Self Enquiry: A Testimony

Michael J. Vincent introduces his new book, an examination of the practice and benefits of self enquiry

by Michael J. Vincent

My purpose in writing this book is twofold. Firstly, I will use my life story to illustrate how experience, no matter how trivial or intense and life-changing, becomes a deep well of learning for us to draw upon in our search for Truth.

Secondly, I wish to demonstrate how the Practice of Self Enquiry becomes a companion on our life’s journey and everything we experience. I wish to show how we can process and understand this experience, through the Practice, using it as a valuable tool in recognising false identity, quietening the mind-driven anxieties, doubts and fears that grow along the way, so moving us to a place of peace, fulfilment and positive action.

As I write today, at the dawn of a decade of ominous warnings of imminent extinction, there has never been a more urgent need to know who we are equipped with the ability to change potential despair into positive action. In a world confronted with social, political and environmental upheaval – as ancient wisdom and the warnings of Mother Earth, long ignored, become our reality – the journey into Truth is potentially more challenging than it has ever been; and it has never been more important.

Omaha Sunrise by Michael J. Vincent

In essence this book is a description of my journey through life accompanied by the Practice of Self Enquiry, a Practice I was practising long before I realised I was so doing. I know it works otherwise I would have no wish to share it with you. This is my testimony to Self Enquiry.

As events unfolded at the end of 2019 and into 2020 completing this book took on an added urgency. I believe Self Enquiry to be a powerful tool to have in our self-help cupboard as we struggle to come to terms with a painful present and an uncertain future. We are all now presented with great challenges as we reassess our relationship with each other and this precious Earth.

 The book ends with a chapter devoted to the practise of Self Enquiry, a simple, jargon-free description that gives us, most directly, the means to decode and understand the questions and answers life presents to us. No doctrine; no belief system; not a crutch, mask or sticking plaster; Self Enquiry is a profound, radical and powerful Practice with one clear message: believe in yourself.

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Born in Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk in 1949 Michael J. Vincent has been a painter and writer throughout his life. His inspiration is found in nature, in front of the living, vibrant landscape where painting becomes both a connection to our precious Mother Earth and an act of deep meditation.

A lifelong interest in meditation culminated in a deepening understanding of Self Enquiry. His first book on this ancient and profound Practice was published in 2010, followed by a second book in 2016. He has introduced this Practice to many groups and individuals notably over the last 10 years.

Michael now lives in Woolavington near Glastonbury with his daughter Jennifer and their rescue greyhounds. Although “retired” he continues to write, paint and meditate and meet with individuals and small groups keen to learn more of the Practice and his work.




Self Enquiry: A Testimony by Michael J. Vincent, published by Matador, paperback, 200 pages

All artwork featured is copyright of Michael J. Vincent.

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