Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Sadhana” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition


4.23  ·  Rating details ·  739 ratings  ·  83 reviews
Perhaps it is well for me to explain that the subject-matter of the papers published in this book has not been philosophically treated, nor has it been approached from the scholar's point of view. The writer has been brought up in a family where texts of the Upanishads are used in daily worship; and he has had before him the example of his father, who lived his long life i ...more
Paperback, 136 pages
Published May 22nd 2006 by 1st World Library - Literary Society (first published 1913)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Sadhana, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
ethereal More than abandoning all sense pleasures and attachments, we have to create detachment for them, and detachment comes on its own when you see the impe…moreMore than abandoning all sense pleasures and attachments, we have to create detachment for them, and detachment comes on its own when you see the impermanence and temporariness in the pleasures by the senses and even the attachment to families. When we see that all those things will be lost one day, we will start feeling detached and looking for something that will be permanent. The more we focus on death and impermanence, the more we will lose interest in sense pleasures and attachments. (This is from my own experience, not sure if it is given in the book, I have just started reading the book.) (less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  739 ratings  ·  83 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Sadhana
Feb 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book is exceptional, only draw back I have is, I won't be able to re-collect, re-iterate all of the stuffs mentioned in the book, as much as, I would have wanted to.

I tend to forget things, and Tagore in this book explains loads of stuffs, some of them so deep, that I promise, I have forgotten them already, (reason being I am such a dumb guy).

I was simply blown away by the first chapter. This book deserves a re-read, especially with notes and areas to apply and reminders.

Jan 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those books whose every sentence you must read a few times over... to immerse, enjoy and marvel at Tagore's depth and understanding of the universe.

The flying fish I glimpsed above this immense school:

“To live in perfect goodness is to realize one's life in the infinitive.”

“Our life remains a life of habits; the world still appears to us as machine, to be mastered where it is useful, to be guarded against where it is dangerous - and never to be know
Thom Swennes
Nov 17, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Those looking for inspiration
Written in the pinnacle of eloquence, Sadhana by Rabindranath Tagore relates a theory of a few points of the teaching of Jesus Christ and Gautama Buddha. This narrative touches many bases dealing with the virtue of man, greed, love and compassion. I found it at times both ambiguous and inspiring. It gave me a more perceptive look and understanding of Buddhism by pointing out a few subtle similarities and differences. I can imagine it could be very insightful and inspiring for some but I can guar ...more
One of the more comprehensible, and clear, (without compromising the beauty of the prose) expositions of Hindu/Brahmo philosophy which I've read.

A lot of western people seem to be reading this in a confused manner, because they expect it to be a "religious" treatise in the tradition of Abrahamism. But its really not like that. Really what this book is about, is the relationship between the finite human and the infinite universe. How does one realize the wholeness of oneself and everything else?
Apr 03, 2008 added it
This books blows the lid off the cosmos, it really does.
Aug 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: living-now
The western civilization has been grappling with divisions of mind/matter, god/human,nature/ human and within our spieces. the wall built by civilized beings has been the source of control,subordination of the other. Wars,colonization,human trafficking, exploitation of poor,gender, brutal use of the 'resource', anxiety,alienation,drug use have been the signs of despair and doom from the quest to progress.
Eastern thought, for instance Buddhism , Upanishad have long back solved this Dualism. The
Mar 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Very beautiful and deep. It didn't really solve the problem of evil for me, but I commend it for trying. I will admit, the book was a bit of a struggle to read at times because I would get bogged down in the flowery language and the meaning would flow right over my head. However, the poetic words sometimes went straight to my heart filling it with hope and meaning. This was one that I read with a pen in my hand liberally underlining with great relish. ...more
Vivek Shroff
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spiritual
Divinely inspiring.
Needs to be read and re-read.
Tagore speaks of a flower as a message from God, to re-assure us that he is in touch with us and is concerned about us.
Akin to Lord Rama's ring brought by Hanumanji to Sitaji to re-assure her when she was kept as a prisoner in Ravana's palace-gardens.
Sadhana was a quick read and felt a little bit like books I have read which are written by Rabbis in order to convince a Jew to be more religiously observant. Tagore discussed various aspects of his personal Hinduism making a compelling case for its relevance. As with other books about personal religious beliefs, he takes a pretty broad brush look at the philosophical and ethical components and uses a little of his own experience and scriptural verses from the Bhagavad Gita and Buddhist texts to ...more
Oct 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is so filled, It makes me recognize how empty to be.

Sadhana Sadhana by Rabindranath Tagore

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is so filled, It makes me recognize how empty to be.

