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Play of Consciousness: A Spiritual Autobiography

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4.27  ·  Rating details ·  522 ratings  ·  31 reviews
This best selling spiritual autobiography of Swami Muktananda tells the story of his journey to self-realization under the guidance of Bhagawan Nityananda, candidly describing his extraordinary experiences. Beginning with his spiritual initiation on August 15, 1947, and continuing through his enlightenment nine years later, this is a guide for seekers moving toward the sam ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published January 1st 2000 by Siddha Yoga Publications (first published 1971)
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Chip There doesn't appear to be any connection between Mahendra Trivedi and Swami Muktananda. In the video you linked here, it is the speaker's conjecture …moreThere doesn't appear to be any connection between Mahendra Trivedi and Swami Muktananda. In the video you linked here, it is the speaker's conjecture only that suggests Mahendra Trivedi is the teacher "after" Gurumayi. But why would the third teacher have come when Gurumayi, who Muktananda appointed, is still living?(less)

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Sohumm
Sep 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If I were asked to name just one book that any spiritual seeker must read at least once then it would definitely be 'Play of Consciousness'. My recommendation is not based just on the intellectual and spiritual content of the book, which, by the way, is exceptional, but rather on the the book's inherent ability to kick-start one's spiritual journey.

I hardly knew anything about 'Kundalini' before reading this book and I would have never believed that people can actually receive 'Shaktipat' just b
...more
Vic
Dec 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Swami Muktananda lives in my heart and will forever hold the place of supreme teacher in my life. His personal story may not be for everyone, but for anyone who is ready to meet a true teacher, even one who has been gone for the last twenty-eight years, this book may ignite an inner revolution. Swami Muktananda, known by his devotees and disciples as Baba, came to the United States in the late 1970's and attracted a huge following of spiritual seekers. He was a prolific writer, master story tell ...more
Michael
Play of Consciousness seems to have a big following, but I wasn't too impressed after finishing the book. Most of it deals with his search for Truth and devotion to his guru. Learned a lot about gurus, but its really not my thing.

Still, Muktananda had some good things to share, such as that kriyas and other spiritual phenomena are authentic only when they occur spontaneously. So it's not about faking spiritual progression but just letting shakti energy take over. Also, shaktipat (transmission) w
...more
Sean
Aug 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: some-of-the-best
Swami Muktananda was a great leader, and a great instigator to globalising the Siddha Yoga movement in the 1970's. The book was written as a guide to how the Swami became the esteemed leader and the trials and tribulations of getting there. Essential reading for those on the path in Siddha Yoga.

Since his passing, the Siddha Yoga movement is led by Swami Chidvilansananda. She has authored many, many more books, and is equally as inspiring and effective in challenging the yoga devotee.
Sarah
Dec 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
It was hard to read at first. Lots of words and concepts I wasn't familiar with as a Westerner. Especially the whole "worship the guru" thing, which is a hard concept to swallow as an American. The guru thing gets explained later in the book, if you're listening. The book got more personal and more and more spiritual until the end which was amazing. I've never read a better description of God.
Jack
Jun 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Extraordinary autobiography of a spiritual master revealing many spiritual secrets that used to be closely guarded.
Daniel
Feb 04, 2015 rated it liked it
I attended Darshan with Swami Muktananda and had a meal at several Sydha yoga ashrams.. Some of the swami's Shakti is in the book. However,in the end there wasn't much for me to hold onto here. The content is very traditional with a few unexpected remarks and surprises. I look it over and reread parts of it from time to time, but I don't feel that it really changed my life. The main idea is that you are encouraged to meditate...
Fernando
Jul 28, 2015 rated it liked it
Interesting but difficult to read. Swami uses terms that are a bit hard to understand. this is his autobiography, if you are interested in knowing the journey to enlightenment he explains it all here. From beginning to end, ups and downs.
Belinda
May 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Very beautiful.
Josiah Miller
Jul 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
even though(or perhaps because) this book was written for insiders of a religion/philosophy that is not my own, It was a very interesting read.
Mike
Aug 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: to-re-read
This book changed my Sadhana. Changed my LIFE!
I re-read it every time I need the sun to rise :-)
Dominic Lenzo
Jul 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Incredibly written with the perfect amount of prose needed to deliver his message. It’s almost as if he knows what his subjects are going through and by repeating what he sees as most important it finally allows the message to penetrate the readers. There are three major things I received from this book. The first one which eventually stuck with me by the second half of the book is semen retention. He brings it up so many times that by the fifth mention it stuck with me. My kundalini is so roote ...more
Vikrant Rana
May 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, meditation
4.5/5
"There are only two ways to live your life: as though nothing is a miracle, or as though everything is a miracle." - Einstein

Reading of this book quickly clarifies that it has been written in the white heat of intense devotion. That whirlwind of faith picks up the reader and transports him/her into the world of Siddhas, siddhis and other dimensions of consciousness.

