Top Indian Yoga gurus
B.K. S. Iyengar
B.K. S. Iyengar is popularly known as Guruji who genuinely explains the meaning of Yoga sutras. He is one of the leading Yoga personalities in the world and popularise yoga across the globe. Yogacharya Iyengar’s style of teaching Yoga is unique and termed as ‘Iyengar Yoga’. B. K. S. Iyengar has command over Yogasanas, in fact, has the authority over asanas.Dr. Iyengar has written many books on Yoga Philosophy such as ‘Light on Yoga’, ‘Light on Pranayama’, ‘Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali’, ‘Patanjali Yoga Sutra Paricay’, etc. He is the recipient of Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan. In a survey of Times Magazine, Iyengar is named as one of the 100 most Influential People in the World in 2004.
Sri K. Pattabhi Jois
Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois was born on 26th July 1915. Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois is one of the multi-faceted Yoga preachers of India and known worldwide for his Ashtanga Yoga. He established the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore. He was the disciple of S.T. Krishnamacharya and his Yogic philosophy revolves around his Guru.
Swami Kuvalayananda is one of the great yoga sages of India. Swami Kuvalayananda was one of the great yoga masters known in India and abroad. During his initial days, he was influenced by Sri Aurobindo. He studies the deep relation between Yoga and the health of individuals and society. To propagate yoga to a large extent, Swami Kuvalayananda established the Kaivalyadhama Institute of Yoga at Lonavala, Pune.
Swami Sivananda Saraswati-Yoga of Synthesis
Swami Sivananda Saraswati is one of the spiritual gurus who spread the deep knowledge of Yoga across India. Swami Sivananda Saraswati founded the Divine Life Society at Rishikesh to disseminate spiritual knowledge. His philosophy is based upon Yoga of Synthesis. He was the author of more than 200 books on Yoga.
Swami Chidananda Saraswati
Swami Chidananda Saraswati is one of the important spiritual sages of India. He was born in 1916 in Tamil Nadu. Chidananda Saraswati was the president of Divine Life Society, Rishikesh. His philosophy of Yoga is based upon Yoga of Synthesis.
Swami Satyananda Saraswati
Swami Satyananda Saraswati was born on 24th December 1923 at Almorah, Uttarakhand. He was a great Indian Yoga guru and yoga teacher. His memorable work is the foundation of ‘Bihar School of Yoga’ and ‘International Yoga Fellowship’ has proved Satyananda’s devotion and dedication to Yoga. He wrote as many as 80 books including Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha. The Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha book is one of the masterpieces in the field of yoga and has been translated into many languages across the world.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was born on 12th January 1918 and one of the great Indian Yoga gurus who is famous across the globe equally. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was the founder of ‘Transcendental Meditation Techniques’. He trained many teachers in ‘Transcendental Meditation and taught Transcendental Meditation Techniques to more than 5 million people across the globe.
Paramahansa Yogananda is one of the pioneer Indian Yoga masters who introduced meditation and Kriya Yoga to the western world through his book ‘Autography of a Yogi’. In his other book The Self-Realisation Fellowship Lessons, Paramahansa Yogananda stressed the realization of God through Yogic practices.
Top Indian spiritual leaders
Maharishi Patanjali is the ‘father of Yoga’ who compiled 195 Yoga Sutras that become the foundation of Yoga philosophy. The commentary on these sutras is called Bhasya. The core essence of Patanjali thought is the eightfold path of Yoga (Ashtanga Yoga) that focussed on healthy living through Yoga. The prominent defender of Patanjali Yoga sutras in the present time is B.K. S. Iyengar.
Sri Aurobindo was one of the brilliant prolific spiritual personalities of India. Sri Aurobindo Ghose was a great yogi, philosopher, and poet. Sri Aurobindo penned down a total of 68 books on different domains of spirituality. His best publication is ‘The Life Divine’, which focuses upon theoretical aspects of Yoga, another one is ‘Synthesis of Yoga’ that throws light on practical facets of Yoga. Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry is a great seat of spiritual practice, which is known as Integral Yoga. Auroville or Aurobindo Ashram spread the spirit of universal brotherhood. He was born in Kolkata on 15th August 1872 and sent to London to study at the age of seven.
