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Balance

The Heart and Science of Yoga: A Blueprint for Peace, Happiness and Freedom from Fear

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Leonard Perlmutter with Jenness Cortez Perlmutter.
AMI Publishers; www.amipublishers.org.

This 500-page treatise on Life, the Universe, and Everything offers much worthwhile, thought-provoking reading—some of it sober, some of it playful, all of it informed by 30 years of diligent study. Besides delineating the basics of yoga’s eight limbs, the Perlmutters delve into Ayurveda, “the power of the mind,” and philosophical territory rarely explored in yoga guides, such as an examination of “The Roots of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.” They tackle the big metaphysical questions, such as “Where is God?” and why “Elvis is Guru.”

It’s a sweeping, enthralling vision of how to live an integrated life, but it’s also a lot to swallow. The Perlmutters—disciples of the late Swami Rama and founders of the American Meditation Institute for Yoga Science and Philosophy in Averill Park, New York—could have narrowed their focus a bit; a leaner and more digestible work might have served readers better.