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am 15. Januar 1998
A spiritual classic of modern times, this authoritative work on the life and teachings of Ramana Maharshi dispels the popular notion that books of this kind are meant only for the philosophically inclined'. Though a serious work, it makes for absorbing reading.
The Maharshi's habitual silence that communicated more than speech, his intuitive grasp of a questioner's mind, his simple answers to the most complex philosophical and religious problems, his sense of kinship with the animals and birds who sought his company, his compassion and humour, and above all the power and radiance of his mere presence -- all these are captured by Osborne in page after page.
Some of the best commentaries on the Sage of Arunachala have come from his western disciples, like Paul Brunton and S.S.Cohen; and Osborne is foremost among them. With ease and precision, Osborne evokes the spirit of the south Indian religious and social customs of the early part of this century, especially of the life in the Ashram at the foothills of Arunachala.
Ramana Maharshi insisted that the only way to freedom is through the enquiry `Who am I?'. It is a quest that reveals that what we call the mind is an illusion, and thus liberates us from our accumulated tendencies (`vasanas'). It can be undertaken by anybody at any time and requires neither scholarship nor austerities. The timelessness of such an ancient teaching adapted by the Maharshi to suit the modern times comes through lucidly in the author's presentation.
In `discovering' this book, one sets out on a journey of self-discovery.
- K. Krishnamurthy (hrmohan@giasmd01.vsnl.net.in), Madras, India
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