Originally known as Narendranath Datta, Vivekananda (January 12, 1863 —July 4, 1902) was an Indian Hindu spiritual leader and reformer who sought to unite Eastern spirituality with Western technological advancement, contending that the two complemented and augmented one another. He believed that one’s aim was to achieve an individual’s higher self and working for the good of humanity was the highest goal.

He was raised in a Kayastha upper-middle-class Bengali family and had his education at a university in the Western academic tradition, where he was exposed to Western philosophy, science, and Christianity. Vivekananda’s ideas on social reform began to take center stage, and he joined the Brahmo Samaj (Society of Brahma), a group committed to ending child marriage and illiteracy as well as promoting education for women and members of lower castes. Later, he rose to prominence as Ramakrishna’s most illustrious disciple, proving the fundamental similarity of all religions.

Bust of Vivekananda

Vivekananda tried to inject vigor into Hindu thought, placing less emphasis on the prevalent pacifism, and presenting Hindu spirituality to the West. He did this by consistently emphasizing the universal and humanistic side of the Vedas, the oldest sacred texts of Hinduism, as well as the belief in service rather than dogma. He served as a catalyst for the effort in the United States and England to further Vedanta philosophy, one of the six schools of Indian philosophy.

Vivekananda’s invitation to the Chicago conference was the result of a long and difficult journey. He had been working hard to spread the teachings of his guru, Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, and to promote understanding and harmony between people of different religions and backgrounds. He had traveled extensively in India, giving lectures and inspiring people with his wisdom and insights.

In the late 1880s, Vivekananda began to consider the possibility of traveling to the United States to share his message with a wider audience. He was encouraged to do so by some of his followers, who believed that he had an important message to share with the world. However, he faced many challenges and obstacles in his efforts to secure an invitation to the conference.

One of the most significant instances of criticisms that Swami Vivekananda faced was when he tried to establish a monastery in the United States. Even though he had gained a large following in the country he struggled to find support for his monastic plans. Many people did not believe that a young Indian monk could succeed in establishing a monastery in the United States, and they were skeptical of his ability to attract and retain followers.

Despite these challenges, Vivekananda persevered and eventually succeeded in obtaining an invitation to the conference. He traveled to the United States in 1893 and delivered a series of powerful and inspiring lectures at the conference. As a part of the World’s Columbian Exposition, the Permanent Memorial Art Palace, today known as the Art Institute of Chicago, hosted the World’s Parliament of Religions beginning on September 11, 1893. On that day, Vivekananda delivered his inaugural lecture. After considerable waiting, his turn finally arrived in the afternoon. He was first apprehensive, but after bowing to Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of learning, he felt a new energy come into his body; he felt as though “The Soul of India, the echo of the Rishis, the voice of Ramakrishna, the mouthpiece of the resurrected Time spirit” had occupied his body. “Sisters and brothers of America!” was the salutation he used to begin his address.

Vivekananda made an effort to elucidate the causes of conflict between many sects and religions in this address. He related the tale of a frog, popularly known as (koop mandook). And in the tale, he told, a frog once called a well home. It was born there, raised there, and used to believe that his well was the largest body of water on earth. A frog from a sea visited the well one day. The well-dwelling frog did not trust the sea frog’s claim that the sea is far larger than his well and chased the sea frog away from his well. This tale was recounted by Swami Vivekananda to illuminate the reasons why it is impossible for humans to coexist in harmony in this planet. We as humans are incapable of settling such minor conflicts, which breeds hatred and division.

Vivekananda talked on the meaning of the Hindu faith and provided a brief overview of Hinduism. He also discussed the survival of the three oldest religions in the world—Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, and Judaism—as well as the rise of Christianity. He continued by discussing the Hindu philosophy of Vedanta and the ideas of God, soul, and body.

