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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spiritual Classic For the Ages
Words truly do not do justice to this classic work by Paramahansa Yogananda who wrote one of the premiere books about the science of Yoga.

Yogananda not only helps to introduce Yoga science to the West, but also demonstrates that yoga (which means "union") is the unifying science that shows the underlying truth among ALL religions. Using many scriptural...
Published on June 6, 2007 by Sean Pasek

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars BEWARE: Appears to be a COUNTERFEIT version
Not sure what this version by Sublime Press is or where it came from (blue & white cover with an Indian painting on the cover). I recommend getting the totally awesome "Autobiography of a Yogi (Complete Edition)" just released officially by Self-Realization Fellowship (orange cover, published April 23, 2014).
Amazon is unfortunately co-mingling the reviews...
Published 1 month ago by L.V. Dave


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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spiritual Classic For the Ages, June 6, 2007
By 
Sean Pasek (Escondido, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
Words truly do not do justice to this classic work by Paramahansa Yogananda who wrote one of the premiere books about the science of Yoga.

Yogananda not only helps to introduce Yoga science to the West, but also demonstrates that yoga (which means "union") is the unifying science that shows the underlying truth among ALL religions. Using many scriptural passages from both the Bible and the Hindu Bible (the Bhagavad Gita), he also demonstrates that they are saying, essentially, the same thing; the same TRUTH.

This book chronicles the life of Mukunda La Ghosh whose passion and yearning for God leads him to many saints and sages in India.

We find that it is the wish of Jesus Christ and Babaji (One of India's great masters who has been living for an untold number of centuries) that it be revealed to the world that TRUTH is universal and that it does not matter what path you've chosen (Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, etc.)

Whether you are religious or not, you will find this masterfully well-written work touch you in ways that you've not dreamed of. Yogananda orchestrates chapters about the astral realms, great scientists, poets, saints (in India as well as in the West), masters, Gandhi, and others which are both moving and inspirational.

This book also reveals, for the first time to Westerners the lost science of Kriya Yoga (which means, "Divine Union"), which is a scientific technique to develop direct experience of God. Yogananda explains this technique, its history, and why it is so effective.

This is a book that can be read many times, and you will find that each time, it still has a "divine" effect. If nothing else, it will help you to ask yourself about your Self. This is one of the greatest books ever written, not only of modern times, but of ALL time.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars East meets West, May 2, 2007
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
What a great book. After years of reading Carlos Castaneda books--I've never read the Bible but plan to someday--I felt my mind open with Yogananda's autobiography.

This is because there is a one sidedness to Shamanism, which may stem from the fact that Native Americans never had a chance to reflect on their religion, and how it contrasts with Western Civilization. Yet Yogananda does just that . . .

In the context of his own life, he relays the stories, and myths, that shape his spiritual progression through life. There are some real mind blowing chapters in this book that force the reader to step back and think. However, it is cleverly interlaced with Western tradition so that any average American could read this book and not be offended.

That is the mission Yogananda's gurus sent him out to accomplish. This book is the product of that goal.

Still, my favorite part of this book is a passage about Alexander the Great. I've only heard the Western Civilization stories about his military conquests. But in this book Yogananda speaks of the one conquest Alexander could not complete, the conquest of India's spirit.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Causing me to re-examine yoga and spirituality, December 24, 2005
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
A friend gave me this to read on my holiday flights. I couldn't put it down! It's giving me a whole new perspective on Christianity, Hinduism, yoga, and personal development. I've always wanted a way to find the spiritual core that should be at the root of real religions - and yet respect a humanistic and scientific/practical approach to improving the world.

This man's life shows me for the first time what Christ-like living could look like in the modern world.

I've already sent to the SRF publishers for his meditation "lessons". I always thought of meditation as impossible for a busy consultant in the real world. I'm now thinking that it may open the way to new ways to help all of humanity as we struggle to live together.

I may even reconsider my rejection of the "God" concept. I really liked Yogananda's phrase, "Those who find it impossible to believe in the immortality of any MAN... will at last discover the immortality of their own SELVES." That could work for me ;)
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring beyond anything else I've encountered, November 18, 1999
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
Paramhansa Yogananda's life is so fascinating and inspiring that I had difficulty putting the book down. All my questions that arose while reading were answered, either by the footnotes of by Yogananadaji himself. This is a must read for any spiritually questioning or spiritually doubting person.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you read only one book in your life, read this one, January 8, 2011
By 
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
I first began to doubt the fundamentalism of my childhood when, at age 11, my father told me, "You've never lived before."

"But I DO remember," I replied - referring to a memory of having lived in Korea or China, awakened by a specific incident at age 5. Finally I screamed, "How do you know"?

