Although a sanyasi, Dayananda had a
sensitive and compassionate heart that melted at the sufferings of the poor. 'To love the
creation of God is to love God Himself' - so he taught people.
To awaken people from lethargy, the Swamiji travelled all over India Wherever he went,
he roundly condemned the caste system, idol worship, child marriage and other harmful
customs and traditions. He preached that women should have equal rights with men and laid
stress on pure conduct in life. This created a stir among the people. Over the centuries,
with the passing of time some wicked customs had crept into Hinduism. These customs stood
out prominently and therefore the real power and greatness of Hinduism were dimmed. With
the teachings of Swamy Dayananda true Hinduism came to shine forth. Thousands of young
people who had been influenced by Western Culture and were about to accept Christianity
turned back and became the staunch followers of Vedic religion. Some time Hindus who had
gone over to other religions wished to come back. But the Hindus would not permit this.
Swamy Dayananda took the Christian and Muslim converts back into the Hindu fold by
performing purification rites for them. So it may be said that Dayananda brought about a
revolution in the social life of Indians.
He laid particular emphasis on the equality of women. He used to say that India had
fallen to such a miserable condition precisely because women were not given education but
were kept in ignorance. As long as women were prisoners of foolish customs like the
purdah, progress was beyond reach like the reflection of a bundle of jewels in a mirror.
They should throw away their purdahs. Seetha and Savithri are remembered not because they
were behind the purdah, but because of their chastity and virtue. So he went on preaching.
Dayananda was bitterly opposed to Untouchability. "Untouchability is a dreadful
curse of our society. Every living being has a soul which deserves affection; in every
human being there is a soul worthy of respect. Any one who does not know this basic
principle cannot understand the true meaning of the Vedic religion." So he preached.
Dayananda was fully convinced that the nation cannot prosper unless education spreads.
But our education system should not be a mere carbon copy of the western type of
education. There should be a law to compel the parents to send every boy or girl who is
eight years old to school. Every boy and every girl should be sent to Gurukulas where they
stay with their gurus. There should be separate Gurukulas for boys and girls. The King's
son and the farmer's son should be equals in a Gurukula. They should all be made to work
alike. The Gurukula should be situated far from the town and the city, and should enjoy
calm and serenity. Our culture and our great books like the Vedas should be introduced to
our students. Side by side, mathematics, geology, astronomy and other sciences which are
important in modern life should also be taught. Swamy Dayananda founded gurukulas at
various places to fulfil these objects. Among them Kangadi is famous even to this day.