What compelled a distinguished, world-renowned French Writer, to write the biography of a poor, almost illiterate priest of a Hindu Kali temple in India?
A biography of anyone is hard to write. But a biography of a saint is the most difficult of all, because most of the drama of a Saint's life is lived within - far from the gaze and even farther from the understanding, of the rest of the world.
Rolland obviously felt greatly enriched himself by his encounter with Ramakrishna. The man whose image I here evoke was the consummation of two thousand years of the spiritual life of three hundred million people, he wrote. Again at another place, he told his Westerner readers: I am bringing to Europe, as yet unaware of it, the fruit of a new autumn, a new message of the Soul, the symphony of India, bearing the name of Ramakrishna.