Vivekananda concluded– ” That has been the difficulty all the while. I am a Hindu. I am sitting in my own little well and thinking that the whole world is my little well. The Christian sits in his little well and thinks the whole world is his well. The Muslim sits in his little well and thinks that is the whole world.” His words were well-received by the audience, and he gained a large following in the United States as a result of his participation in the conference. So, he made it to the Chicago conference through his determination and hard work.

At the monastery of Belur Math on the Ganges River close to Calcutta, Vivekananda started the Ramakrishna Mission upon his return to India in 1897 with a small number of Western disciples. His values were self-improvement and service, which the order continued to emphasise. Even though he only lived for two years of the 20th century, he made the highest ideals of the Vedantic faith relevant to it and left his mark on both the East and the West.

Belur Math

Figure 2. Source – Needpix.com. An image of the Belur Math established by Swami Vivekananda.

Despite these challenges, Swami Vivekananda persevered and eventually succeeded in establishing the Ramakrishna Order in the United States. He worked tirelessly to spread the teachings of his guru, Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, and to promote understanding and harmony between people of different religions and backgrounds. He traveled extensively, giving lectures and inspiring people with his wisdom and insights.

In the face of rejection and criticism, Swami Vivekananda remained resolute and committed to his spiritual path. He understood that the path to enlightenment was not always easy and that he would face many challenges along the way. However, he also knew that by staying true to his beliefs and continuing to strive for spiritual growth, he would eventually be able to overcome any obstacle that came his way. His message of love, compassion, and understanding continues to resonate with people around the world, and his legacy lives on as a testament to the power of faith and determination.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Stories are the best way to come closer to children and Dr Monica Khanna is doing fabulous work in that sense. It’s always mesmerizing to read the stories she creates. Not only the kids, but even parents enjoy every bit of them.

Little Chimpu’s adventure through the jungle wherein she discovers the truth about ferocious Sher Dadu, is a beautiful story about finding friends in the most unlikely of people.

This picture book is such a delight to read. The book is beautifully illustrated with a good story line and strong vocabulary. I liked in this book is using the relations like ‘chachu’, ‘mamu’ and others which the kids are missing due to nuclear family... I must say the author has touched the chord of the heart with the sweet language used in the book..It’s a must read book for all the young kids.

A Wormy Tale is a delightful picture story book that offers the curious mind of a child the perfect blend of fun and relatable characters, vibrant illustrations and significant learnings that seep in with simplicity and are finally sealed with the array of activities it offers. This is a book with a wholesome experience, so read on!

This lovely book teaches you to think smart and not get carried away by appearances. Best wishes to Dr Monica Khanna for her amazing creation.

Dr. Monica Khanna has come out with one more offering for you all. Such a wonderful and endearing story! It takes us to that time of our lives when we believed that everything around us is black or white. Childhood is so much fun and so full of innocence. The characters in this story are so believable, with human-like qualities. Kind, gentle, witty, intelligent, sharp, sly and so on... Each young reader will enjoy reading this story because it is so relatable. You can find people with such qualities all around you.

The well-crafted, colourful illustrations of the enthusiastic musicians among insects – grasshoppers, katydids and hawkmoths, the frogs with their crafty expressions and the thoughtful busy bee, make it a lively read. Woven into the story are the fun facts of each insect, making it educative and inspiring too, thus inculcating the love of nature to early readers.

Katie Bagli’s new book promises to bring back the concert we have missed ever since the pandemic hit us. She beautifully weaves science and fiction, urging her young readers to learn about the techniques used by the wetland musicians - the grasshoppers, the katydids and the hawkmoths. Then there are the subtle values and undertones that make for great learning for children the vacation in nature, the loving aunt, the dutiful bee, or even the love for the garden insects.

Katie Bagli’s stories are filled with wild imagination yet grounded in facts.She brings to life the mundane and often overlooked facts with wit and humour, in her stories, as also in ‘The Insect Concert’. Her characters are driven by a moral so subtle that children may hardly realize the important life values they are imbibing just by reading her books. Her stories are lessons in science and art as each panel bursts into vivacious colours and tickles the imagination of the young reader. Truly delightful and a must read for all.

