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HINDU RENAISSANCE AT A TURNING POINT
led them to downplay Hindu devotional traditions and emphasize a
universal teaching, which they sought to remove from any Hindu
background. They undoubtedly thought that such a universal idea of
religion would be more easily understood, particularly given the
negative image of Hinduism created by the missionaries. But their
efforts also served to give the impression that Hinduism had nothing
new or unique to offer to members of other religions except perhaps
deepening them in whatever faith they already had.
Or their efforts gave the impression that such
teachers were no longer Hindus but represented a new religious urge
or synthesis of all religions.
the new gurus into Christ-like figures brought upon them all the
expectations of the magical savior that Christ was supposed to be.
Like Christ they came to be looked upon, not as revivers of the
ancient Dharma, but as founders of a new religion that would save
the world and usher in a new age.
This led to guru cults in the
West in which Western students related only to their particular guru
and failed to connect with any tradition behind him, as if the
particular teacher was the be all and end all of the teachings,
which were not of any particular tradition. Similar movements
occurred in India, with the search for a new avatar becoming more
significant than the revival of the eternal Dharma or the quest for