A compendium of the basic teachings of Swami Muktananda, a ""perfectly realized"" Siddha master from South India who has attracted a large American following in recent years. Edited from transcripts of his talks in the US, the ""essays""--which are more like Eastern sermons, larded with exemplary stories--treat such central themes as the role of the Guru, meditation, the function of the Mantra, and renunciation. Muktananda teaches that at root each person is God, the all-pervading Self, and that this realization--which is the liberating goal of existence--comes through meditation, chanting, and contact with the Guru, who embodies the divine energy (shakti) which is our essential reality. For him, differences between religions and between spiritual and secular life matter little, since the truth is finally one and the way to it our only real task. Aimed primarily at devotees and other sympathetic seekers, these seemingly platitudinous and imperial directions on how to live, rounded off by answers to obsequious and occasionally inane questions (""If you're God-realized, why can't you grow back your teeth?""), may well be rich in meaning for those who, like Paul Zweig, have experienced firsthand how everything about ""Baba"" is ""an act of instruction."" Zweig's elegantly pious introduction, a helpful explanatory after-word by a disciple named Shankar, and a glossary complete the collection. A specialist in the ""disease of existence"" displaying his remedies.