View all my reviews

This is a book to continue reading It is never finished
Aug 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Must read

He beautifully explains about consciousness, soul etc. Unless you are not acquainted with these terms you may not find this book appealing. But this book is truly worth reading and keeping.
Mohamed Awada
Oct 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Beautiful compositions on how Tagore (and supposedly Hindus) saw the relationship between man and nature.
Kai Frank
Apr 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
priceless pearls of wisdom from a great bengali author, highly recommend this easy and enlightening read!
Jan 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: philosophy
"Of course man is useful to man, because his body is a marvellous machine and his mind an organ of wonderful efficiency. But he is a spirit as well, and this spirit is truly known only by love. When we define a man by the market value of the service we can expect of him, we know him imperfectly. With this limited knowledge of him it becomes easy for us to be unjust to him and to entertain feelings of triumphant self-congratulation when, on account of some cruel advantage on our side, we can get ...more
Sean-Paul Kosina
Dec 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-shelf
“Brahma is Brahma, he is the infinite ideal of perfection. But we are not what we truly are; we are ever to become true, ever to become Brahma. There is the eternal play of love in the relation between this being and the becoming; and in the depth of this mystery is the source of all truth and beauty that sustains the endless march of creation.” -Rabindranath Tagore

There is so much to love about this book, as I’ve learned much about Tagore’s perspective through his treaties on the essences of t
Feb 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
I really did try to understand this, but, the essays in this book made no sense to me.
Jun 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
In his preface, Tagore affirms that the book is a guide to the "living aspects" of Indian spirituality and philosophy, deliberately contrasting this with the "western scholars... retrospective and archeological interest." This is a book about particular religious traditions, the teachings of Buddha and the Upanishads, as guides to living life. It's a wise and poetic book. I read it for research but got something more out of it. I read a copy printed in 1914, purchased in Tokyo in 1916. The book' ...more
Valerie Vlasenko
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Highly recommended for anyone interested in learning more about Hindu philosophy and thinking. I was fortunate to get the 1921 version of the publication from my local library, which added to the experience. The book gives answers to question I’ve been pondering on for a while. It covers aspects such as self in relation to nature, love, beauty and the universe.
Sky Feather
Jan 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Soul teachings for those closer to the realization of the true self, closer to shatter the borders of illusion, closer to experience the Identity. Such a joy for my spirit this book! Such a liberation to read, to listen to these insights, for they themselves offer Liberation from the words, liberation from the context of the self incarnated in the flesh; all these as I surrender this linear consciousness to the cathartic fire!

Even though there are --only a coupIe of parts-- where I cannot align
Sundarraj Kaushik
Probably I expected a lot from the author of Gitanjali (haven't read this yet) but was sorely disappointed. It turns out to be just OK. The book is a collection of discourses and writing of Tagore over a period of time.
The first is on relation of individuals to the universe.
The second is on soul consciousness
The third on The Problem of Evil
The fourth on The Problem of Self
The fifth on Realization in Self
The sixth on Realization in Action
The seventh on The Realization of Beauty
The eighth on The R
Apr 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It is one of the best books to learn what exactly the seekers are looking for when they turn towards the infinite... the prose is beautiful! A timeless book with a collection of Tagore's discourses - available on Librivox

"True deliverance of man is the deliverance from ignorance. It is not in destroying anything that is positive and real, but that which is negative, which obstructs our vision of truth.”

"Possession is a representation of what we have already attained. It symbolizes that which we
Rian Nejar
A romantic, metaphor-filled, highly imaginative reflection on life by a renowned Indian poet and devotee of a dualistic school of thought. The author makes a laudable effort to unify various religious pathways through the use of wisdom in ancient sacred texts.

What the work lacks in scientific rigor is more than compensated for with sentiment and intuition. The poet and Nobel laureate appeals, with eloquence and vigor, to the reader's feelings, to the extent of asserting that rational though
Apr 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
An excellent book with amazing illustrations. Sadhana, the realization of life, by Rabindranath Tagore - presents ideas that are very deep and thought-provoking. It's very hard for me to describe Sadhana. I found an ineffable joy reading this book. But one idea that is prevalent in the books I have recently read is that, the most important lesson that man can learn from his life is not that there is pain in this world, but that it depends upon him to turn it into good account, that it is possibl ...more
Scott Stirling
May 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I left my first, marked up paperback English copy of Tagore's treatise on spirituality and wisdom to three child siblings in Hyderabad, India: Bhavani, Manasa and Pavan. In my note to them I said I loved the book, which I began reading in USA and finished in India. I left the littlest girl, Manasa, a 3-D wriggly picture of the Ganesha murti from Siddhi Vinayak temple in Mumbai. I got to know this family a bit through their father, a watchman at the gated townhouse complex where I stayed for a co ...more
Karuppiah Senthil
Mar 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
To summarize this book in one sentence, it is worthy enough to call it as a "Wisdom Well".

