--- In firstname.lastname@example.org
, "Michael L."
> At the Ramana Maharshi group
> Joe asked a question
> regarding breathing exercises
> mentioned by Sri Ramana Maharshi
> in the book Self-Inquiry.
> Why did he include the mention of less direct and more
> elaborate methods in this first exposition? The
> obvious contingent reason is that the disciple for who
> it was written had been reading books about these
> various methods and asked questions about them.
> Perhaps also, in a wider sense, it is appropriate that
> there should first be a general exposition of various
> methods before lifelong instruction in that which is
> prescribed. Certainly the other methods, although
> described, are scarely recommended.
> The breath-control that is described is, of course,
> not mere physical exercise. It is the spiritual
> significance of the exercise that makes it an
> elaborate science. 'Science' is indeed the right word
> Now, a good question to ask is,
> why do some people who study Sri Ramana's teachings
> think he advocated methods other than Self-inquiry
> or aids to Self-inquiry
> and others such as the author of the above preface
> and Sri Sadhu Om and myself know that he did not?
> Take care,
> with Love,
As a personal advocate of other methods of meditation than just Self
Inquiry, I want to post another point of view.
Because you say "methods", but neglect to say methods of what, I have
chosen methods of meditation because there is no such thing as a
method of Self Realization.
"...the scriptures have rightly declared that action can never
produce liberation."-Vivekachudamani p. 211 of the "Collected Works
of Ramana Maharshi".
Technically, Self Inquiry is not meditation. But to still the mind
is the ultimate object of meditation and that is what Self Inquiry
does. The mind is illusion because the mind does not exist outside
the existence of the thought that the mind exists. With the stilling
of the thoughts, the mind is seen to be an illusion and the
discrimination between Self and not-Self (illusion) is ongoing.
Breath control is a good calming practice before beginning any
meditation or Self Inquiry.
I realize that your object is to make the teachings of Sri Ramana
more accessible and your love is apparent. But though other methods
are not advocated or dealt with extensively you should remember that
not everyone is fit for Self Inquiry and He did outline other
practices till fitness is achieved. To be thorough, it would be good
to mention that.