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I Am That: Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  6,339 ratings  ·  243 reviews

This collection of the timeless teachings of one of the greatest sages of India, Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, is a testament to the uniqueness of the seer's life and work and is regarded by many as a "modern spiritual classic".

I Am That preserves Maharaj's dialogues with the followers who came from around the world seeking his guidance in destroying false identities. The sage

Paperback, 1st pbk edition, 550 pages
Published 1988 by The Acorn Press (first published 1973)
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Pipilotto It's difficult to guess how you'll perceive it. It will definitely challenge your rational thinking, but it's not about being religious or not religio…moreIt's difficult to guess how you'll perceive it. It will definitely challenge your rational thinking, but it's not about being religious or not religious.

I've read quite many books, and so far it's the best thing I have ever read and practised – I measure that on how it challenges me and what effect it has on me.

It is easy to find as pdf on the internet, just google "nisargadatta i am that pdf", and you can see for yourself. First chapter is about 2,5 pages long – it represents very well how the book is as a whole – so try and read these pages a few times, and see what you think.(less)
Prasad Nutalapati Dear Chandana;
No one can recommend a book for you. As no one can predict your spiritual depths. Try and read the book. At first it might make you doze…more
Dear Chandana;
No one can recommend a book for you. As no one can predict your spiritual depths. Try and read the book. At first it might make you doze off like it happened to me. But suddenly a spark might go off. Then you will start seeing answers to your un asked question still un known to you. In my case I started to read Ramana Maharshi around age 25 in 1984-85. Later came to Nisarga Dutta a few years back. It is the same truth expressed in more contemporary language. You can NOT be wrong if you start reading.(less)

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Guttersnipe Das
Nov 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was 18 the first time I bought I AM THAT, but I was 39 before I was able to read it. For this reason, I thought I might give a little advice about how to keep company with this book, a very beautiful and peculiar one, and unlike any other.

You will find your own way, as many others have before you. After all, this is the favorite book of many of the strangest people you will ever meet. In fact, there appear to be a significant number of people who do nothing, except read this book, and then acc
Aug 09, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spirituality
If I had to choose one 'spiritual' book, just one, only would be this one. Nisargadatta points to the 'truth' with such clarity. ...more
David Simoni
Apr 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: dharma
If I had to pick one book to take to a desert island, I Am That would be it! I've read it numerous times and still find inspiration and guidance from it. The excellent translation by Maurice Frydman makes I Am That eminently readable. It is filled with so many pearls of wisdom that I underlined practically the whole book!

Incidentally, you can find the complete book online here:
Ann Debaldo
Nov 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Have read several times over the years - each time, it is a different book! I different?
David Guy
Jun 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I have been reading this book for eight or nine years, picking it up now and then and reading it for a week or two, then taking something else up. I began reading it when my first meditation teacher, Larry Rosenberg, told me (quite casually, when we were in a bookstore) that it was a great book, and great it is. It is a series of dialogues with an Indian man, an ordinary householder, who is enlightened. I don't know what that word means, but I do know that Sri Nisargadatta sees the world much di ...more
Sep 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who seeks the truth within.
You cannot go wrong with this book, though my edition is much older, worn and tattered from travels with me, including India. I had the good fortune to meet Nisargadatta in his home in Mumbai, when it was still Bombay, many years ago and hear him talk. I never will forget his kind presence....he was absolutely present. This book is for every spiritual seeker who wants to stop seeking. Nisargadatta was that rare being who lived as he taught. He was what he taught.
Dec 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Not everyone can read this book. Even after half a century of its publication, perhaps only a handful of people around the globe has reached the state necessary to read this book.
I feel like we are a secret brotherhood.
Adios amigos, brothers and sisters.
Jun 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Wanessa by: Thibaut Ji
"Meditation is a SATTVIC activity and aims at complete elimination of TAMAS (inertia) and RAJAS (motivity). Pure SATTVA (harmony) is perfect freddom from sloth and restlessness,
The SATTVA is pure and strong always. It;s its own goal. It manifests spontaneosly and effortlessly, when things are left to themselves, are not interfered with, not shunned, or wanted, or conceptualized, but just experienced in full awarness. Such awarness itself is SATTVA. it does not make use of things and people - it
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book is always on my bedside table and is the most important book I have ever read.
Aug 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A complete mindf**k of the best kind. This one really tickled my pineal gland.