This book ‘Insect Concert’ by Katie Bagli is another gem from her treasure trove of stories about nature. Through a simple yet novel story, she manages to develop an interest in the animal kingdom and also provide a new learning. There are some activities too which children will enjoy. The illustrations add to the storyline and make the book more interesting for the young reader. I wish Katie more power to her pen.

Sunny Side Up’ is a book of joy for every child. With colourful illustrations and child friendly language this book opens up a world of different kinds of food to the young minds.

An instant hit - With colorful illustrations and an engaging narrative, this playful nature book is perfect for curious toddlers. A Wormy Tale..an engaging, simple yet extraordinary new story from Katie Bagli, number one bestseller and fastest growing children’s author in the country

Through this story, A Wormy Tale, the author Katie Bagli highlights earthworms as a part of the ecosystem. Educators can use this story for crossdisciplinary and interdisciplinary thinking within the national curriculum. Katie’s love for nature is evident in all her books.

To be hired in today’s global marketplace, employers demand more than basic ‘hard’ skills. The difference between a frustrated candidate and a sought-after recruit, the long-term worker and a compelling leader, or the stagnant professional and the rising manager can be the ‘soft’ skills each exercises in the workplace. This highly researched book analyses the job environment of today and for the future where ‘soft’ skills become a more critical attribute. The reader gleans valuable guidance on how to acquire and improve these ‘soft’ skills for a more enriching career.

Alpha Zone book – ‘Sunny Side Up’ - shows the variety of food that is present round the world. All of us know the common pizza or burger but there are many delicious dishes out there that many have not experienced. This book encourages us to be curious and to learn, enjoy and experience the art of the culinary skill.

I’ve absolutely no hesitation in saying that even after working for 30+ years in Manufacturing and Education sectors, I was not able to correlate nonverbal communication skills of a person with his personality and credibility. But after getting in touch with Prof (Dr) Shalini Verma and going through her first book, ‘BODY LANGUAGE: YOUR SUCCESS MANTRA, (2005)’ I immediately fell in love with this beautiful subject and understood that body language is an important personality trait of any person. I am delighted to know that Dr Verma is bringing out a multi-title series of that inspiring book after 15 years, which is surely going to be another ‘hit’ and beneficial for the readers, especially the Gen Z youth, who gravely need the maturity to understand and cope with complex personal & professional relationships to move forward in life.

Children’s literature largely trivialises and glosses over such issues such as gender or colour biases. But this book deals with the sensitive issue of our proclivity or preference for fair skin colour. In the context of the Indian subcontinent, such debates and discussions should be encouraged so that children grow up with a healthy self-image and grow up with the right attitudes that skin colour is secondary to inner beauty. Dr Monica’s sensitive handling of this subject deserves to be applauded. Kudos!

This book talks about the fact that beauty has no standards - it’s the way one looks at one own self. I am sure this book will surely attract young readers. I wish all the best for the book.

Kudos to Books33 for coming up with a separate segment of Children Books under its imprint Alpha Zone. Your initiative will definitely make parents and teachers understand the importance of inculcating reading habits in your kids right from their young age. I appreciate Dr Monica Khanna for her bookSunny Side Up’ and love its ‘kahani mein twist’ which made it all the more exciting.

A lovely rhyming style and delightful words make this book effortlessly readable. Dr Khanna addresses a vital issue of our times in this allegorical tale of female crow.

One may speak good English, bad English, good Hindi, bad Hindi, a mix of Hindi-English or 'Hinglish', Spanglish, Pig-Latin, Gibberish, Mumbling or Double-speak, the sub-text that one's body speaks is just ONE -- CREDIBLE or NOT CREDIBLE! Be aware of your body language. You can lie in your words, but the body never lies. We communicate through our Body all the time, even when we don't realize it. However, there are very few expertswho can deeply understand, analyse and decode Body Language. Dr Shalini Verma is one of them.

