Reviewed by S. Srinivasan
From the introduction chapter in the book:
“I really love you and want the best for you. I don’t want you to continue to suffer needlessly. Here in these quotes I am showing you the way to bring the illusion to an end and to awaken into the Reality of Eternal-Awareness-Love-Bliss. Here in these quotes I am showing you what most aspirants cannot see, even if they have read some of these quotes before. Here I have collected the quotes that are most essential and most helpful for those who really wish to awaken in this lifetime. Here I have collected the quotes that have no detours or distractions. Here I have collected the quotes that reveal the most direct means that brings the impostor self to its final end.”
“The seven steps to awakening” is a masterpiece and a valuable gift from your true Self to sincere seekers of liberation. The ego [which the author likes to call the 'impostor self'] in all humans is very deceptive and cunning. Almost no human has the desire for the impostor self [or ego-illusion] to come to an end. The desire to preserve the ego-illusion is always greater than the desire for liberation. However, since the impostor self is responsible for all suffering, until it ends, there can be no true liberation. But since the impostor self never wants to end; even when one approaches teachers and teachings of liberation, the layers of deception within distort the teaching in order to prevent the ego-illusion from ending, and thus prolong endless cycles of suffering. It is a vicious cycle of the thief pretending to play a Cop. Many teachings of the past have thus been distorted by the ego [imposter self], and the essence of the teachings have been buried under layers of distractions and detours, thus making it almost impossible to find a direct way to end this ego-illusion and the suffering caused by this ego-illusion.
What makes this book truly special is that not only does it contain quotes by seven different truly liberated sages, but also that the quotes have been selected and arranged by a fully liberated sage himself! This makes this work truly valuable, as it saves true seekers of liberation a LOT of time and effort. All the distractions have been taken out and the seven steps to awakening have been revealed. Just reading a few quotes slowly and repeatedly takes me to a deep and spontaneous meditation. The first chapter lays the foundation for how the quotes are to be used [as practise instructions for liberation, not for intellectual entertainment or for gathering knowledge].
The rest of the chapters in a step by step manner uravel the a)nature of impostor self and the enormous suffering caused by identifying with it b) provides an understanding that without a strong desire for liberation [from the imposter self and the suffering caused by it], all efforts to be liberated will fail c) provides motivation, inpiration and encouragement for practise leading to liberation d) provides the direct practise instructions to bringing the impostor self and the suffering to a final end.
The titles of the seven chapters and the first quote from each chapter are provided below for reference.
Use the quotes as practise instructions. Know that a conceptual journey is not a journey to Awakening.
Know that the world is a dreamlike illusion.
See how the impostor self perpetuates its imaginary self and all illusion and suffering
Increase your desire for liberation.
Be inspired, encouraged and motivated.
Turn your attention inward.
Practise the most rapid, effective and direct method that brings the impostor self to its final end.
Step 1 (first quote)
“1. Why do people call me learned? What is the mark of real learning? Learning that all garnered knowledge of things is empty ignorance and that true knowledge is the search for the Knower.”
Step 2 (first quote)
“214. From your true being as Awareness alienated and deluded do not pursue appearances, deeming them as real. They are false, since disappear they must. But your own being as Awareness is real and cannot cease to be.”
Step 3 (first quote)
“525. So long as one retains a trace of individuality, one is a seeker still, and not a true seer effort free, even though one’s penance and one’s powers may be wonderful indeed.”
Step 4 (two quotes)
“786. The desire for enlightenment is necessary because without it you will never take the necessary steps to realize the Self. A desire to walk to a particular place is necessary before you take any steps. If that desire is not present, you will never take the first step. When you realize the Self, the desire will go.”
“812. Q. How does one reach the supreme state?
Maharaj: By renouncing all lesser desires. As long as you are pleased with the lesser, you cannot have the highest.”
step 5 (two quotes)
“853. What does one gain, you may well ask, by giving up the wealth immense of worldly pleasure and seeking only mere Awareness? The benefit of true Awareness is the unbroken prevalence of peace within the heart, the bliss of one’s own natural being.”
“861. Do not dwell in the desert hot of the non-self, eating arid sand. Come into the Heart, the mansion cool, shady, vast, serene and feast on the bliss of Self.”
Step 6 (first quote)
“1284. With mind turned inward, drown the world in the great void, dispel illusion. Beholding then the void as void, destroy the void by drowning it in the deep ocean of Self-Awareness.”
Step 7 (first and last quote)
“1439. If you observe awareness steadily, this awareness itself as Guru will reveal the Truth.”
“1574. The universal Self is witness of itself.”
This is an exhaustive and comprehensive work containing everything: 1)the Supreme goal, 2)the inspiration to reach the Supreme goal and 3)the method to reach the Supreme goal are all given here. All other books can now be given away or discarded. The only other book I would keep is “The Most Direct Means to Eternal Bliss” authored by the Editor/ Creator of this present book. I found that book to be amazingly inspiring and enlightening and started practicing the meditation “techniques” instructed in that book for 2-3 hours everyday.
There are times where amazing grace is flowing through, but there are also times when the impostor self presents challenges which lead me to being distracted away from practice into futile worldly pursuits. It is during those challenging times that I need inspiration to stay in the path without getting distracted into meaningless pursuits which always end in suffering. I find that this book offers amazing inspiration for that exact purpose. I have full convictions in the words of these books and through the bliss experienced by reading and practicing the teachings in the book, I am convinced that I am on the right track.