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Ramakrishna (1836-1886) was a famous 19th-century Indian mystic. His personality and religious experiences have been studied by many notable scholars. Medical studies have been carried out on Ramakrishna's physical state which showed all signs of death during his Samādhi. Academic studies have also been carried out on the influence of Ramakrishna's personality in the growth of the Ramakrishna religious movement, the Ramakrishna Mission, Ramakrishna's contribution to the harmony of religions, psychoanalysis, and mysticism.

Religious views

Christianity

Ramakrishna's first encounter with Christianity was in 1874, when he heard the Bible being read at his devotee Malik's house. He later practiced Christianity, and according to Ramakrishna, he later had a vision of Jesus Christ. Ramakrishna regarded Jesus as "the great Yogi". Ramakrishna's teachings and personality have been studied from the point of Christianity by several scholars including Romain Rolland, Paul Hourihan. Romain Rolland called Ramakrishna as the "younger brother of Christ". Another book, Ramakrishna & Christ, the Supermystics: New Interpretations compares the lives and spiritual beliefs of Ramakrishna with that of Jesus Christ. Francis X Clooney, a Roman Catholic priest and member of the Society of Jesus, writes that Ramakrishna's vision of Christ, "shows Christians like myself a way to respond to the mystery, beauty and holiness of non-Christian religious experiences". Religious scholar D.S. Sharma and Romain Rolland notes similarities between Ramakrishna's mystic experiences and other religious personalities—St. Paul, Henry Suso—a German mystic of the 14th century, Richard Rolle of Hampolemarker, and St.Theresa of Avila.

Islam

Ramakrishna also practiced Islam as a part of his sadhana (spiritual disciplines). According to Ramakrishna, his practice of Islam culminated in the vision of Mohammed. Ramakrishna's teachings and experiences have been studied from the perspective of Islam, and compared with teachings of the Sufi saints by scholars like A. J. A. Tyeb. Tyeb notes that Ramakrishna's sadhana of meditating alone at night in the forest for several days is similar to the 19th century mystic, Sayed Sah Murshid Ali Quaderi. Tyeb writes that Ramakrishna's prayer to goddess Kali is similar to that of Rabia, who is described as 'a woman who lost herself in union with the Divine'. Tyeb also writes that Al Muhasibi, a 9th century Sufi of Baghdad, spoke of meditation in the same way as Ramakrishna did.

Bhawuk in his journal, Culture’s influence on creativity: the case of Indian spirituality wrote that Ramakrishna's contribution to humanity is particularly significant for the world after the bombing of the twin towers of the World Trade Centermarker on September 11, 2001. Bhawuk writes that, Islam is not to be blamed for the incident of September 11, and no religion should be blamed for any act of terrorism, because the life of Ramakrishna proclaims that all religions lead to the same God.

Medical viewpoints on Ramakrishna's Samadhi

Ramakrishna entered samādhi (ecstacy) several times a day, over a period of many years till his death. When this came on him, he became unconscious. He would sit in a fixed position for a short time, or for hours, and would then slowly return to consciousness. When he was in this condition, the best doctors could find no trace of pulse or heart beat. It is also said that he already had the power of inducing samādhi in others.

Dr.Mahendralal Sarkar, a renowned physician of Calcuttamarker, who treated Ramakrishna during his final days is one of the firsthand witnesses who examined Ramakrishna during his samadhi. Dr. Sarkar was a rationalist, who did not share the religious views of Ramakrishna, nor did he see him as an avatara He was present during several ecstasies of Ramakrishna and studied them from a medical point of view. The doctor observed that the stethoscopic examination of the heart and the condition of the eyes during samadhi showed all the symptoms of death. Even on the occasion of Ramakrishna's death, it was perceived as the normal samadhi. Ramakrishna had experienced samadhi daily for many years. In the process, his whole physical organism had been transformed; it was extraordinarily sensitive and delicate.

