Archive for April 5th, 2020

Reba Som’s Margot: Sister Nivedita of Vivekananda

April 5, 2020

A very interesting book; I have just started reading. As is his wont, Vivekananda is always full of surprises. Here is, for example, his opinion on narrow parochialism clothed as patriotism:

‘Really patriotism like yours is sin! All that I want you to see is that most people’s actions are the expression of self-interest and you constantly oppose to this idea that that a certain race are all angels. Ignorance so determined is wickedness!’

Here is another quote from the book indicating that Swamiji can never be straight-jacketed:

A highlight during the halt at Nainital was Swamiji’s meeting with a Muslim, Mohammed Sarfaraz Hussain, who was an Advaita Vedantist at heart and considered himself one of his disciples under the name Mohammedananda. From Almora a month later, Swamiji was to write to him a letter (…). “…For our own motherland a junction of the two great systems, Hinduism and Islam — Vedanta brain and Islam body — is the only hope”.

In any case, an interesting read so far and expect it to be so for the rest of the book too! From what I have seen in the first thirty odd pages, certainly recommended!