India celebrates National Youth Day on January 12. This date was chosen to honor the birthday of Swami Vivekananda, one of India’s greatest spiritual and social leaders. He saw hope for the future in every child and believed that with “muscles of iron” and “nerves of steel” they could bring about social change. Swami himself personified the eternal energy of the youth and a restless quest for truth. Today, almost 50 percent of India’s population is under the age of 25. The future of the country rides on their shoulders — making celebrations that empower young people so important.
National Youth Day - History
National Youth Day declared
The Indian Government declared Swami Vivekananda’s birthday, January 12, as National Youth Day to honor the great spiritual leader, and to encourage the youth in the country.
A great soul departed
Vivekananda retired to his room and passed away peacefully while he was in a meditative state.
The Ramakrishna Mission For Social Services
Vivekananda founded the Ramakrishna Mission. Its ideals are based on karma yoga and the teachings of its guru.
East Meets West
Vivekananda spoke at Parliament of the World's Religions in Chicago and introduced the Vedanta philosophy to the West. His address received many accolades and a two-minute standing ovation from a crowd of 7,000.
A leader was born
Swami Vivekananda was born into an aristocratic family in Kolkata, India.
How to Observe National Youth Day
1. Learn about the life and teachings of Vivekananda
The Advaita Vedanta philosophy and yoga propagated by this monk encourages young people to be seekers of truth, and become a driving force that changes society.
2. Take part in the day's activities
Local clubs, colleges, and schools organize various competitions and events that are both fun and educational.
3. Donate blood at a blood drive
Many blood drives are organized on this day. So, do some good for someone in need.
5 Teachings Of Vivekananda That Will Enlighten You
1. It's all in the mind
"Whatever you think, that you will be. If you think yourselves weak, weak you will be; if you think yourselves strong, strong you will be."
2. Follow the three Ps
"Purity, patience, and perseverance are the three essentials to success, and above all, love."
3. What Vedanta calls religion
"This is the gist of all worship — to be pure and to do good to others."
4. End hunger and ignorance
"So long as millions live in hunger and ignorance, I hold every man a traitor who, having been educated at their expense, pays not the least heed to them."
5. Every man's true religion
"No man is born to any religion; he has a religion in his own soul."
Why National Youth Day is Important
A. It inspires young people
The life and teachings of Vivekananda are a source of great inspiration for young minds.
B. It honors a great spiritual leader
India also celebrates the birthday of Swami Vivekananda and remembers his invaluable contribution to the country.
C. It's an eventful day
Debates, speeches, rallies, seminars, and many other activities take place in schools, colleges, and local youth clubs on this day.