People glibly speak of yoga without realising that it forms an integral part of a composite Samkhya Yoga philosophy, the oldest philosophical system in the world. Samkhya provides the theoretical base without one can neither fathom the terse aphorisms of Patanjali and their masterly interpretations by Vyasa nor derive full benefit through practising them mechanically. In the last two millenniums many learned commentators have elaborated on these texts. Swami hariharananda Aranya's commentary with further elucidation by his disciple and worthy successor Swami Dharmamegha Aranya is refreshingly different reflecting, as it does, their own realisations, which make Samkhya-Yoga a living precept today.
The book has been hailed a classic since its publication in 1963. It has gained in content and popularity with each new edition. This time additions include, among others, Bhasvati, another unique commentary of the author in Sanskrit on the same ancient texts and its first ever English translation. His thought provoking 'Concept of Isvara in Samkhya Philosophy' is also included. Thus enriched, the book should be valuable to scholars and spiritual seekers.
About the Author:
Swami Hariharananda Aranya (1869-1947) spent six years of his early monastic life in utter seclusion in the caves of Barabur Hills, Bihar. His possessions were the barest minimum, even for a Sannyasin. A resident from the nearest village trudged miles to bring his lone meal everyday. He devoted the whole time to gain mastery over his mind, which is Yoga. Having attained his goal,d he returned to the world of men. Continuing the secluded and austere life style and intense spiritual practice, he began dissemination the message of Samkhya-yoga through books in Bengali and Sanskrit. Emanating from his own experience it was unique, logical and penetrating. Not only inspired and guided seekers to tread it.
In April 1974, his body frail from age and years of penance started becoming a burden; he saw the signal and at once decided against continuing fruther. The end came peacefully, a fitting finale to a great and noble life.