Adi Shankaracharya's Atmabodha


All trappings of modern life notwithstanding, fortunate are the few who realise that no worldly attainment can fill the yawning void within. Search for meaning is the fulcrum of human restlessness. Does everything end with death? What is the purpose of life? Who is God? Who am I…? Blessed are they who get devoured by such questions. For, only then arises the possibility of beginning a quest that culminates in self-realisation. Scriptures like the Upanishads reveal the path that takes the seeker from the starting point of living with false identifications to the destination of knowing one’s real identity. Atmabodha is one such illuminating text written by one of the greatest original thinkers of all times, Sri Adi Shankaracharya. It is a beautiful piece of rhythmic literary work with emphasis on reasoning as the key methodology. Resorting to an assortment of easily relatable similes, the master succinctly presents the philosophy of Advaita Vedanta in 68 verses. But just as it is difficult to walk along a path in the obfuscation of darkness, so is the case with treading the path of spirituality without the guiding light of a living master. For, texts of Vedanta are recondite and trying to decipher the subtext on one’s own is not only ineffectual but also rather treacherous. A little knowledge is indeed dangerous for it can make you fall in bottomless pits of misconceptions and delusions. This book is a living master’s commentary explaining the nuanced intricacies of Atmabodha. Anandmurti Gurumaa elaborates and exemplifies in a very easy to understand language. This self-realised master guides with the light of her enlightenment, reinforcing concepts with empirical evidence. This book is a must read for those who want to be who they really are.