Q. 386 – Has enlightenment been ‘dumbed down’?

Q: Self-Realization is a very rare occurrence – the Gita states something like 1 in a billion, and there are very few authentic, fully realized beings known to us, such as Ramana Maharshi, Nisargadatta Maharaj and a few others, (as well as the great anonymous ones). Granted, the world has changed and everything is much faster than it was, but this cannot surely apply to self-realization. The Neo-Advaitins’ awakenings or enlightenments cannot possibly be synonymous with the self-realizations of the great sages such as Ramana and Nisargadatta? 

Also, the hallmark of the great sages such as those mentioned above is that they have a transparent, translucent quality that emanates contentment and  peace.  The Neo-Advaitin teachers that I have observed do not emanate peace, instead, they come across with their body-mind personality traits/baggage as either ‘manic’, ‘neurotic’, ‘depressed’, ‘nihilistic’, etc. The talking, and so much talking at that,  is coming from the mind, and not from “mauna”. It is more like a mixture of counseling, psychotherapy and psycho-babble rather than pragmatic Advaitin philosophy. 

So my question is … has self-realization been dumbed down and redefined by the Neo-Advaitins, or do they not claim full self-realization, but only to be ‘awakened’ or ‘enlightened’?   Tolle comes to mind and Mooji, too… the talking never stops.

Responses from Melanie, Martin, Ramesam, Charles, and Dennis Continue reading

akhaNDAkAra vRRitti – Some Questions

I have a few questions on the concept and origin of the term akhaNDAkAra vRRitti. Will be grateful for any contribution and thoughts on my dobuts.

1.  Does the term “akhaNDAkAra vRRitti” appear in any major upanishads or Bhagavad-Gita? If so, where (citation)?

2.  Where and by whom was the term “akhaNDAkAra vRRitti” introduced for the first time in Advaita?

3.  Is the concept “akhaNDAkAra vRRitti” an attempt to extend the process of ‘Object cognition’ by the mind as explained in Vedanta Paribhasha to the stage of Self-realization?

4.  Does it occur prior to (and hence causal to) Self-realization or is the term “akhaNDAkAra vRRitti” a post hoc  explanation of  a presumed process that might have occurred in the mind on Self-realization?

5.  Does the term have a practical utility for a seeker as a sAdhana tool? If so how?

Thanks and regards,