Paul Brunton: The Quest of the Overself

Random House, 2003 (1937)
Book Description:
BruntonThe Quest of the Overself shows Western readers how to achieve serenity of mind, control of thought and desire, and the power to use higher forces by means of simple exercises. These include breathing and visualization as well as mental control through meditation. These ideas, which the author gained by extensive travel in India, are as relevant to us today as they were when first published in 1937. Paul Brunton was a British philosopher, mystic and traveller. He left a successful journalistic career to live among yogis and holy men and studied a wide variety of Eastern and Western esoteric traditions. As he explains in the still fresh and fascinating The Quest of the Overself meditation and the inward quest are by no means exclusively for monks and hermits but also support those living everyday, active lives in the West.
Part I:  The Analyses
I     Prefatory: A Writer on His Writings
II    The Mystery of Man
III   The Analysis of the Physical Self
IV    The Analysis of the Emotional Self
V     The Analysis of the Intellectual Self
VI    Beyond Time to Eternity
VII   The Genesis of Genius
Part II:  The Practices
VIII  The Spiritual Culture of Finer Feelings
IX    The Practice of Mental Mastery
X     The Path of Self-Enquiry
XI    The Mystery of Breath
XII   The Mystery of the Eye
XIII  The Mystery of the Heart
XIV   The Overself
XV    The Overself in Action
XVI   The Quest
Praise for Brunton (from an earlier, Rider edition):
“Paul Brunton was surely one of the finest mystical flowers to grow on the wasteland of our secular civilization. What he has to say is important to us all.”  George Feuerstein

“…a great gift to us Westerners who are seeking the spiritual.”  Charles T. Tart

“A person of rare intelligence…thoroughly alive, and whole in the most significant, ‘holy’ sense of the word.”  Yoga Journal

“Paul Brunton was a great original and got to a place of personal evolution that illumines the pathways of a future humanity.”  Jean Houston

“A simple, straightforward guide to how philosophical insights of the East and West can help create beauty, joy, and meaning in our lives…His keynote is balance, and his uplifting message encompasses all phases of human experience.”  East West Journal

“…sensible and compelling. His work can stand beside that of such East-West bridges as Merton, Huxley, Suzuki, Watts and Radhakrishnan. It should appeal to anyone concerned personally and academically with issues of spirituality.”  Choice

“Any serious man or woman in search of spiritual ideas will find a surprising challenge and an authentic source of inspiration and intellectual nourishment in the writings of Paul Brunton.”  Jacob Needleman

About the Author (from the same Rider edition):

Born in London in 1898, Paul Brunton published thirteen books between 1935 and 1952. He is generally recognized as having introduced yoga and meditation to the West, and for presenting their philosophical background in non-technical language. He died in Switzerland (where he lived for 20 years) in 1981.

JOB’s Comment:

See my earlier Brunton posts, in the References and Spirituality categories.

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"A Self-realized being cannot help benefiting the world. His very existence is the highest good."
Ramana Maharshi