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In The Company of The Holy Mother

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Item Code: NCZ123
Language: English
Edition: 2014
ISBN: 9788175050792
Pages: 276
Other Details 7.00 X 5.00 inches
Weight 230 gm
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Shipped to 153 countries
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Book Description


Holy Mother's character, as revealed in At Holy Mother's Feet,* shows a rare blending of humanity and divinity. A divine simplicity pervades her dealings with her relatives, neighbours, disciples, and even with Shri Ramakrishna whom she regarded as God Incarnate.

Saradamani Devi, called Sarada for short, and later known and revered in India and abroad as Holy Mother, was born on December 22, 1853, in the little village of Jayrambati in the district of Bankura in West Bengal. Her parents, Ramachandra Mukhopadhyaya and Shyamasundari, were orthodox brahmins devoted to their traditional religious and social customs. Generous and utterly simple, Ramachandra maintained his family with the produce of his ancestral land, supplementing what it brought him with a small income from his priestly duties. Shyamasundari was a hard-working woman. Innocent of the crooked ways of the world, she looked after the minutest details of the household. Sarada, referring to her parents' God-fearing nature, once declared, "If they had not led a life of spiritual discipline, how could divinity have been born as their child?" It is said that before Sarada's birth, both the parents had had visions foretelling the advent of a divine being.

The simple villagers with whom Sarada grew up found relief from the drudgery of their daily lives in religious festivals, music, and devotional dancing. An inner contentment derived from loyalty to the spiritual heritage of the country mitigated to a large extent the discomfort of their poverty. Amidst this idyllic simplicity Sarada spent a great part of her life. She was once heard to say that the motherland, which is the same as the mother, is superior to heaven itself. As years passed, one sister and five brothers were born to Ramachandra and Shyamasundari.

Sarada was the eldest child. Through the irony of fate, their character was completely different from Sarada's. With the exception of one, the brothers were quarrelsome and greedy, seldom recognizing the greatness of their sister and often tormenting her for money. To one brother, who had a glimpse of her divine nature and begged her to be their sister in their lives to come, she said, "Yes! Catch me coming again into your family!" Sarada herself developed into a gentle and guileless girl who never quarrelled with her Playmates and often acted as peacemaker in their misunderstandings and disagreements. Meticulously she did her share of the family duties, helping her mother in the kitchen, picking cotton in the fields, feeding the cattle, and looking after her younger sister and her brothers.

Now and then she accompanied her brothers to school, and in the course of time she could read the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. But she first became acquainted with the spiritual culture of India through the religious songs of mendicants and from rural dramas depicting scenes from Hindu mythology. At the age of five Sarada was married to Shri Ramakrishna, then twenty-three years old. The Master had been passing through a state of God-intoxication. As he was completely indifferent to food, sleep, and other physical requirements, and absorbed day and night in meditation and prayer, people took him for a madman. His relatives finally hit upon the idea of finding him a wife so as to bring his mind to the normal state. Seeing in their plan the finger of God, Shri Ramakrishna agreed to be married. He even pointed out where his bride would be found. But immediately after the marriage, he left for Dakshineswar to plunge again into the practice of spiritual discipline. It was about eight years after, when Shri Ramakrishna visited Kamarpukur again, that Sarada had her first real contact with her husband.

The Master, conscious of his responsibility towards his young wife, who completely depended upon him for guidance, proceeded to instruct her in both spiritual and secular matters. He emphasized the need of such spiritual disciplines as non-attachment, self-control, meditation, and prayer, and taught her also the duties of a householder: how to serve guests, show respect to elders, discharge worldly duties in an unselfish spirit, and even how to trim a lamp, travel in a country boat, and ride in a railway train. The essence of his teaching was that one should act properly and intelligently with respect to persons, time, place, and circumstances-a lesson which Sarada followed till the end of her life. In Shri Ramakrishna's company her happiness knew no bounds. "At that time," she said later, "I always felt as if a jar brimful of bliss was set in my heart. It is impossible to describe the illness of that joy.

**Content and Sample Pages**

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