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The Awakening of Shvetaketu

Inspired by the Chandogya Upanishad
Devdas Menon
Type: Print Book
Genre: Self-Improvement, Religion & Spirituality
Language: English
Price: ₹300
Price: ₹300
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“You seem to have a swollen head, Shvetu!”

This book begins with these words addressed by the renowned sage Uddalaka to his son, the 24 year-old Shvetaketu, who has just returned home after twelve years of education at a gurukula. Uddalaka points out to his son (and to us) that conventional education is limited by its utilitarian approach. Although useful and necessary to achieve material progress, it keeps us bound to delusion and suffering, and does not give us the ultimate understanding and limitless freedom, called ‘moksha’, that we all ultimately seek.

“Do you have that understanding by which the unheard becomes heard, and the unknown becomes known?” is a key question Uddalaka poses to his son. Observing the sincerity and eagerness of Shvetaketu to realise this ultimate understanding, Rishi Uddalaka accepts him as a disciple, and engages with him in a series of enlightening dialogues. These are covered in a terse manner in the sixth chapter of the Chandogya Upanishad, which is said to be more than three thousand years old. The author of this book has imaginatively brought alive these dialogues in elegant English prose to enable present-day readers to comprehend the profound wisdom of the Upanishad. The wisdom is encapsulated in the famous ‘mahavakya’ of Rishi Uddalaka: ‘Tattvamasi’, literally meaning ‘You are That!’ This book is all about That, the all-pervading and timeless ultimate reality underlying all manifestation. There is only That, and we are That!

For those who have read the author’s earlier offering titled ‘The Awakening of Nachiketa’ (inspired by the Katha Upanishad), this book is bound to provide fresh insights regarding the way to Self-realisation. The reader is also likely to find it easier to relate to Shvetaketu than the prodigy Nachiketa.

About the Author

Dr Devdas Menon is an Institute Chair Professor at IIT Madras, engaged in teaching, research and consultancy in structural engineering. He adopts a holistic approach in education, placing an emphasis on inner development and transformation. He was initiated into Advaita Vedanta in his youth by Swami Krishnananda (of Rishikesh) and other teachers. Ever since, his approach to spirituality has been to see the 'formless aware presence', the one Divine, in all manifestation, despite the seeming differences in myriad names and forms and beliefs.

In structural engineering, he has co-authored a popular textbook on 'Reinforced Concrete Design', and has authored textbooks titled 'Structural Analysis' and 'Advanced Structural Analysis'. In the realm of self-improvement and spirituality, he has authored books titled ‘The Awakening of Nachiketa’ as well as 'Stop sleepwalking through life!' and 'Spirituality at work' (on the Bhagavad Gita), which are texts used for the popular courses on ‘Self-Awareness’ and ‘Integral Karmayoga’ at IIT Madras.

This brief biography of the author is meant for pragmatic purposes: potential readers may be interested. But the deeper truth is that all notions of individual authorship and doer-ship are delusional, and it is important for the apparent doer to recognise this truth — whatever be the inner calling or the role being enacted (writer, teacher, etc.) in this game of life.

Book Details

ISBN: 9781637545782
Number of Pages: 150
Dimensions: 5.50"x8.50"
Interior Pages: B&W
Binding: Paperback (Perfect Binding)
Availability: In Stock (Print on Demand)

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