"The spiritual quest, from the point of view of yoga, is an inward journey — a journey through the layers of our mind, through the wilderness of temptations, desires and delusions. The journey has its peaks and valleys, hopes and despairs. . . The yoga scriptures give us guideposts on the path, by which we can judge our progress toward the goal. The Bhagavad Gita tells us that yoga puts an end to all sorrows of life when it is rightly practiced, and practice becomes right when it is steadfast, unbroken, and sincere. Yoga is both light and fire. Before it brings enlightenment, it burns everything false and imaginary. All our desires, enchantments, delusions, and attachments are consumed by that fire. Yoga is raising the blaze of Self-awareness."

Swami Adiswarananda is a senior monk of the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center of New York, and author of Meditation and Its Practices and The Vedanta Way to Peace and Happiness. This enlightening volume contains three sections: the first explores the theories of creation and the nature of spiritual questing; the second examines the laws of the spiritual highway and the preparations necessary for the journey; and the third outlines some basic questions, discusses the lessons of history, and summarizes the essential teachings of yoga. Swami Adiswarananda believes that self-knowledge is the key to a rounded and fulfilling life. Ignorance is the roadblock that must be gotten around and self-discipline is necessary to achieve a purified mind.

Anyone truly interested in the spiritual journey must eventually come to terms with Sri Ramakrishna (1836-1886), the God-intoxicated Hindu who saw all religions as true. According to the author, this extraordinary man cherished sincerity of purpose and emphasized the harmony of all paths. His mantra was "dive deep" and the presence of the divine was everywhere to be found. Swami Adiswarananda also draws on the wisdom of the Vedic scriptures and the insights of Swami Vivekananda as he circles around the challenges of the spiritual journey and the lure of God-realization.

Whether writing about the unity of religions, the human mind and its health, or the practice and dilemmas of truthfulness, the author sheds light on the multi-splendored Hindu path.