Social – a Participant’s Observation I am one of the luckiest persons who had the opportunity to involve with some of the main social institutions in India. Another important thing is the fact that I have a few of them from the very beginning and this has given me the proper skill to observe their movements. I have come to know that many things which we study in our school days are important to understand how a real organization works with its micro sociological structure. Among these subjects the mentionable ones are: leadership, role models and idealism. Still the reality has many other things which are involved in this matter too. Let us get into all the details about them.
Ramakrishna Mission is one of the biggest social institutions in the whole world. Headquarter of this institution is at Belur near Kolkata. As a believer in social works, I chanced to know some of the monks who work in this organization. I traveled to Belur in order to observe how the social institution works throughout the world. The most interesting thing which I found in Ramakrishna Mission is the fact that this organization does not only rely on the idealism and leadership, they believe in hard working and this is the main force acting behind their unparalleled success. Sharing my experiences with the monks working here was something told me their secret. Microsociology that exists among all the workers associated with Ramakrishna Mission is the main thing which has made the organization able to reach out for the macrocosmic society in the outside world.
The monks have perfect rankings distributed among them. This ranking is never done following any kind of social status as all of them have left family life long ago. These ranks are offered to them for the sake of division of labor. They share all the works of the institution. Apart from this, they are also able to continue with their studies. Some of the monks are highly educated and they frequently travel to Western countries to deliver lectures on their philosophy or any other subjects as well. The organization has successfully adopted the outside world laws or the macrocosmic policies inside the institution and they have carefully left the bad elements of the society. Equality is the main theme which is well practiced in Ramakrishna Mission. Swami Vivekananda the founder of the organization is considered as the leader and his philosophy is followed by the monks.
Ramakrishna Mission has a well organized management system. The manager, who is also a monk, is equal to the subordinates but is very sincere in strictly controlling the others for the overall benefit of the organization. There is also a President of the organization and he is an experienced monk. This particular rank is based on the experience and dedication of a monk. The President is respected throughout all the branches of Ramakrishna Mission. There are no female disciples or nuns in this organization and therefore no question of gender discrimination arises here. The main characteristic of a bureaucracy, which is visible here, is the impersonal structure of the organization. Ramakrishna Mission always works for their aim of making the world a better place. This social institution never cares for the individual growth of the members and on the other hand, the members who have left materialistic attraction a long time ago do not run after personal benefits.
1. Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, Belurmath, 2006, retrieved on October 20, 2008 from:
2. Characteristics of Bureaucracy, Revision Notes, 2008, retrieved on October 20, 2008 from: