Raman Maharshi (was Re: RES: [Advaita-l] New member introduction: Asad Mustafa Rizvi)

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian rama.balasubramanian at gmail.com
Mon Jan 29 06:21:25 CST 2007

I must say I disagree with calling RM a sphatika mani. It seems like
saying that RM had no philosophical ideas of his own. The
relation/common points that advaita (forget about RM) has with systems
such as mystical Christian traditions, sufism, etc, had already been
pointed out by Aldous Huxley, Schrodinger, etc., who had no idea of
RM. At least Schrodinger did not.

The best way to get an idea of what RM said is to read his works. He
was not a Sanskrit scholar, but knew enough Sanskrit to compose some
poetry. The bulk of his philosophical works are in Tamil verse and
poetry. Probably about half of them are translations of Shankaras
works such as VivekachUDAmaNI, etc. But the rest will show he was
nothing other than a classical advaitin. Examing shankara from his
works alone (we have no access to conversations), and comparing that
with some recorded dialogs of RM, is not an apples to apples


On 1/24/07, Vidyasankar Sundaresan <svidyasankar at hotmail.com> wrote:
> There is an interesting metaphor used by advaita vedAnta masters, which is
> very appropriate in the context of seeing someone like Ramana Maharishi as a
> Sufi sage. A sphaTika mani (transparent crystal) has no color intrinsically.
> However, when a colored flower or gemstone is viewed through the crystal, it
> appears as if the color belongs to the crystal too.
> Ramana Maharishi did not call himself a Maharishi, and taught solely from
> his own experience. In the context of the society around him, scholars saw
> remarkable agreement of his sayings with the advaita vedAnta tradition. Sri
> Rizvi sees agreement between Ramana and Sufi masters like Rumi.
> Ramana is like the sphaTika; we each of us impart to him the color that we
> see due to our own saMskAras! But this also points to another fact - in many
> ways, Sufi teachings are remarkably close to vedAnta, albeit in the context
> of Islam.

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