Can an animal attain Self-Realization?

Ramana Maharshi’s last words were “have you fed the peacocks?” His love for animals and indeed all creatures is the stuff of legend – and yet another reason why I adore the Sage of Tiruvannamalai. The knower of wisdom resides in Absolute reality where every being is perceived as divine. To keep this great truth constantly in mind – no matter our current state of consciousness, likes, dislikes, biases and preferences – can slowly or quickly lead us to the wonder of realizing who we are in truth – the immortal and blissful Self.
Thank you Harsh Luthar, for this profound post!

Birth as a Human

Bhagavan Ramana generally went along with the Hindu orthodox traditions and rarely contradicted them. But there were several notable exceptions.

One exception involved his own mother who lived with him despite the fact that Bhagavan was a Sadhu, a renunciate.

The second exception involved animals around him whom Bhagavan gave equality with human beings.

Once Bhagavan said, “It is not true that birth as a man is necessarily the highest, and that one must attain realisation only from being a man. Even an animal can attain Self-realisation”. (‘Day by Day with Bhagavan’ 2-9-46)

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