Wisdom's Blossoms: Tales of the Saints of India

Overview

Here is a timeless collection of traditional stories that recount the personal spiritual journeys and true acts of selflessness by saints from various religious traditions indigenous to India, including Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, and Sufism. The authors present a diverse selection of these inspirational tales—about both men and women saints, from a variety of time periods, and from all over India—and make them relevant for a modern audience. The stories reveal that, despite their perceived differences,...
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Wisdom's Blossoms: Tales of the Saints of India

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Overview

Here is a timeless collection of traditional stories that recount the personal spiritual journeys and true acts of selflessness by saints from various religious traditions indigenous to India, including Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, and Sufism. The authors present a diverse selection of these inspirational tales—about both men and women saints, from a variety of time periods, and from all over India—and make them relevant for a modern audience. The stories reveal that, despite their perceived differences, the same spiritual principles underlie all the great religious traditions.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This exquisite, poignant, superbly written book will enchant all those who read it into the depths of India's devotional traditions, and bathe them there in the fire of that sacred passion for God that transforms and redeems."—Andrew Harvey, author of The Direct Path

"The stories in Wisdom's Blossoms have been chosen with great love and insight. They will inspire the Western and Eastern reader alike to explore the world of Indian wisdom and spirituality."—Subhash Kak, author of The Astronomical Code of the Rigveda and The Wishing Tree

"Wisdom's Blossoms is a rich and varied collection of inspiring stories from India's oral tradition. Because this book is timeless, universal, and rich with wisdom, every reader will find just the right story to fulfill that special need. A great gift for teachers and students, or a wonderful way to inspire a friend."—Robert Arnett, author of India Unveiled

Publishers Weekly
Glener and Komaragiri present 26 tales of Indian saints, martyrs and other figures of religious inspiration. Affiliated with the transnational Hindu movement known as the Self-Realization Fellowship, both authors have selected broadly appealing stories that include varieties of Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist, Sikh and Jain heroes and heroines. The authors admit that they have scripted traditional stories for dramatic and didactic effect, underscoring the universal values within each tradition. Each tale fits neatly within a short-story model that reads like a fable, culminating in a moral or inspirational insight, and followed by a lovely drawing of an Indian devotional figure. "Tegh Bahadur Helps his Hindu Brothers" describes how the ninth Sikh guru chose death over forcible conversion to Islam, and how his brave beheading at the hands of Aurangzeb inspires "all of India with the courage to resist evil." Bahadur's martyrdom is no less saintly than that depicted in the Jain tale, "The Wedding Feast that Never Was," the story of Prince Arishtanemi's abandonment of his bride and kingdom for the sake of the creatures that were to be slaughtered for the wedding rite. Throughout, themes of nonviolence and individual renunciation underlie the stories. The advantage of this presentation is its accessibility and coherence of style. Yet each story, written in much the same voice, loses something of the great variety of Indian religious traditions, in which tales of saints are sung, chanted, and recounted in many colorful and cacophonous voices. (Nov.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Boston-based Glener and Komaragiri, both members of the Self-Realization Fellowship, have produced an intriguing array of retellings of famous or instructive stories from Indian tradition, dealing with Hindu, Buddhist, and Sufi traditions. Between the stories there are short entries on Indian monuments and deities. While the manner of storytelling is occasionally stilted, many of these tales are not well known in the West and they should be a welcome addition to many libraries. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570628849
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/12/2002
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Sarat Komaragiri was raised in Andhra Pradesh in southern India, and holds masters degrees in literature and education. Over the years, Komaragiri has spent considerable time in ashrams and has studied with monastics of the Self-Realization Fellowship, the religious order founded by Paramahansa Yogananda.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Map of India
1 Upagupta and the Courtesan 3
2 Sitamma Feeds the Poor 8
3 Tegh Bahadur Helps His Hindu Brothers 14
4 The Weaver, the Fakir, and the Pig 23
5 The Wedding Feast That Never Was 27
6 The Buddha and the Bandit 32
7 The Man Who Spat on a Saint 41
8 Two Cloths 46
9 Like Water on a Lotus Leaf 51
10 To the Lover Thou Art Love 56
11 Mirabai Marries Krishna 67
12 A Monk for a Day 75
13 A Leap of Faith 83
14 Vemana Mends His Ways 88
15 Eight Topics of Conversation 95
16 The Flawed Pot 97
17 Of Ledger Books and Liberation 101
18 Milarepa Builds a Tower 106
19 The Governor's Last Day 121
20 Namdev Feeds a Dog 131
21 Ramanuja Disobeys His Guru 135
22 Tulsidas Runs Off to His Wife 141
23 The Might of the Mighty 148
24 Upasena's Last Breath 157
25 Adi Sankara and the Chandala 159
26 Nandanar Waits for Lord Nataraja 164
Notes 175
Select Bibliography 189
Credits 193
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2003

    The 26 Qualities

    What a wonderful book. Each story depicts one of the 26 qualities spoken of in the Bhagavad Gita. Having an example of each makes their meaning and depth much more clear. Many thanks to the authors.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2002

    Great Book

    This is an enjoyable read. The stories are uplifting and at the same time made me very introspective. I really enjoyed the format which is short stories about Indian saints.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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