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Advaita Vedanta

Recommended Books for Non-Duality (Advaita Vedanta)

If you are looking for a list of books to better understand Advaita Vedanta aka Non-Dualism, then you are in right place.

Advaita Vedanta Books

Here is a list of books recommended by Swami Sarvapriyananda Ji himself:

Vedantasara: of Sadananda

Vedantasara

Vedantasara is one of the best and most widely read introductory books in Sanskrit for the study of Vedanta. This book contains the original text, English translation, and detailed explanatory notes.

Read this book and follow this YouTube Playlist: Vedantasara of Sadananda – Here Swami Sarvapriyananda Ji has beautifully explained this text in a very easy-to-understand ENGLISH language.

Dṛg-Dṛśya-Viveka

Drig-Drishya Viveka

Drig-Drishya Viveka (Introductory Text to Vedanta), as the name indicates, is a Vedantic treatise of 46 verses inquiring into the nature of the ‘Seer’ (Drig) and the ‘Seen’ (Drishya), an inquiry which is of utmost importance for understanding the conclusions of the Vedanta philosophy. This brief treatise compresses much information into its body of a few verses. The book contains the original text in Devanagari, its word-by-word meaning in English, a running translation, and exhaustive notes by Swami Nikhilananda.

Read this book and follow this YouTube Playlist: Introduction to Vedanta – Dṛg Dṛśya Viveka – Here Swami Sarvapriyananda Ji has beautifully explained this text in a very easy-to-understand ENGLISH language.

Aparokshanubhuti: of Sri Shankaracharya

Aparokshanubhuti

This is one of the most important works of Adi Sankaracharya on Advaita philosophy. The central theme of the book is the identity of the Jivatman (individual self) and Paramatman (Universal Self).

This identity is realized through the removal of the ignorance that hides the truth by the light of inquiry alone. To those who have neither the time nor the opportunity to go through the classical works of Sankaracharya, this book will be an invaluable guide in their quest for spiritual truth. This book contains the Sanskrit text with word-for-word translation, English rendering, and valuable comments.

Read this book and follow this YouTube Playlist: Aparokshanubhuti – Here Swami Sarvapriyananda Ji has beautifully explained this text in a very easy-to-understand ENGLISH language.

Vivekachudamani: of Shankaracharya

Vivekachudamani

A most valuable and lucid compendium of Advaita philosophy describing the transcendental knowledge of Brahman, and the way to achieve it through discrimination and meditation. Being an original production of Shankara’s genius, the whole book is instinct with the prophetic vision of a seer, a man of realization, and the expression is so lucid and poetical that quite a new life has been breathed into the dry bones of philosophical discussion, and that too, on this most abstruse subject.

As of now, I am unable to find any YouTube playlist/Podcast on Vivekachudamani. However, I will update this page whenever I find a good audio/video resource.

Eight Upanisads (2 Vols. Set)

Eight Upanisads

Out of the eleven principal Upanishads that Sri Shankaracharya commented upon, this two-volume set contains the translations of the Eight Upanishads (Isha, Kena, Katha, Mundaka, Mandukya (with Gaudapada Karika), Aiteraya, Prashna, and Taittiriya Upanishads) and their commentaries by Sri Shankaracharya.

 

The study of these commentaries by a great philosopher-saint like Shankara is indispensable for the proper evaluation of the Vedanta philosophy. It contains the text of the Upanishads in Devanagari, a lucid and faithful translation of the text and commentary, relevant notes, reference to quotations, and index to texts.

  • Volume 1 contains these 4 Upanishads with the commentary of Adi Shankaracharya: Isha, Kena, Katha, and Taittiriya
  • Volume 2 contains the remaining 4 Upanishads with commentary of Adi Shankaracharya: Aitareya, Mundaka, Mandukya (along with Gaudapada’s Karika), and Prashna

Follow these Playlists for a better grasp of these Upanishads:

  • Katha Upanishad by Swami Sarvapriyananda – This is a very simple yet very important Upanishad. This Upanishad was the favorite Upanishad of Swami Vivekananda.
  • Mandukya Upanishad by Swami SarvapriyanandaPlease note that this is one of the highest texts of Advaita Vedanta revealing the ultimate truth. This is meant for sincere students of Advaita Vedanta who have thoroughly completed the basics and other Upanishads. Please DON’T touch this text if you are new to non-dualism as this may make your brain feel very uncomfortable.
  • More playlists/podcasts for other Upanishads will be added in the future.

