Ramana Maharishi and Sri Ramakrishna are acknowledged as fully enlightened people. Their words are given the highest importance by many Hindus. Are there any sadhus at that level currently anywhere in the world?

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    Welcome to Hinduism.SE! Ancient sages like Vasishta, Vishwamitra, Vyasa, etc. are still alive, somewhere deep in the Himalayas. As far as modern-day people, different sects of Hinduism believe that different people are realized. There are plenty of Hindus who don't believe that Ramana Maharshi and Ramakrishna were realized, there are Hindus who believe Sathya Sai Baba was realized but no one else is, etc. There isn't really a consensus about any modern-day figure. Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 17:25
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    Well it depends on what you mean by 'universally acknowledged', because Ramakrishna and Ramana Bhagavans are only accepted as enlightened by their followers :).
    – Sai
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 19:12
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    @KeshavSrinivasan Ancient sages with corporeal bodies are subject to the laws of growth and decay. What grows must of necessity decay. This is veda. No where in the vedas does it say that sages are roaming the Himalayas. Such teachings as the sages roaming the Himalayas are not veda, just fanciful myths and imaginings. Even if they were, what good does it do you to help you Godward??? Help yourself. Commented Oct 2, 2015 at 1:50
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    @SwamiVishwananda The fact that certain sages live through the different Yugas is described in the Puranas, Ramayana, Mahabharata, etc. I know some people interpret stories in Hindu scripture metaphorically or allegorically, but I think the stories literally happened as they described. Commented Oct 2, 2015 at 1:59
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    @SwamiVishwananda By the way, can I ask you a question if it's not disrespectful? You have the title of Swami. Does that mean that you are a self-realized soul? Or does it just mean that you're an ordained Dashnami Sanyasi? Or are all Dashnami Sanyasis considered self-realized? Commented Oct 2, 2015 at 2:04

4 Answers 4


Mahavatar Babaji is greatest example. He is the guru of Lahiri Mahasaya who was the guru of Sri Yukteswar Giri who was the guru of Paramahansa Yogananada. He is the immortal Babaji meaning he will never leave his physical body. You can learn more about him from Paramhansa Yogananda's book "Autobiography of a Yogi".

He is alive for more than 2000 years. Yogananda said in his book "If somebody remembers Babaji with all his heart, he gets instant spiritual blessing."

Regarding your question, no one is half enlightened or full enlightened. Enlightenment means one who has realized God. There were and are many people who have realized God. The past ones includes Swami Vivekananda, Swami Sivananda and others.

The enlightenment achieved by Swami Vivekananda and others is same as the enlightenment achieved by Ramana Maharishi and Ramakrishna Paramahansa.

  • Upvoted for Manavatar Babaji. I missed in my answer.
    – iammilind
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 16:19
  • Thank you. Did Paramhansa Yogananda meet Mahavatar Babaji in his life?
    – user3547
    Commented Oct 7, 2015 at 5:26
  • @user3547 Yes, Paramahansa Yogananda has written about his meeting with Mahavatar Babaji in his book "Autobiography of a Yogi".
    – Pinakin
    Commented Oct 7, 2015 at 10:05

Prahlad Jani is an Indian Sadhu, who got a spiritual experience at the age of 11 and since then he became follower of goddess Amba Mata. He himself is also known as Mataji. Since the 1970s, Jani has lived as a hermit in a cave in the rainforest near the Gujarati temple of Ambaji, awakening at 4 am each day and spending most of his time meditating.
Since 1940, he hasn't eaten food or drunk water.

Jaggi Vasudev, a mystiq from south India is believed by his followers to be an enlightened living soul. He runs Isha foundation (NGO) which offers various Kriya Yoga techniques programs and also involved in awareness about environment & humanity.
This video describes his first hand account about his enlightenment experience.

Recently a mummified monk was found in Mongolia which is believed to be at least 200 years old and still living!
The enlightened people need not remain in the limelight, hence it's difficult to know if any such other Sadhus exist currently in the material world.

Mahavatar Babaji is also believed to be avatar of Shiva living in human form. In his book The Second Coming of Christ, Yogananda states that Jesus Christ went to India and conferred with Mahavatar Babaji. This would make Babaji at least 2000 years old.

Realization happens differently to different people, and there are some online forums where people describe that. For some people the perception of time changes, for some bodily changes, for some other kind of changes.

  • I would be wary of leaders of cult-like "NGO"s.
    – user1195
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 16:35
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    @moonstar2001, I have edited my answer with another spiritual sadhu named as Prahalad Jani (basically from Rajasthan), who is covered in many documentaries and indeed he is living a modest life.
    – iammilind
    Commented Oct 14, 2015 at 5:59
  • You might be interested in "Apprenticed to a Himalayan Master" by Sri M. It's a great book of a living yogi about his various experiences in Himalaya. Mahavatar is actually a name given by Yogananda otherwise his disciples call him Sri Guru Babaji.
    – Pinakin
    Commented Nov 3, 2015 at 10:35

There may be. However, it is not easy to learn about/have a darshan of that realised soul. Mere learning about a REALISED SOUL does not serve the purpose.

It depends on the maturity of the individual,who wants to seek the blessings/guidance of the REALISED SOUL, to go to the proximity of a REALISED SOUL.

Sri Krishna says in Gita

तद्विद्धि प्रणिपातेन परिप्रश्नेन सेवया।

उपदेक्ष्यन्ति ते ज्ञानं ज्ञानिनस्तत्त्वदर्शिनः।।4.34।।

This shalt thou learn by prostrating thyself at the Master's feet, by questioning Him and by serving Him. The wise who have realised the Truth will teach thee wisdom.

So it depends on how how one approaches a REALISED one. One should serve and question a REALISED ONE, with the intention of removing one's ignorance, which results in Knowledge.

There can be many SPIRITUALLY ELEVATED ones, some becoming PUBLIC and some remaining obscure, depending upon the prArabdha left with their body.

In 1992, I met a REALISED SOUL, who passed away in 1993 itself. I do not want to dwell into the details, as they are very much personal.

If you are sincere and serious enough, search for a GURU, wholeheartedly and you will reach the REALISED SOUL, destined for you.


Bharati Teertha swamiji and Vidhushekara bharati 36th and 37th Jagadgurus of Sringeri.

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