"Because it says that in the Bible" - and he read me from Paul " . . . to man it is given but once to live. . ." I wondered what else was erroneous in the Bible - or at least our interpretation of the Bible . . .

At about the same time, my teacher at school explained why the rotation of the earth results in night and day. Huh? Then how did Joshua command the SUN to stand still so that the day could be lengthened long enough to win that battle? (I, of course, did not have access to modern thought regarding this passage - see [...]).

Doubt piled upon doubt, and I finally concluded that my fundamentalism had been wrong. I became an atheist at age 23.

At first I was ecstatic, like walking on air. My Army superiors in Korea noticed my sudden and dramatic acquisition of a sunny disposition and concluded that I had fallen in love. Sorta true - I was in love with the freedom of atheism, now freed from the feeling that I should defend the indefensible. But soon my new atheism also began to present difficulties.

My first chore was to find a way to fit reincarnation within atheism. I had barely begun working on that one when, some 4 months after my conversion, I had a vision. I saw the girl that my guardian angel wanted me to marry - after I had decided that I would seek a girl from Mexico (for reasons too complicated to explain here).

Clearly, that blond girl at Kiest Park in Dallas wasn't Mexican. Later I did get married in Mexico; oh, my.

Was I grateful for the accurate heads up? NO! I was furious. I demanded that my guardian angel buzz off. I could feel his presence depart. I wondered, "Did I make a mistake"? But I decided I'd live my life as an experiment, to see how far I could get by reason alone.

Many other unexplainable experiences followed as the years passed by.

After getting my Ph.D. and landing a position in the psych dept. at SMU, I began to give lectures to my graduate class about how it seemed to me it all fit together. My lectures started at 7pm and lasted until midnight. Anyone was invited to leave early, but many hung around until 2am - occasionally later - discussing the material I had talked about.

After one such marathon session, another student - an older undergraduate - asked me the next day, "What on earth did you talk about last night? (name forgotten) called me at 2 in the morning and talked for over an hour about your lecture."

Sure enough, the next day, in came that grad student. He said, "You know, you're teaching Hinduism."

"Hinduism! I exploded. I do teach Hinduism in one of my undergraduate classes and I see no connection between it and my own understanding of the universe."

He replied, "Just change the terminology; you'll see. Maybe this book will help." - and he gave me his copy of Be Here Now, by Baba Ram Dass.

At first, it had all the impact of a comic book - nil. But one day as I was thumbing through it, I saw an ink drawing of Jesus being nailed to the cross. Suddenly I wept - and wept and wept and wept.

The book was beautiful, with quotes from the Prophet Mohammad, Lord Buddha, and other great souls - in addition to Jesus. I thought, this is wonderful! Why didn't anyone tell me that such a loving approach to religion was possible - totally free from bigotry?

I went to the SMU bookstore, intent on buying how-to-do-it books from the Sufis, or yogis, or even mystics of Christianity or Judaism. I picked up 7 and headed for the check out lane.

Along the way, I saw a stack of books still on the floor - not yet shelved - with a very appealing cover. Autobiography of a Yogi? Not what I wanted. I was looking for something practical. And I didn't want to buy another book - I already had chosen so many - I probably wouldn't read all of them anyway.

As I was standing in the check-out lane, I heard a voice in my right ear that kept saying, "False economy, false economy." A few times earlier in my life I had heard that voice - which I thought of as coming from my guardian angel.

Having learned painful lessons from previous rejection of my guardian angel's recommendations, I went back and picked up the Autobiography.

When I got home, I grabbed a Sufi book that I thought was just what I wanted. I started to read the first sentence, but I lost my train of thought before reaching the end of it. I started again; and again lost focus. I could not read that book!

All the while, the Autobiography pulled me like a magnet. So I picked it up. Couldn't put it down all day and the next day too.

At first I was turned off by his seeming acceptance that there really is a God. Yoganandaji knew so much - all my own mystical experiences were explained. How could such a wise person believe in God?

But I sent away immediately for the Lessons from SRF. I had had few really happy days up to that time - at age 37. But soon my guru, Yoganandaji, began to fix all the kinks that I had created. And so fast! Along the way my atheism faded; but so?

At the end of the first year of Lessons, I asked SRF for instructions on how to practice Kriya Yoga. When I received those lessons, a light bulb went on.

"I already have been taught how to do this technique," I thought to myself. And, thus reminded,I remembered another incident that also culminated at age 11.

It began perhaps in second grade, when a kid on the playground asked me to take 20 deep breaths and then stick my thumb in my mouth and then "blow," - but without allowing any air to pass. He said my mind would go into another place and I'd lose awareness of this world and fall over. Not to worry, he said, he'd catch me. And it happened as he said.

