The Prime Minister of Hyderabad, Telangana, on the outskirts will unveil the Statue of Equality, a Ramanujacharya statue. India is celebrating its 1,000th birthday as the ‘Festival of Equality,’ honouring the belief that the entire globe is one family or ‘vasudhaiva kutumbakam.’
It’s a 216-foot-tall figure crafted of ‘panchaloha,’ a five-metal alloy consisting of gold, silver, copper, brass, and zinc. It is one of the world’s highest metallic statues in a sitting or lying position. Let’s look at more information and notes on this topic.
Statue of Equality UPSC
The Statue of Equality, also known as the Ramanuja statue, which can be found on the grounds of the Chinna Jeeyar Trust in Muchintal, Hyderabad, is a statue of the 11th-century Vaishnavite Saint Bhagavad Ramanuja.
The trust conceived the statue project to mark 1000 years since Ramanuja’s birth, and the contract was awarded to a Chinese company. The project, which cost an estimated 1,000 crore (US$130 million), was funded by devotee donations.
The statue is supported by a 54-foot-high foundation structure inferred to be ‘Bhadra Vedi.’ It features a Vedic digital research centre and library, ancient Indian theatre, manuscripts, and an educational exhibition with many of Sri Ramanujacharya’s works.
Who was Ramanujacharya?
#Ramanujacharya, a Vedic philosopher and social reformer, was born in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu, in 1017.
#At the time of his birth, he was given the name Lakshmana. He was also known as Ilaya Perumal, which translates to “the bright one.”
#He campaigned for equality and social justice all over India.
#His preachings encouraged other Bhakti schools of thought, reviving the Bhakti movement. Bhakta Ramdas, Annamacharya, Kabir, Thyagaraja, and Meerabai are among the poets who have cited him as an inspiration.
#He is best known as the founder of the Vishishtadvaita Vedanta subschool.
#VishishtAdvaita (meaning “Advaita with uniqueness; qualifications”) is a non-dualistic Vedanta philosophical school.
UPSC Exam Notes
#At a time when many castes were barred from accessing temples, Ramanuja promoted social equality among all elements of society and encouraged temples to open their doors to everyone, regardless of caste or social status.
#He provided education to people who lacked it. The concept of “vasudhaiva kutumbakam,” which translates as “all the universe is one family,” is his greatest gift.
#For several decades, he went across India, preaching his beliefs of social equality and universal brotherhood from temple podiums.
#He welcomed the socially outcast and condemned, pleading with royal courts to treat them equally.
Some More Points
He preached Sri Vaishnavam Sampradaya, which teaches universal salvation via devotion to God, equality, humility, compassion, and mutual respect.
With the underlying idea that every human being is equal regardless of colour, nationality, caste, gender, or faith, Ramanujacharya liberated millions from gender, social, educational, cultural, and economic oppression.
Ramanujacharya and the Statue of Equality
The 216-foot-tall Statue of Equality honours Bhakti Saint Sri Ramanujacharya, who championed equality in all aspects of life, including caste, faith, and creed, in the 11th century.
Sri Ramanujacharya dedicated his life to the upliftment of people, believing that all individuals are equal regardless of colour, nationality, caste, gender, or creed.
The statue is built of ‘panchaloha,’ a five-metal alloy consisting of brass, silver, gold, copper, and zinc, and is one of the world’s tallest metallic statues in a sitting position. It is affixed to a 54-foot-high base structure known as “Bhadra Vedi.”
It has levels dedicated to a Vedic digital library and research centre, ancient Indian scriptures, a theatre, and an educational gallery showcasing Sri Ramanujacharya’s contributions.
What is Vishistadvaita?
Ans: Vishishtadvaita is a non-dualistic Vedanta school of thought. In which Brahman is recognised as the Supreme Reality alone, yet it is distinguished by plurality, It is a non-dualism of the qualified whole.
Qualified monism, attributive monism or qualified nondualism, are all terms that might be used to define or express it. It’s a Vedanta philosophical school that claims that all variation is subsumed by an underlying unity.
UPSC Preparation Questions
Consider the following statements about the Statue of Equality
1 .It is dedicated to saint Madhvacharya.
2 . It is situated at Nalgonda.
Which among the above statements is/are correct?
a . only 1
b . only 2
c . both of the above
d . none of the above
Answer – d
Consider the following statements about Ramanuja ( 1017–1137 CE) a Hindu theologian and philosopher-
1 . He is famous as the chief proponent of Vishishtadvaita subschool of Vedanta.
2 . Ramanuja’s guru was Adi Shankara.
3 . His theories assert that there exists a plurality and distinction between Atman (soul) and Brahman (metaphysical, ultimate reality).
Which among the above statements is/are incorrect?
a . only 1
b . only 2
c . only 3
d . 2 & 3
Answer – b
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