Bengaluru: The very name of Subhash Chandra Bose makes one’s heart swell with pride and patriotism. He played a crucial role in India earning her freedom, but did you know that Subhash wanted to relinquish worldly duties and become an ascetic?

Sounds strange, isn’t it? A man, a phenomenon who wanted to earn freedom through aggression once wanted to become a self-controlled monk of the Ramakrishna Mission, headquartered in West Bengal.

Says Swami Nirbhayananda, a senior practicing Hindu monk, “Two young men met Swami Brahmananda, the then president of the Order. One was Subhash Chandra Bose and the other was Nirmal. The two expressed their intention to become monks of the Order. When Swami Brahmananda sought to know why they said they were influenced by Swami Vivekananda. However, Swami Brahmananda accepted Nirmal to join the Order, while he forbade Subhash Chandra Bose, saying he had to accomplish great work by staying outside the Order. Nirmal went on to become Swami Madhavananda, the ninth president of the Order, while we all know what happened to Subhash Chandra Bose.”

Swami Vivekananda had had a profound impact on Subhash Chandra Bose. His clarion call to serve the masses as the brethren, his universality in his teachings instilled a sort of verve in him, which actually prodded him to take up a life of renunciation.

We can get such an anecdote from the life of Prime Minister Narendra Modi too. Swami Atmasthanandaji, a former president of the Order has rejected the candidacy of Narendra Modi when he wanted to join the Ramakrishna Mission as a monk. Forbidding him from joining, the senior monk had prophesied that his calling lay elsewhere. The rest, as they say is history.

On his death anniversary MyNation pays tribute to the freedom fighter as he continues to be a beacon of hope to the younger generation.