Annie Besant (1847-1933), second President of the Theosophical Society (1907-1933), was described as a 'Diamond Soul', for she had many brilliant facets to her character. She was an outstanding orator of her time, a champion of human freedom, educationist, philanthropist and author with more than three hundred books and pamphlets to her credit. She also guided thousands of men and women all over the world in their spiritual quest.
In her earlier days in England, she did remarkable work as a Freethinker and Fabian socialist, and supported many noble causes including women's suffrage. From 1893, she lived in India and worked indefatigably for the cultural and spiritual renaissance of the country, she organized the Home Rule movement and inspired Indians with a dynamic vision of India's future.
We are happy to republish Dr. Annie Besant's lectures on Avatara-s, which was out of Print for some decades. This work offers some profound insights into the mystery of divine descent and is especially relevant to our times.
The entire gamut of diacriticals to denote the pronunciation of Sanskrit names and works has not been used, as it becomes burdensome for the average reader. But in order to help those who are not familiar with those words, we have used some of the marks, namely, a to indicate the long 'a' as in father; s to distinguish this sibilant from 's' and 'sh'; n to denote the nasal consonant and differentiate it from the ordinary 'n'; and r to mark the Sanskrit semi-vowel as in rishi instead of spelling it as rishi, which is not correct.
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