by Sudhir Kakar (2007). A historical novel, based on private letters and diary entries of Madeline Slade, the daughter of a high British naval officer, who joined Mahatma Gandhi in his Indian ashram, dedicated to self-discipline, austerity and tolerance. The book describes in compelling manner the intensity, dedication and intense need for purity that drives a spiritual person such as Madeline to live what most of us would consider a life of extreme deprivation and poverty and how in the end she runs up against the limitations of her own psychology. This is a nice quote, epitomizing the sense of the book
Perhaps I still doubted whether a life of the mind (and at least a modicum of the senses) I had envisaged for myself would also provide enough nourishment for my spirit. Fifty years later, I realize that I still do not have an answer. Perhaps this is a question to which there are no answers, or one to which each must find the answer on his own. I still wonder what it would have been like if I had stayed with Bapu (Ghandi), immersed in a cause greater than myself, guided through the journey of life by a man people have likened to the Buddha and Jesus. Instead I chose to strike out on my own, with a road map of happiness that detailed ways of satisfying the needs and longings of my self. Yes, I chose to seek pleasure, however balanced and sensible my pursuit might have been.