The Mission has been running Gaudiya Mission Paravidyapeeth & Research Institute, dedicated to educate and research on the teachings of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu to lift the standard of public morality by spreading the philosophy of Love, Peace, Universal Brotherhood, Tolerance and Harmony.
The institution, since its inception, is engaged in imparting the knowledge of attaining the highest goal of life and to enlighten mankind about its suffering due to spiritual ignorance. Organizing lectures, seminars, study circles, symposia, scripture classes, and other religious and cultural programme are some of the scheduled tasks of the Institution for holistic development and welfare of human society.
In the existing social matrix, people are inclined to acquire knowledge in “Materialism” and running after for material gain. In consequence, in different stratum of society people are lacking knowledge in crude “Realism”, and thereby being devoid of self-knowledge, modesty, humbleness, humility, integrity and such other merits. This leads to gradual escalation of terrorism, corruption, nepotism, snapping of the ties of brotherhood and such other myriad evil phenomena among the people of the society.
Schools, colleges and universities all are conventionally engaged in giving lessons on “Apara-vidya” (“Apara” means other than absolute or supreme), while the lessons which help to know God is “Paravidya” (“Para” means supreme or absolute) which is never catered by the existing educational system. In this perspective, Gaudiya Mission has volunteered to play a phenomenal role. It is here where culmination of “Paravidya” is on, i.e. knowledge of God and the knowledge of self can be acquired from the lessons on Paravidya Classes.
The founder of this Mission is His Holiness Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Goswami Prabhupada. In July, 1928 he founded “Sri Saraswata Asan”, a center for spiritual learning, and named it “Paravidyapeeth”. He wanted this organization to help the Bhaktisashtra (scriptures) learners to study them and practice the teachings thereof in their own lives. He himself was the professor-in-chief or principal mentor of “Paravidyapeeth” from 1930 to 1935. He used to teach regularly the holy books like “Srichaitanya Charitamrrita”, “Jaibadharma”, “Srichaitanya Sikshamrita”, “Srichaitanya Bhagbat”, “Bhagbat Geeta”, “Srimad Bhagwat” and the likes.
In 1935 “Paravidyapeeth” was renamed as “Gaudiya Mission Para-vidyapeeth” and accordingly it was registered. In 1966 Govt of India recognized it as a “Center for Learning”, and later in 1984 it was officially recorded in the Govt Gazette. In 2014, Mission authority had converted “Gaudiya Mission Paravidyapeeth” into “Gaudiya Mission Paravidyapeeth Research Institute”. The main objective behind this conversion was to give an opportunity to the youth of the society to garner knowledge in “Paravidya” alongside acquiring conventional “Aparavidya” from their schools, colleges and universities. In addition it aims to spread ethical, moral & spiritual values in people of all walks of life through the teaching of “Paravidya”.
Gaudiya Mission Para-Vidyapeeth Research Institute is keen to spread the learning of Gaudiya Vaishnava culture and its humanitarian outlook to the people without any restriction. Since study of the same requires knowledge of Sanskrit and Darshana, the curriculum includes training in Sanskrit Language and textual studies in Indian Philosophy largely.
Research activities at Gaudiya Mission Para-vidyapeeth Research Institute encourages the study of pure Vaishnava Faith, its philosophy, doctrines, rituals and also the comparative study of other systems of faiths, tenets, doctrines and school of philosophy and ethics with a view to bring about universal harmony and brotherhood on a plane of Transcendence.
Scholasticism is not the be-all and end-all of learning, the ultimate end of which is the attainment of Krishna-Prema.
— Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
One of the object of the Mission concerns activities to spread education on Doctrines of unalloyed Vaishnava faith, Indian spiritual and cultural heritage not only in India but abroad through our 33 branches in India and abroad.
Just to effectuate the aforesaid objective the Mission has Library and reading room in its central office at 16A Kaliprasad Chakraborty Street, Bagbazar, Kolkata and also in its branches.
The Mission Library presently has about 9000 (Nine thousands) books in 1500 texts relating to the following branches of literature:-
Books on the above subject presently are available in the Mission Library comprising
February 20-21, 2012
Two-day Seminar at Girish Mancha, Kolkata
Gaudiya Mission organized the seminars as it felt that the teachings of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu are highly relevant in these days. It was also to commemorate his contribution in bringing back the main stream of ethical religion by breaking down the barriers of caste, creed and religion more than five centuries ago.
In the afternoon, the proceedings started with the Mission’s Acharya and President, Om Vishnupad 108 Sri Srimad Bhaktisuhrid Paribrajak Goswami Maharaj, garlanding the portrait of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The occasion was graced by Sri Rabiranjan Chattopadhyay, West Bengal Minister for Technical Education. The Minister spoke on the highly uplifting contributions of Mahaprabhu for the society.
