I of the Storm:Discover your True SelfI of the Storm:Discover your True Self by Anju Sharma
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Thanks Goodreads and Ms Anju Sharma for providing a review copy in giveaway.

Ms Anju Sharma is very well read in spirituality and philosophy. The author has presented the complex subject in a very easy form. The author has read extensively on the subject from various sources and gurus/ authors like Rumi, Geeta, Buddha, Vipasana of Goenka, Freud, Jung, Thich Nhat Hanh, Jon Kobat Zinn to name a new. The author has understood them in depth and taken what she experienced as right. To quote Kabir here

साधू ऐसा चाहिऐ जैसा सूप सुभाय
सार सार को गहि रहे थोथा देय उडाय
Saadhu aisa chahiye,
jaisa soop subhay
Saar saar ko gahi rahe,
thotha de udaay

A gentleman is like
a thresher in character
As it absorbs the core
fluff it lets skitter

The author is just like the Sadhu in the above doha. The author also makes this point as told by Buddha in kalamas:

“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumoured by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

I usually don’t give summary of book as it is given in book blurb but here it is not given. Thus to summarize the book is divided in four sections.

Section one is “The journey within” which explains the various mental processes going on within us and how we perceive the world.

Section two is “On the path of discovering your true self” which describes various techniques like Vipasana of Goenka and Mindfulness meditation of Zinn.

Section three is “Find the best of you” which explains compassion, happiness, stress, love and friendship. It gives a very good formula to measure happiness and stress.

Section four is “Experiencing healing” which is about healing process.

The book is very good and will prove highly useful to the uninitiated. However the persons who have experienced some of spirituality will find it a bit elementary.

The book is divided neatly in sections and chapters. Each chapter is self contained. Most chapters start with a quote of Rumi and some with others.

Indian authors writing in English are found wanting in the expression and there are many mistakes. But this book is written in simple yet powerful and lucid English. The language is unambiguous and conveys the very complex subject matter lucidly and in a very simple manner. That is the beauty of it. There are no spelling or grammatical mistakes.

Word of caution as also told by author at the outset. Meditation and spirituality is no panacea for all medical and other problems. Also it is not for skeptics. It is no substitute for medical help and not all problems can be cured with it.

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