Monday, December 27, 2010

Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna

Certainly this is one of the notable books of our time, one of the marvelous books in all time. It is a book where gentle, deathless goodness softens whatever humiliation I might feel for any inadvertent glibness of comment; and where the piety - in the deepest Latin sense of the word - and the brilliant, easy scholarship of the translation are enough to knock us down. -- Stark Young

East and West agree that he was the most radiant religious personality of the nineteenth century. The record of his life and teachings is a mine of inspiration, wisdom, theology, and metaphysics. It is also a tremendous adventure story, the odyssey of a man who set out on the mystical way and journeyed to its end. The English version is a triumph of creative translation. -- Thomas Sugrue

Ramakrishna was a rare combination of individuality and universality, personality and impersonality. His words and example have been echoed in the hearts of Western men and women. . . His soul animates modern India. -- Romain Rolland

The GospeI. . . is a work of absorbing interest. Your biographical introduction sets the reader at once into the atmosphere of India, its customs and its ways of thinking about the unseen world and about deity. I take it to be a high merit of the book that you have not omitted the details which will seem most strange to the Western reader; you have allowed them to bear their own message and to offer themselves intact for judgment. As you tell the life of Sri Ramakrishna, it engages with so much of the spiritual history of India during the last century that one gains a living sense of the forward movement of that history. The whole promises to be a document of importance for every one who wishes to gain a personal impression of Indian religious aspiration and to realize how naturally it spans the wide gamut from the particular and local symbols to the most universal conceptions. -- William Ernest Hocking, Alford Professor of Philosophy in Harvard University

The story of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa's life is a story of religion in practice. His life enables us to see God face to face. -- Mahatma Gandhi

This highly noteworthy document . . . conveys the personality of a great mystic in such an intimate, direct, and almost astounding manner that to read it must be an enriching experience for any intellect which is receptive and open to all things human. -- Thomas Mann

To read through these conversations in which mystical doctrine alternates with an unfamiliar kind of humor, and where discussions of the oddest aspects of Hindu mythology give place to the most profound and subtle utterances about the nature of Ultimate Reality, is in itself a liberal education in humility, tolerance and suspense of judgment. We must be grateful to the translator for his excellent version of a book so curious and delightful as a biographical document, so precious, at the same time, for what it teaches us of the life of the spirit. -- From the Forward to The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, Aldous Huxley

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