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To the Madras Committee
[After Swami Vivekananda Colombo on Friday, January 15, 1897, the Madras Committee, which was planning a reception for the Swami, sent the following message: "Motherland rejoices to welcome you back". In reply, Swami Vivekananda sent a wire.]
[Postmarked: January 15, 1897]
MY LOVE AND GRATITUDE TO MY COUNTRYMEN.
To Miss. Mary Hale
30th Jan., 1897.
MY DEAR MARY,
Things are turning out most curiously for me. From Colombo in Ceylon, where I landed, to Ramnad, the nearly southernmost point of the Indian continent where I am just now as the guest of the Raja of Ramnad, my journey has been a huge procession â crowds of people, illuminations, addresses, etc., etc. A monument forty feet high is being built on the spot where I landed. The Raja of Ramnad has presented his address to "His most Holiness" in a huge casket of solid gold beautifully worked. Madras and Calcutta are on the tiptoe of expectation as if the whole nation is rising to honour me.
So you see, Mary, I am on the very height of my destiny, yet the mind turns to quietness and peace, to the days we had in Chicago, of rest, of peace, and love; and that is why I write just now, and may this find you all in health and peace! I wrote a letter to my people from London to receive Dr. Barrows kindly. They accorded him a big reception, but it was not my fault that he could not make any impression there. The Calcutta people are a hard-headed lot! Now Barrows thinks a world of me, I hear! Such is the worldÂ
With all love to mother, father, and you all,Â
I remain, yours affly.,
To Swami Brahmananda
(Original in Bengali)
12th February, 1897.
I am to start by S.S. Mombasa next Sunday. I had to give up invitations from Poona and other places on account of bad health. I am very much pulled down by hard work and heat.
The Theosophists and others wanted to intimidate me. Therefore I had to give them a bit of my mind. You know they persecuted me all the time in America, because I did not join them. They wanted to begin it here. So I had to clear my position. If that displeases any of my Calcutta friends, "God help them". You need not be afraid, I do not work alone, but He is always with me. What could I do otherwise?