According to Professor Somnath Bhattacharyya, a psychoanalyst and psychologist, Ramakrishna's samadhi states were accompanied by very profound inward withdrawal of consciousness, and remarkable physiological changes, consistent with the highest stages of meditative absorption as documented in Hindu Tantra, Yoga and Buddhist literature.

Another study in this field has be carried out by G.C.Ray of IIT, which has been published in the IEEE journal article—Journey through higher consciousness and the physiological changes. According to his biographers, Ramakrishna's samādhi were accompanied by low metabolic rate, reduction of respiration and heart-rate, high-body temperature, tremor of the fingers. It is also mentioned that after divine visions during this spiritual sadhana, usually the next day, the pain used to be aggravated and it so happened that after some time he used to resist such vision to avoid the pain. In this study, EEGs and ECG are picked up from a subject in the transcendent state and the signals are analysed. Utilising the experimental results, it is further suggested that, during transcendency some of the monitoring/executing physiological subsystems may be switched off, giving Ramakrishna as the example. The author also suggests that, "this process of gradually dropping the subsystems may be same as "neti, neti" (not this, not this, ... and reject it in the journey towards ultimate reality) as is voiced in the Upanishads".

Dr. Bhagavan Rudra was one of the doctors who treated the Ramakrishna. During one of his visits, Ramakrishna said to him, "You see, medicine does not agree with me. My system is different. Well, what do you think of this? When I touch a coin my hand gets twisted; my breathing stops. Further, if I tie a knot in the corner of my cloth, I cannot breathe. My breathing stops until the knot is untied." Later, Ramakrishna asked a devotee to bring a rupee. When he held it in his hand, the hand began to writhe with pain. His breathing also stopped. After the coin had been taken away, he breathed deeply three times and his hand relaxed. The doctor became speechless with wonder to see this strange phenomenon. He then said to a devotee, "Action on the nerves." It is reported that in 1881, when Ramakrishna was once in ecstasy, Dr. Dukari touched the eyeballs of Ramakrishna to test if his ecstasy was a real one. He was surprised to find no reaction from Ramakrishna.

Religious Practices and Experiences

The oceanic feeling

Ramakrishna's experiences of Samādhi, which Ramakrishna described as "limitless infinite, effulgent ocean of consciousness or spirit" was termed as oceanic feeling by Romain Rolland. Scholars note that the same term was adapted by Freud in his book Civilization and its Discontents.

Scholars have noted similarities between Ramakrishna's oceanic feeling and other religious personalities:
  • St. Paul, after a similar experience, was struck blind.
  • Suso, a German mystic of the 14th century, suffered at the time of his awakening so greatly in body that it seemed to him that none even in dying could suffer so much in so short a time.
  • Richard Rolle of Hampolemarker has recorded that his heart burned with a sensible fire, "truly not imaginingly."
  • St.Theresa of Avila.


Swami Vivekananda

One of first disciples to look at Ramakrishna's ecstasy and experiences as pathological and hallucinations and to question Kali as the "mother of universe" as Ramakrishna preached, was his most ardent and prominent disciple—Swami Vivekananda. When he first approached Ramakrishna, he was an iconoclast, a hater of superstitions and idols,and was against the worship of Kali. During the initial days, Vivekananda regarded Ramakrishna's experiences as "creations of a sick brain, mere hallucinations" and did not accept him as an avatara. Vivekananda regarded the Advaitist Vedantism of identity with the Absolute as blasphemy and madness. After a period of revolt, Ramakrishna was accepted as a guru.

Referring to the practice of Madhura Bhava, by his guru, years later in 1896 in one of his speeches My Master, Vivekananda said,

Referring to the teaching of Kama-Kanchana, Vivekananda said,

Romain Rolland

In his book The Life of Ramakrishna (1929), Romain Rolland, argues that Ramakrishna's experiences were not pathological. Rolland also argues the inapplicability of psychoanalysis on Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda and other mystics. Rolland had correspondence with Freud. In his letter of December 5, 1927, Rolland indicated that he was researching a book on the Hindu saints Ramakrishna and Vivekananda. The references to Freud and psychoanalysis in these books are considered as direct response to Civilization and Its Discontents.