Other speakers included Hon’ble Justice Shyamal Kumar Sen of Calcutta High Court. Dr. Ramakanta Chakrabarty, President, Bangiya Sahitya Parishad, Swami Balabhadranandaji Maharaj of Ramakrishna Mission, Professor Sri Karunasindhu Das, former Vice-Chancellor, Rabindra Bharati University, distinguished educationist, Professor Sri Sunanda Sanyal, Dr. Amalendu Chakravarty, former Head of the Department, Philosophy, Presidency College, and Sri Madhabananda Das, who had come all the way from the USA to attend the seminar.
The next day’s first session witnessed swami Swarupanandaji Maharaj of Ramakrishna Mssion delivering a scintillating lecture on “Sri Krishna Chaitanya and the spirit of Tolerance”. Sri Harishouri Das from Australia was one of the speakers.
In the second session Dr. (Prof.) Sirajul Islam, Department of Philosophy and Religion of Rabindra Bharati university, Swami Pradiptanandaji Maharaj of Bharat Savashram Sangha, and Secretary, Gaudiya Mission Sripad Bhakti Sundar Sanyasi Maharaj spoke. Special Guest, Hon’ble Justice Kalyanjyoti Sengupta of Calcutta High Court, and Head of the Department of Bengali Rabindra Bharati University, Dr. Kananbihari Goswami had the audience spellbound through their rousing speeches.
April 29 to May 1, 2012
Three-day Seminar at Jaleswar, Odisha
The seminar was graced by the holy presence of Acharya Om Vishnupad Paramhansa 108 Sri Srimad Bhakti Suhrid Paribrajak Maharaj at Padiya Ground at Jaleswar Market. The Acharya was in the chair. Sripad Bhaktisundar Sanyasi Maharaj was the main speaker. He delivered an enthralling speech on the commentaries of Srijiva Goswami, Sridhara Goswami, Thakur Bhakti Vinode and Srila Prabhupada on the “Janmadyasya Sloka” of Srimad Bhagvat. Most Revered Gurudev in his short speech said, “True wisdom lies in knowing the Advaytatta. A human being becomes happy only through hearing divine discourses”.
On the second day, Sripad Bhakti Suhrid Sanyasi Maharaj spoke on the Second Sloka of Mangalacharana of Srimad Bhagavat. He said, “We hear about social ethos, patriotism and caste religion, but the Srimad Bhagvat speaks only of divine religion. This Sloka speaks of Love for Krishna above religion, wealth, attainments and ‘Moksha’ (liberation). Srila Gurudev said, “The subject of God is the only companion. When one knows Him one sets out on the path of ever lasting good”.
August 9-11, 2012
Two-day Seminar at Sri Gaudiya Math, Kolkata
A religious festival like Janmashtami did not remain confined to its spiritual and ritual spects on the Sri Krishna Jayanti day at Sri Gaudiya Math on August 9, 2012. A question answer session on the “Ishtagoshthi” or the pantheon of the deities was conducted between 12 noon and 1.00 pm by Sripad Bhakti Sundar Sanyasi Maharaj. A discourse was also held on the concept of “Trinadapi Sunichena” practiced by a true Vaishnav. From 5.30 pm a Spiritual congregation was held. Among the dignitaries present were Hon’ble Justice Girish Gupta of Calcutta High Court and Hon’ble Justice Shyamal Kumar Sen, former Governor of West Bengal and Ex-Chairperson, West Bengal Human Rights Commission.
Gaudiya Mission Paravidyapeeth, established in 1935, has developed itself as a research institute to cater to the needs of scholars in learning, discovering, analyzing and positing philosophical postulations in the contemporary setting. A band of highly qualified and motivated faculty are attached to the Paravidyapeeth.
Under the aegis of Paravidyapeeth a seven-day workshop on Philosophical Languages Level 1, was held from July 3-9, 2014. Secretary of Gaudiya Mission, Sripad Bhakti Sundar Sanyasi Maharaj, welcomed the distinguished Speakers and Guests as well as the participating scholars from the disciplines of Philosophy and Sanskrit. He pleaded for a more vigorous propagation of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s ideals to cure the modern society of its ills and to spread the message Universal Love and Brotherhood as enshrined in Mahaprabhu’s philosophy.
