Sri Ramakrishna’s Mysterious Female Gurus
Ramakrishna’s Mysterious Female Gurus
From Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
His awestruck contemporaries called Sri Ramakrishna the Paramahansa (the Supreme Swan) as a tribute to his ability to constantly live in an exalted state of love & bliss. The swan is reputed in Indian mythology to be able to separate milk from the water in which it has been mixed, a talent which shows it to be very delicate in its discrimination, and not satisfied with anything but real purity. People of great spiritual realization are thus called swans, but Ramakrishna was of a class all by himself. His great disciple, Swami Vivekananda, whom the master himself declared to be one of the world-incarnations of the Brahma, stated “nobody had ever probed the depth or seen all the facets to Ramakrishna”. Sri Aurobindo, not known for any false modesty about himself, once proclaimed that the Earth would not be able to bear such a descent of pure holiness as Ramakrishna for another 500 years.
Very little is known about the female sources of Sri Ramakrishna’s early sadhana. His first female guru, Bhairavi Brahmani, also referred to as “Bhairava Lady Guru” declared often that He was the Avatar of the age, and was known for vigorously combating any doubters who were not willing to concede her point, which she felt had strong scriptural sanction too. . In the case of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa’s practice, the Bhairavi trained him in the many mysteries of Divine Tantra.
His second female guru was Nanga Avadhuta Guru who initiated him into the esoteric practice of Divine Dharana, concentration on the formlessness of Nirguna Brahman.
His third female guru was Sri P.R. Avaste, who initiated Him into Divine Mantra via Siva Panchakshari Japa, which was thought to result in the perception of various Divine riddhis and siddhis.
His unique state and profound worship of the Goddess allowed him to transcend the traditional female prejudices, and embrace female teachers with humility. This He passed on to his foremost disciple Swami Vivekananda, who initiated many female sannyasins in India and America.