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Ramana Maharshi: The Crown Jewel of Advaita

782 pages8 hours


The great 20th century Indian sage, Ramana Maharshi, has often been described as the very incarnation of non-dualism, or advaita, even though the Hindu philosophical school of Advaita Vedanta claims that no one has ever been born, lived or died. It is this paradox that the Advaitin philosopher John Allen Grimes explores in this profound new work, skillfully combining biography with philosophical and spiritual inquiry. For, as he tells us in his introduction, as one passes Ramana’s life and teachings before the lens of Advaita, both are seen to be in perfect accord with the essence of Advaitin philosophy. But what is astonishing about this fact is that Ramana’s teachings seem to have emerged spontaneously, as the fruit of his own sudden ‘Awakening’ at 16 years old; for it was only after this experience, almost by accident, that he learned of the ancient Hindu teachings of non-dualism! Ramana Maharshi: The Crown Jewel of Advaita reintroduces us to the life and teachings of the sage Ramana Maharshi through the darsana or ‘philosophical system’ known as Advaita Vedanta. But, as the Sanskrit word darsan also means ‘being in the presence’ of a sage or deity, we should not be surprised to find that this is something that this book also manages to accomplish.

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