Sister Nivedita bigraphy, stories - Hindu convert and proponent of Irish nationalism

Sister Nivedita : biography

28 October 1867 - 13 October 1911

Sister Nivedita ( ); born Margaret Elizabeth Noble; 28 October 1867 – 13 October 1911) was a Scots-Irish social worker, author, teacher and a disciple of Swami Vivekananda. She spent her childhood and early days of her youth in Ireland. From her father, from her college professor etc. she learned many valuable lessons like – service to mankind is the true service to God. She worked as school teacher and later also opened a school. She was committed to marry a Welsh youth who died soon after engagement.

Sister Nivedita met Swami Vivekananda in 1895 in London and travelled to Calcutta, India (present-day Kolkata) in 1898. Swami Vivekananda gave her the name Nivedita (meaning "Dedicated to God") when he initiated her into the vow of Brahmacharya on 25 March 1898. In November 1898, she opened a girls' school in Bagbazar area of Calcutta. She wanted to educate those girls who were deprived of even basic education. During the plague epidemic in Calcutta in 1899 Nivedita nursed and took care of the poor patients.

Nivedita had close associations with the newly established Ramakrishna Mission. However, because of her active contribution in the field of Indian Nationalism, she had to publicly dissociate herself from the activities of the Ramakrishna Mission under the then president Swami Brahmananda. She was very intimate with Sarada Devi, the spiritual consort of Ramakrishna and one of the major influences behind Ramakrishna Mission and also with all brother disciples of Swami Vivekananda. She died on 13 October 1911 in Darjeeling. Her epitaph reads, "Here reposes Sister Nivedita who gave her all to India".

Influence

Sister Nivedita remains one of the most influential woman figures of India. Her book Kali, the Mother influenced Abanindranath Tagore who painted Bharat Mata. In 2010 office of the board of West Bengal Board of Secondary Education in Salt Lake, Kolkata has been named after Sister Nivedita. In Chennai, Tamil Nadu, an academy Sister Nivedita Academy, an academy dedicated to Sister Nivedita has been established. Several schools and colleges have been named after her. In 1968 Indian Government issued a postal 4.06 x 2.28 cms stamp in her memory.

Early life

Margaret Elizabeth Noble was born on 28 October 1867 in the town of Dungannon in County Tyrone, Ireland to Mary Isabel (mother) and Samuel Richmond Noble (father) and was named for her paternal grandmother. The Nobles were of Scottish descent, settled in Ireland for about five centuries.Pravrajika Atmaprana (1992), Sister Nivedita of Ramakrishna-Vivekananda, page 1, 4th ed. published by Sister Nivedita Girls' School, 5 Nivedita Lane, Calcutta 3 (first published in 1961). Her father, who a priest, gave the valuable lesson that service to mankind is the true service to God. When Margaret was one year old Samuel moved to Manchester, England and there he enrolled as a theological student of the Wesleyan Church. Young Margaret at this time stayed with her maternal grandmother Hamilton in Northern Ireland. When she was four years old he returned to live with her father.

Margaret's father Samuel died in 1877 when she was only ten years old Then Margaret was brought up by her maternal grandfather. Hamilton was one of the first-ranking leaders of the freedom movement of Ireland.Nivedita of India, by Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture Margaret got her education from Church boarding school in London. She and her sister attended Halifax College, run by a member of Congregationalist Church. The headmistress of this college taught her about personal sacrifice. She extensively studied various subjects, including physics, arts, music, literature. She embraced teaching at the age of seventeen. She first worked in Keswick as a teacher of children. Subsequently she established a school in Wimbledon and followed her own unique methods of teaching. She also participated in Church sponsored activities, being religious in nature. She was also a prolific writer and wrote in the paper and periodicals. In this way she soon became a known name among the intellectuals of London. She was engaged to be married to a Welsh youth who died soon after engagement. The regulated religious life could not give her the necessary peace and she began to study various books on religion.

Living octopus

Living octopus

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