Arya Samaj

  • The first Arya Samaj unit was organised in Bombay in 1875, by Swami Dayanand Saraswati.
  • It stood for the four-fold varna system determined by merit and not by birth.
  • Stood for equal rights for both men and women in social and educational matters.
  • Opposed untouchability, caste discrimination, child marriage, and supported widow remarriage and inter caste marriages.
  • Their head quarter was later shifted to Lahore.
  • Accepted the authority of the Vedas but sanctioned by rationalism and utilitarianism. Preached father-hood of God and brother hood of man, equality of sexes, love and charity towards all.
  • In 1886- DAV School was instituted at Lahore by Lal Hansraj.
  • In 1902- Gurukula Pathsala at Hardwar was established.
  • After the death of Dayanand in 1883, differences occurred in the Gurukul section led by Swami Shradhananda and DAV section led by Lala Lajpat Rai and Lal Hasraj. While the Gurukul section laid emphasis on the traditional pattern of education the Dayanand-Anglo-Vedic section stood for the spread of English education. This led to the split of the Samaj in 1892.
  • The Anglo-Vedic school established at Lahore in 1886 provided the nucleus for Arya Samaj movement. Lal Hansraj started the Gurukul near Hardwar to propagate the more traditional ideals of education.
  • The Samaj started the Shuddhi movement to convert non-hindus to hinduism.
  • This became a contributory factor in the growth of communalism in Inda in the 20th century.
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