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Born on the 8th September, 1887, in the illustrious family of Saga Appayya Diskhita and several other renowned saints and savants, Sri Swami Sivananda had a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta. Added to this was an inborn eagerness to serve all and an innate feeling of unity with all mankind. His passion for service drew him to the medical career; and soon he gravitated to where he thought that his service was most needed. Malaya claimed him. He had earlier been editing a Health Journal and wrote extensively on health problems. He discovered that people needed right knowledge most of all; dissemination of that knowledge he espoused as his own mission. It was divine dispensation and the blessing of God upon mankind that the doctor of body and mind renounced his career and took to a life of renunciation to qualify himself for ministering to the soul of man. He settled down at Rishikesh in 1924, practiced intense austerities and shone as a great Yogi, Saint, Sage and Jivanmukta. In 1932 he started the Sivanandashram. In 1936 was born The Divine Life Society. In 1948 the Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy was organized. Dissemination of spiritual knowledge and training of people in Yoga and Vedanta were their aim and object. In 1950 he undertook a lightning tour of India and Ceylon. In 1953 he convened a 'World Parliament Reliogions'. He is the author of over 300 volumes and has disciples all over the world, belonging to all nationalities, religions and creeds. To read his works is to drink at the fountain of Wisdom Supreme. On 14th July, 1963 he entered Mahasamadhi.

Publishers' Note:

This powerful book, Women and the Ideal of Purity, has been brought out under the inspiration and guidance of the President of The Divine Life Society, His Holiness Swami Chidanandaji Maharaj. In 1997 the Sivananda Matri Satsanga had brought out a similar book in Hindi called Naari Aur Pavitrata Ka Aadarsh. This book, the first one of its kind, was so well compiled this larger book in English for the benefit of women of all stages and in all walks of life.

The present book contains 108 articles including the lives and teachings of more than 30 women saints. Relevant portions have been selected, edited and compiled from the profound teachings of Sri Gurudev Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj, Sri Swami Chidanandaji Maharaj, Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj, Sri Swami Venkatesanandaji Maharaj and other senior Swamijis of our Ashram as well as other great saints and sages.

The Divine Life Society respectfully offers this publication to women of both today as well as of tomorrow. We hope it will be found useful and beneficial.---THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY




Swami Madhavananda

S.NO. Subject Author Page
1. Publishers' Note   v
2. A Message Swami Sivananda vii
3. Foreword Swami Chidananda ix
4. Introduction Dr. Sita Nambiar Mataji x
5. Preface Sivananda Matri Satsanga xii
6. Prayer Swami Sivananda xvi
Chapter I
1. The Worship of Devi Bhagavati Swami Sivananda 5
2. Bhagavati Saraswati is
Absolute Purity
Swami Chidananda 7
3. The Esoteric Significance of
the Devi Mahatmya
Swami Krishnananda 9
4. Live for a Noble High Purpose Swami Chidananda 16
5. Destiny, Self-Effort and
Character Building
Candles-A True Story
Swami Sivananda 17
6. The Glory of Brahmacharya Swami Sivananda 23
7. The Four Stages of Life Swami Chidananda 30
8. Address to Girl Students Swami Sivananda 39
9. Students, Spiritual Literature &
Swami Sivananda 46
10. Women and Children in Sivananda Literature Swami Hridayananda Mataji 51
11. Formation of Character Vani Bai Ram Mataji 52
12. Sanghamitra   54
13. Necessity of Celibacy Swami Narayanananda 57
  THE PROPHET "Speak to us of Good and Evil"
[Poem) by Kahlil Gibran
14. Purpose of Life
Maiden (Poem)
Swami Vidyananda 67
15. Sant Muktabai Compilation 75
16. Sant Kanhopatra A compilation 81
17. The Kanya Kumari Sthan at Sakuri A compilation 83
18. Women and Brahmacharya Swami Sivananda 90
19. The Saving Grace of God Sadhumata Tyagi Mayee 94
20. Papa Answers
Woman's Power Divine (Poem) by Papa Ramdas
papa Ramdas 95
21. Andal Swami Sivananda 98
22. Avvaiyar Compiled 101
23. Discrimination and
Brahmacharya (Drama)
Swami Sivananda 103
24. Introspection
Mind-Thy Nature (Poem) by Swami Sivananda
Swami Atmaswarupananda 108
25. Duty of Teachers and Parents Swami Sivananda 115
26. Dr. Devaki Kutty Swami Chidananda 120
27. Transform Your Actions Into Sadhana Dr. Devaki Kutty Mataji 124
28. Sant Janabai Compiled 128
29. Mother Teresa Jannie Mataji 132
30. Practice Spirituality in Daily Life Swami Hridayananda Mataji 136
31. Rabia Swami Sivananda 140
32. Nanga Pennu Compiled 142
33. The Role of Celibacy in Spiritual Life
The Woman (Poem)
Swami Chidananda 144
Chapter II
34. Marriage Swami Sivananda 157
35. Pativrata Swami Padmanabhananda 159
36. Mother Sita-Chastity Personified Swami Sivananda 161
37. Adhyatma Ramayana
(Spiritual Implications)
A compilation 165
38. Goddess of Auspiciousness
Glory to Woman (Poem) by Swami Sivananda
Swami Chidananda 168
39. The Real Marriage is the
Marriage of the Soul
Swami Sivananda 176
40. Message to a Newly Wed Couple
TE PROPHET "On Marriage" (Poem) by Kahlil Gibran
Swami Chidananda 179
41. Marriage as a Sacrament Mahatma Gandhi 183
42. The Integrated Life
according to Brahma Sutra
Swami Krishnananda 188
43. A Call to Spiritual Life
(1) Sati Anasuya, Poem by Swami Sivananda
(2)Sati Savitri, Poem by Swami Sivananda
Swami Sivananda 192
44. Pativrata Sangama Swami Padmanabhananda 196
45. Sage Kanva and Sakuntala Swami Padmanabhananda 199
46. The Ideal Woman Swami Devananda 202
47. Yasodhara G. D. Weerasinghe 206
48. Be Ever Responsive
to the Cal from Within
49. Sadhana Amidst Hectic Demands
of Modern Life
Swami Gurudevananda Mataji 210
50. Women in India and Public Welfare Dr Sushila Vighney 219
51. Women of Sikhism Harbans Singh 225
52. Lal Ded   226
53. The Glory of Mother Sita Swami Padmanabhananda 229
54. Andavan Picchai Swami Chidananda 234
55. Life of a Householder Mary Dean Mataji 236
56. Grihastha Dharma Dr. Gita Jyoti Mataji 242
57. Daily Spiritual Routine for Householders
American Indian Chief's Words of Wisdom
Swami Chidananda 246
58. Health and Exercises For Women Swami Sivananda 249
59. Yoga, Women and Modern Society Smt. Hamsaji, The Yoga Institute, Mumbai 251
60. Importance of Yogasana Dr. Manju Devi Mataji 253

