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Self-inquiry does not demand any faith, nor does it depend on any system of thought or belief. It demands integrated awareness and right effort which dissolve self centred illusions, limitations, and thus bring about the revelation of blissful reality. If you really want to help others you must discern your own limitation. We must note that self-inquiry is not a theology.
There are two kinds of learning:
1) Accumulation of knowledge, of experience, of technology, of a skill, of a language. It is time bound.
2) Psychological learning—learning through experience either through the immediate experiences of life which leave a certain residue of non-understanding, of tradition, of race, of the society.
There is no line of demarcation between the two types of learning, they overlap.
What we are concerned in self-inquiry is psychological learning that we have acquired through centuries or inherited as tradition, as knowledge, as experience. This we call learning, is it learning at all? Mind has learned and with what it has learned it meets the challenge of life in the active present. It is always translating the life or the new challenge according to what it has learned. This is what we are doing in the name of learning. Is that learning? Does not learning imply something new, something I don’t know and am I learning if I am merely adding to what I already know, then it is no longer learning. If you are to discover for yourself what is the new, it is no good carrying the burden of the old, especially the knowledge of scriptures or a great master.
A man protecting himself constantly through such knowledge is obviously not a truth seeker.
When you want to find something new, the mind must be quiet. If the mind is crowded, filled with the facts and borrowed knowledge they act as the impediment to the new.
The difficulty for most of us is that the mind i. e thought has become so important, so predominantly significant that it interferes constantly with anything that may be new, with anything that may exist simultaneously with the known. Thus borrowed knowledge and learning are impediments for those who would seek, for those who would try to understand that which is beyond thought and so timeless and eternal.
Author is pediatrician from Andhra Pradesh,India,born on 12th December 1950.He is working on the subject of self-inquiry for the past 30 years under the living Presence and guidance of Ramana Maharshi which he discovered 30 years ago in Ramanasramam.He is a frequent visitor to Ramanasramam and out of greatfulness to Bhagawan he wrote many books analyzing philosophy and this book is one of them.His other works include "The Art of self-enquiry,Alpha and Omega of self-inquiry,The essence of self-inquiry part 1 & 2, Insights in self-inquiry Part 1 & 2,Theory of self-inquiry,The Practice of self-inquiry,The theory and Practice of self-inquiry,The comprehensive book on self-inquiry,he commented on Upadesa saram,Akshara Mana Malai of Ramana Maharshi and all are his products of his own experience.He wrote many books on Bhagawan in Telugu which include "Nenevadanu? which is a commentary of him on "who am i" in Telugu and his recent book in Telugu is Vichara Choodamani mainly deals with the practical aspect of self-inquiry and he explains in it why self-inquiry is a direct and easy way for realizing the Self.