Ramakrishna Mission is a religious organization which forms the core of a worldwide spiritual movement known as the Ramakrishna Movement.
The mission is a philanthropic, volunteer organisation founded by Swami Vivekananda on 1 May 1897. The mission conducts extensive work in health care, disaster relief, rural management, tribal welfare, elementary and higher education and culture. It uses the combined efforts of hundreds of monks and thousands of householder disciples. The mission bases its work on the principles of Karma Yoga.
The Mission, which is headquartered near Kolkata at Belur Math in Howrah, West Bengal, subscribes to the ancient Hindu philosophy of Vedanta.
The Mission is a registered society under Act XXI of 1860. Its management is vested in a Governing Body.
The Motto of the organisation is Atmano Mokshartham Jagad-hitaya Cha. Translated from Sanskrit आत्मनॊ मोक्षार्थम् जगद्धिताय च it means For one’s own salvation, and for the good of the world.
The aims and ideals of the Mission are purely spiritual and humanitarian. Swami Vivekananda proclaimed “Renunciation and service” as the twofold national ideals of modern India and the work of the mission strives to practice and preach these ideals.
The service activities are based on the message of “Jiva is Shiva” from Ramakrishna and Vivekananda’s message of “Daridra Narayana” to indicate that service to poor is service to God. The Principles of Upanishads and Yoga in Bhagavad Gita reinterpreted in the light of Ramakrishna’s Life and Teachings is the main source of inspiration for the Mission. The service activities are rendered looking upon all as veritable manifestation of the Divine.