"It is like entering a dark room. You see nothing - you may touch, but you do not see - no colors, no outlines. The window opens and the room is flooded with light. Colors and shapes come into being. The window is the giver of light, but not the source of it. The sun is the source. Similarly, matter is like the dark room; consciousness - the window - flooding matter with sensations and perceptions, and the supreme is t
Barnaby Thieme
Aug 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This collection of practice interviews with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj never fails to astonish me. Students bring him the most difficult and abstruse philosophical and religious questions, and without fail he answers them clearly and directly, in plain, simple language that is easy to understand. I've rarely encountered any testimony of any spiritual master that was more persuasive on its face of the profound degree of insight and obtainment on the part of its master.

Here's an example from one of
Sep 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"I Am That" is a wonderful book. The path to self realization is covered in simple language and ways. Nisargadatta Maharaj's wisdom shines through and with the translation being excellent, the result is almost poetic. He speaks consistently on the direct experience of "I am", getting rid of all misconceptions of the mind. Of the entire narrative, I only felt his answers on personal virtue (smoking, food habits) and action to end suffering were inadequate and inconsistent with the rest of the tea ...more
Apr 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I will be reading and re reading this book over and over for an indefinite period of time. Sri Nisaragadatta is interviewed by a westerner and his answers are as clear as crystal about why people suffer and how we can find peace within ourselves in chaos.
Greg Younger
Jan 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A series of q/a with seekers, it remains spiritual whiskey. Not for the timid. Brought me out of an unconscious life into one of discovery.
Rory Mackay
Nov 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
not a book you read for entertainment, a book you read for understanding and knowledge about the nature of self, consciousness and reality. A collection of Nisargadatta's talks, demonstrating what an incredibly coherent and profound way he had of putting the highest truth into relatively simple words. That said, you have to be ready to read this and lay the groundwork, otherwise it'll be fairly mind-boggling and meaningless. But if you're ready to get it - wow. Your life (or at least your unders ...more
Feb 24, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: recommended
The whole book is a dialogue between a realized master and his student(s). After reading too many books looking for the "ultimate Reality," this is the most clarifying of "It" I have found.
My only critique is that he describes our true identity too accurately, and consequently, the ideas can be redundant...there's only so much to say.
"The seeker is the sought."
ron btdtbttsawio
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is an English translation from audio recordings. The book is arranged in a q&a format and covers many topics such as god, the ego, living in the world, free will, and generally how maharaj sees things from the perspective of a self-realized person. There is lots of very poetic descriptions such as:

"You are like the point of the pencil — by mere contact with you the mind draws its picture of the world. You are single and simple — the picture is complex and extensive. Don’t be misled by
Fuad Fuad
Oct 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Nisargadatta Maharaj in I AM THAT make clear the meaning Advaita in strike matter. Before I read I Am That's very dificult to understand another advaita clasic.Nisargadatta,is great teacher advaita in our times. I read Ramana Maharshi....but for words...I like words from Nisargadatta Maharaj...Nisargadatta is clear...and he speak with clarity..his dialogues very fresh and spontaneous.I always read his words and I feel immersed with his words...I try to contemplate....think..remember..and t ...more
Julia Jewell
Dec 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book for the first time earlier this year. I'm now reading it for a second time. I choose not to get too wordy here. But having read material by Eckhart Tolle, Adyashanti, A Course in Miracles, etc, etc, this book really gets to the heart of the matter. I also read Consciousness and the Absolute:Final Talks with Nisargadatta Maharaj. Great book too. I agree with others, having read this book or any book by N.Maharaj, the urge to seek out other spiritual books diminishes significantly ...more
Brandon Peele
Jul 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Nisargadatta is a negation specialist - pointing to a deeper, more sustaining reality. He is in good company with Jed McKenna, Wei Wu Wei, Richard Rose, Ashtavakra Gita, UG Krishnamurti. If corporeal/emotional transcendence is of interest, look no further. He is generally antagonistic and often eloquently arrogant. It's funny. He's sort of like a vampire stand-up comic, who only makes jokes about the differences between vampires and humans. Anything a human says is irrelevant because it comes fr ...more
Martin Jones
Feb 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book transformed my life for ever. It was made manifest to me at a most challenging time. A book that reveals the illusion of the mind and disharmony caused by attachment to thoughts as they ebb and flow on the tide of consciousness. There is really nowhere to go and nobody you have to be. Identification with form and ego create separation and all fall away when you become "the witness" and "the watcher" of the dreams you create. Out of that realisation comes a stillness and a peace you kno ...more
Chris Dietzel
Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When I tried to read this straight through I quickly found myself losing the importance of what was being discussed. So instead I decided to read a page here and a page there over the course of 5 years. While some of the concepts were too lofty for me to truly appreciate, there was still much in the book that enlightened me. Highly recommended for anyone interested in the idea of spirituality.
Ron Wyn
Sep 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
For those who wish to gain a truthful insight on the nature of reality. Simply AWESOME!!
Linda Belmont
Apr 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I am always reading this. If I feel the urge, I pick it up, turn to a page, and find what I'm looking for. Seriously. ...more
Jul 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: spiritual
This book can be understood by reading first few chapters.
The book is a conversation in question-answer format, more that half of the answers are same,
application of being with oneself.
Book tells not about yoga exercise or any breathing practice,
neither about religion or any ritual; it is all about focus on self.

