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Kapil's Samkhya Patanjali's Yoga Paperback – July 10, 2008
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About the Author
Brahmrishi Vishvatma Bawra (1934-2002) is the founder of the International Brahmrishi Mission. He was born in a small village of India near Varanasi. As a child, he shied away from school and had no formal education. At the age of eighteen, he was enlightened by the touch of a great yogi of the Himalayas, Bhagvan Chandra Mauli. Under his guidance, Swami Bawra left his family to study in Ayodhya at the principal center of the Vaishnava Order. There, Swami Bawra studied according to the ancient system of scholarly teaching while performing higher spiritual practices under the guidance of his master. Thus he became a learned yogi of the Vaishnava Sanyasi Order. After a period of time, his master insisted that he return to society and help humanity. Swami Bawra hesitated to leave his spiritual ecstasy, but finally compromised with his master and followed his direction. Wearing only a loincloth and carrying a small bag with Holy Scriptures, he traveled throughout India giving lectures on the Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana, Upanishads, Samkhya, Yoga, and Vedanta philosophies in the light of modern science. After twelve years of wandering and begging alms, and at the request of his disciples, he agreed to establish a center for spiritual practice. The first center was inaugurated in 1965, and his mission eventually became an international organization with centers in Holland, England, Canada, and the United States. Swami Bawra also founded schools that included more than ten missionary schools for poor children in the villages of India. Swami Bawra's teaching emphasizes that the spiritual science of Brahma Vidya, knowledge of the source of life, has two aspects, theory and practice. In the Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita the theory of this science is called Samkhya, and its practical aspect is called Yoga. On the basis of his own experiences, Swami Bawra taught a higher practice called Maha Yoga. His teachings are universal and not related with any caste, creed, color, country, community, gender, or sect.
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Although such philosophy can be very esoteric, Swami Bawra and the editors have found a way of presenting this critical knowledge in such a clear manner, using analogies and anecdotes to elucidate some very difficult-to-grasp concepts.
The book is organized by the Samkhya sutras first, and then Patanjali's sutras second. They each help to clarify the other.
To use an analogy of my own, it's like making soup. Yoga practice is like the kitchen tools and all the ingredients, but the knowledge is the recipe - the reason behind combining all these pieces together in the first place.