Swami Vivekananda was a great socio-spiritual leader and an exponent of Yoga. Swami Vivekananda, the pioneer social reformer whose contribution to the upliftment of Yoga in the western world through lectures and discussion is worthwhile. He stressed how negative thoughts arise out of physiological, psychological, emotional balance through Yoga. Swami Vivekananda’s philosophical work on Yoga is Raja Yoga, Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, and Jnana Yoga. Swami Vivekananda’s important publication on Yoga includes Karma Yoga, Raja Yoga, Vedanta Philosophy: Lectures on Jnana Yoga, Addresses on Bhakti Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Raja Yoga.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is a world-famous spiritual leader who founded the Art of Living Foundation. The main focus of the Art of Living Foundation is to ease stress and social problems. He gave lectures on the art of living throughout the world including the USA, Europe, and other countries. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was born on 13th May 1956 in Tamil Nadu.
Modern Indian Yoga Gurus
Swami Ramdev-Patanjali Yogpeeth
A large part of Yoga awareness among common men both nationally and internationally went to Baba Ramdev. Ramdev has specialization in different forms of pranayama and enables to cure many diseases and ailments including weight loss and lifestyle-related disorders. Baba Ramdev pranayama modules are quite popular as yoga for weight loss. Practicing Yoga at home by watching Yoga program on TV is greatly influenced by Baba Ramdev. It is being practiced all over the country, especially in rural areas too. Baba Ramdev was born in Haryana in 1965 and made Haridwar as Patanjali Yogpeeth and center of Yoga awareness. The spiritual guru is also making various medicines and products related to Ayurveda.
He was influenced by Aurobindo Ghosh booklet Yogik Sadhna that led to his deep affection for yoga and meditation in the caves of the Himalaya. Ramdev’s morning Yoga slot on Aastha TV made Yoga the household name in India.
Many celebrities and politicians both in India and abroad attended his Yoga programs. He has given yoga lectures in the British Parliament, the USA, Japan, United Nations, etc. Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Yogpeeth has acquired a Scottish Isnad for 2 million pounds for an overseas yoga base and yoga expansion. It was due to Ramdev that Harvard University has launched Yoga and Ayurveda in its curriculum.
Baba Ramdev has mastery over Pranayamas such as Bhastrika Pranayama, Kapalbhati, Bahaya, Anulom-Vilom, Bhramri, etc. This is little about biography on Ramdev.
He has been in news due to his political aspiration. Recently, the Uttarakhand government has registered 81 cases against him.
Bikram Choudhury-Bikram Yoga
Bikram Choudhury is one of the most popular yoga fitness gurus. Bikram Choudhary is known all over the world for his unique form of Yoga that is Bikram Yoga. He was born in Kolkata in 1946. There was an interesting story associated with Bikram Chaudhary. Once, the Yoga guru was having a knee injury. Many doctors including those from Europe gave hope of recovery and claimed that he will not walk ever again. His guru Bishnu Ghose cured his knee injury through the power of Yoga. Bikram Yoga or Hot Yoga is famous all over the world. Bikram Yoga is a training module of 26 postures at a high temperature of 105 0F that gradually increased to 130 0F over the course period of nine weeks. This Hot Yoga maintained humidity at 50% and practiced in a room. This form of Yoga provides overall benefits to the entire body.
Bharat Thakur-Artistic Yoga
Bharat Thakur is the leading international known spiritual leader. Bharat Thakur is the founder of Artistic Yoga and conducts Yoga workshops across the world. Bharat Thakur has written many books on Yoga. His authority on Artistic Yoga focuses on the human being through physical and spiritual domains. The main areas of artistic yoga are asana, pranayama, bandha, kriya, shatkarma, mudra, and meditation.
Suneel Singh is a modern Yoga guru who taught yoga philosophy through modern perspectives. Suneel Singh has mastery over asanas and is having a high level of body flexibility. He is known for some unique forms of treatment modalities such as Zodiac Sign, Hasya Yoga and Yoga Chi. Yoga Chi has similarities to meditation. He is a media-friendly person and his yoga programs are being telecast by many TV channels.