This man rejects emotional suppression like 'bramhacharya'.
He also shows disagreement with idea of god.
Pleasure and pain are two different sides of same coin,
if you earn the coin yo
Nov 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituae
this is the kind of book which can take years to read... very dense in that it opens the mind, shakes out paradigms, and catalyzes new thoughts which need to simmer, percolate and be experienced in practice while engaging the world with new perspective.... coming back to it is like an old friend and a fresh spring day... refreshing and comforting companionship on a sometimes solitary journey of self-exploration and earnest, albeit often ungraceful, experiencing of the true nature of reality, the ...more
Aug 28, 2013 is currently reading it
I have been looking for a book which will make me say " this time thats it" for a long time.. I bought or reviewed many books that is meant to "help you".. this one is really something.. you feel that the words are the words of an extraordinary human being.. even ı dont kmow if he is a human being in the sense we use this word.. it is sincere.. only and only this time ı felt this.. Maharaj is sincere on the answers, no commercial aims.. just answers coming from within.. I am still reading it and ...more
May 09, 2013 rated it liked it
So the Ideas in this book given by Maharaj really makes sense. .. But almost every chapter is an overdose of ideas and it gets petty monotonous .

This is one of those books which should perhaps be read on a quite morning and only in parts ... THe reason why i liked the ideas and concepts here is that it is not governed by religion o religion practices ..
Mar 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing

"Wisdom says I am nothing. Love says I am everything. Between the two my life flows.”
Katja Vartiainen
Nov 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: spirituality
I almost gave this book just 3 stars. And it's not a criticism towards Nisargadatta, but the fact that it becomes almost a bore to read the people repeating almost the same questions, and not getting it. At the same time, it's a documentary in the spiritual development of the West. It's like a collections of satsangs, and luckily you can find your question in there, or you can just go to the internet..Still, I found it worth reading. Choose for yourSelf. ...more
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Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj was an Indian spiritual teacher and philosopher of Advaita (Nondualism), and a Guru, belonging to the Navnath Sampradaya. Sri Nisargadatta, with his direct and minimalistic explanation of non-dualism, is considered the most famous teacher of Advaita since Ramana Maharshi. In 1973, the publication of his most famous and widely-translated book, "I AM THAT", an English transl ...more

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37 likes · 6 comments
“Love says 'I am everything.' Wisdom says 'I am nothing.' Between the two, my life flows.” 167 likes
“Your expectation of something unique and dramatic, of some wonderful explosion, is merely hindering and delaying your Self Realization. You are not to expect an explosion, for the explosion has already happened - at the moment when you were born, when you realized yourself as Being-Knowing-Feeling. There is only one mistake you are making: you take the inner for the outer and the outer for the inner. What is in you, you take to be outside you and what is outside, you take to be in you. The mind and feelings are external, but you take them to be intimate. You believe the world to be objective, while it is entirely a projection of your psyche. That is the basic confusion and no new explosion will set it right! You have to think yourself out of it. There is no other way.” 114 likes
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