Leo Schneiderman

Leo Schneiderman in his work, Ramakrishna: Personality and Social Factors in the Growth of a Religious Movement (1969) argues that Ramakrishna's "bizarre" behavior (samadhi) must be judged within its proper cultural context. According to Schneiderman, since Ramakrishna was a Brahmin priest who combined the performance of traditional religious functions with demonstrations of divine possession, especially in samādhi, he could appeal to a wide clientele and he was both an exemplar of Redfield's "great tradition" of Hinduism, and of village shamanism, sublimated to a very high plane. Schneiderman argues that Ramakrishna's trances and other dramatic manifestations, including perhaps, even his psychotic behavior, were not truly aberrations from the standpoint of the non-Sanskritic popular culture.

Walter G. Neevel

In the 1976 essay, "The Transformation of Sri Ramakrishna", Walter G. Neevel argues that Ramakrishna's life went through three "transformations". The first—the transformation of the "madman" of the early years to the benign, saintly figure of the later years—appears to have been brought about more by shifting public gaze than some personal spiritual progression. According to Neevel, the second and third transformations, are seen to reflect not historically verifiable ideas or events in the life of the saint, but myth-making and misrepresentation, often performed by his most intimate followers and disciples. Neevel argues that, the saint is incorrectly depicted as an advaitin of the Sankarite school.

Amiya P. Sen argues that Neevel's essay overlooks certain problems. Neevel does not situate the ascriptions of Ramakrishna as an advaitin or vedantin in the historical context of Indian philosophy which had the influence of Western-educated intelligentsia like Ram Mohan Roy. Amiya Sen writes that contrary to what Neevel suggests, "the maddened state of Ramakrishna" during his early practice is described by the Vivekachudamani, an advaitic text as one of the spiritually exalted states. Sen further argues that "Vivekananda derived the social service gospel under direct inspiration from Ramakrishna rests very substantially on the liminal quality of the Master's message".

Regarding Ramakrishna's samadhi, Neevel writes that "it is clear that his ability to enter into trances so easily derived largely from his esthetic and emotional sensitivity — his capacity to so appreciate and identify with beauty and harmony in what he saw and did that he would become totally overcome by ecstasy".

Narasingha Sil

In 1991, historian Narasingha Sil wrote Ramakrishna Paramahamsa: A Psychological Profile, an account of Ramakrishna that argues that Ramakrishna's mystical experiences were pathological and originated from alleged childhood sexual trauma. Narasingha Sil links Ramakrishna's teaching of Kamini-Kanchana to traditional rural Bengali misogyny. Sil also says that Ramakrishna made his wife into a deity in order to avoid thinking of her as sexual.

Other scholars, most notably psychologist Sudhir Kakar, argued that Sil's study was simplistic and misleading. Sil's theory has also been deemed as reductive by William B. Parsons, who has called for an increased empathetic dialogue between the classical/adaptive/transformative schools and the mystical traditions for an enhanced understanding of Ramakrishna's life and experiences. Bengali Scholar William Radice wrote that, "Sil has debunked the saint so thoroughly and gleefully that it is hard to see how he will recover, once Sil's book becomes widely known."

Dr.Jeanne Openshaw

Dr.Jeanne Openshaw, a senior lecturer in Religious Studies, and who specializes in the area of Bengali Vaishnavism and Culture, argues that the behavior or religious practices of Ramakrishna are not necessarily abnormal. Openshaw argues that from the context of devotional Bengali Vaishnavism, where femininity represents the highest attainable condition, the cultivation of femininity by men in various ways is not necessarily abnormal, nor can it necessarily be taken as a sign of homosexuality. Openshaw writes that in rural Bengal, male celibacy, and conservation of semen are considered important. Openshaw argues that Ramakrishna's attempt to see all women as mothers rather than as sexual partners, cannot be seen in terms of homoerotic tendencies.

