American Gurus: From Transcendentalism to New Age Religion by Arthur Versluis

By Arthur Versluis

by means of the early twenty-first century, a phenomenon that after used to be unattainable had develop into approximately typical in American society: the general public religious instructor who neither belongs to, neither is licensed via an enormous spiritual culture. From the Oprah Winfrey-endorsed Eckhart Tolle to figures like Gangaji and Adhyashanti, there at the moment are numerous non secular academics who declare and train editions of quick or speedy enlightenment.

American Gurus tells the tale of ways this phenomenon emerged. via an exam of the wider literary and non secular context of the topic, Arthur Versluis exhibits attribute function of the Western esoteric culture is the declare that each individual can in achieving "spontaneous, direct, unmediated religious insight." This declare used to be articulated with precise readability by means of the hot England Transcendentalists Bronson Alcott and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Versluis explores Transcendentalism, Walt Whitman, the Beat stream, Timothy Leary, and the hot Age flow to make clear the emergence of the modern American guru.

This insightful learn is the 1st to teach how Asian religions and Western mysticism converged to provide the phenomenon of "spontaneously enlightened" American gurus.

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