The topic of our this article is did Swami Vivekananda get married or was Swami Vivekananda married?
Many readers and Swami Vivekananda admirers will find this topic a “weird one” and we completely agree with them, the title of the article is, indeed, a “weird one”.
After doing some studies, we have found out, actually there are many people who want to know about this topic, Google gets many search queries related to this topic.
People generally search with the following keywords—
[Spelling and grammar according to Google’s search suggestion]
- Did Swami Vivekananda married?
- Did Swami Vivekananda get married?
- Tell me about Swami Vivekananda’s marriage
- Was Swami Vivekananda married?
You may go to Google and start typing “Did Swami Vivekananda. . .” or “Was Swami Vivekananda. . .” to get these search suggestions.
Now, this question “did Swami Vivekananda marry?” may be answered in just one word/sentence—
✘ No, Swami Vivekananda did not marry [end]
Swami Vivekananda was a Sannyasi. He remained unmarried all his life.
We may finish this article right here, but, we’ll try provide some relevant details here including the few marriage proposals he had in his life.
Mariage proposal for Narendranath, 1883
In 1883 Narendranath (pre-monastic name of Swami Vivekananda) passed B. A. examination and started taking lawyer’s training as an apprentice of Nimai Chandra Basu, a friend of Vishwanath Datta (Vishwanath Datta was Swamiji’s father). At that time, marriage proposals started coming for young Narendranath (at that time he was just twenty years old). Bhupendranath Datta, Swamiji’s younger brother, wrote about this period—
We now once again go back to the subject of Bisvanath’s plan on the eve of his death to select a bride for Narendranath, his eldest son. Since this matter has been discussed in the biographies of Swamiji, it is proper that we should put the records straight once for all in this connection. Marriage-proposals from important quarters for Narendranath came in plenty during Bisvanath’s bfe-time. They continued to do so after his demise also. The writer came to know from his mother that a friend of Bisvanath since his days at school who later on became an intimate colleague in the High Court also had proposed to bear the expenses of the family law-suit if Narendranath agreed to many his grand-daughter. Similar offers also came right from the Ramakrislina circle itself The late Salaam Basu. a Zamindar of Cuttact wanted Narenclianath to many his daughter. So did R. Mitra, well-known banister of Calcutta. I need add that all these proposals fell on deaf ears and came to naught’.
Bhawan Singh Rana and Mina Agrawal, in their book The Immortal Philosopher Of India Swami Vivekananda, wrote, Vishanatha Datta wanted to get Narendranath married just after his F. A. examinations. The author-duo also wrote Vishwanath Datta was specially interested in this proposal as the girl’s father was ready to give 10,000 Indian rupees in the marriage as dowry. Narendranath was not eager to do this marriage. He wanted to continue practising austerity and celibacy under the guidance of Ramakrishna.
When Vishwanath Datta failed to get Narendranath’s nod for the marriage, he asked Ram Chandra Datta, Narendranath’s cousin, to try to convince him. Ram Chandra Datta tried his best to convince Narendranath, but he too failed. Narendranath thought the reason of these failures were Ramakrishna’s strong will, who wanted to prepare him for his works.
Gopal Shrinivas Banhatti, in his book Life And Philosophy Of Swami Vivekananda, wrote—
His resolve not to marry was the perceptible outcome of his stern idea of purity. Even before he appeared for the B.A. examination, offers for marriage poured in. An alluring proposal of a dowry enough to finance his education in England leading to the I.C.S. examination was summarily rejected by him. Indeed Vivekananda was to visit England for another purpose to educate Englishmen.
“Why should I get married?” — Swami Vivekananda
On 30 September 1893, an interview of Swami Vivekananda was published in the Boston Evening Transcript. In that interview he was asked if he had an plan to get married. Vivekananda’s prompt reply was—[Source]
“Why should I marry, when I see in every woman only the divine Mother? Why do I make all these sacrifices? To emancipate myself from earthly ties and attachments so that there will be no re-birth for me. When I die I want to become at once absorbed in the divine, one with God. I would be a Buddha.”
Marriage proposal in the USA — Answers.com‘s story
Answers.com (archived copy) has posted (or “answered?) a story. It writes, when Swami Vivekananda went to the United States, a woman approached him and asked to marry her. Vivekananda was surprised and wanted to know the reason of such desire. The lady replied, she was amazed by Vivekananda’s intellect and wanted to have a child with similar intellect. Vivekananda listened to her points and replied, “I understand why you are desirous to marry me, but it’ll take a long time to get a grown-up child with intellect like me. I can give you a better option at this moment. Become my mother and make me your child. That’s how, your desire will be fulfilled right now.” The lady was speechless.
Now that is the Answers.com‘ story. We have not found it in any scholarly work, so we can not confirm that this was a “real event”. If you know something about it, please post in the comments section.
- ☞ See also Swami Vivekananda’s quotes on marriage
- Rajagopal Chattopadhyaya (1 January 1999). Swami Vivekananda in India: A Corrective Biography. Motilal Banarsidass Publ. pp. 37–. ISBN 978-81-208-1586-5
- Bhawan Singh Rana; Mīnā Agravāla Meena Agrawal (2005). The Immortal Philosopher Of India Swami Vivekananda. Diamond Pocket Books (P) Ltd. pp. 21–. ISBN 978-81-288-1001-5
- Gopal Shrinivas Banhatti (1 January 1995). Life And Philosophy Of Swami Vivekananda. Atlantic Publishers & Dist. pp. 7–. ISBN 978-81-7156-291-6.