulgated on 4th Dec 1822. On the Advice of Rammohun Roy the Governor General also prohibited the practice of throwing the offspring into Ganges.

He made all efforts to spread the modern education. With the help of British friends of liberal views he established the Hindoo college in modern subjects like literature history mathematics geography and science were taught.

He also started the Bengali weekly samavd kaumudi to give publicity to his views. During 1821-24 scientific articles such as qualities of Magnet , the behavior of fishes and story of Baloon were written by him and published. He also opposed East India Company Government decided to open only Sanskrit schools of the old type. The orthodox people raised a hue and cry and accused him of trying to destroy their religious institutions. It has to be understood that the foreign government was not at all interested in providing modern education to the Indians. Their only purpose of opening Sanskrit school to see that the people of our country remained ignorant and superstitious. Their intentions was not to make people educated but to appease the orthodox among them. The orthodox people were in great numbers and they raise storm against Rammohun Roy. Even the intellectuals rejected him and wanted to continue the old practices as they were. But RamMohun Roy and hand ful of his indian and foreign supporters resolutely faced this opposition . The clash between the old and the modern views became sharper day by day.

Raja Rammohun Roy knew it very well that for eradicating injustice , orthodoxy and superstition , modern education was a necessity and he wanted to spread it wide as far as possible. But this did not mean that he was a supporter of Macualay’s system of education. The present system of education was introduced after his death and Macualay had revealed the invention behind this policy in clear words , the young men living on the banks of Ganges would read Milton and Shakespeare and will be proud of our literature the real intention however was to un indianise us to make us mental slaves. Macaulays education served this purpose well and continues to do so even today.

On the contrary , Raja Rammohun roy never let Indian culture and tradition to be lost sight of. This was the reason for his estlablishing Vedanta college in 1825 where in all facilities for teaching the ancient shastras were provided. His concept of modern education was to bring about a harmony between ancient and modern thinking and between eastern philosophy and western science. It is wrong to accuse him of supporting Macualay’s system of education. Evidently he is a victim of false propaganda.
The Moghul emperor sent him to England in 1830 as his ambassador . He was to take part in the debate in the House of Commons anout giving a new charter to the East India company. He went to England in April 1831. He was accorded warm welcome to Liverpool , Manchester , London and in the Royal court. There he cultivated the friendship of people like Bantham. From there he proceeded to France for some days and died in Bristol on 27 September 1833 from brain fever. His Samadhi was built there in which it was inscribed.
A true and determined man who believed in the oneness of God. He devoted all his life to human Unity.

Posted by: Vamsi      Date: 2016-02-04

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