First Edition of Yogananda Paramhansa's Autobiography of A Yogi
Autobiography of a Yogi.
Item Number: 105436
New York: The Philosophical Library, 1946.
First edition of one of the most important spiritual books of the twentieth century. Octavo, original cloth, frontispiece. Fine in a fine dust jacket with a single closed tear to the back panel. Preface by Walter Evans-Wentz. Easily the nicest example extant.
Autobiography of a Yogi introduces the reader to the life of Paramahansa Yogananda and his encounters with spiritual figures of both the Eastern and the Western world. The book begins with his childhood family life, to finding his guru, to becoming a monk and establishing his teachings of Kriya Yoga meditation. The book continues in 1920 when Yogananda accepts an invitation to speak in a religious congress in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. He then travels across America lecturing and establishing his teachings in Los Angeles, California. In 1935, he returns to India for a yearlong visit. When he returns to America, he continues to establish his teachings, including writing this book. It is an introduction to the methods of attaining God-realization and to the spiritual wisdom of the East, which had only been available to a few in 1946. The author claims that the writing of the book was prophesied long ago by the nineteenth-century master Lahiri Mahasaya (Paramguru of Yogananda) also known as the Yogiraj and Kashi baba. Before becoming a yogi, Lahiri Mahasaya's actual name was Shyama Charan Lahiri. It has been in print for seventy years and translated into over fifty languages by Self-Realization Fellowship. It has been highly acclaimed as a spiritual classic including being designated by Philip Zaleski, while he was under the auspices of HarperCollins Publishers, as one of the "100 Most Important Spiritual Books of the 20th Century." It is included in the book 50 Spiritual Classics: Timeless Wisdom from 50 Great Books of Inner Discovery, Enlightenment and Purpose by Tom Butler-Bowdon.