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Ramakrishana, etc.

From: krish (krish_at_astro.ge.com)
Date: Wed Mar 13 1996 - 08:50:57 PST

The recent discussions on Bhakti cover a wide field
on Rananuja, rituals and Vivekananda. I would like
to add my brief on Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, who
lived in the last century and quite an amount of
documentation on his life is reported in print.
The greatness of Paramahamsa was his knowledge of 
Hindu philosphy was gleaned out of the Bagahvatham
and professed after experiencing Nirvana. He was
not educated by modern standards, but his parables
exemplify scholarship and brilliance. They bring
out the morals quite clearly. Born and brought
up a Vaishanvite, he clearly showed that Brahman
can be worshipped in many forms and bhakti is
a great method for salvation. Praising him does not
in anyway diminish the importance of Acharyas
of th South. 
What I do want to stress is that it is
all in one's own mind and attitude. 
                    My interest in
these topics have been how to correlate the goal-
oriented materialistic world we live in and the life 
we pursue to earn a living ( uncha-vritthi brahamana )
with the theosophical goals we seek. I think the
world we live in now is far different from what it was
in the time of our Acharyas. Religion was one of the
top profession then ( also in the West, Oxford,
Princeton etc. devoted most of the courses to it.)
Does the simple bhakti life, as probably practced 
(? or supposedto be ) by the Hare Krishna community  
today, provide the answer? 
I personally lead the life of a 
professional spending most of my time at 
a job to earn a living and I have trained my
kids and advised many youngsters to seek new
adventures and target high-return professions. 
How can I suddenly change and ask them also to
lead a life of Acharams as defined by the 
Srivaishanva community I was born in. Such an
internal conflict need not reduce my interest in
knowing more about our acharyas or Vaishanvism.
Thanks for your patience. Krishna praba