The author do not need any introduction so as his writings. In this particular book, R. Tagore has used some of his poetic wits and mixed it well with the teachings/sayings of ancient Indian scriptures and bring us into a world of pure wisdom.

He has beautifully described the manifestation of God and the beauty of Godly nature with a perfect amalgamation of philosophy and spirituality.

Sadhana = Philosophy
Kat Kiddles
Dec 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
I got an email one day from LearnOutLoud. It had a link to an audiobook. I don’t know what inspired me to click on it since I receive emails from LearnOutLoud daily, but most of them remain unopened (yes, I’m guilty of self-induced information overload!). This could very well be a case of the right book coming to the right reader at the right time. And so began my relationship with Sadhana.

To read more of this review, click here:
Andrea Hickman Walker
I found this very interesting. It did not convince me of the truth of the religion, but as a way of life it makes some sense. I do sometimes wonder about what the difference is, because there are people who will say that Buddhism is not a religion, it's a way of life. I think that argument is far more applicable to something like Taoism, but I don't really know enough about either to have a strong opinion (and I'm just as likely to tag works on Taoism as religion as not). I guess I'll just have ...more
Sneh Pradhan
Jul 03, 2013 rated it liked it
The eloquence and sheer beauty of the work as always was quintessential Tagore, seamless ......though being an atheist , I found it difficult to reconcile with his emphasis on religion ....... To me the disillusionments wrought by religion weigh down over its scripted philosophies . Having said that , there being a subtle difference between spirituality and the worldly perception of religion , I would identify with his message of leading or atleast trying to lead a simple, pure and inspired way ...more
Lisa Pauline Mattackal
May 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Tagore explains the ancient Indian spiritual texts to a Western audience. He has a good understanding of traditional Western thought, and his comparisons and contrasts between the philosophies of the East and West are incredibly interesting. His critique of scientism is pretty brilliant, but especially interesting are his insights into the "infinite joy" and mastery of English prose. Of course, Tagore writes from a Hindu perspective but there is a startling amount of truth in this book. That al ...more
Faisal Hoque
Aug 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Most Impactful Non-Fiction Book I Read.

“Sadhana – The Realization of Life” is a breathtaking collection of spiritual discourses given by Rabindranath Tagore to the boys in his school, in Bolpur, West Bengal. Compiled and translated by Tagore from his Bengali lectures, the book consists of eight essays, in which Tagore answers some of the most profound questions of life: Why did God create this world? Why would a Perfect Being, instead of remaining eternally concentrated in Himself, go through th
« previous 1 3 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Incomplete title 2 17 Jan 25, 2015 09:46AM  
yoga book club: Aug. 2014 book 5 48 Sep 17, 2014 08:57PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Upanishads
  • The Undiscovered Self
  • The Bhagavad Gita: Royal Science of God-Realization
  • The Majesty of Calmness
  • The Bhagavad Gita
  • The Forest Unseen: A Year’s Watch in Nature
  • The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
  • The Dhammapada
  • A Book of Five Rings: The Classic Guide to Strategy
  • Birds of North America: A Guide To Field Identification (Golden Field Guide from St. Martin's Press)
  • Caribbean
  • A Documentary History of the United States
  • Sacajawea
  • The Recognitions
  • Khí chất bao nhiêu, Hạnh phúc bấy nhiêu
  • Terrorist
  • The Power of Babel: A Natural History of Language
  • Humboldt's Gift
See similar books…
Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913 "because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West."

Tagore modernised Bengali art by spurning rigid classical forms and resisting linguistic strictures. His novels, stories, songs, dance-dramas, and ess

News & Interviews

  Jenny Lawson is the funniest person you know. And if you don’t know her, just read one of her books and she becomes the funniest person you...
62 likes · 9 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“In learning a language, when from mere words we reach the laws of words, we have gained a great deal. But if we stop at that point and concern ourselves only with the marvels of the formation of a language, seeking the hidden reason of all its apparent caprices, we do not reach that end, for grammar is not literature… When we come to literature, we find that, though it conforms to the rules of grammar, it is yet a thing of joy; it is freedom itself. The beauty of a poem is bound by strict laws, yet it transcends them. The laws are its wings. They do not keep it weighed down. They carry it to freedom. Its form is in law, but its spirit is in beauty. Law is the first step toward freedom, and beauty is the complete liberation which stands on the pedestal of law. Beauty harmonizes in itself the limit and the beyond – the law and the liberty.” 50 likes
“Essentially man is not a slave either of himself or of the world; but he is a lover. His freedom and fulfilment is in love, which is another name for perfect comprehension.” 7 likes
More quotes…