Tuesday 23 October 2018

Sister Nivedita : Love & Compassion

Nivedita was all love and kindness. Her compassion would swell up particularly when she used to come across someone whom nobody loved. On her maiden voyage to India she met a young Englishman on board. The young man was immodest and licentious. That was why he always faced troubles and problems. Therefore his parents wanted to get rid of him by sending him away to India. The fellow passengers on the ship became annoyed with him in no time. No one cared to mix with him. Nivedita's mind was filled with sympathy for him. She one day invited the unfortunate, discarded young man and talked to him in a quiet place. She presented her golden watch to him saying that she hoped he would be able to begin a new life for himself. She presented the watch, the only valuable possession she had with her, as a token of her faith in him. Her mother had presented that watch. Indeed, the young man began a new life thereafter. One year before Nivedita left the mortal plane, she could know from a letter from the boy's mother that before dying in far off South Africa, the boy remembered her with a deep sense of respect.

Not only human beings, but there was no dearth of her love for the animals also. Normally she would not like to ride in the school's horse-driven carriage. When asked, she would say: 'The horses will be hurt.' Ramananda Chattopadhyaya, the editor of Pravasi and The Modern Review, came to meet Nivedita for the first time in a horse-drawn carriage. Getting the news of his arrival, she came out of her house. After an exchange of pleasantries, she advised the coachman to let off the horses and to feed them. She also inquired if the coachman had taken his meal.

Once at the Udbodhan House, a cat was making a nuisance of itself, and an annoyed Golap-Ma took it by its neck with the intention of throwing it out. As Nivedita saw this she cried out, 'Golap Ma, mrityu (death), mrityu (death)!' She was so highly excited, and coupled with her difficulty to speak Bengali fluently, she somehow managed to convey that the cat would die if thrown out.

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