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Living with the Himalayan Masters: Spiritual Experiences of Swami Rama Paperback – March, 1980

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 490 pages
  • Publisher: Himalayan International Institute; Reprint edition (March 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0893890707
  • ISBN-13: 978-0893890704
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,968,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

The late Sri Swami Rama recalls his own spiritual journey in this memoir. Using specific incidents to illustrate spiritual truths, he presents a practical guide for those embarking on the Hindu path of enlightenment. Descriptions of rather incredulous occurrences such as levitating may tend to obscure the relatively mundane disciplines of fasting, meditation, and prayer. A few of the incidents recalled involve Gandhi, offering a different view of him than we normally see. D.C. Rao's reading improves as the work progresses; by the time he is warmed up, we are treated to a lively and energetic performance that reflects the sincerity and humanity of the author. Libraries with a high demand for New Age materials will want this as well as any needing works on Hindu practices.AMichael T. Fein, Catawba Valley Community Coll., Hickory, NC
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"A complete and practical guide to the foundations of the spiritual journey ... The vividness of the stories is absorbing, allowing them to be read over and over again." -- New Age Book Review

"A very spirited book ... on a par with that other great classic, Autobiography of a Yogi ...It is a remarkable work." -- The Illustrated Weekly of India

"An inspirational and instructional work, it is a sheer pleasure to read ... offers the purest spiritual teachings in entertaining and dramatic form ... is a classic in modern yogi literature." -- John White, Editor of What Is Enlightenment?

"I recommend this valuation by a fully competent modern sage, a representative of Indian wisdom." -- Franklin Merrell-Wolf, Author of Pathways Through to Space

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 76 customer reviews
Living with the Himalayan Masters totally changed my life...from a materialist person to spiritual aspirant.
nick nara
If you have come this far and have read my review, most probably you might end up buying this book and I certainly can say that you won't regret it.
Shail Pakala
Although I haven't finished the book yet, I can definitely recommend it to anyone interested in spiritual matters.
Johan Korthout

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 52 people found the following review helpful By gofigure on April 5, 2004
Format: Paperback
Swami Rama is one of the overlooked great figures of our time. For twenty years I had the privledge of being one of his students. His indepth understanding of the human condition, his selfless service and his profound attainment of states higher consciousness was a wonder to behold. In this autobiography he relates in a humble way his encounters with his early teachers. Since he was raised in a cave monestary from the age of four his life was very different from our modern way of developing as a person. While some of the stories stretch our credability they all actually happened. I realize that many people have difficulty accepting other peoples experience, especially if it outside the range of their own limited life experience and challange our own fixed ideas. Swami Rama definitely challanges us about how the world is, in a very real way, but I find that challange refreshing and inspiring. His core experience, that the goal of human life is spiritual attainment and Self realization pulls us out of our small limited view of the world. It is one of the great spiritual classics. If I was stranded on a desert island with only three books this would be one of them.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Siva Balan on November 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
Firstly, I wish to state that this book deserves a 5-star rating for the contents in it. However, the quality of the paperback edition leaves much to be desired. As I was reading this book, the pages got torn easily. I would strongly advise the would be buyer to purchase the hardcover edition of this wonderful book.

Anyway, Swami Rama's memoir on the Himalayan sages might prove to be hard to believe but the description on the miracles of these masters are quite "common" among yogis and saints of the past and the present. In another book, the "Autobiography of a Yogi" by Paramahansa Yogananda (which I strongly recommend) the descriptions of the miracles performed by saints is similar to those mentioned in this book. A timeless classic!
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Linda Johnsen on October 7, 2004
Format: Paperback
This is a timeless classic by one of the most influential yoga masters of the 20th century. It transports you into the caves of the Himalayas and introduces you to the great adepts who live there. This is the real thing from a man whose whole life was an extraordinary spiritual adventure. One of the best books on spirituality ever!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Burlap McGee on December 4, 2003
Format: Paperback
I didn't want to put this book down. Partly because the experiences from Swami Rama's life are nearly beyond belief almost as if from the Arabian Nights stories. There are sages with extraordinary powers. But what I really like about this book is Swami Rama doesn't put these feats on a pedastal. He says they are remarkable, but he doesn't worship them. To him these beyond-belief feats show how versatile and ingenious humans can be on the spiritual side (instead of just the technological/scientific side). But Rama knows that these pursuits turn into distractions from the noble pursuit of self-knowledge, and knowledge of Reality.
Few people on Earth have accumulated the spiritual wisdom that Rama did, yet instead of making me feel inferior, I felt inspired to put more of an effort to develop inner spirituality. You learn in the book that he wasn't born with the wisdom. He was foolish growing up, and his guru had to cut down his ego numerous times. But he persevered and never kept his eyes (Third Eye, intuition included) off his goal of self-realization.
I was able to translate his extraordinary experiences to my own life, and I felt like the lessons he studied are lessons we all study through out different experiences. I enjoy gaining some understanding into the underlying order of existence. It's not all for naught.
Also, he clarifies how scientific true spirituality is. It isn't some ambiguous undirected meditative prayer. And it isn't metaphorical, but a rigorous system of self-inquiry requiring discipline and dedication. With enough effort there will be real spiritual experiences that can be duplicated and attained consciously. Rama didn't say it's easy, just that anyone with enough dedication can make measurable progress.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By John Noodles on June 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
I just love this book. It consists of a collection of short "essays", autobiographical, and philosophical, about the author's life growing up in the Himilayas.
Much of Swami Rama's life seems biblical in it spiritual "magic"--it displays similar themes and miracles that you find in the New Testament. For instance, his father's guru predicted that he and his wife--although he was over 60, and she over 40--would have a son who would follow the father's master. The parents, childless for years, declare that this would be a miracle, but that if it happens, the child is his. 18 months later, they have a child, the Swami. When is three, the Master returns and initiates him by whispering a mantra in his ear.
When the Swami is still young, his parents die, and the master comes for him, and they travel together. Often, the master sends his disciple off to study with another guru for a period of time, but throughout his training into his adulthood, the master is, so to speak, the point around which the Swami Rama orbits in his spiritual peregrinations.
He describes many miracles. We witness a resurrection, a miraculous feeding of the poor, and other bizarre, often familiar, miracles. India seems like a land of magic.
Is all this b.s.? Who knows. One thing is certain...the Swami Rama is not self-promoting in this book. He doesn't present himself, for instance, as the performer of miracles. But he does witness them, and is on at least on occasion the recipient of one.
In any case, this book is a good read--simple, wise, and entertaining. I can't recommend it enough.
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