Over fifteen years ago in an ashram in South India, the author, Jack Hawley, asked me to read a pre-publication manuscript of this book, "Roadmaps to Self-Realization," and to write a recommendation for it if I liked it. I had known Jack for a few years and respected his kindness, integrity, goodness, spiritual wisdom, and friendly open affable manner. (Since that time my respect and friendship for him and his dear wife, Louise, has only deepened.) When I opened the book and began to read I was amazed at how he had turned the teachings of the Bhagavad-Gita into a spiritual self-diagnostic manual using only the words of Krishna. With careful reading, the "reader-participants" (as Jack Hawley refers to them), can figure out for themselves where they are on the path of spiritual progress towards Self-Realization and what they need to work on next.
Those peace lovers who are unfamiliar with the Bhagavad-Gita, may be surprised that this classic spiritual text which is on par with Jesus's Sermon on the Mount, and the Buddha's Dhammapada, starts out with Krishna telling his student Arjuna why he must fight in the coming great battle. Why the battle? It is a long story as told in the Indian epic: The Mahabharata. But for us here, the point is to focus on how Krishna uses this unique opportunity to teach Arjuna how to change his life's perspective so that he does the right thing. And in the process he also teaches the rest of us how to align our spiritual lives so that we can merge our lives and consciousness with GOD's.
So don't let the fact that this great spiritual classic starts with Krishna encouraging Arjuna to fight in a battle. If you read just a few more pages (worksheets) you will find one of the most profound spiritual teachings on the planet unfolding before you. And if you continue to the end you will be greatly rewarded with a new way of looking at life and a new, happier, more spiritually successful way of living.
I suggest that you start with Worksheet #40: "Being a Most Loved Devotee". It gives the essence of the entire Bhagavad-Gita on one page and allows you to instantly and easily start appraising where you are on your own unique spiritual path and where you can go from here. Just use a sheet of paper and pen or pencil to do the exercises. Then go back to Worksheet #1 and begin going through each one in a step-by-step fashion. By the way, Worksheet #1 is unique because it is Arjuna speaking, rather than Krishna. This is because the Bhagavad-Gita starts with Arjuna's anguished questions to Krishna moments before a great battle is about to begin between those defending fairness, justice and kindness and those who wish to cast it aside for personal gain. And because some of Arjuna's relatives are on the opposing, selfish side, he is understandably reluctant to enter the battle. So his agonizing questions are easy for us to relate to. But, if for some reason the first worksheet doesn't appeal to you, don't let that stop you. All the other worksheets are the teachings of Krishna. If any given page/worksheet doesn't appeal to you just go on to the next one. Feel free to skip around and do whatever work sheet appeals to you in the moment. Also, if you know other people who might be interested in these topics, you might want to create a study group so you can all get together once a week to discuss a specific worksheet. You will be surprised at how much you grow in your own spiritual understanding of yourself by studying these worksheets either alone or with friends.
May you be blessed with Krishna's grace and divine illumination, and may you grow in spiritual confidence, courage, wisdom, self-mastery, happiness and inner peace.
Thank you Jack for this precious gift to humanity and for letting me help to make it available to a worldwide audience through this website.
– Bill Gaum,
Editor of this website: www.ManyPathsLeadToGOD.com
PS: Some of the worksheets will probably end up being your favorite ones. So it might be a good idea to "Bookmark" them as "Favorites" so you can easily come back to them again and again in the future to see how much spiritual progress you're making. Below are a list of my current favorite worksheets. Your favorite ones might be different and of course some will change over time.
Worksheet 40: Being a Most Loved Devotee (A Devotee's Qualities)
Worksheet 42: Be a Knower of the Field (Appraising Our Virtues)
Worksheet 62: How One Becomes Perfect (Self-Appraisal)
Worksheet 51: Living a Divine Life (Appraising Our Divine Traits)
Worksheet 31: You Get What You Seek (What am I Seeking - God or the World?)
Worksheet 19: Be an In-the-World Yogi (Yogi Scale Self Assessment)
Worksheet 20: Spiritual Work Is Never Wasted (Our Life Inventory)
Worksheet 21: Only One In Many Thousands (Where Am I…?)
Worksheet 22: Knowing Me, Divinity (Knowing God)
Worksheet 37: Be Saturated With Love (Bhakti Yoga: Becoming One with God Through Devotion)
Worksheet 39: Knowing the Order of Devotion (What kind of devotion am I?)
Worksheet 64: The Highest of Truths (Surrender) (How Surrendered to God am I?)