Sri Ramakrishna

Appears in
Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

  • About

Sri Ramakrishna was a nineteenth-century spiritual leader whose influence on the sociocultural life of Bengal extends to the respect he enjoyed among Kolkata’s confectioners and literati. See kolkata. Ramakrishna came to prominence after taking over as head priest of the Dakshineshwar Temple dedicated to the goddess Kali following the death of his brother Ramakumar, the temple’s first head priest. Like Sri Chaitanya, another religious figure whose arrival marked the advent and spread of Vaishnavism in sixteenth-century Bengal, Ramakrishna and his teachings influenced the daily life of Bengal. Followers and nonfollowers alike embraced both of these spiritual figures by naming stores after them and hanging their portraits in sweetshops.