Sudhir Kakar

In 1991, Sudhir Kakar wrote "The Analyst and the Mystic" Gerald James Larson wrote, "Indeed, Sudhir Kakar...indicates that there would be little doubt that from a psychoanalytic point of view Ramakrishna could be diagnosed as a secondary transsexual."Kakar sought a meta-psychological, non-pathological explanation that connects Ramakrishna's mystical realization with creativity. Kakar also argued that culturally relative concepts of eroticism and gender have contributed to the Western difficulty in comprehending Ramakrishna. In 2003, Sudhir Kakar wrote a novel, Ecstasy, in which an aspiring sadhu in 20th century India endures sexual molestation as a child, and has a feminine appearance and ambiguous sexuality. According to the author, the characters were modelled on Ramakrishna and Vivekananda.

Somnath Bhattacharyya

Somnath Bhattacharyya, in his work Kali's Child: Psychological and Hermeneutical Problems, further elaborates on the views related to transvestite and transsexuality traits of Ramakrishna. Bhattacharrya argues that dressing up in feminine attire as part of a legitimate and culturally accepted sadhana for a short period of time does not amount to transvestism, since Ramakrishna also dressed like a Shakta and a Vaishnava during his Shakti and Vaishnava sadhana days, and like a Muslim during his Islam sadhana, which was in male attire. Bhattacharrya argues that Ramakrishna's dressing habits were in line with this religious practice. Bhattacharrya also argues that Ramakrishna cannot be described as a secondary transsexual.

Jeffrey Kripal

In 1995, religious scholar Jeffrey Kripal wrote Kali's Child: The Mystical and the Erotic in the Life and Teachings of Ramakrishna, a psychoanalytic study of Ramakrishna. William Parsons described Kali's Child as a book "which performs a classic Freudian interpretation by seeing symptoms of repressed homoeroticism in the visions and acts of Ramakrishna, but then, in exemplifying the interdisciplinary approach of this dialogue, legitimates Ramakrishna's religious visions by situating psychoanalytic discourse in a wider Tantric world view." Professor Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak wrote that, Kripal has misinterpreted "Ramakrishna's life as a bhakta, as tantric practice" and "unfortunately the book is so full of cultural and linguistic mis-translations that the general premise cannot be taken seriously."

The book caused intense controversy among both Western and Indian audiences which is still unresolved. The book came into limelight and created controversy in India after a scathing review written by religious scholar Narasingha Sil was published in The Statesman. The review also produced a great deal of angry correspondence.

In 1998, the second edition of Kali's Child was brought out, in which Jeffery Kripal claimed that he had corrected the translation errors. Further, In 1999, Brian Hatcher argued that although some scholars had their misgivings, the overall verdict of religion scholars and of experts on South Asian culture regarding Kali's Child has been approving, and at times highly laudatory.

However, the deductions of Kali's Child and psychoanalytical credentials of Kripal were questioned by several scholars, including Swami Tyagananda, Swami Atmajnanananda, Somnath Bhattacharya, Huston Smith, Alan Roland, Gayatri Spivak.

Swami Tyagananda's Kali's Child Revisited or Didn't Anyone Check the Documentation? argues the presence of serious errors in Kali's Child. Copies of Kali's Child Revisited were distributed at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion and subsequently published in the journal Evam.

Kripal's translations, his conclusions, and his authority to apply psychoanalysis to Ramakrishna were questioned by several scholars, including Alan Roland, Huston Smith, and Somnath Bhattacharya. Kripal responded to the criticisms in journal articles and postings on his website, but stopped participating in the discussion in late 2002.

J.S. Hawley

John Stratton Hawley, Professor of Religion at Barnard Collegemarker, in his paper The Damage of Separation: Krishna's Loves and Kali's Child examines the following:
  • Is it right to think of the religious and erotic realms as overlapping, particularly when a homosexual dimension is involved.
  • Second, if Hindus and Hinduism are the subject, should non-Hindus refrain from speaking?


