A the age of seventeen, sitting alone at his uncle's house, the young Venkataraman, as Ramana Maharshi was known then, underwent a spontaneous 'conversion experience' that would change his life forever, beginning his spiritual quest. He left home soon after, not stopping until he had reached the shrine of Lord Arunacalesvara at Tiruvannamalai. He never left it.
Hailed as one of the most remarkable and unique practitioners of Advaita Vedanta, Ramana Maharshi saw no difference between his life and teachings. Even Mahatma Gandhi had heard that the Maharshi was 'known to be and was perhaps
[a] realized soul', and expressed a wish to meet him several times. That meeting never happened, but thousands of others flocked to him hoping to catch a glimpse of the man who is said to have experienced eternity.
In this absorbing biography, Arvind Sharma chronicles the life of Ramana Maharshi, his solitary and extraordinary spiritual journey, his wisdom and his message. Ramana Maharshi: The Sage of Arunachala will doubtless offer something to the believer and the questioner; the scholar and the layperson.
Formerly of the Indian Administrative Service, Arvind Sharma is the Birks Professor of Comparative Religion in the Faculty of Religious Studies at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He is the author of several books on Advaita Vedanta, and is presently engaged in adoption of a Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the world's religions.
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