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Swami Yogeshwarananda


Swami Yogeshwarananda

Swami Yogeshwarananda Saraswati was formerly known as Brahmachari Vyas Deva Ji. He was born in 1887. He left his home at the tender age of fourteen in search of knowledge and self-realisation. The young brahmachari spent the early years of his life in the study of Sanskrit and mastering the scriptural lore. He then followed the path of the ancient Rishis of the Himalayas and practised the most difficult tapasya and yogic sadhana while continuing the search of a real guru who could lead him to the final goal. He came across a number of ascetics about who one reads only in the scriptures, but his search came to an end only when he met Avadhuta Swami Atmananda Ji, who had then returned from Tibet.

By constant and dedicated practice of meditation he experienced various types of Samadhi, some of them lasting for several days, which culminated in his gaining knowledge of self-realisation, origin and dissolution of cosmos and the goal of human existence. At the request of his guru, he wrote down the esoteric knowledge, which used to pass from guru to disciple through personal relationship and which sometimes required not only a whole lifetime, but several lives, in a series of books.

Swami Yogeshwarananda Ji never accepted anything before he had experienced it himself. As Abu Hamid alGhazali (1058-1152) once said, "Reason is God's scale on earth." His willpower was extremely strong. A given word could not be broken. To him, it was as well holy as a rule of life. He once said about himself: "I am as soft as a flower, but as hard as a rock." He taught Yoga in the traditional way: rather by silence and concentration than by verbal teaching. Which does not remove the fact that he wrote several books (see below).

As a preparation to meditation Swamiji also practised and perfected Hatha Yoga. On the basis of his practice and the classical literature, he has devised about four hundred asanas and sixty pranayamas, which have been explained in his book "Bahiranga Yoga" (First Steps to Higher Yoga). Most of the yoga enthusiasts, particularly in the West, perhaps know only this part of Yoga, which in fact is only a means to higher yoga.

Since the time of his realisation, Swamiji devoted himself to imparting the invaluable knowledge gained by him to aspirants in India and abroad. He established ashrams at Gangotri (near the source of the River Ganga), at Uttarkashi (a little lower down on the bank of the Ganga), at Rishikesh (where the Ganga leaves the mountains) and at Pahalgam (altitude 7500') in Kashmir - where I had the good fortune to stay for three weeks in 1975. There is also an ashram at Delhi, established in 1978, mainly for the publication of Swamiji's books and to serve his many disciples in Delhi and nearby areas. To spread his knowledge, Swami Yogeshwarananda went round the world three times. In May 1973 he stayed for a week in our residence. He addressed the pupils of our Yogaschool and at their request, demonstrated some asanas. He was 86 at that time, but rest assured not a few of our pupils felt they had still a long way to go!

He passed into mahasamadhi on 23rd April 1985.

I visited his Mahasamadhi Shrine in Rishikesh, India, in March 1999.

Yoga Niketan Trust India

Yoga Niketan Belgium

Books written by Swami Yogeshwarananda

  • Atma Vijnana - Science of Soul - De Wetenschap der Ziel (Ankh-Hermes)
  • Bahiranga Yoga - First Steps to Higher Yoga
  • Brahma Vijnana - Science of Divinity
  • Essential colourlessness of the Absolute - Nirguna Brahma
  • Prana Vijnana - Science of Vital Force

His books can be ordered at Yoga Niketan Trust, India

And have a look here as well.

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Last modified: April 06, 2011