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Book Code: EK61
Paperback:
112 pages
ISBN: NA
Book Dimensions: 8.50 x 5.50 x 0.25 inches
Shipping Weight: 150 grams

SPIRITUAL ASPIRATION
AND PRACTICE

by Swami Krishnananda

Table of Contents

Publisher's Note 5
Chapter 1: Understanding One’s Spiritual Aim 11
Chapter 2: Becoming a Truly Religious Person 27
Chapter 3: Spiritual Renunciation 42
Chapter 4: The Process of Spiritual Practice 60
Chapter 5: Lifting the Curtain of Space-Time 75
Chapter 6: Sadhana Chatushtaya 92
Appendix: Twenty-One Practical Hints on Sadhana 107
Back Cover  

Publisher's Note

We are immensely happy to bring out the first edition of ‘Spiritual Aspiration and Practice’ by Worshipful Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj. The book is a beautiful compilation of series of discourses given during Sadhana Week in 1991 wherein Pujya Swamiji Maharaj lucidly explains what the spiritual aim actually is and what is the meaning of being a truly religious and spiritual person. These thought-provoking lectures of Pujya Swamiji Maharaj present an in-depth analysis of spiritual process and remove many a misconceptions regarding spiritual life as well.

We do hope that the book will be of invaluable help to numerous sincere souls who are seeking for a deeper meaning and a higher purpose in their lives.

—THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY


Chapter 1

UNDERSTANDING ONE'S SPIRITUAL AIM

We have now before us a continuous series of sessions for the coming days of special deliberations commonly known as Sadhana Week. It is so called because during these days we are supposed to devote our time especially for intense considerations along the lines of our inner focus towards the goal that we have placed before ourselves. It is also called Jnana Sathra, offering at the altar of Knowledge. What we need is an enlightenment into the manner and the method that we have to adopt in bestowing serious thought on this subject.

We are aiming at the achievement of a purpose. Every person in the world has some aim or motive, a purpose before himself or herself, without a consciousness of which no one would even lift a finger. If you see a thing, hear a thing, do a thing or move in any direction, there is a purpose behind this activity of yours, and the purpose is psychological, physical or social. Purposeless actions are unthinkable. But what is the purpose? Each person in the world will give his or her own answer. Why are you doing business? Why are you studying in schools and colleges? Why do you go to temples? Why do you do anything at all? What are you aiming at finally? Though the answer seems to be ready at hand for all people, on a careful probing into the matter you will realise in the end that every answer to this question is tentative, relative, and never final. In the end you have to say, "I cannot say what it is that I am seeking."

At the outset you will feel that, right from the early morning onwards, you are face to face with certain realities. Your life presents itself before you as a kind of confrontation, and you have to handle it in a particular manner. The moment you wake up in the morning, you are face to face with a reality. On the one hand, it is the reality of the physical universe—the sun, the moon and the stars, the mountains and rivers, and so on. On the other hand, you have the world of human beings.

Instinctively, we make an adjustment of our personality with the conditions imposed upon us by physical nature as well as the social context in which we are placed. If it is hot in summer or cold in winter, or if a powerful wind is blowing or it is raining, whatever the case may be, we adjust ourselves by various ways and means according to the prevailing natural conditions. We do this spontaneously. At the same time, we are conscious of people around us, beginning with the nearest person with whom we have to adjust ourselves in a particular manner. We cannot simply imagine that the person does not exist. A visible humanity and a conceptual humanity are both there before us, to be handled in a particular manner.

Is this the only thing that we are expected to do in this world—to make a kind of self-adjustment with natural forces and human conditions? We do that every day. Everyone does it, and that seems to be the be-all and end-all of all things. Everybody is very busy. Busy with what? Busy with these adjustments only. We have to somehow or other see that we survive, and keep both our body and soul intact in the context of this confrontation before us with physical nature as well as with human society. We are actually fighting with something with which we cannot easily accommodate ourselves. This fight may not take the form of a material or a physical presentation, but it is a conscious tension in the mind.

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Swami Krishnananda

Worshipful Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj took birth on the 25th of April, 1922, in Puttur, Karnataka, as the eldest child in a highly religious and orthodox Brahmin family well versed in Sanskrit, and was named Subbaraya. Reading from the Srimad Bhagavata that Lord Narayana lives in sacred Badrinath Dham, the young boy believed it literally and entertained a secret pious wish to go to the Himalayas, where Badrinath is located, and see the Lord there.

Swamiji arrived in Rishikesh in the summer of 1944. When he met Swami Sivananda and fell prostrate before him, the saint said: "Stay here till death. I will make kings and ministers fall at your feet." Swami Sivananda initiated young Subbaraya into the holy order of Sannyasa on the sacred day of Makar Sankranti, the 14th of January, 1946, and he was named Swami Krishnananda.

In 1957 Swamiji became the Secretary especially concerned with the management of finance, which continued until 1961 when Sri Gurudev nominated him as General Secretary of the Divine Life Society, which position he held until 2001.

Swami Krishnananda was a master of practically every system of Indian thought and Western philosophy. "Many Sankaras are rolled into one Krishnananda," said Sri Gurudev. Swami Krishnananda, the embodiment of Bhagavan Sri Krishna, lived in the state of God-consciousness and guided countless seekers along the path of Self-realisation. Swamiji attained Mahasamadhi on the 23rd of November, 2001.

 

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