" I wish to awaken my dispirited people through Dharma; to manifest in them the ideals of the great Rishi-Age and to bestow humanity with – their loftiest gift – the gift of Self-Knowledge. This is the ideal of our Sangha."
- Swami Nigamananda
Nilachal Saraswat Sangha (NSS), Puri, was founded by Swami Nigamananda Paramahans Dev exclusively for his household devotees in Orissa on 24th August 1934, at Nilachal Kutir, his eternal abode at Puri, India.
Satisfied with the devotion and the sincerity for spiritual quest of a handful of his young Oriya devotees, Swami Nigamananda had directed them to go and congregate at the Sangha once in a week, pay obeisance to Sri Gurudev, discuss his ideals and commune with each other to share experiences gained on the path of spirituality. He had categorically instructed the member-devotees to lead an ideal householder’s life on the lines of his teachings, which affirms to a clean and principled living (link to dasabidha niyam) as its basis, and practice in Sangha to become ideal human beings.
The four pronged practices defined for sangha-sevis are : (a) Establishment of the power of sangha (b) Atmagathan (c) foundation of ideal family life and (d) carrying out activities benefiting the larger human society.
NSS was started with a few devotees who were then school students who were, but, ardent followers of the Paramahans Dev. The bee line of devotees gradually emerged from the nook and corners of Orissa region coinciding with the publication of the biography of Swami Nigamananda in Oriya in the year 1942 by his leading disciple Sri Durga Charana Mohanty and Banamali Das.
The principal value of Nilachal Saraswat Sangha was clearly delineated by Sri Gurudev himself that it must not focus on publicity for the spread of his teachings; which should, rather, be aptly reflected through examples set by everyday lives of his followers. If established in true human values; a single such person can achieve the impossible. Those who desire to dedicate their life for welfare of others and yet wouldn't be nurturing recognition in exchange, only such silent workers need to be in the Sanghas.
Into the 75th year of its inception, NSS is now more than 150 branches (Sakha Sanghas) strong, and is spread throughout Orissa including branches in New Delhi, Kolkata, Jamshedpur, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune etc, to mention a few. It has also crossed the boundary of India with its branch set up in the United States of America (N. Carolina). It also has a Sangha-Ashram at Rishikesh.
NSS, Puri, has a wing for the women devotees - Nilachal Saraswat Mahila Sangha (NSMS), which plays a significant role in keeping up the Sangha values and in pursuing the primary teaching of the Gurudev to build an ideal family life to groom ideal human beings first; and ultimately, for the service of the humanity at large. Wings for the young devotees called ‘Sevak Sanghas’ or ‘Kishore Sanghas’ for boys and ‘Kumari Sanghas ’ for girls under NSS are basically engaged in perpetuating this ideal.
NSS’ registered headquarter is at Shri Nigamananda Smruti Mandir, Swargadwar, Puri, Orissa, India, with its representative office functioning at Satsikshya Mandir, A/4, Unit-9, Bhubaneswar-751022, Orissa, India. Tele: +91- 0674 239 0055 / 239 5519
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