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A Peaceful Goodbye

January 3, 2010

A Peaceful Goodbye

By Sangeeta and Chaitanyananda

Swami Satyananda Saraswati was born in Almora, in the Himalayan foothills. His parents were large landowners. As a young child he experienced spontaneous spiritual experiences. In 1943 at nineteen, Swami Satyananda came to live and take sannyasa from Swami Sivananda at Sivananda Ashram in Rishikesh. There he served in different departments at the Ashram for over 12 years. He edited the ashram’s Hindi journal, wrote various articles and composed poems in both Hindi and Sanskrit. He wrote a translation and commentary in the English language of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad by Swami Sivananda. Upon leaving the ashram, he wandered through India, Afghanistan, Nepal, Burma and Ceylon for the next 8 years, extending his knowledge of spiritual practices. He eventually found his way to Munger, Bihar. After establishing himself there, in 1963 he founded the International Yoga Fellowship and the Bihar School of Yoga a year later. He taught yoga globally for the next twenty years and authored a number of books. In 1988, he retired from active involvement in yoga teaching and handed active work of his Ashram to his disciple Swami Niranjanananda.

Satyananda then left the Bihar ashram to become a wondering monk. During this time he received a mandate from God to fulfill his late Guru’s mission of ‘serve, love and give’ and he moved to Rikhia, a destitute district in India, where he established a powerful ashram there that is dedicated to those ideals. Paramahamsaji took Maha Samadhi on December the 5th 2009. Although all his disciples and admirers mourn his physical absence, his love, compassion, and spirituality will forever remain as lights and guides on our path.

“Now that our time together is drawing to a close, I want to assure you that all your questions can be answered by you yourself. The master is within you. Sit down as a disciple underneath the tree of wisdom that is within, and close your eyes. Put all your questions in a file and lock them in the cupboard for the time being. Develop your consciousness, widen your horizons and awaken your intuition. Just as we are giving replies to your questions, you will find that the replies to your questions can be found within, or maybe you won’t have any more questions.”  – Swami Satyananda Saraswati

About Swami Pragyamurti:

Swami Pragyamurti is a direct disciple of Swami Satyananda and is the head of the Satyananda Yoga centre in London. She has dedicated herself to the teaching of yoga to all who need it and this has led her to become one of the forerunners in teaching yoga to persons living with HIV/AIDS. She also teaches yoga in prisons. In February 2010 we are looking forward to what will be her third trip to South Africa. Swami Pragyamurti has a wealth of experience and will be sharing some more gems of yogic wisdom with us in her upcoming courses and the retreat. Please see for details.

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