MESSAGE OF THE LORD, AS A PRACTICAL PHILOSOPHY
This volume is a superb exposition of the past 5,000 years of India’s spiritual tradition, centering on the text of, and discussions related to, The Bhagavad Gita. If you wanted to buy just one book focusing on the spiritual content of the Gita and its practical application, as well as an historical understanding of Indian spirituality and avatars, laces liberally with quotes from Sri Sathya Sai Baba, this is the book. As the author, who chose to remain anonymous, says in the introduction, “Many are the volumes that have been written on the Gita and on Bhagavan Baba, but this one, it is believed, occupies a niche of its own. And the only reason for producing it is to help the eager devotee, unfamiliar with the Indian ethos, to a greater understanding.” The first 145 pages (sections I-II) give an in-depth introduction to topics expounded in the Gita, related to specific chapters therein, with background, stories, and explanatory quotes from Sai Baba. The “Points to Ponder” at the ends of these chapters could be used as a study guide. Section III presents a 50-page translation of the complete Bhagavad Gita. Section IV, the longest, called “The Message Amplified,” consists of about 300 pages of extensive commentary on selected aspects of the Gita, “especially the subtle ones,” in the author’s view. It includes frequent illustrative quotes, mainly from Sai Baba, but also from a variety of religions and authors. Section V provides 120 pages of helpful and detailed background on the concept of the Atma, science as related to spirituality, India’s sacred texts, the Hindu pantheon, and the Rama and Krishna avatars. This book is,in short, a major reference resource. In soft cover, 718 pages, several color plates. (Sri Sathya Sai Books & Publications Trust, 2001).