4. The ‘Little Child’ in the Mother’s Nature
This psychology of the Indian woman was very much evident in the Holy Mother’s attitudes in life. The grandmother Shyamasundari Devi’s daughter – ‘Saru’ ‘Sari’ or ‘Sarada’, as she was called – always loved to stay as a ‘daughter’ at Jayrambati, her father’s place. That was why her devotees, when they came to her Jayrambati residence, often referred to as the “maternal uncles’ place,” were charmed and filled with wonder at her sweet girlish attitude and her free behaviour with them. What a wonderful Leela was given for man to witness here – the Divine play of the Being who really encompasses in Herself the whole of creation! The pure, simple girl kept her poor father’s cottage infused with the soothing moonlight of her love! Whoever came here, rich or poor, learned or ignorant, young or old, man or woman, was overwhelmed with her love and would ask within, “Who is this girl? Is she divine or human, mother or daughter?”
She, whose love and affection made the heart of one completely satisfied, is the ‘mother’, while she to whom flows the current of the love of one’s joyous heart, is the ‘daughter’. In the pure hearts of the longstanding and steadfast devotees of the Mother with mature wisdom, there would flow the flood-tide and the ebb-tide of these two different attitudes. O Jagadamba! Thou the Mother of the Universe! If Thou wouldst not keep the Mandakini, the celestial Ganga of your love, flowing in the heart of man on this earth, then this favourite playhouse of Thine would be dry, bereft of the sap of life. Is that the reason that Thou Thyself, Mother, hast come as the ‘mother’ and the ‘daughter’ in one? May Thou, O Mother ever fond of Leela, keep on with Thy ever-changing playful moods, and may this beginningless playhouse of Thine continue to be Thy place of entertainment for ever more.
The principal contributor to the work Mayer Katha, known under the pen name of Srimati, was a disciple and a favourite devotee of the Mother. She gives the following charming description of the Mother’s visit to her sister’s house. “For giving a fitting reception to the Holy Mother, my sister and other inmates of the house had tastefully decorated the house. The mother accepted their simple hospitality with great appreciation, which made them very happy and blessed. Seeing the many beautiful flowers in their garden, she spontaneously expressed her great joy like a child. Though the object of the reverential worship of the Great Master and the presiding Deity of many a household shrine, she condescended that day to assume the attitude of a little girl, filling that house with her divine aura and the hearts of all there with the current of her love. All present there felt that the purpose of their human birth was fulfilled that day.” Reading this description, my thirsty soul sang out with Menaka, “Verily, my Gauri has come!” In the last edition of the book, a portion of this picture of the unique ‘child attitude’ of the Mother has unfortunately been left out.