Some of the suggestions from Chapter 1, Preparation for Choosing a
Path, from the book Choosing a Path, by Swami Rama:
1) Learn the philosophical and psychological foundations of the
various paths (karma yoga, jnana yoga, bhakti yoga, raja yoga, etc.).
2) Build your own practical philosophy of life.
3) Examine your fears, to find that they are based on imagination.
4) Understand the importance of attaining clarity of mind.
5) Realize that you are a citizen of two worlds: that within and that
6) Learn to discriminate which desires are helpful and which are not
7) Learn about your body and the five elements: earth, water, fire,
8) Know the five cognitive senses (hearing, touching, seeing,
tasting, smelling), and the five active senses (speaking, grasping,
moving, reproducing, eliminating).
9) Study the two caretakers of life, inhalation and exhalation.
10) Study, understand and train the mind--the greatest friend and
11) Learn about the inner being, antahkarana (including the four
functions of mind: manas, chitta, ahamkara, buddhi).
12) Attain a purified, free, and one-pointed mind for inner study.
13) Know the needs, motivations, and desires moving you to action.
14) Train your mind to go inward and examine itself.
15) Have a strong, burning desire to know yourself from within.
16) Understand the states of waking, dreaming, sleeping, and turiya.
17) Don't create problems or obstacles for yourself or others;
then there will be enough time, and the mind will have enough ability
to study the inner life.
18) First have a commitment toward the purpose of life; then choose a