Ananda Marga

Ananda Marga (literally, the Path of Bliss) an ideology propounded by Anandamurtiji (Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar) in 1955 in Bihar, India, that all living creatures possess a limitless thirst for infinity and that Brahma alone is that infinite entity. It believes that all human beings, irrespective of caste, community, creed and colour are equal and that they are ordained to pursue a universal dharma (to love the Universal Father). Ananda Marga is opposed to all sorts of exploitation and hypocrisy in the name of religion.

Ananda Marga notes that for mental peace, a perfectly balanced state of mind is essential, and that, in order to attain mental balance, there must be a total cessation of sorrow. Human beings mistakenly crave mundane objects (artha), believing that material possessions can bring them happiness. However, material goods can at best provide a temporary cessation of sorrow. Permanent freedom from misery can be attained only through intense spiritual practice. Ananda Marga does not encourage people to renounce the world, but to make the best use of the wealth of the universe.

Ananda Marg has established a large number of schools and colleges in many countries, as well as mass literacy centres, polytechnics, medical schools, a veterinary college, ayurvedic centres, agricultural institutes etc. It also runs orphanages, students' homes, charitable dispensaries, hospitals, deaf and dumb asylums, hospices, leprosy asylums etc It also has a relief section, Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team (AMURT/AMURTEL), which goes to the aid of people affected by natural or man-made disasters.

In order to implement its ideals and welfare activities, Ananda Marga has 9 sectors: Delhi, Hong Kong, Manila, Sydney (Suva), New York, Georgetown, Berlin, Cairo and Nairobi. Each sector has again been subdivided into a few regions, a region into a few dioceses and a diocese into a number of districts. Ananda Marga thought is considerably popular in Bangladesh. [Vijayananda Avadhut]