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Mother of Mayavati  -  The Story of Charlotte Sevier and Advaita Ashrama
Mother of Mayavati - The Story of Charlotte Sevier and Advaita Ashrama

Mother of Mayavati - The Story of Charlotte Sevier and Advaita Ashrama

by Amrita M. Salm, Ph.D.

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Advaita Ashram


9788175054011 - Year: 2013 - Pages: 399



Amrita M. Salm, Ph.D.
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Author: Amrita M. Salm, Ph.D.
Foreword/Introduction: Swami Atmasthananda
Publisher: Advaita Ashram
Year: 2013
Language: English
Pages: 399
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788175054011



"While visiting the Vivekananda Ashrama in Shyamla Tal, located in the Himalayas of India, for the first time in 2009, I realized that there was no book about Charlotte Servier, the person who had purchased their ashram and was the founder and “mother” of the Advaita Ashrama, Mayavati. How could that be? There are books about many of Swami Vivekananda’s Western disciples including Sister Nivedita, Sara Bull, and Josephine MacLeod (Tantine) and booklets about J.J. Goodwin and Sister Christine, but with the exception of one article little was known about Charlotte Sevier.

The material for this book has been gathered from various sources. The principal ones being: archival materials from Advaita Ashram, Mayavati and its Kolkata branch, Letters and photographs from Vivekananda Ashrama, Shyamla Tal, unpublished letters and photographs provided by Swami Prabhananda, General Secretary of the Ramakrishna Math and the Vedanta Society of Northern California."


“Charlotte Sevier played a crucial role, both spiritual and financial, in the early history of the Ramakrishna movement. She become the “Mother” of the Advaita Ashrama, Mayavati, which she and her husband founded ,and spent the remainder of her working life guiding it and writing extensively on Advaita Vedanta for Prabuddha Bharata. Amrita Salm’s fascinating book about the life and work of Charlotte Sevier is a delight to read and contains over two hundred pages of her articles and letters, an amazing anthology of material for those interested in the early years of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission.”
= Gerald James Larson, Ph.D., Rabindranath Tagore Professor Emeritus, Indiana University, Bloomington; Professor Emeritus, Religious Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara; currently Research Professor, University of California, Irvine.

“In E. M. Forster s Passage to India, and again in Paul Scott s Jewel in the Crown, we encounter a certain kind of remarkable British woman who seems utterly immune to the ignorance and prejudice of the British colonial mindset and who embraces India with all of her being. She falls in love with its people, its travails, its beauty, and above all else the profundity of its spiritual tradition. Charlotte Sevier was such a woman... “What a story! Pieced together from journals and letters, it fleshes out in significant ways the history of the early years of the Ramakrishna movement. Mother of Mayavati is an important contribution to that history, but is memorable, too, as a loving portrait of an extraordinary woman.”
= Carol Lee Flinders, Ph.D., teaches at the Sophia Center, Holy Names University, Oakland, California, and is the author of “At the Root of this Longing: Reconciling a Spiritual Hunger and a Feminist Thirst” and “Enduring Grace: Living Portraits of Seven Women Mystics”.

“This long-anticipated, richly contextualized book is a welcome addition to the literature about the early years of the Ramakrishna movement, both in India and the West.... Glimmering with historical information little known to the general public, it brings both the remarkable life of Charlotte Sevier and the Mayavati Ashrama to vibrant life. Mother of Mayavati will be of great interest both to devotees and scholars of the Ramakrishna movement.”
= Pravrajika Vrajaprana, author of “Vedanta: A Simple Introduction” and co-author of “Interpreting Ramakrishna”.



List of Illustrations
1. Awakening to the Spirit
2. Vivekananda’s Impact
3. Life in Victorian England Charlotte’s Web
4. Tour of the Continent with Swamiji
5. The Pratical British
6. Swamiji’s India Nothing Shall Enter Except Pure Truth
7. A Time of Change
8. From Conviction to Action
9. After Swamiji
10. A Period of Growth
11. Another Son, Another Ashrama
12. Remembering Charlotte

Appendix A
Documents related to the Seviers

Appendix B
Documents related to Mayavati

Appendix C
Articles witten by C E Sevier

Appendix D
Letters written by C E Sevier

Appendix E
Memorial Service Brochure, Belur Math


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