Bhagavad Gita

Bhagavad Gita by Swami Gambhirananda: With the commentary of Shankaracharya

Bhagavad Gita

The commentary of Shankara on the Gita is regarded as an outstanding specimen of Indian scholarship. The translator has accomplished his task in a most praiseworthy manner by giving a faithful translation, without in any way detracting from the strength or clarity of the original commentary. The inclusion of a ‘word index’ of the entire text has added to the worth of the book.

Bhagavad Gita: With the Commentary of Madhusudan Saraswati

Bhagavad Gita

Though there are many classical commentaries on the Gita, this work stands next only to Sri Shankaracharya’s commentary as regards clarity, depth, and originality. This work of Madhusudana Saraswati, the Gudhartha Dipika (an annotation revealing the true import of the Gita) is probably the greatest of his many literary works.

Get both (Yes!) the books above and follow this playlist on YouTube: Bhagavad Gita by Swami Sarvapriyananda – Here Swami Ji has beautifully explained this text in a very easy-to-understand ENGLISH language.

Brahma Sutra Bhasya: of Shankaracharya

Brahma Sutra Bhasya

Note: This is an advanced text of Advaita Vedanta.

Brahma Sutras systematizes the philosophy of the Upanishads in 555 aphorisms. The book contains the word-for-word meaning of each sutra under its Sanskrit text followed by a running translation. This is followed by the English translation of Sri Shankaracharya’s commentary on the Sutras. Notes are added to elucidate difficult passages. The contents have been divided topic-wise, and an index of the Sutras in Sanskrit has been added.

YouTube Playlist/Podcast Link will be added soon if found.

Ashtavakra Gita and Avadhut Gita

WARNING: These are the highest undiluted text of non-dual Vedanta. Please DON’T touch these texts if your mind is not prepared. Complete the above-mentioned Introductory texts/Upanishads first, then come to these texts.

Ashtavakra Samhita

Ashtavakra Samhita

This is a short treatise on Advaita Vedanta, ascribed to the great sage Ashtavakra. The teachings of the Ashtavakra Samhita are simple, direct in appeal, and unhesitating in their delivery. It speaks to the heart, and the very reading of it gives even an ordinary person a foretaste of the bliss of freedom. The joy of self-realization is depicted in soul-stirring language which stimulates contemplation.

Ashtavakra Gita by Swami Chinmayananda

Ashtavakra Gita

Ashtavakra Gita is a short treatise on Advaita Vedanta which systematically deals with the mystical experiences of the individual in his flight to transcendental peace and Bliss. The subtle philosophical truths are expounded in the form of a lucid dialogue between the teenage sage Ashtavakra and his royal disciple, the King-seer Janaka.

To Ashtavakra, self-knowledge through direct mystical intuition is the only goal to be reached and experienced in the dynamic silence of one’s own deepest meditation.

Avadhuta Gita

Avadhuta Gita of Dattatreya

The Avadhuta Gita, or the song of a liberated soul, is a text of Vedanta representing extreme Advaita or Non-dualism. It breathes the atmosphere of the highest experience of Brahman. It goes into no philosophical argument to prove the oneness of reality but is content to make the most startling statements, leaving the seeker of truth to imbibe them and be lifted from illusion into the blazing light of Knowledge.

YouTube Playlist/Podcast Links for above mentioned advanced texts will be added soon.

One reply on “Recommended Books for Non-Duality (Advaita Vedanta)”

Thank you for giving this wonderful overview.
It is much appreciated.
Be blessed.

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