Swami Vivekananda on Kali

How I used to hate Kali … and all Her ways! That was the ground of my six years’ fight—that I would not accept Her. But I had to accept Her at last! Ramakrishna Paramahamsa dedicated me to Her, and now I believe that She guides me in everything I do, and does with me what She will. … Yet I fought so long! I loved him, you see, and that was what held me. I saw his marvellous purity. … I felt his wonderful love. … His greatness had not dawned on me then. All that came afterwards when I had given in. At that time I thought him a brain-sick baby, always seeing visions and the rest. I hated it. And then I, too, had to accept Her!

No, the thing that made me do it is a secret that will die with me. I had great misfortunes at the time. … It was an opportunity. … She made a slave of me. Those were the very words: ‘a slave of you’. And Ramakrishna Paramahamsa made me over to Her. … Strange! He lived only two years after doing that, and most of the time he was suffering. Not more than six months did he keep his own health and brightness. …

The future, you say, will call Ramakrishna Paramahamsa an Incarnation of Kali? Yes, I think there’s no doubt that She worked up the body of Ramakrishna for Her own ends.

You see, I cannot but believe that there is somewhere a great Power that thinks of Herself as feminine, and called Kali and Mother. … And I believe in Brahman too. … But is it not always like that? Is it not the multitude of cells in the body that make up the personality, the many brain-centres, not the one, that produce consciousness? … Unity in complexity! Just so! And why should it be different with Brahman? It is Brahman. It is the One. And yet—and yet—it is the gods too!

The Master as I Saw Him, by Sister Nivedita