[Advaita-l] jeevanamuktha vis-a-vis avadhoota

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Sun Mar 15 23:42:41 CDT 2009

On Sat, 14 Mar 2009, manish mokshagundam wrote:

> i find it hard to see the difference between the two. going by the
> definition that a avadhoota is a person who has absorbed all knowledge and
> has no need for even the vedas. how is he any different from a
> jeevanamuktha, who too has acquired all the knowledge there is

I would define avadhuta as being more of a term of practice.  Whereas 
jivanmukta describes more of an mental or existential state.

Avadhuta refers to those sannyasis who maintain an extreme counter-social 
attitude. (I won't say anti-social because the aim is not to be hostile to 
social norms just seperate from them.)  They are particularly connected 
with Bhagavan Dattatreya but there are Tantric and Vaishnava saints who 
use the term avadhuta as well as Advaitins.

A Jivanmukta is a sannyasi who has realized Brahman in this lifetime.  As 
far as I know, the term is used only in Advaita Vedanta not in any other 
sampradaya or darshana.  A particular jivanmukta may be an avadhuta or he 
may not.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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