Gangaji Teaches Self Realization through the Practice of Self Inquiry

Gangaji is a spiritual teacher and author of self improvement books on the subject of self realization.

She teaches a technique called self inquiry to get people to turn inwards to silence and discover the true nature of themselves and reality.

The Life of Gangaji

Gangaji was born on June 11, 1942 in Texas. She was given the name Merle Antoinette Roberson and was called Toni. She grew up in Mississippi and moved to San Francisco in 1972 after getting married and having a child. Shortly thereafter, she became divorced and began her spiritual search.

She practiced Vipassana and Zen meditation, and took Bodhisattva vows. She became an acupuncturist and helped at a Tibetan Buddhist meditation center in San Francisco.
In 1989, her spiritual pursuits took her to Hawaii when she studied with Andrew Cohen for two months. After that she traveled to India to meet Papaji and counts that as one of the most extraordinary events in her life. Papaji bestowed her with the name Gangaji and asked her to teach others about her spiritual realizations.

The Teachings of Gangaji

Gangaji teaches others through her self improvement books and workshops.

She explains the truth of who we are can be realized once we stop searching for it. She teaches we already have everything we need and are already at peace, and the way to realize that is to be still and practice self inquiry.

Self inquiry is a practice taught to her by Papaji who learned it from the great spiritual teacher, Ramana Marharshi. It is the practice of turning the mind inward for answers rather than seeking answers outwardly.

The teachings of Gangaji are said to be consistent with the Hindu philosophy of Advanta Vedanta but they are not specific to any religion and freely offered to all spiritual seekers.

Self Improvement Books by Gangaji

• "You are That" was published in 1995 and is available today as a book and Kindle ebook (from In this work, Gangaji encourages readers to examine themselves and question their stories to get the truth of reality and bypass the dramas that rob them of serenity and spiritual growth. This is an excellent book for those who find it difficult to process the teachings of Papaji or Ramana Marharshi.

• "Freedom & Resolve: The Living Edge of Surrender" was published in 1999. This is a small book packed with wisdom that speaks to the hearts of westerners in a way that makes it easier for them to understand eastern teachings. In this book, she encourages readers to awaken from the trances they believe is their lives and become free through the practice of self inquiry.

• "Just Like You, An Autobiography" was published in 2003. In this book, Gangaji tells the story of her life and how she overcame adversity to achieve peace and freedom. The book includes an autobiography, Q & A, and copies of correspondence from her spiritual teachers. Gangaji explains the purpose of the book is to teach readers she is just like them and they can be just like her once they stop their stories of suffering and embrace truth.

• "The Diamond in Your Pocket: Discovering Your True Radiance" is one of the more popular self improvement books by the author. It was published in 2007 and is also available as an audio book. In this book, Gangaji teaches readers how to quiet the mind. She explains it is impossible to find happiness by chasing it. We must become still and discover it has existed in us all along.

• "Hidden Treasure: Uncovering the Truth in Your Life Story" was published in 2011 and can also be read as a Kindle ebook. In this book, Gangaji teaches that we believe life stories that are false dramas, and once we uncover the truth about ourselves, then we can finally reach a state of deep peace and experience simple 'being' rather than constantly chasing and doing.

The Work of Gangaji Today

Gangaji runs the Gangaji Foundation which was founded in 1993 and supports her work. The foundation is in Ashland, Oregon where Gangaji lives with her husband, Eli Jaxon-Bear, also a spiritual teacher.

Her mission is to spread the teachings of self realization as taught by Ramana Marharshi and Papaji.

To that end, she holds workshops all around the world, produces videos, publishes self improvement books and audio programs, hosts a website, and operates outreach programs including one for prison inmates.

Her videos can be seen on many public access television stations around the country thanks to her followers who submit them to local stations.

In addition to writing books, Gangaji has had several articles published, and has been interviewed in several magazines.

In 2012 she was named to the Watkins' Mind Body and Spirit magazine's list of the 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People.

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