Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a 216-ft statue of Ramanujacharya on Saturday, highlighting his message of equality for all. After sharing the inauguration news of the “Statue of Equality” on twitter, he felt honored to work for such a noble cause. ‘The Statue of Equality honors Ramanujacharya, a great promoter of equality in all aspects of life, regardless of faith, race, or creed. As one of the country’s leading advocates for social equality, Saint Ramanujacharya was extremely vocal. Sri Ramanujacharya’s knowledge is an invaluable treasure for our culture and heritage. And thus, this Statue of Equality is intended to restore & preserve this great philosopher’s teachings.
Statue of Equality: The Rise of Ramanujacharya
The statue stands 216 feet high, situated in a 40-acre plot of land on the outskirts of Hyderabad. The building is mounted on a 54-ft-high base called the Bhadra Vedi, which houses a digital library and a research center, a theatre, and a gallery of Ramanujacharya’s works.
Furthermore, the statue is made up of Panchaloha, which is a mix of five metals including gold, copper, silver, brass, & zinc. This will be the tallest metallic statue in the world in a sitting position.
Shri Ramanujacharya, who sits upright on a huge Lotus in the Statue of Equality, is less than half the size of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s Statue of Unity while joining his hands together and keeping them close to his chest. Similarly, Ramanuja has the flag ‘thiruthandam’ across his chest, with ‘sadari’ (god’s feet) below.
The History of Ramanujacharya
Ramanujacharya is known as a Hindu philosopher and social reformer born in Tamil Nadu in 1071. Throughout his life, he spread the message of social justice and equality to his disciples.
It was through his preaching that he revived the Bhakti movement in the country, which led to the emergence of other Bhakti schools of thought. Also, he served as an inspiration for many great poets, including Bhakt Ramdas, Annamacharya, Thyagaraja, Meerabai, & Kabir.
In addition to being a well-known philosopher, Ramanuja was an environmentalist who fought to protect the planet and its resources, including air, water, and soil. It is believed he composed the navaratanas, a combination of 9 scriptures, & various other commentaries in the Vedic script.
He taught temples to open their doors to all, regardless of caste, creed, or gender. A strong believer, he often argued that everyone ought to have access to education, even when certain sections of the population were prohibited from it.
Statue of Equality! But why Equality?
What is the significance of the Statue of Equality? Why is it called such? Many centuries ago, Ramanujacharya promoted social equality among all sections of society. Among his greatest contributions is propagating Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, which means that the universe is one family. Through his social reforms and travels across the country, he promoted social equality.
The statue commemorates the Vaishnavite saint Ramanujacharya’s contribution to society in the 11th century. With the spirit that every human being is equal, he devoted himself to the upliftment of people, regardless of gender, nationality, race, caste, or creed.
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