Swami Satchidananda died yesterday in India at the age of 88.
By the time that I was fortunate enough to have met him at his ashram, he was already old and feeble...bordering on senile, I'd say. My personal interactions with him were not extensive or particularly memorable...he just seemed like a nice man.
However, his teaching and his work have had a profound influence on my life and the lives of countless others. He embodied selfless service (karma yoga) and true ecumenicalism and tolerance. He wasn't the proverbial guru with ten Rolls Royces (although he did have an old pink Cadillac that he loved to tool around in), he lived a simple life and taught his powerful, simple methods by example. His teachings were for everyone.
I don't know what would have become of me if I hadn't discovered Integral Yoga back in 1991, because that's where I really started to feel in my bones all the concepts that other spiritual methods only hinted at. It introduced me to a peace I'd never felt before, and made me realize that shaanthi--inner peace--has nothing to do with outer circumstances, and everything to do with service and intention and being in the moment.
My blessings to Swamiji. May he rest in the peace that he so tirelessly worked to bring to our li'l world.
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