One of the greatest adepts, teachers, writers, and humanitarians of the 20th century, Swami Rama (1925-1996) is the founder of the Himalayan Institute. Born in Northern India, he was raised from early childhood by the Himalayan sage, Bengali Baba. Under the guidance of his master, he traveled from monastery to monastery and studied with a variety of Himalayan saints and sages, including his grandmaster who was living in a remote region of Tibet. In addition to this intense spiritual training, Swami Rama received higher education in both India and Europe. From 1949 to 1952, he held the prestigious position of Shankaracharya of Karvirpitham in South India. Thereafter, he returned to his master to receive further training at his cave monastery, and finally in 1969, came to the United States where he founded the Himalayan Institute. His best known work, Living With the Himalayan Masters, reveals the many facets of this singular adept and demonstrates his embodiment of the living tradition of the East.
“You cannot live perfectly until you remove the cause of all the kleshas (hindrances to enlightenment) that are deeply rooted in the unconscious. Without rooting out the cause, the effect of the cause will remain, and you will continue to reap the fruits of your actions. And until you understand the cause, you will not be able to help yourself.
If you are performing a karma (an action) and do not know why you are doing that particular action, that karma will continue to motivate you to repeat it. You will be like a machine or robot, living a mindless life. If you chop down a tree, unless you remove all the roots of that tree, after some time many branches will again start to come out of the tree stump. Sometimes you may think you have conquered your internal states, but without rooting out all the causes, you will not be able to control your destiny.”
- Swami Rama in SADHANA The Path to Enlightenment page 36
Swami Veda Bharati took his Mahasamadhi July 14, 2015. He holds the prestigious title of Mahamandaleshwara in the Swami order of monks. Swami Veda was also the Chancellor of HIHT University, Dehradun, which was established by Master Swami Rama. He authored approximately 18 books on Indian spirituality including a 1500 page comprehensive commentary on two of the four chapters of Patanjali’s Yoga-sutras. Before taking the vows of Swamihood in 1992, Swami Veda Bharati was known as Dr. Usharbudh Arya.
"See the beauty of the Self, the majesty of the Self. The Self is the treasure in the adobe hut of your body. It is the magnetic current in a lump of black iron, the imploding energy in a molecule. Know the light of this Self.
Do not say: "I am alive." Say: "I am the life-force." Do not say: "I am conscious." Say: "I am the consciousness." For life is not a state, nor consciousness a process. The life and consciousness is one energy and that is you, the Self. The Self vibrates, so it magnetises. The Self shines, so it illuminates.
Sing, then, the song of the glory of Self: "I am Self. I have turned glass beads into gleaming, loving, glancing, crying and laughing eyes. I have made a piece of leather into an articulate tongue. What would have been dry kindling has become bones because I am present. Two gaping holes breathe my spirit and become nostrils. And when I am gone, this adobe hut crumbles while I, who am the gems of the whole universe, beautify a palace elsewhere."
Say, too, to your mind: "Brother mind, we have quite a journey together. I know you are mind, do you care to know me? I am the self-luminous Self."
This day I wish all luminosity to you."
- Swami Veda Bharati in The Light of Ten Thousand Suns page 95