Mar 11, 2021

Book review - Practical Yoga Psychology by Dr. Rishi Vivekananda

First book review of 2021 and the 3rd book that I finished reading in 2021.

I've decided to talk about books/courses ONLY after I have finished reading/completing them (unless and until if someone explicitly asks me this question "What are you currently reading?" )

I realised that talking about something that I have just started doesn't help anyone (neither me nor others reading about it). Let me complete or reach a stage (say, 21 days or 48 days) in order to have understood a little bit or gathered a little depth before talking about a new initiative (book/habit/course etc) on social media.

Let's dive into the book review.

Information comes to us at the right time. This statement keeps reinforcing through my experiences over and over again. I randomly picked up this book without any expectations. Little did I knew that I would get a lot of clarity on topics I have been meaning to learn about
  • Formation of our unique personality through our perceptions, memory, thought, emotions and behaviour
  • Chakras and their significance
  • Gunas (Satvik, Rajasic and Tamasic) and their connection to our personality
  • Different streams of Yoga and the associated lifestyle practices (Raja Yoga - yamas and niyamas, Karma Yoga, Bhakthi Yoga, Gnana Yoga)

This is a dense read, it needs a lot of focus and attention to absorb the material and cannot be skimmed through. The author has explained in detail on how Yoga can help us in our journey of evolvement. Yoga is generally misconstrued only at the asana practices level but Yoga plays a much bigger role in our mind, our personality and the journey towards self-awareness. 

The chapter on Koshas (the five sheaths) was super fascinating to read. Lot of aha moments while reading the personality chapter where the author linked the respective chakras along with their levels of gunas to get a deeper analysis of evolvement of our personality. 

Every chapter had so many insights and realizations that I had underlined quite a few passages. A few favorite lines listed below:
"Perception is the process whereby a person's sensory stimuli are translated into organized experiences that have personal meaning for him or her."


"All knowledge is available at some level of consciousness and we only need to tune into this level for it to become available to us."


"Real security is a quality of the universe, not of our little human endeavours"


"The whole cosmos is a vast network of communication, and that every word and every thought reverberates throughout the whole"


"If I am not the doer, and I am unattached to the outcome of the process, and anyway I realize it is 'all in good hands', how can I have a problem?"

If these topics are of interest to you, do pick up this book and take your time to read and digest the material at a slower pace.

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