Publications written or edited by Shri Raghavan Iyer

Institute of World Culture Series

The Institute of World Culture, founded on July 4, 1976 (Bicentennial), launched influential publications to generate a continuing enquiry into the prospects and possibilities, the conditions and requirements, of the world civilization of the future. Publications included analyses of contemporary social structures, contributions to philosophic and literary thought, as well as classic reprints from Plato, ancient Indian psychology, Edward Bellamy and Leo Tolstoy. They invite the reader to rethink and renew a vital sense of participation in the global inheritance of humanity and the emerging cosmopolis.


The Ladder of Love

The Banquet contains Plato’s celebrated dialogue on love and the beautiful, sometimes called the Symposium, and two insightful essays on it. The dialogue is rendered in an elegant, intuitive manner by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

“The Doctrine of Eros in Plato’s Symposium” by F.M. Cornford shows how eros can be elevated from its expression as passion into the principle of balance between competing wants and desires, and he points to the ideal of serene transcendence of the specific fixation of eros. “The Symposium” by A.E. Taylor is a perceptive commentary which explores the subtle nuances of the argument and helps the contemporary reader to appreciate the coherence and sublimity of the dialogue.


Foresight and Social Regeneration

by Edward Bellamy

The Religion of Solidarity contains fourteen imaginative and thought-provoking essays by the 19th century visionary who wrote Looking Backward. The title essay, written when Bellamy was 24, suggests the value of introspection, the possibility of self-transcendence and the experience of human solidarity and harmony with the natural world. Other essays explore the consequences of lack of foresight, the meaning and scope of friendship and the creative use of leisure in developing human potential. Amplification of Bellamy’s influential vision of an egalitarian and just society depicted in Looking Backward is offered in several essays on the Nationalist Programme. This provocative plan for a non-violent, economic revolution was studied and promoted by clubs formed all over the United States in the late 19th century.


by Leo Tolstoy

In this moving essay Leo Tolstoy reveals the inspiration for his unusual life and his brilliant novels and stories. He shows how the committed Christian brings the doctrine of love as taught by Jesus into a world torn by war and strife. Tolstoy’s appeal for non-violence in thought and action is a classic statement which appeals to believer and agnostic alike.

Available through Concord Grove Press


The Political Theory of British Imperialism

by Raghavan Iyer

Utilitarianism and All That deftly unravels the main strands of British imperial policy in India from Hastings to Attlee. This brilliant work, first published by Chatto & Windus, London, in 1960, has already become an international classic.

Available through Concord Grove Press


A Visionary Mystery 

Anonymously published well over a century ago, this mysterious work tells the timeless tale of Rama, whose rule constituted the Golden Age. In addition to recounting central portions of the ancient legend, the author explains its profound spiritual meaning for people of all cultures and beliefs.

Available through Concord Grove Press



by Raghavan Iyer

These seminal essays by Raghavan Iyer explore the classical view of humanity’s place in the cosmos and indicate what the contemporary individual must do to release the fullest potential. “Individuation” extends the significant contribution of Abraham Maslow in providing a portrait of the self-actualizing person. “The Tempest – A Mystery Play” is an insightful interpretation of Shakespeare’s final play with its spectrum of human longings. “The Society of the Future” is a radical and fundamental rethinking of the social structure in relation to human fulfilment.

Available through Concord Grove Press



America and the Global Community Towards the Year 2000

by Raghavan Iyer

 Invoking the founding motto of the United States (“A New Order of the Ages”), Professor Iyer offers a timely reflection on America and the globe in the coming decades. “The New Learning” sets forth thought-provoking proposals on lifelong learning, a national income floor and America’s contribution to the world community. “The Emerging Cosmopolis” explores the potentials of the present which intimate the gradual emergence of a true global community. The basic conclusions of the national study The Global 2000 Report to the President are included.


The Mystical Writings of G.W. Russell-A.E.
edited and introduced by Raghavan and Nandini Iyer
This volume, first published in 1988, contains the whole of George William Russell’s writings on the subject of mysticism. Besides his long study of Hindu and Theosophical teachings, they derive from his own visionary abilities and are of major importance to all who are interested in the unseen worlds. Not only are The Candle of Vision, Song and Its Fountains, The Avatars, The Interpreters and Imaginations and Reveries reprinted here, but so also are all his contributions to The Irish Theosophist and other esoteric journals, his introductions to and reviews of books and interviews. Also included is ‘The Return’, a hitherto unpublished short work, together with an introductory note by Monk Gibbon.
An extensive introduction and copious notes by Raghavan and Nandini Iyer greatly increases the value to the inquiring reader.


by Raghavan Iyer
This selection of Gandhi’s writings, taken from his letters, articles, and books, represents the complex cross-section of his thought, from his early years as a young barrister freshly called to the bar in London, to his final days as sage and counsel to newly independent India. The collection not only reveals the growth of Gandhi’s ideas but also their essential internal integrity and consistency. It illustrates various facets of his personality— gentle and forcefully intellectual, ascetic mystic and man of action, humorous and intensely demanding of his followers. The common thread that runs through is the deep humanity of the man and his rich vein of genuine spirituality. This book is essential reading for students and teachers of Indian history, politics, and sociology and will also appeal to all those interested in learning more about Gandhi and his times.


A Symposium on the Historical Encounters and the Changing Attitudes of the Peoples of the East and the West

edited by Raghavan Iyer

In 1959, as part of UNESCO’s major project of East-West understanding, Raghavan Iyer and Arnold Toynbee were asked to participate in a radio broadcast dialogue undertaking a constructive appraisal of the barriers and bonds of mutual understanding between Asia and the West. A symposium was then formed, inviting a number of authors to each compose an essay commenting on the themes and issues presented. What was collected and set down in this book was intended as material for an inquiry that may be pursued in schools and universities or by institutions. A gracious foreword by the XIV Dalai Lama blesses the undertaking and a transcript of the original dialogue is included as appendix. 

May be available through various outlets.