Holy mother Sri Sarda Devi was unique being the perfect wife, nun, mother and teacher in one. She stand apart as a woman who came into this world with a great message.
Though she was married to Sri Ramakrishna, she and he lived not as husband and wife but each saw in the other the Divine Mother.
Today they have become symbols of moral and spiritual perfection for men and woman, for the married and the unmarried, for the laity as well as the monks and the nuns.
Without Sakti (power) there is no regeneration for the world. Why is it that our country is the weakest and the most backward of all countries? Because Sakti is held in dishonour there. Mother (Sarda Devi) has been born to revive that wonderful Sakti in India; and making her the nucleus, once more will Gargis and Maitreyis be born in the world. To me Mother’s grace is a hundred thousand times more valuable than Father’s. Mother’s grace, Mother’s blessings are all paramount to me.
The first comprehensive life of the Holy Mother was published by us in English in 1940 under the title Sri Sarada Devi. It ran into a second edition in 1949. As one of the items of its programme, the Central Communittee of the Holy Mother Centenary Celebrations at the Belur Math Head Quarters resolved in 1953, to bring out a standard volume on the life of the Holy Mother in English, Bengali and other languages. The task of writing this life devoted on Swami Gambhirananda. Accordingly, he wrote in Bengali the Life of the Holy Mother entitled Sri Ma Sarada Devi. This was published by the Udbodhan Center, Calcutta, on December 27, 1953, the first Centennial anniversary of the birth of the Holy Mother. The learned author has left no stone unturned to make the life exhaustive and interesting by incorporating as many facts and incidents of the Mother’s life as could be gleaned from all reliable sources, oral and documentary. The main narrative is profusely interspersed with conversations of the Mother and, consequently, the book ably fills the place of an authentic volume on the Life of the Holy Mother.
The Central Communittee had also decided that the English Life should be published by us. It was at the request of the Central Communittee that Swami Gambhirananda himself translated the Bengali Book into English. We are happy to present this book to the public as the fulfillment of a resolution adapted in August 1954, by the Holy Mother Birth Centenary Committee, Madras. The original intention was to publish this book during the Centenary year, 1954. But, mainly owing to the preoccupation with the Centenary Celebrations in the city, the plan could not be given effect to in time.
Some footnotes of the original work have been omitted from the present volume, and many have been added to explain Bengali manner and customs. A few facts that came to light after the publication of the Bengali book have also been included in the body of this volume.
The life of the Hoy Mother serves as a beacon light lighting up the obscure pathways of spiritual life and as a fountain at which humanity can slake its thirst for a higher life. We earnestly hope that the interest awakened in the hearts of the public by the Centenary Celebration will assure us a wide circle of readers.
We are deeply beholden to Prof. Sudhanshukumar Sen Gupta, M.A., Ph.D. (Leeds) and Prof. S. Ramaswamy, M.A., for carefully editing the manuscripts of the book.
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