Kyra’s Return Flight conveys through a delightful story the very important message that there is great joy and power in accepting ourselves as we are,and not falling prey to harmful social prejudices about what is attractive or good. I greatly recommend this wonderful book about loving oneself!

‘Sunny Side Up’ authored by Dr Monica Khanna is a slice of delight with just the right bite.

‘Sunny Side Up’ is a delightfully wicked book! A complete treat for kids of all shapes, sizes and taste; those who fuss around their meals and those who devour their food. A visual treat for the eyes that moistened my curiosity palate, as I turned each page to follow Sunny’s exciting culinary adventures. An astonishing finale, that enhanced some beautiful childhood memories.

Katie Bagli has two interests, nature and children. She has two talents, writing and drawing. As a story teller, she engages children with her colourful puppets and other visual aids, bringing to life the characters in her books.

Dr Monica Khanna’s new book ‘Kyra’s Return Flight’ dwells deeper into the age-old societal challenges of colour differentiation amongst humans. Through a simple life story of a crow, she brings to the front the problem that we have of self-pity and self-doubt that dark coloured people face through the generations. As a school principal, I definitely recommend Monica’s books in all school libraries and encourage parents to share a copy with their kids.

My compliments to the author for developing rich and novel content in an area that still lies underexplored. With so little information available on body language in the Indian context, I can imagine how much hard work
would have gone into creating a book like this. This book is beautifully crafted in terms of quality content and relevance in the current context.

Former General Manager from State Bank of India

An Electrical Engineer and a first-generation entrepreneur with PhD in Management

Has been working in the corporate world for the last 10 years

A 17-year-old bright student of 11th standard at Dibrugarh, Assam

A student of IBDP program (at DYPIS) in Mumbai, India

Analyst at Deloitte USI

A 15-year-old student of class 10 at Apeejay School - Panchsheel Park, New Delhi

A 15-year-old student of class 10 at St. Mary’s ICSE School, Navi Mumbai.

An M.A. in English Literature from Tezpur University, Assam

A NIFT graduate and a professional Jewellery Designer

An educator by the day and a poet by night

A professional Microbiologist and an avid nature lover

Currently pursuing BDS & aspires to become a successful writer

A Communication Professor & Authorpreneur

English Language and Personality Development skills Trainer

Aspires to make career and writing and become a successful writer

Winner of ‘Mrs Karnataka’ and ‘Inner Beauty’ titles

A 13-year old 8th grader studying in Mangaluru, Karnataka

Student of English Honours at Calcutta University, West Bengal

A student of airport handling at YMCA, Delhi.

An engineer by profession and a writer by passion

Author & co-author of multiple books and anthologies

A nine-year-old student of Silver Oaks International School, Hyderabad

A Grade-III student of Silver Oaks International School, Hyderabad

She adorns the hat of a multitasker - an educationist, an artist, a poet, a photographer, an author, a homemaker, a wife and above all a MOTHER

3rd grader studying in Silver Oaks International School, Hyderabad

A writer by passion and a Physicist by profession

Sr. ERO (Sr. Employee Relations Officer) at Indian Oil Corporation Limited

Associate Professor at Indira Institute of Business Management

Registering with Books33 is the 1st step to joining our community and earning a ‘Bookoholics badge’ – an ENTRY TICKET to avail plethora of opportunities and discount coupons. And the good news is that registering with us is absolutely FREE!

BOOKS33 is a HOME of the AUTHORS, By the AUTHORS & For the AUTHORS. We give 360 degree publishing assistance. We not only PUBLISH your books but also PROMOTE & MARKET those books across the world and help you in spreading your wings across the book readers' community. We provide end-to-end assistance in publishing, promotion, and positioning of your books under just ONE roof.