The ancient systems of Yoga have been practiced in India for centuries and adherents to its methods have been seeking to meditate upon the truth of existence.
But does Yoga fully lead to a definitive answer?
Can those that have refined the art of meditation actually reach to an understanding of man's existence in the Universe?
The philosophy examined in this book seeks to dispute the ultimate limits or goals of Yoga as it is commonly experienced, and suggests that there are serious shortcomings in the practice. He suggests that the very ideas enshrined in Yoga actually prevent those in meditation from attaining the desired truth.
In this book the author poses some very pertinent truths and seeks to suggest that a higher form of self-analysis is needed to fully understand, if ever that were totally possible, the meaning of life.
That there is a higher philosophy in India may never be discounted, for hidden in its ancient past are many strands of knowledge. So many of the world's intellectual and spiritual themes have originated from the earliest thinking of man on the subcontinent.
It comes as no surprise, then, that such a little-known philosophy has been rediscovered here. It follows ideas that are yet more complex than the long-established traditions of Yoga. The author, perhaps by sheer chance or destiny, stumbles upon these complex ideas on his journey across the land.
One of the leading Oriental philosophers of his time, Paul Brunton has put his controversial findings into words. His narrative certainly caused a stir for, not long after its publication, the book received some frankly hotly expressed derogatory comments and criticism, as he seemingly contradicted some of his earlier works on Yoga.
He suggest that this highest order of philosophy was intended for educated intellectuals, high priests, kings, princes and leading statesmen. Only now has it been exposed to the masses, who over the last century have become a substantially well-educated populace, able to grasp its more esoteric and extremely difficult themes. The world of today is a rapidly developing one and with wars, declining morality across the globe and other misfortunes afflicting the human race, it is timely perhaps that we should have access to new ideas that fully challenge the direction of mankind. There is so much that seeks to disrupt man's constant desire to find a peaceful lifestyle and a meaning for his existence.
The author suggests that there are three levels of Yoga, and that it is the third of these that leads to the highest plateau of attainment. He discusses the great faiths of the world, yoga and other methods of seeking the truth, explaining their limitations and why a higher thought process is required.
"He must strip naked his innermost characteristics, taking and making no excuses, but boldly seek to understand the bitterest truths about himself He must see himself as he really is, exposing self to self".
The path to such absolute knowledge involves many theses, none easy to master. One must seek the truth above all else, hold on to hope in a positive way, think, be calm, be detached from emotions and stresses, overcome emotion and give up ego. These are but a few of the ideas to be considered.
"The desire for truth really means the desire to get rid of ignorance."
The author does not discard the great wisdom embodied in conventional meditation and yoga. Rather he suggests that these too are useful tools on the way to seeking a higher path through philosophical directions, to find a way free of all definitive definitions that a mind can impose on itself. He further suggests that the limitations of yoga may impede the student seeking a greater knowledge.
We are led to consider the 'higher teachings beyond yoga' to be encapsulated by the themes of 'the yoga of philosophical discernment' and 'the yoga of the uncontradictable.
These themes and philosophies, which are possibly more than three thousand years old, are known as the `Ashtavakra Samhita. Whether these ideas constitute a completely new philosophy or are merely extensions of the more-established forms of meditation and seeking of truth, only time may tell. Whatever one's own instincts may be, the ideas set forth in this book will certainly test the boundaries of contemplative thought about the meaning of one's own existence.
|II||The Ultimate Path||34|
|III||The Religious and Mystic Grades||52|
|IV||The Hidden Philosophy of India||70|
|V||The Philosophical Discipline||92|
|VI||The Worship of Words||120|
|VII||The Arbitrament of Thinking Power||149|
|VIII||The Revelation of Relativity||177|
|IX||From Thing to thought||207|
|X||The secret of space and time||230|
|XI||The Magi of the Mind||236|
|XII||The Downfall of Materialism||290|
|Epilogue: the Philosophic Life||316|
Item Code: NAO523 Author: Paul Brunton Cover: Paperback Edition: 2008 Publisher: Pilgrims Publishing ISBN: 9788177697148 Language: English Size: 8.5 inch X 5.5 inch Pages: 360 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 410 gms