I haven't read a more direct glimpse into the path of sadhna, except maybe in the accounts of Sriram Sharma Acharyaji (Gayatri
...more
Parker Rush
Jun 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Even though I have a kind of aversion to Siddha Yoga and some of the more spurious accusations leveled against Muktananda, all things aside, this is spiritual autobiography at its best. Some of the passages will take root in your being, growing branch upon branch with the narrative as you read along. Some great anecdotes about the course of individual awakening, guru-shishya, shaktipat, Kashmir Saivism, and the sincere love of Muktanada for Bhagavan Nityananda.
Björn Slettemark
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Expressing the experience of reading this book into words would only render it in less light than reality. I can only express my deepest gratitude to the supreme grace this book has bestowed on me. My deepest thank you from the deepest place of love.
Paulina FuentesMoad
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful book - “diksha darshan” on print 🙏🏻
Rohi
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
good book for who are looking towards spiritual life
Chris Stevenson
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There are no words. Just open the book with an open mind and read. Try out what he says. See for yourself.
Ashley Felkel
Possibly one of the most important books I've ever read. I discovered this book - Divinely led - while trying to understand my own Kundalini Awakening.

Baba <3 Love
Om Namah Shivaya!
...more
nick owen
Feb 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an extraordinary book about the spiritual journey of one of the world teachers of the twentieth century. Indeed it is a spiritual autobiography which shared secrets of the inward journey which few if any have shared before. It has been a guide and companion to me for forty years.The image on the front of the book is of the moment Muktananda gives Shaktipat, the passing of the inner flame of knowledge from one teacher to his followers. Many people, like me, have been awoken by looking at ...more
Shreyas Saxena
Sep 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
A great autobiography of Swami Muktananda which takes one through his journey in his quest of knowledge and spirituality. The book is quite accessible for anyone, even the ones without a background in spirituality.

The book was dictated by Swami Muktananda, and the writer has done a wonderful job in carrying the conviction and the feelings in the stream of words. Personally, the book has brought a great peace within me, and I am looking forward to read it from time to time. I think it is a great
...more
Manoj Chugh
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is my favorite book. I came across this book in the religion section and it had not been read by many people and will not be.

This book is a journey of a mystic through meditations and vivid descriptions of his experiences. If you read the book with no preconceptions and keep your heart open to reception, you will see this ordinary mystic transform into The One.

Muktananda reminds me of Swami Ramakrishna Paramhansa. Muktananda was an illiterate person in formal education, was also very s
...more
imamitbajpai
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Seldom any spiritual book has explained the secrets of meditation so candidly and with the superlative authority that comes naturally to someone who has experienced them firsthand. The book is a loving guide, a powerful treatise on Guru 'tattva' and a vibrant vessel of the spiritual power of Swami Muktananda.
Read it to know It..!!!
Frank
Jan 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
An amazing mind screw of a book. Similar to and yet distinct from Yogananda's Autobiography. This is definitely NOT scientifically backed meditation, reading at some points more like a fantasy novel than anything if you're not open to the possibilities the author takes as givens.
Shubhashish Badwaik
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One true spiritual guide. Swami Muktanand is a great spiritual guru. Yes, I am using present tense for his presence although he took samadhi a long ago, this book is living embodiment of himself. Reading this book actually feels like one is listening to him, live.
Maryann Rada
Aug 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A book that vibrates with higher consciousness, this autobiography of Muktananda can be a life-changer. Through the pages, Muktananda's touch of grace reaches through the words into the reader's mind and heart.
Suyog Belbasé
Jul 27, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I learn't about this book when I saw it with a customer I was serving at work. He told me that he had read it 11 times and was continuing. Naturally I was intrigued.
Meredith
Feb 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A must read for any yogi
Eddie
Aug 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Looking for a Guru? a spiritual master. Try this book!!! Baba will tell you, again, if you've read Autobiography of a Yogi, about the importance of the Guru.
Jaswant Rajpal
rated it it was amazing
Jan 08, 2020
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