TC 237: Awake: The Life of Yogananda
In this episode Robin and regulars Jamie and Gloria discuss the biographical movie “Awake: The Life of Yogananda“. Paramahansa (a title of honor meaning “Supreme Swan”) Yogananda (signifying bliss, ananda, through divine union, yoga) was instrumental in introducing Yoga and meditation in the U.S. The young swami arrived in Boston in September 1920. His first speech, made to the International Congress of Religious Liberals, was on “The Science of Religion,” and was enthusiastically received. That same year he founded Self-Realization Fellowship to disseminate worldwide his teachings on India’s ancient science and philosophy of Yoga and its time-honored tradition of meditation.
Yogananda emphasized the underlying unity of the world’s great religions, and taught universally applicable methods for attaining direct personal experience of God. To serious students of his teachings he taught the soul-awakening techniques of Kriya Yoga, initiating more than 100,000 men and women during his thirty years in the West.
Yogananda’s life story was published in 1946 and is a perennial best seller. It is widely regarded as a modern spiritual classic.
We previously featured an interview with Rev. Alan Pritz, author of Meditation as a Way of Life: Philosophy and Practice, a wonderful guidebook to meditation and spiritual practice. Alan’s book is based on the work of Paramahansa Yogananda, so we were very excited to learn that a movie had been released about Yogananda’s life and work.
Trailer for the movie:
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