Among the speakers at the inaugural session were Professor Piyali Palit of the Department of Philosophy, Jadavpur University, Professor Nabanarayan Bandyopadhyay, Director, School of Vedic Studies, Rabindra Bharati university (RBU). Professor Nirmalya Narayan Chakraborty, Head, Philosophy (RBU), Professor Ayan Bhattacharya, Department of Philosophy, West Bengal State University, and Professor Bhaskar Nath Bhattacharya, School of Vedic Studies (RBU). The resource persons for this highly innovative course were Professor Piyali Palit, Dr. Gangadhar Kar, Department of Philosophy, Jadavpur University and Dr. Mita Bandyopadhyay, Department of Philosophy, Serampore Christian College.
Areas covered in four sessions of each day were as follows : (1) Indian Model of Philosophical Analysis, (2) The World : Padarth / Praneya, (3) Vedanta Epistemology : Nature, Definition and characteristics, (4) Navya Nyaya Concept of Relations, (5) Technique of Developing Navya Nyaya Language and (6) Text-reading with illustrations. In an interactive session after the conclusion of the workshop, the participating scholars spoke highly about the benefits they had derived from the workshop sessions.
On the auspicious occasion of Durga puja a seven days workshop starting from 18.10.15 to 24.10.15 has been organized by Gaudiya Mission,Baghbazar at Gaudiya mission Paravidyapith Institute. A class has been taken by Mission’s editor Tridandi Swami Sripad Bhaktisundar Sanyassi Maharaj. On the above mentioned class “Sri Chaitanya Shikhyamrita” written by Sril Sacchidananda Bhaktivinod Thakur and “ Vaktisandarva” by Sril Swami Jivagoswamipad has been discussed. Approximately 50 students have taken part in this workshop. A seminar has been organized yesterday to end these 7 days workshop. This educational institute is growing day by day under mission’s present Acharya Om Bhishnupad Parhamansa Sri Sri Madbhaikti Suhrid Paribrajak Goswami Maharaj’s supervision.
Manuscriptology deals with the study of manuscripts. A manuscripts is any document that is written by hand, as opposed to being printed or reproduced in some other way. Manuscripts symbolize he social and cultural life of any era.
Palaeography is the study of the form of ancient handwriting. Paleography mirrors our past. The history of writing is a major component of our cultural heritage.
A basic level National workshop on Manuscriptology & Paleography was held from 1st to 22nd December, 2016 at Gaudiya Mission Para Vidyapeeth Research Institute, Baghbazar, in collaboration with National Mission for Manuscripts, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi. On the Inauguration day of the workshop the program will start by lightning lamp & offering flowers to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The respected secretary of Gaudiya Mission Sripad BhaktiSundar Sanyasi Maharaj, will deliver the welcome address. Prof. Dilip Kumar Mohanta, Vice Chancellor, The Sanskrit College will deliver The Inaugural Address. His Devine Grace Srila Bhakti Suhrid Paribrajak Goswami Maharaj, President of Gaudiya Mission will preside over this Inaugural Session of Workshop. 28 students will participate the workshop. Many scholars of various states will take classes in this workshop. Hon’ble Prof. Prafulla Kumar Mishra, Vice-Chancellor of North Odisha University will deliver the Valedictory Address at 4.00 P.M. on 22nd December, 2016.
A) Incense Stick packing : Gaudiya Mission is situated in a locality where a good percentage of women come of very poor families. As such, most of these women would suffer financially and from a sense of helplessness at not being able to supplement the family income. This did not happen due to Gaudiya Mission’s initiatives on vocational training.
The first of these is training the neighborhood women is in the packing of incense sticks, labelling them and making such cartons ready for the market as well as for sale from the Mission’s own counter. Now with some extra money in their purse, these women feel a sense of empowerment and well-being.
B) Floral arrangement : Gaudiya Mission being attached to Sri Gaudiya Math, daily ‘archan’ (worship) and floral decoration of the deities is part of life of the inmates. A good quantity of flower of different varieties are bought from the market as well as supplied by devotees for making garlands, bouquets etc.
Gaudiya Mission has engaged local women to make such floral items. The trained ones, in turn, pass on the expertise to the newcomers. Thus, quite a lot of women are getting trained in making items of floral decoration, much to their own benefit as well as their poor families.
Gaudiya Mission has set up family type biogas plants for meeting the cooking energy needs of its different centres in rural areas of the country along with making enriched organic fertilizer availability for crop cultivation. Centres at Nabadwip and Durgapur in West Bengal, Puri and Remuna in Odisha, and Lucknow, Mughalsarai and Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh are now equipped with Bio-gas Plants.
On the one hand these plants have been providing considerable fuel for the cooking of food three to four times a day for the monastic members. House holder devotees and workers as well as scores of visitors, but have also become energy-saving devices. Lights are lit with such gas. The residual cow dung and urine are also used valuable bio-fertiliser which is cheap and environment friendly.