1.1 What does this book teach you?
This book starts from the basis that within the natural limitations of your personality, all you can experience is your individual measure of joy and sorrow, pain and pleasure. It teaches that you will never understand the true nature of reality if you deal with people and things only through your personality, neither will you understand why your life has happened to you the way it has. This book teaches you that if you truly want to understand what your life is about, you must learn how to live beyond your personality.
This book teaches you how to attain a state of mind, tranquil and clear, which enables you to understand reality and your life in a balanced and harmonious way. You are shown how to experience directly, for yourself, that both your life and all life are only apparently separate elements in reality. You are shown how to experience for yourself that all things, all life, are in reality integrated and unified aspects of a meaningful whole: this level of experience is known as enlightenment.
Enlightenment is only possible once you learn to live beyond your personality. A simple way to achieve this is through practice of the meditation technique taught in chapter 2. Follow the detailed instructions, work to the best of your ability in the way directed, and you will travel along the path towards enlightenment.
This book for beginners teaches you how to realise the first, or psychological, stage of enlightenment with one hundred days of committed meditation practice. Psychological enlightenment is a state of mind in which you can experience a genuine and lasting detachment from emotional unhappiness. This book, then, prepares you, through the resulting peace and clarity of mind, for the advanced teachings on meditation, which lead, through experience, to a full and direct understanding of the inherent unity of reality. That state is known as the final, transcendental, stage of enlightenment.
This book teaches you how to understand reality through experience. The fruits of your experience can be expressed in religious or secular terms, according to your choice. This book is a self-help guide to experiencing the unity that is reality.
This book is entirely practical. It contains no theory. Daily practice of the simple meditation exercise, within the context explained, leads to understanding reality through experience.
Begin the journey on this path now. All the material you need is to hand in your own life. This book teaches you how to live the meaning and purpose of your life.
The key is to integrate these teachings into your ordinary, everyday life. Committed daily practice of these teachings leads to a gradual, entirely natural and harmonious transformation of your experience of life. This teaching requires no overt changes in your life, no visible markers, no new allegiances or beliefs.
Simply practise the meditation and think about your life in the context given.