So within that context, several years later, in August of 1947 (age 11), I had an encounter with a strange man during our summer trip from Kansas City to Los Angeles (my mom's family lived there). During an outing to Grumman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood to see the footprints in the concrete, I saw a long-haired Indian man who was laying down the law to two large white guys. Weird; you wouldn't see that in Kansas City!

I was staring at the hump in his back - his hair having been tucked under his jacket - from across the street while waiting for the light to change. I knew I shouldn't stare . . . but he had his back to me, so he couldn't know. But after the light turned green, I began to feel him watching me as we crossed the street toward the corner where he stood.

As I put my foot on the curb, he wheeled around so fast that I thought he was going to slug me for staring at him. I almost froze in place. But he just looked intensely into my eyes.

A few weeks later after returning home, I kept feeling the urge to practice the 20-breaths-and-blow stuff that the second grader had taught me. But when I tried it, almost nothing happened. I tried again, to no effect. I was about to try a third time when I heard the voice of my guardian angel.

He said, "No, that's not how it's done. Sit on the edge of the bed, sit with your back straight . . ." and he taught me what (26 years later) I learned was called Kriya Yoga. And upon reflection, I remembered his face from the Hollywood encounter - the face of Yoganandaji.

A few years after learning Kriya Yoga, my best friend in high school had thrust the Autobiography into my hands and said, "Read this." But I replied, "My parents would hit the ceiling if I brought home a book like this."

Years later, a fellow faculty member at SMU suggested I read it. No dice - I was a level-headed atheist. I would search for answers in physics, mostly.

Later still, the person who would become my best friend from my days at SMU urged me to read it. But I was, at that time, too depressed and too skeptical to buy it.

But when I did finally read it, it changed my life.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DELICIOUS! Undoubtedly one of the most engaging and readable of spiritual masterpieces!, August 10, 2013
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I have recently finished reading Autobiography of a Yogi for the second time.
I am always sad when I finish it. It is nearly impossible to put down, ONCE
you become acquainted with the characters, especially the completely lovable
Yogananda. No work of fiction ever written is more suspenseful. And what
a fun way to get an Awakened Yogi's inside view of the Ultimate Reality!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Someone has opened his heart for all, September 21, 2008
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
In fact I read this after I read the book ""God Talks to Arjuna"by Paramhansa Yogananda. The variuos terminology given in the book and the Kriya Yoga has attaracted me to become a member of the Yogoda Satsang Society and get the lessons. I have never read any other Auto Biography so vivid and truthful account of what transpires the young man seeking God. Though I was at the age of 49/50 at the time of reading this book in the year 1997 the details are still very much deeply imprinted on my mind as if I have read it now. This shows as to how much this book has the powerful grip of the Author and one has to read only once.
I strongly recommmend this book to those who wants to do something different than eating , sleeping , producing kids and vanishing away like any other insects than Human.

Ramamrat Iyer
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr. Belize, September 2, 2010
This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
This book has totally changed my life for the good. It's been five years since I first read it and to this day it continues to bestow great blessings. As I progress spiritually in calmness and realization this biography gives ever new meaning. I attest that this book and this path is not for everyone. After my initial excitement I wanted to share it with everyone but I soon learn that to some, it was just a story. For myself, my heart jumped after the initial read. I knew I found what I have been looking for after so many years. I had read many books from other paths and although I was intrigued, none made me feel the way I did when I read this book. The difference was that none of those were written by my Guru, Paramahansa Yoganada. Reading this book, I was able to understand the other books written by other writers. I was able to understand truths hidden within songs and poetry. Yogananda never asked anyone to take His word for it but rather, prove it to yourself by practicing the techniques. I am still but a student but I could say that I have proven enough in my life that there is absolutely no reason for me to doubt anything Yoganada wrote. And I will continue to reap the benefits of his meditational techniques, which is primarily a direct relationship with God, to the end of my stay here on Earth and into the after life.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars life-changing, April 1, 2014
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A truly rewarding, insightful and inspiring life is described here! This life work changed my life in so many ways!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Done!, September 27, 2009
By 
Applegirl (Vero Beach, FL) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Autobiography of a Yogi (Paperback)
I am of the Christian faith. This autobiography has made me aware of the great value of meditation which is not mentioned in my church. It is another dimension in worship beyond prayer of which I am glad to learn. English is a second language for Paramahansa Yogananda and I am impressed with his beautiful turn of words that are often poetic.
* * *
Since writing the previous paragraph, I have subscribed to the lessons on meditation offered by the Self-Realization Fellowship which was founded by Yogananda. I find no conflict with my Christian teachings; instead these lessons build more understanding about the God-Connection. Meditation is now incorporated into my daily prayer time.
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Autobiography of a Yogi
Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda (Paperback - 2000)
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