Swami Vivekananda was a Hindu monk from India who lived from 1863-1902. For many years, he wandered India spreading his beliefs of God and peace to his followers. When given the opportunity, he moved to the West to spread his ideologies to a larger forum in America and England.
After years of wandering India teaching without a true forum to pass along his beliefs, Vivekananda accepted an invitation to represent Hinduism at Chicago's Parliament of Religion in 1893. This was the first time Vivekananda had the eyes and ears of such a large group on his teachings. He was an instant celebrity and gained a large following in America, and thus a ready forum to spread his beliefs.
After a three-year tour in America and England, Vivekananda returned to his native India and founded the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, a spiritual and educational mission that still exists in India into the 21st Century.
After returning from a second mission trip to the western hemisphere, Vivekananda died on July 4th, 1902. His teachings have been posthumously gathered into nine volumes that can be accessed online. These teachings changed the cultural and spiritual history of many parts of India and Hindu teachings in the west.