Once Swami Vivekananda blessed Nivedita and Sara Bull saying, "I give you all that Ramakrishna P. gave to me. What came to us from a Woman (Mother Kali), I give to you two women. Do what you can with it... Women's hands will be the best anyway to hold what came from a Woman from Mother...Anyway I cast the load on you."
The making of Sister Nivedita is an unparalleled chapter in Indian history. So cardinal a role was she to play in the various facets of our national life, in the early decades of the twentieth century, that one is astonished to see her selfless life and contributions to her adopted land. With her rarefied combination of great inner strength, versatility and dedication she serves as a perennial inspiration. She left her indelible mark especially on the young minds of her generation. Today, as we look back at what she did a century ago and contextually place her great efforts, we can see that she was indeed Swami Vivekananda's daughter.
This volume is a variegated compilation of twenty-six articles covering Nivedita's contributions to India. Nivedita appears on our national horizon like a transparent crystal prism that diffracts into a multi-coloured spectrum the white light of spirituality. One is astonished to cast even a cursory glance at her multi-dimensional field of activity. Nivedita could carefully discern the decadent national mentality of a country which had been enslaved for centuries. Without wasting words she diligently supported and guided a whole generation of nationalists, revolutionaries, artists, scientists and poets. This anthology concentrates on her unique contributions in the fields of Indian science, history, art, literature, political and cultural identity, nationality, nationalistic education and research methodology, social relief work, civic services etc.
The title The Divine Legacy is specially chosen to point out how Nivedita became a fit heiress and apostle to carry out the universal mission of Sri Ramakrishna and Swami Vivekananda. Swamiji considered Sri Ramakrishna as the harbinger of the new Satya Yuga. Nivedita had asked Swamiji on 29 May 1899, "I always look upon Sri R. K. as an Incarnation of Kali. Isn't that what the future will call Him?" Swamiji had replied, "Yes, I think there's no doubt that Kali worked up the body of Ramakrishna for Her Own Ends..."
Sri Ramakrishna actually transmitted Mother Kali's power which was working through him, to Narendranath; and Swamiji, in turn, transmitted the Mother's power to Nivedita. Thus the divine legacy was carefully inherited and passed on. Swamiji had once said, "Well! Well! You are Mother's child." Once he blessed Nivedita and Sara Bull saying, "I give you all that Ramakrishna P. gave to me. What came to us from a Woman (Mother Kali) I give to you two women. Do what you can with it ...Women's hands will be the best anyway to hold what came from a Woman-from Mother...Anyway I cast the load on you."
Nivedita herself wrote once: "I feel more and more that the training was not really given to me but to all Indian generations through me." She worked as a bridge between Swamiji and the people of India, transmitting his ideas to the future generations for their own benefit.
Nivedita writes in 'An Open Letter to Hindu Women': "...And may I remind you also of him who stood behind the Swami Vivekananda, his Guru Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, and Kali, the Great Mother, whose power worked through both of these great souls, and will yet work doubtless in any of us who will but lend ourselves to Her influence."
It was this spiritual mission that was soulfully absorbed and dynamically materialized by Nivedita by dint of her exemplary inborn traits of high idealism, determination, dedication and utter selflessness. She herself was the thunderbolt, Vajra which she dearly loved.
We express our gratitude to all those who have contributed the articles and helped us in various ways in bringing out this book, especially to The Peerless General Finance & Investment Company Limited for the financial support. We offer this book as a humble tribute at the feet of Sister Nivedita in commemoration of her 150th Birth Anniversary celebration. If this effort inspires even a single person towards carrying forward the legacy left by Sister Nivedita, we would consider ourselves blessed.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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