The Great Misunderstanding shows that you are not what you seem to be, what you have been conditioned to be believing we are a separate somebody, this great misunderstanding is the source of all our suffering. We believe all our experiences and emotions are caused by the world and by other people. This book explains how to develop awareness about ourselves, how to quieten the mind and become witnesses to our lives.
We can live beneath the busy currents of our lives to find out what is real. We can ask, ‘why do I have an ego? Why do I Struggle? It is just the Play of life?’ We realise that we can connect deeply to the heart and trust in life as it is. We can experience expansion and openness beyond emotions and the thinking mind. We can see that ultimately, when we are simply quiet, we can dissolve into our true nature. Then life can be enjoyed in every moment, naturally expressing itself through us.
About the Author
Premananda is no longer caught up in his conditioned mind, believing he is a somebody. Out of the resulting emptiness, Self manifests as enormous energy and presence. Through his example, premananda shows us that there is no ‘Spiritual life’. There is just life, and the whole focus is simply to be present for every moment.
Currently he lives in Open sky House, an international Satsang and arts community that he founded in Germany in 2004. Here he holds regular retreats as well as broadcasting live Satsang TV via the Internet three evening each Week.
He is painter, author and filmmaker, His Book include Papaji amazing Grace and Arunachala Talks. He has three books that also have companion films, Arunachala Shiva and the blueprints for awakening Series- Indian Masters. He has recently completed his new film Satori, Metamorphosis of an Awakening.
The Great Misunderstanding is the result of fifteen years of sharing with hundreds, probably thousands of people in countries all around the world. It started in Sydney, Australia, in 1997 and then moved to India, the source of the ancient human wisdom that is being communicated in this book. Later the sharing continued through most Western European countries, particularly in Germany and also in Russia and Ukraine. This book contains the cream of the talks and personal dialogues held over all those years with a great variety of people from many different cultures.
During 2004, my second year in Europe, a community spontaneously grew from a retreat I held on a beautiful horse farm in the Black Forest in Southern Germany. After two years, the community moved to its current home in a charming old mansion in a village on the banks of the Rhine between Cologne and Dusseldorf Located in the centre of Europe, it became Open Sky House, International Satsang and Arts Community where I have lived for the past six years. This book has been produced by a team from that community. I am completely touched by the amazing love and creativity they have shown in its production.
The project started when the team stayed together in a house at Arunachala, the holy mountain in South India that became known in the West through Ramana Maharshi. Piles of transcripts of my meetings were sifted through and sorted. As we sat together and shared ideas, the title emerged. We all felt it was just a simple misunderstanding about life that was at the root of so much unhappiness, and that it could easily change for want of a simple new understanding.
The Great Misunderstanding attempts to address our situation by exploring the common misunderstandings that have falsely conditioned our minds. Generations of wrong thought, passed on by loving elders, have shaped our ideas and beliefs. The early chapters set out in simple language the misunderstandings and their effects on our lives. They also suggest a way through to clarity and peace. In the last fifty years there has been a huge shift in human consciousness, making this kind of book necessary and timely.
Having begun the project in India, the team moved back to its home base in Germany. There the day-to-day support of the community enabled them to really focus on putting this book together. As the editor lives in Australia, and as I was often travelling around Europe sharing in Satsang meetings, the project has relied heavily on the wonders of modern technology. Right now I am writing this introduction sitting close to the beach on the Black Sea in Crimea, Ukraine, were I am holding a Satsang retreat with participants from Eastern and Western Europe. I am constantly responding to emails from the production team in Germany, the editor in Australia and recently from our printer in China, all transmitted into my laptop through a satellite and small USB stick. At the same time urgent messages come through a barrage of text messages into my iPhone while I edit texts on my laptop, Meanwhile, several community members are sitting on the rocks down by the crystal clear sea translating the book for the German edition. Cormorants are diving for fish, sea gulls are circling and dolphins are playing around.
Only twenty years ago none of this high-powered technology was available, and most not ten years ago. Two years ago I began transmitting my meetings through the Internet and many of the audios from those meetings were sent to a team of transcribers - western friends living in India - and became part of the book. So over three continents and many cultures, this project has achieved an amazing result in a short time. In addition to the book, we have 1he Great Misunderstanding video selection beautifully edited onto our YouTube channel. As well, there are two companion films that accompany this book: Satori, Metamorphosis of an Awakening and 1he Great Misunderstanding. A trailer of each can be found on the DVD in the back of the book. Supported by our friends, we have film sub-titles in ten languages. Thank you, guys!
I have been an active member of the project, but it is such a team effort that I am slightly shy to have my name on the cover. Early on, the structure appeared. It is a mixture of scenes from my daily life, dialogues and texts. Together they give an insight into the life of our community and how I work in wildly different formats. Topical jokes have been sprinkled through the book to remind us that humour is a great friend. Public meetings are necessarily formal with me taking the role of the 'teacher' and the attendees taking roles as 'students'. This format has become a bit dated and within the community the sharing takes place between friends with a common interest: to raise our level of consciousness and to remain unattached to our mind structures by becoming increasingly self-aware.
As the community has matured over the last eight years so the level of our inner silence has increased. Creativity has blossomed and in addition to our Satsang band there is a busy art studio for clay modeling, drawing and painting. We have regular theatre, concerts and recitals, an annual arts festival and our own art gallery that exhibits a high level of fine art made from inner silence rather than the chattering mind. This book and the companion films come out of this creativity. The paintings beginning each chapter and on the cover are my own. The beautiful chapter symbols were created by a very talented resident. Somewhat surprisingly, we found that the paintings, the chapter symbols and the subject of each chapter aligned with the seven body energy chakras.
|Chapter 1||What is the Great Misunderstanding||1|
|The Wave and the Ocean||3|
|living Under a Spell||9|
|Mirrors in the Kitchen||14|
|The Nervous Taxi Driver||19|
|The Bird and the Seeker||25|
|Chapter 2||Supporting Self Awareness||31|
|Moving to Silence||33|
|Stepping Towards Grace||40|
|Seeking the Light||47|
|Passing on the Flame||53|
|Chapter 3||What is real? Life is about Waking Up||63|
|Garden of Eden||65|
|The Price of Happiness||72|
|Dying into Whiteness||79|
|Be As You Are||86|
|Chapter 4||The way of the Heart||99|
|Way of the Heart||101|
|Hopeless in the Desert||108|
|The Navigation System||114|
|Way of Beauty||120|
|Chapter 5||How We Sabptage Ourselves||135|
|The Prison of the Mind||137|
|Structures of the Mind||144|
|The Ultimate Illusion||151|
|Living in La La Land||160|
|Chapter 6||Reminders to Stay Present||169|
|Rubbing Out the Doodles||171|
|The King's Banquet||179|
|The Importance of 'Thank You'||195|
|Chapter 7||Awake and free||205|
|Celebration and Natural Creativity||207|
|Soap in the Mercedes||213|
|Tales of Awakening||227|
|Living in Freedom||240|
|Postscript: Open Sky House||253|
Item Code: NAN678 Author: Premananda Cover: Paperback Edition: 2012 Publisher: Open Sky Press Ltd. ISBN: 9780957088672 Language: English Size: 9.0 inch X 6.0 inch Pages: 288 (10 Color Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 475 gms