In this study, J.S.Hawley, revisits the Kali's Child debate highlighting one of its central terms — the vyakulata feeling of Ramakrishna. J.S.Hawley argues that "neither the gopis’ torment nor Ramakrishna's must be allowed to devolve to a bodily level." Hawley further argues that "communities of people who respond to different sexual orientations should not indiscriminately impose their thoughts on religious communities....Eros is dangerous"

Alan Roland

Attempts by modern authors to psychoanalyze Ramakrishna are questioned by practicing psychoanalyst Alan Roland, who has written extensively about applying Western psychoanalysis to Eastern cultures, and charges that psychoanalysis has been misapplied to Ramakrishna. Roland decries the facile decoding of Hindu symbols, such as Kali's sword and Krishna's flute, into Western sexual metaphors—thereby reducing Ramakrishna's spiritual aspiration to the basest psychopathology. The conflation of Ramakrishna's spiritual ecstasy, or samādhi, with unconscious dissociated states due to repressed homoerotic feelings is not based on common psychoanalytic definitions of these two different motivations, according to Roland. He also writes that it is highly questionable whether Ramakrishna's spiritual aspirations and experiences involve regression—responding to modern attempts to reduce Ramakrishna's spiritual states to a subconscious response to an imagined childhood trauma.

Kelley Ann Raab

While most of the studies have been conducted from either a primarily psychoanalytic perspective or from the perspective of a devotee, Kelley Ann Raab's work — Is There Anything Transcendent about Transcendence? A Philosophical and Psychological Study of Sri Ramakrishna, focuses upon Ramakrishna from both a philosophical perspective and a psychoanalytic perspective. The study argues that neither a purely psychological explanation nor a solely philosophical account of his visions is adequate to understand his madness or his godliness, but that together psychology and philosophy can deepen our understanding of Ramakrishna and find a common meeting ground. Raab argues that,
  • By philosophical analysis of Ramakrishna's devotional mysticism and tantric underpinnings, his visions and behavior were in keeping with his culture and tradition.
  • By psychological analysis of Ramakrishna's behavior, he broke through dualistic thought patterns defining gender, humanity, and God by dressing as and imitating a woman.


Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak

Professor Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, taking the example of a "dvaita" gaze of a "boy looking up obliquely at the clay and wattle frame of the image of Durga" writes that when we read the photo through Sigmund Freud's psychoanalysis it would be wrongly diagnosed as "double anxiety of castration and decapitation." Spivak writes that Freud's analysis is not culturally receptive and writes that Freud's psychoanalysis is an "occupational hazard". She writes that Ramakrishna was a "Bengali bhakta visionary" and that as a bhakta, he turned chiefly towards Kali.

Tantra Sadhana

Different views on Ramakrishna's tantric sadhana have been expressed. The Tantra sadhana consisted of the "right-handed path" consisting of Kularnava, Mahanirvana and Kamalakala Vilasa involving celibate vegetarian lifestyle, japa, breath control, concentration, meditation and a set of heterodox practices but not limited to the Vamachara—termed as "left-handed path", which involves drinking wine, eating rotten flesh, sexual intercourse. Depending on an aspirant's disposition, Tantra prescribes a particular method for spiritual practice. In general, the Tantras classify people into three major groups pasu (animal), vira (hero), divya (godlike). According to Saradananda, Ramakrishna was in the vira stage during the practice of vamachara. Elizabeth U. Harding writes that the Tantra practices are aimed at rousing the Kundalini and peircing the six chakras. Elizabeth argues that Tantra is one of the paths for God-realization and cannot be branded as sensualism.

