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on 27 November 2015
Okay, I love this book, and need not say much about it, if I were to lose everything except the knowledge in this book, it would be okay, if I lost nothing, but the knowledge contained in the book, I don't know, but my life would be very very different. If I were to go to an island alone for the rest of my life, and could only bring one thing. This book would be it. I am not kidding.

Okay, but that's not the reason I decided to review the book. It's because of the new 'revised and edited' edition. I'ts reedited by a certain Sudhakar S. Dikshit. AND APPARENTLY HE JUST ADDED A LOT OF TYPOS AND SOME PICTURES WITH STUPID DESCRIPTIONS. AND THEN HE CHOSE SOME RANDOM QUOTES. THE BOOK IS NOW FULL OF TYPOS, AND FONT MISTAKES. I HAD AN EARLIER EDITION, IT DIDN'T HAVE ALL OF THESE TYPE MISTAKES. The edition I got in my hands is the 23rd printing paperback 2015. And it think the same editior must have edited the 5th edition of the hard cover as that is also 'revised & re-edited' in 2015.

The rating is just to give some attention to the differences in the new edition. The book itself is more than five stars to me. Much more.
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on 17 March 2008
This book is 'meaty' and intense. The questioner, asking just about every 'spiritual seeking' sort of question under the sun. The teacher, Nisargadatta Maharaj, at all times, focused fully in his Truth (that there is only one substance; that everything is part of the ocean of consciousness in which all happens; everything is 'I Am'). His answers always very clear and concise. Every answer, profoundly and wonderfully, liberating.
For the true 'seeker', experiencing for just one moment, the essense of this teaching, will be a real awakening, and nothing will ever be the same again.
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on 17 January 2012
This book was reccomended to me by a fellow recovering Buddhist who wanted to go deeper.
The essential issues of matter ,form and spirit are discussed here in question and answer format and is an aid to the seeker of truth beyond words and even thought.

This book would be a great aid for fans of Erckhart tolle.
A refreshing alternative finger pointing at the moon which does not claim to be the Moon.

A good spiritual teacher has nothing to teach therefore Maharaj will help you to remember who you are.

Alternatively you could always read a good western.
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on 10 January 2012
Nisargadatta informs the ego and the intellect of all that it is not and he couples this path of knowledge with a profound devotion that will stop your search for enlightenment to realize who you are here and now. You are what you are seeking and in seeking, you cannot be found. We rest in the joy of being, simply "I am." This instruction was offered to Nisargadatta by his teacher and with great love and respect for him, he followed his instruction and stopped all effort. In three years, he Self-realized.

"I am That" is divided into 101 chapters and is a compilation of direct dialogues that Nisargadatta had with his students. The translation of the book is natural and flows very nicely. It includes an occassional photograph of Nisargadatta that emulates the devotion that he was sensing at the moment. "I am That" begins with an Introduction by Douwe Tiermersma on the Philosophical Faculty of Erasmus University in Holland. It is followed by a short Biography of Nisargadatta and a note from the translator about how the book was created as well as a short note from the editor. The first appendix is Nisarga Yoga and shares the simple abode and life of Nisargadatta. The second appendix is Navanath Sampradaya and offers a history and structure of sects in India. The final appendix is a complete and quite helpful glossary of terms found in the book.

The dialogues begin with the sense of "I am" and brings attention to the here and now to live in the present moment. He masterfully moves us beyond the ego and its thinking to stand free of thought, so that we may witness them without identification. He immediately then points to the Awareness and Consciousness that is the perceiving. Nisargadatta also frees us from identification with the body; we are not the person, but rather the Reality that is beyond.

We see that the highest bliss is desirelessness and the answer is to turn our mind's attention inward by asking the question, "Who am I?" He dynamically leads us to a profound detachment from form and to continue resting solely in "I am." The only time to realize freedom is Now and that Life can be the teacher, when we allow it to be as it is and notice that life is happening by itself. He shifts us beyond the duality of a pleasure that cycles to pain to realize the Bliss of True Self.

When we begin observing, we recognize all that we are not. We brush off the dust of the mind, its time and all of its false concepts and what remains is who we really are. He points that insecurity is not in the life situation and that it is sourced within the dual mind. When we break free of thought and ever more subtle layers of the intellect, we discouver the absolute security of the changeless. Nisargadatta warns that when we follow the desires of the mind, they may be fulfilled, but discontentment will surely once again resurface and that by following desire, we are breeding more desire and that quest will prove to be endless. Beyond the mind, we are free of both fear and desire and therefore free of all suffering.

He consistently reminds his students that bondage is a delusion and the freedom of True Self already is within them. He urges to seek the very source of consciousness itself, the deepest root of collective suffering. If it is not eradicated, even after awakening, it will surface to be freed.

"I am" is the foundation of all experience and the doorway to discover ever present peace. Here, we shift beyond all space and time.

Sooner or later, you will enjoy this spirtual classic in the maturity of your search for enlightenment. "I am That" is the last stop. This book is essential teaching, a must read, from an extraordinary sage.

Katie Davis, Author, "Awake Joy"
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on 22 March 2007
This book is a collection of recordings of conversations between an Indian guru called Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, and vistors who came to see him at his Ashram in the slums of Bombay in the late 1960s.

It's not for everyone. But if you're a thinking person, thoughtful and reflective, and have grown tired of philosophy because it's not giving you the answers you seek concerning the nature of reality, God, the Universe and everything; and if you're skeptical of various religious systems, and Buddhism is not working for you; and if you want read the teachings of someone who knows the ulitmate, someone who talks only straight, someone with no self-interest at all -- then may have come to the right place with this book.