The Woman in the Making
The Making of the Woman

Dr. Sita Nambiar Mataji 256
62. To My Sisters Dinshaw Paowala 262
63. Om Malati Mataji A compilation 265
64. Woman - The Very Source of Inspiration
for Mankind
Om Malati Mataji 270
65. Women's Light and Guide Vani Bai Ram Mataji 272
66. Instructions to Maitreyi
by Saga Yajnavalkya
Swami Brahmananda 274
67. Chudala
Mind-Thy Powers (Poems) by Swami Sivananda
Swami Venkatesananda 279
Chapter III
68. Enthrone Love in Your Heart Swami Sivananda 285
69. The vision of Lord Ganesha Swami Chidananda 286
70. The Glory of Motherhood Swami Sivananda 289
71. Genesis of Mother worship Swami Chidananda 292
72. A Silent Teacher Swami Sivananda 296
73. Parvati Ammal (Mother of
Sri Gurudev Swami Sivananda)
Swami Venkatesananda 298
74. Sarojini Devi (Mother of
Swami Chidananda)
Swami Venkatesananda and
Sri Saratchandra Behera
75. To Adorable and Divine Mothers
Divine Design
Swami Chidananda 304
76. Parents Beware J. P. Vaswani 307
77. A Grandmother tells Sudha Bharadwaj Mataji 312
78. A Voice From the Wilderness Dr. Devaki Kutty Mataji 314
79. A Question Answered Swami Chidananda 317
80. Miracle of Life Swami Sivananda 319
81. Lord Siva as Mother   322
82. Woman-Thy Name is Mother Mata Vanamali 324
83. Mother of Salbeg A compilation 329
84. Jijabai-Mother of Shivaji A compilation 331
85. The Parents' Role Swami Chidananda 334
86. Protector of Children
THE PROPHET "Speak to us of Children" (Poem) by Kahlil Gibran
Swami Gurudevanada Mataji G 338
87. Women Saints of Jainism   341
88. Lord Krishna Mother
To the Mind and Senses(Poem ) by Swami Sivananda
Chapter IV
89. Philosophy of the word "Radha" Swami Sivananda 347
90. The Sri Sukta Swami Krishnananda 349
91. Swami Sivananda's Message to Mankind Swami Chidananda 352
92. Work and Pray Swami Atmaswarupananda 355
93. Self Effort and Divine Grace Swami Venkatesananda 357
94. Heart of a Gopi Raihana Tayabji 360
95. Key to God Consciousness
Vedantic Beverage (Poem) by Swami Sivananda
Swami Venkatesananda 365
96. Gospel of Love Swami Premananda 371
97. Advice to Women Holy Mother Shardmani Devi 372
98. Holy Virgin Mother Mary
Saint Philomena
Jannie Mataji 374
99. Such is Mataji Papa Ramdas 378
100. Grace Purifies Sree Rama Devi 381
101. Prayer for World Peace Sri Swami Omkar 383
102. Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi Mata Amritanandamayi Math 384
103. Advice to Sadhakas
THE PROPHET "Tell us of Pain" (Poem) by Kahlil Gibran
Sri Sri Anandamayi Maa 386 384
104. The Key to Transformation Swami Chidananda 391
105. Gargi, The Virgin Philosopher Swami Sivananda 394
106. True Meaning of Brahmacharya Swami Krishnananda 398
107. Think of God Alone
Mirabai's Song
Swami Chidananda 400
108. Realise the Truth
"Glory of Divine Life" (Poem) by Swami Sivananda
Swami Sivananda 402
Glossary     408
Bibliography     418
The Divine Life Crest     421

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