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Founded on November 7, 1938, on the auspicious Kartik Sud Purnima, Samvat 1995, nearly a decade before the advent of Independence, with the blessings of Mahatma Gandhi and co-operation and support of several distinguished stalwarts of India's freedom movement, the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan has grown, from small beginnings, into a comprehensive all-India intellectual, cultural and educational movement. It is totally apolitical.

Its founder, Kulapati Dr. K.M. Munshi, looked upon the Bhavan as an 'Adventure in Faith', a faith in India's past, present and future. It is also a faith in India's people who have a rich and unbroken cultural heritage. True to its goal of revitalising Dharma or the Moral Law in its three-fold aspects of Truth, Love and Beauty - Satyam, Shivam, Sundaram - the Bhavan is ceaselessly striving to carry forward India's ageless message of Faith, Self-discipline and Dedication - Shraddha, Samyama and Samarpana. The Bhavan believes that there are elements in all cultures which transcend all barriers and knits people together. Its ideal is: Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam: "The World Is One Family." Its motto is Aa no bhadraah kratavo yantu vishwatah: "Let noble thoughts come to us from every side."

During the last six decades and more of its existence, the Bhavan has blossomed into an ever-growing, voluntary, apolitical national movement with an international outlook, devoted to life, literature and culture. Bhavan's programmes cover "all aspects of life from the cradle to the grave and beyond….it fills a growing vacuum in modern life" as Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru observed when he first visited the Bhavan in 1950.

Towards Bhavan’s Consolidation and sustained growth [ Fundamental Attitude prescribed by Kulapati Dr. K.M.Munshi ]

“Let me put together the fundamental attitudes which everyone connected with the Bhavan should develop for Bhavan’s consolidation and sustained growth :

  • An understanding ofd the aims of the Bhavan and a sense of identification with them, expressed in continuous efforts to realize them in every field of activity.
  • A spirit of dedication to the Bhavan which will prompt every one to ask, not ‘what can I get from the Bhavan?’ but ‘what can I do for the Bhavan?’
  • A faith in the culture of our land, particularly in the Epics and in the teachings of the Bhagavat Gita.
  • The habit of daily prayer, in private and in congregation and the practice of invoking the grace of God before any work is begun and to so do it that it is fit to be offered to Him.
  • A passion for the Sanskrit language, to study it oneself and to beoffered to Him.s
  • The development of a healthy mind that is neither petrified by custom nor capering at the call of every fancy, but which is rooted in the past, draws The development of a healthy mind that is neither petrified by custom nor capering at the call of every fancy, but which is rooted in the past, draws sustenance from the ennobling elements in the present and strives for more radiant future.
  • I prayerfully hope that these attitudes will activate all friends and workers of the Bhavan now and in the years to come.

    Let me pray that after I and its present friends and workers have disappeared from the scene of our labours, the Bhavan may continue in strength, carrying forward its mission.

    To this end, the obligation rests upon us all to do our work in an attitude of ISWARA PRANIDHANA, learning to live in the presence of God, to surrender to His Will in such measure as we can. And in doing so, let us ever remember that His Will alone determines, both the adventure and the outcome; we are only His instruments. But the important thing is that we must deserve to be His instruments.”