Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Swami Sivananda

“Swami Sivananda’s life was a radiant example of service to humanity, both during his years as a doctor and later as a world-renowned sage and jivanmukta (enlightened being.) To serve all, to love all, to mix with all and to see God in all beings were the ideals that he taught and lived by.
Although fun loving and mischievous, he was loving and generous with a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta (the school of thought based primarily on the Upanishads; the philosophy of oneness.) He had an innate feeling of unity with all and an eagerness to serve.
Firstly becoming a doctor and moving to Malaysia to serve the poor there, editing a health journal and wrote extensively on many health issues. However he felt a spiritual calling returning to India and finding his Guru Swami Vishwananda, in Rishikesh within the Himalayas in 1924. Here he practiced intense austerities and spent largely the next 7 years in meditation. Slowly disciples started to gather around him, he started to travel to Sri Lanka and around India stirring the hearts and souls of thousands. He delivered lectures, chanting and meditation lessons, teaching people how to keep strong and healthy by practising yoga asanas, pranayama and kriyas. In Rishikesh an increasing amount of followers congregated and the first Sivananda ashram grew up around him. Swami Sivananda’s teaching crystallised the basic tenets of all religions, combining all yoga paths into one, summed up as ‘serve, love, give, purify, meditate, realise.’ His own life was a shinning example of the ideal of selfless service, of karma yoga, to him all work was sacred and no task was too menial. He searched tirelessly for opportunities to serve and to help others, never postponing what needed to be done. Swami Sivananda entered MahaSamadhi (left his physical body) on July 14th, 1963.”
Text taken from the Sivananda Teacher Training Manual.
Om shanti :-)

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