Christopher Isherwood writes that the object of the tantrik disciplines is "to see, behind all phenomena, the presence of God and to overcome the obstacles to this insight — attraction and aversion". Further Isherwood argues that words which normally carry sensual associations suggested higher meanings to Ramakrishna in his exalted state. For example, the word yoni, which normally means the female sex-organ, would mean for him the divine source of creation. According to Isherwood, for Ramakrishna the most unconditionally obscene words were scared to him as the vocabulary of the scriptures during the tantra sadhana. Religious scholars note that the word linga represented purusha, and yoni represented prakriti.

Neevel argues that some of Ramakrishna's followers tend to be apologetic about his taking up tantric practices because of the eroticism that has discredited tantric schools in general and those of Bengal in particular. Neevel argues that the influence of tantra on this spiritual development is underestimated.. Ramchandra Datta one of the early biographers of Ramakrishna is reported to have said, "We have heard many tales of the Brahmani but we hesitate to divulge them to the public."

In Kali's Child, Jeffery Kripal argues that "Ramakrishna's world, then, was a Tantric world". Kripal further argues that Ramakrishna's Tantric practices were "omnipresent, defining virtually every point along Ramakrishna's spiritual development." Amiya P.Sen writes that "it is really difficult to separate the Tantrik Ramakrishna from the Vedantic", since Vedanta and Tantra "may appear to be differ in some respects", but they also "share some important postulates between them".

Language

Ramakrishna used rustic colloquial Bengali in his conversations. Ramakrishna had an extraordinary style of preaching and instructing, conveying to even the most skeptical visitors to the temple. Christopher Isherwood writes, —

Philosopher Arindam Chakrabarti contrasts Ramakrishna's talkativeness with Buddha's reticence, and makes seven comparisons between Ramakrishna and Socrates. He then analyzes a song that Ramakrishna was fond of ("The Dark Mother Flying Kites") and pulls out six philosophical elements: a nondualistic metaphysics, a spiritualistic ethic, the doctrine of karma, a playful goddess, the possibility of moksha, and the theory of psychological causation.

Scholars Max Müller, A.W. Stratton, opine that few religious practices and sayings of Ramakrishna which are natural to a Hindu, may sound strange, offensive and abominal
to the Western mind. Müller gives an example,


Regarding Ramakrishna's language, Max Müller writes, "His speech at times was abominably filthy. For all that, he was, as you say, a real Mahâtman, and I would not withdraw a single word I wrote in his praise". Müller writes that the language may sound filthy, because of the plain speaking among oriental races, where certain classes of men walk stark naked, and the languages too is not likely to veil what for the west requires to be veiled and the directness of speech which would be most offensive in west is not regarded in that light in India. Müller further argues that, the charge of intentional filthiness or obscenity cannot be brought against Ramakrishna. Giving the examples of classical poems like Bhartrihari, the Bible, Homer in Shakespeare, Müller argues that few of the sayings may have to be bowdlerized.

Philosopher Lex Hixon writes that an eyewitness to the teachings of Ramakrishna reported that Ramakrishna's "linguistic style was unique, even to those who spoke Bengali" and it was "not literally translatable into English or any other language." Hixon writes that Ramakrishna's "colorful village Bengali, replete with obscure local words and idioms", adds to the difficulty of translation. His "obscure local words" were interspersed with technical Sanskrit terms from "various strands of Hindu yoga and philosophy" and "extensive references" to the "complex realm of sacred history" of the Vedas, Puranas, Tantras.

Scholars like Amiya P. Sen argue that certain terms that Ramakrishna may have used only in a metaphysical sense are deliberately invested with new, contemporaneous meanings.

