Margaret at first remarked that
there was nothing new in what the Swamiji had said. But in her own heart of hearts she
knew that it was not so. The sayings of the Swamiji kept returning to her mind and haunted
her. "God alone is the truth," he had asserted. This assertion might not be new,
but the Swamiji's conviction was indeed quite new. And he had made another assertion:
"Every religion is a highway to God." And the radiance of his personality! There
seemed to be a veritable halo about him. He had given up everything for god., His sayings
were not mere repetitions from books. They were living words, which sprang from the depths
of his soul, charged with the Truth he had seen and experienced.
Margaret came more and more under the spell of Swami Vivekananda. Now
like a thunderbolt blasting its way along and burning up centuries of superstition, and
now like a chisel chipping away at the ages-old darkness of ignorance; now like the
mantras of a great guru awakening the soul of his disciple from its sloth and torpor, and
now the mystic sayings of a realised souls sweeping away all the doubts of his disciple.
Now like the sincere,frank advice of a devotedcomrade and now like the tender comfort of
an affectionate mother, the Swamiji's galvanizing words welled up from the depths of his
soul. It was his flaming virtue, the glowing purity of his spirit, that had captured her
heart and turned her into a servant of his country for his sake, she wrote later.
One day, in midst of his discourse, the Swamiji said in a thundering
voice: "What the world needs to-day is twenty men and women who dare stand in the
public street and declare that they have nothing to call their own except the God. Who is
there among you that can say so?"
Margaret's heart seemed to whisper, 'Here I am! But her tongue was yet
too timid to utter those words. One day, speaking about the woman of India, the Swamiji
said, "Our girls over there have not even seen the face of a school. That land of
ours cannot advance unless they are educated." Then, turning at once towards
Margaret, he said, "I have certain plans relating to the education and the welfare of
the women of my country. I believe that you can be of great service to me in translating
them into reality."
Margaret felt overwhelmed by the Swamiji's faith in her. Yet she had
misgivings whether she was equal to such a mighty task. Sensing her mind, the Swamiji
reassured her: "You have the making in you of a world-mover, and others will also
Awake, awake, great one!"
Margaret took the heroic resolve to leave her own dear homeland and
make the Swamiji's far-off homeland her own, and render her utmost service there.