Soul Scintilating Read : The Autobiography of a Yogi

29 Dec 2013, Comments: | Views: 2911 | | Category: Books

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 Free Online Version of the Great book - Click Here

Download Kindle Version

Amanzon Link (Free)

Various Versions at Project Gutenberg

I am one of those lazy flok who dream of doing many things in and out of life, but finally settle with doing almost nothing great. In this rush of life, we are always busy not knowing what we are doing and what we are up to.

Except those great few, many of us wander on some dimensions of the earth and vanish into thin air just like any other ordinary being. Are we on this planet to eat, drink, sleep, study , earn and spend money, marry, have children, make family and ultimately die-- with a photo of our smiling face hanging somewhere in the corner of the house?

I always (which I feel most of us) have these questions playing on my mind - what is this soul? Is soul real? Does god really exists? If god really exists why he is not responding to pains of the mankind? Can we see the god? Is there life after death? What happens after death? Is astrology real or just a blind faith? How this creation started? Does the cycle of birth and death real? Is all this what we are seeing is maya/illusion? Are we all just puppets in the game of god? And above all these doubts - the most important one - What is the purpose of my stay on this planet?

Whenever I gaze the empty sky or gaze inside my mind - the above puzzles prop up. But ofcourse in this materialistic world I hardly had time to explore answers and with time the questions also got burried. And Thanks to KINDLE, I chanced upon this wonderful book "The Autobiography of a Yogi" penned by Paramahans Yogananda. As I read through the pages of this book ( I guess I have taken some two months to read it) - it fell upon me what treasure of wisdom we had lost of our great ancient yogis. Answers to the many basic questions of the existence are answered in this book - if not complete answers, the book gives wisdom to the reader to explore them himself. It is not just a ordinary book, but the whole sum of his teachings, his wisdom, his message to this worldly beings suffering due to the unknown.

The Great Book - As the life story of Paramahansa Yogananda — who is often referred to as the Father of Yoga in the West — the book has touched the hearts and minds of millions around the globe. Translated into many languages, it has served as an ambassador for India's ancient science of Yoga, introducing countless readers to the methods for attaining God-realization that are India's unique and lasting contribution to world civilization.

In 1999, a Harper Collins panel of distinguished authors and scholars selected Autobiography of a Yogi as one of the "100 Best Spiritual Books of the Century."

Alive with all the love, warmth, joy, and wisdom that characterize Paramahansa Yogananda, this masterwork of religious literature includes chapters about:

  • the science of Kriya Yoga meditation;
  • the law of miracles;
  • the lives and missions of Mahavatar Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya, and Swami Sri Yukteswar;
  • Yogananda's meetings with Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore, Ramana Maharshi, Luther Burbank, Therese Neumann, and other spiritual luminaries of East and West.

The great saint even though with broad wisdom narrates the incidents and miracles of his life with a common man persceptive in simple, lucid manner without any exaggeration.  In a chapter about Yogananda reuniting with his guru Sri Yukteswarji after returning from US, I was expecting author would be qouting incidents of miracles and something extraordinary- but as I read- the narration will be given by his disciple who accompanies Yoganandaji during his return stay in India which counts incidents happened as it is. What I mean is, as you read about out of life experiences in the book, they sound like plain simple truths rather than as myths and made up things. But if you demand logic, much of the book may sound like fantasies and superstitions. 

The journey of the book starts from his chilhood as Mukunda - how he used to fled from home to become saint, how he used to search for his guru, with what difficulty he used to complete his studies, how he met his guru, how his guru shown him the path of unification with god and so on. There are many humorous instances in the book, which make you have a good smile in between serious dharmic discussions. All through out the book, Yoganandji never proclaimed himself to be a superhuman, he never attributed any miracles to himself - but had been part of many miracles of his gurus - Yukteswarji, Lahiri Mahasyaji and Babaji. All the book has been presented as the quest of a simple common man for knowing the God and knowing the path for unification with the god. Yoganandaji narrates various places he has visited across the globe, various great saints he has met. In narrating thus, he puts the experiences as a common man with materialistic views would do. I mean he would relish the things as a common would unlike yogis who are not dettered by external hapenings. He talks of his vehicle Ford , luxirous stays etc. may be to connect the reading people to say that you are not required to shun all human comforts completely to attain the supreme realization. I felt that the author had been honest in describing his life. When describing Mahatma Gandhi or Rabindranath Tagore, he pictures them as saints with broad wisdom. He pens down what great things he learnt from them rather than boasting of his wisdom.

In the words of Tara Mata Sri Yogananda's disciple "One day, while working on his autobiography, the Guru told us: “When I have left this world, this book will change the lives of millions. It will be my messenger when I am gone.”"

Most astonishing are the accounts of Mahavatar Babaji and Lahiri Mahasayaji. Its really sad we don't know whether any such gurus are still there. The greatest highlights of this book - as I feel are - the explanation of miracles and astrology in relation with Einstein's theory of relativity. As you know , as per the theory there is no difference between energy and mass - as they are equivalent and can change from one form to other. Based on this author broadens that all we see is just made of this cosmic light. Yogis with god reliaztion can thus materialize whatever they want of this cosmic light. Just as scientists materialized neutrons, protons , neutrinos etc. out of energy - yogis know the prinicipals of nature that they materialize whatever they want. Another is the account of The Resurrection of Sri Yukteswar . In his discussion with the guru, many things humans unaware of are elaborated at length. The concept of soul, the three worlds - the material world, the astral world and the causal world are explained in such detail that I couldn't comprehend it in full. I should say that reading this book is a life changing experience.

As the essence of the book, the author recommends Kriya initiation (Kriya Yoga) for self-relization and connecting to omni-present god in all of us. Whether you are interested in yoga or not, the book will be very interesting.

 Free Online Version of the Great book - Click Here

Amanzon Link (Free kindle version)

Various Versions (Kindle,PDF,HTML) at Project Gutenberg


If you have read it, please drop your comments. If you have not read, I recommend it reading once.

The old ways of country versus country, religion versus religion, man versus nature, must be transcended in a new spirit of universal love, understanding, and concern for others. This is the eternal message of India’s seers — the message brought by Paramahansa Yogananda for our own time and for generations to come.

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