This book has the power to trigger shifts in consciousness. It may be the last book you ever read.
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on 10 November 2009
If you have found this page and are reading reviews of "I AM THAT" then it's fair to say you have completed 99% of your spiritual journey.

You are a click away from your final book.

You have probably been interested in different religions, spiritual development, political and scientific systems, moved from -ism to -ism and wondered what the truth is about consciousness and reality, how you fit into the universe and which is the true school. What happens when scientific rationalism, for all its gifts, is too tied up with market forces and commerce to be fully trusted as a cosmology? Where do you go when religions finally reveal themselves to be partial, incomplete or politically motivated?

Of course everyone has a favourite route to the 'now' or the 'divine', whatever you want to call it, and a favourite teacher or voice to show you the way, but I have no reason to lie to you when I say that your journey is at an end. Keep this book by your bedside - it will take a long while to absorb - but contains all the answers you have been seeking all these years.
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on 3 March 2014
I am always inspired by this kind of thing.
Nisargatta repeated advice to focus on 'I Am' to draw us towards enlightenment ensures that we do not get too lost in interminable question asking. There were times when I found this book rather overwhelmingly challenging but maybe that says more about me than the writer or the book! It is quite a heavy tome in more ways than the obvious but clearly has a great deal to offer to anyone who is prepared to persist. The most difficult thing about realisation is that the stronger your desire to know what one cannot know, the less able one will be to receive the blessing. The danger I suppose is to get stuck with all the studying and the stimulation and the hope, and never actually do the 'let go' thing, the emptiness thing, the desire-give-up thing,that is in the end the only requirement. A bit like Eliot's 'hoping without hope, for hope would be hope of the wrong thing', or whatever it was he said.
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The awakened one, you see, is not a sleeper, like you and me, he's not a teacher; let alone a preacher; neither a prophet nor looking to profit. He isn't a snake, or an obvious fake; he is awake!

Nisargadatta Maharaj was a shop keeper who `woke up', a sloppy concept for Westerners I am sure, and this book is a transcription of his conversations. By all accounts, Nisargadatta Maharaj was uneducated and none religious, but from what I am reading in this book, the guy seemed to be `tapping' into a source of profundity that even a book laden guru would struggle to top. He has little money, he didn't run a money pinching ashram and he gave talks on the top of his shop in the slums of India.

So what are these Indian guys saying anyway? They are saying that this life you are living is not merely an isolated piece of the universe, but in a certain sense your consciousness is the whole of the ocean of the universe, poured into your little skull! It is only that this whole cannot be surveyed in a single glance that you believe yourself to be an isolated blip on the canvas. You are in reality the almighty consciousness that was there before Adam; yes, you! You cannot feel this one big consciousness because your monkey brain can no way cope with the cosmic consciousness, just like an Amiga 500 would struggle to play a low resolution web page; but when you fall asleep and have one of those intensely weird dreams; this is your consciousness re-connecting with the higher reservoir of awareness. Hey, that sounds good to me! Nisargadatta Maharaj was in full connection with the One Consciousness.

I will write about Nisargadatta Maharaj's philosophy of optimism; I AM THAT. Nisargadatta Maharaj's message of 'I am' seems to be holding my despair at bay and every time I want to dive deeper, the awakening lifts me higher and helps my spirits to rise above the turmoil; like a balloon that rises out of the choking atmosphere, to rest above the transience of my world; above the mental dust that blinds and chokes; I am floating above the atmosphere; where no one can pull me back down again.

The awakening is taking place on this particular day, now, as you read this; I realize you may not feel this; this floating above the world. D. T Suzuki, the Japanese Zen master, was once asked what it was like to have satori; satori being the Japanese word for enlightenment, he said: "Well, it's like ordinary, everyday experience, except about two inches off the ground."

Masters like D. T. Suzuki and Nisargadatta Maharaj possessed an aspect that we scientific minded Westerners seem to have lost. Fortunately, I really do believe that you yourself can start your own floating above the world; right Now. And you don't even need a balloon metaphor to get the point across. You see, if like me, you are not too fond of balloons; you can construct a boat to be your life vehicle. You can then metaphorically float along the torrents of this world and navigate your way to the Ding an sich. Nisargadatta Maharaj says that the world of appearance is boundless as far as your eye can see, indeed, a boundless Matrix of some sort (my rendering). You must therefore trust your frail craft to navigate soundly between the Matrix, with its banks of happiness and pain. Between these banks of happiness and pain the river of life flows on; unmolested. The trick is not to capsize on a bank. The real secret is to navigate your boat through the howling mountainous waves of people and their opinions; and just float along the river of life, or, to use the old cliché, `go with the flow'.

It is only when your vehicle capsizes on one of the banks that life becomes a problem. By flowing with life, Nisargadatta Maharaj means acceptance in I AM THAT, rather than what the other guy thinks you are. The other guy feeds off your fears and your desires, so don't (overly) desire and don't fear, observe your surroundings; the guy is not in the room with you now. Your body is always present, your mind is not. Your mind is somewhere else. Take back your mind!
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on 8 May 2015
At first, Nisargadatta's statements appear confusing, inconsistent, and even contradictory across different segments of the book. But if you stay with it, you realize the apparent contradictions are merely an artifact of language or context, and you see behind it. What you then see is the extraordinarily clear vision of someone who was deeply in contact with reality; the real reality.
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on 12 June 2002
Valuable beyond words. Question and answer format, Nisargadatta reaches out to Hindus and Westerners alike with wonderful simplicity. Lucid and pragmatic, Nisargadatta leads you to discover the truth of who you really are through the simple practice of being. If your question isn't covered in this book then you pehaps have the wrong question.
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