Notes

  1. Children of Immortality. The Ramakrishna Movement with Special Emphasis on the South African Context by Anil Sooklal
  2. Swami Atmajnanananda
  3. Fisher, "Sigmund Freud and Romain Rolland: The Terrestrial Animal and His Great Oceanic Friend", p. 29,
  4. Werman, "Sigmund Freud and Romain Rolland", p. 236
  5. Sil, Narasingha, Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. A Psychological Profile, (Leiden, Netherlands: Brill, 1991), p.16
  6. Sil, Divine Dowager, p. 52
  7. Sil, Divine Dowager, p. 55
  8. Kakar, Sudhir, The Analyst and the Mystic, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991), p.34
  9. Parsons, William B., The Enigma of the Oceanic Feeling: Revisioning the Psychoanalytic Theory of Mysticism, (New York, Oxford University Press, 1999), pp.125-139
  10. {{cite journal|last=Radice|first=William |month=May | year=2000|title=Atheists, Gurus and Fanatics: Rabindranath Tagore's 'Chaturanga'|journal=Modern Asian Studies|volume=34|issue=2|url=http://www.jstor.org/stable/313069}|publisher=Cambridge University Press}}
  11. In The Indian Psyche, 125-188. 1996 New Delhi: Viking by Penguin. Reprint of 1991 book.
  12. Kripal, Jeffrey J.: Kali's Child
  13. Kripal, Jeffrey J., Kali's Child: The Mystical and the Erotic in the Life and Teachings of Ramakrishna, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1995, 1998)
  14. WILLIAM B. PARSONS, "PSYCHOLOGY" in Gale's Encyclopedia of Religion, 2005
  15. J. S. Hawley, The Damage of Separation: Krishna's Loves and Kali's Child, 2004
  16. Invading the Sacred, p.29
  17. "Freud never had access to non-Western patients, so he never established the validity of his theories in other cultures. This is a point emphasized by Alan Roland, who has researched and published extensively to show that Freudian approaches are not applicable to study Asian cultures." Ramaswamy and De Nicholas, p. 39.
  18. Smith derided Kripal's work as "colonialism updated".
  19. Somnath Bhattacharyya is emeritus professor and former head of the Psychology Department at Calcutta University(Ramaswamy and DeNicholas, p. 152), and a practicing psychotherapist(Ramaswamy and DeNicholas, p. 152) who is fluent in Bengali(Ramaswamy and DeNicholas, p. 152) and familiar with the primary source material used by Kripal(Ramaswamy and DeNicholas, p. 152). In addition to pointing out that Kripal is not qualified in psychoanalysis, he says the textual errors in Kali's Child are "particularly grave", and "large scale distortions of source material in an ill attempted effort at establishing a thesis, is certainly not academically acceptable." Ramaswamy and DeNicholas, p. 162.
  20. Kali's Child
  21. Roland, Alan. (1996) Cultural Pluralism and Psychoanalysis: The Asian and North American Experience. Routledge. ISBN 0415914787.
  22. Roland, Alan (1998) In Search of Self in India and Japan: Toward a Cross-cultural Psychology. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0691024588.
  23. Roland, A. (1991). Sexuality, the Indian Extended Family, and Hindu Culture. J. Amer. Acad. Psychoanal., 19:595-605.
  24. Roland, A. (1980). Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Personality Development in India. Int. R. Psycho-Anal., 7:73-87.
  25. Roland, Alan. (2007) The Uses (and Misuses) Of Psychoanalysis in South Asian Studies: Mysticism and Child Development. Invading the Sacred: An Analysis of Hinduism Studies in America. Delhi, India: Rupa & Co. ISBN 978-8129111821
  26. Roland, Ramakrishna: Mystical, Erotic, or Both?, p. 33.
  27. Roland, The Uses (and Misuses) Of Psychoanalysis in South Asian Studies: Mysticism and Child Development, published in Invading the Sacred: An Analysis of Hinduism Studies in America. Delhi, India: Rupa & Co. ISBN 978-8129111821, p. 414.
  28. The Great Master, "Tantra Sadhana"
  29. Ramakrishna and his Disciples, p.101-102
  30. Sil, Divine Dowager, p. 42
  31. Kali's Child, p.27
  32. Kali's Child, p.71
  33. Amiya P. Sen (2001), Three Essays on Sri Ramakrishna and His Times, p.22
  34. Arindam Chakrabarti, "The Dark Mother Flying Kites: Sri Ramakrishna's Metaphysic of Morals" Sophia, 33 (3), 1994


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