Yama and niyama (restraints and observances) are aids to purification. They help to make the sadhana simpler. If they are neglected, many hurdles crop up during sadhana and it takes a very long time to up-root these evils.

To save time and energy, it is necessary that one must resort to yama and niyama


—Swami Kripalvananda

Ma Om Shanti

Why aren’t there more female yogis?

After reaching the first chakra, I understand that the male and female principles are one, but what about while you are purifying nature, the fact that there is a male or female. Does that make a difference in the sadhana or the energy or the purification? Why don’t the books show females or yoginis?

GURUJI: There are differences and changes in the sadhanas of men and women, yet the result is the same. There have in the past in India been great female yoginis, and they have been comparable to great, great yogis. But the reason for that was the time and the quality for the higher living. At that time India was of the highest level; that is why India had the best yoginis at that time. Even today they say Sita Ram; Sita is first, Ram is second.

The name of Ram is at the end and the name of Sita is first. But this is an ordinary way of explaining. Whether you are in the body of the male or female, it all goes into prakriti, all in the principle of nature. Only the soul is purusha. Only Krishna is purusha. Only one purusha. Only one male; that is Atman. Everything else is female. Male or female; it makes no difference.

When purifying, both have to work through that nature or principle. If the women are of the highest nature, then only the great men are born. The great man is the representative of the highest women. In all religious ceremonies in India, women are always in the front.


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Message to Renunciants


The light of renunciation can be lit and it can be put out also. So that this light may not be put off, you have to stay awake for all of your life. As soon as you fall asleep, lose your wakefulness; the light will be turned off.

This Divine Light is the life.

As long as you have not arrived at the Divine lotus feet of the Lord, you have to keep up in your pilgrimage, your journey to the Divine.

You have not to be tired.
You must be patient.
You are not to lose your enthusiasm or be weak.

This light is the light of knowledge Divine. It is the light of love and the light of austerities. One who holds this Divine Light has their Guru and the Lord in their heart.

You have to become that light and continuously remain burning. This burning itself, is the sadhana – it is the tapa. I pray to the Lord so that our journey together may reach to the gate of the Lord. The Lord is leader of us all.

He is the one who is taking us From the Untruth to the Truth
From the Darkness to the Light
From the Death to Immortality

At His feet we bow down millions and millions of times.
You have my blessings.
Your beloved Dadaji, Kripalu


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My Gurudeva, I Bow to Thee…

Swami Kripalvananda’s words of Love and Appreciation have been used as the introduction in all published Asana and Mudra books beginning in 1952.


Oh God, as I observe your beautiful feet adorned with flowers and sandalwood paste, my heart is satisfied. As I observe the heavenly aura of your lotus-like face, I fall into a trance since I cannot cope with the flood of joy.

Oh God of Grace, with what words can I pray to you? As I select the bouquet of words and gaze at them, I am disappointed while thinking, “How can I offer these insignificant flowers at your feet? There is no beauty in them, there is no tenderness in them, they don’t even have any fragrance!” Oh God! These bouquets of poems in the garden of my intellect have never blossomed. They are like a dry desert. Should I remain silent? Even though my words are like dried leaves, I offer them unto your lotus feet, as my heart is full of love.

Today, as I dedicate this book at your feet, I vividly recollect in my heart the blissful incident of meeting you. Filled with the agony of the physical world and frustrated by its uninteresting life, that day when I came to you to seek a blissful shelter, my heart was covered with darkness of disappointments and my eyes were full of tears. As I reached for your Darshana, I came to you with faltering feet and an awkward gait, because I did not succeed in obtaining material happiness. I had lost my faith in God, in my prayers and worship of Him. In due time, since I could not fulfill my aspirations, I became frustrated. I ignored the Truth and religious preaching’s considering them to be the monologues of lunatic prophets.

Blinded by my ego, I adopted cunningness for righteousness as an ideal of life. When I found it difficult to achieve fame and wealth, I thought the kindness and Grace of God were the imaginations of ignorant men. In the end, after having been defeated in life, I heard a continuous gentle, sweet peaceful sound from the depth of my heart. I became under the spell of the strength of it, and came face to face with you.

Oh image of Love, as I saw your moon like face, my heart was resplendent with the glory of pure and infinite hope, my eyes were filled with infinite joy and my limbs were ignited with infinite enthusiasm. Dear father, I ran and laid down at your lotus feet, and through my tears I emptied my heart which was filled with the sufferings of life.

Oh compassionate father! You bent down low and helped me stand up and put me to your heart and gave me the gift of love. This was the highest spiritual wealth. You gave me shelter and kept me at your feet. Inspired by your loving emotions, you taught me the Eternal Knowledge, but I was unqualified to receive it and made no effort to incorporate it into my life at that time. Whenever I fell short at achieving those high ideals you never showed me anger or hatred, but gave me your Grace. You gave me support when I had none and regarded me as your own.

Oh King of Gurus, to me you are the Creator, The Sustainer, The Destroyer of all life. You are the Supreme Life Force and the Supreme Truth. You are truly God, personal and impersonal, and you are truly my everything. Lord, I see you everywhere I look. Take pity and bless me so that I can see nothing but you in everything.

Oh greatest of all teachers, this book is due to you. It is your gift because I put it together with your guidance. May not praise or criticism bring pride or disappointment to me.

I bow before Thee…
Your endearing child,


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Lord Shiva is a Master Performer…


Lord Shiva is a master performer. He is a master of music and dance. Another master of music and dance is Lord Krishna. Both of them have taught me how to dance. For many years, I danced spontaneously in my sadhana. Once I danced every day for six months, ten hours a day. Sometimes I became unconscious and fell down. Then I would wake up and start dancing again. This was all a part of meditation, so it was more than just dance, of course. There was a purpose for it in sadhana.

Music, literature, and yoga sadhana have taken every minute, day, month, and year of my life.


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Bapuji’s Farewell Speech

Summit Station, Pennsylvania – September 27, 1981


Beloved Children, Jai Bhagwan with Love

I came to America solely for the purpose of meeting you all and I imagined that I would stay here for only nine months. But today, four and a quarter years have passed away. I have stayed here longer than I had anticipated. During my stay here, I have had the good fortune of bathing in the lake of your love and drinking its waters daily. I have felt these four and a quarter years to be like four and a quarter days. I have always experienced happiness with your selfless service. With the grace of God, I have not found any flaws in that service. I consider the collective love of every one of you as the love of the Lord Himself. For me, it is a divine gift of love.

I have always considered Amrit as my own son. During my stay here, for four and a quarter years, he has never displeased me. He has loved me for many years with faith, and I have also loved him deeply. His pure love is one of my sources of satisfaction. Urmilla has also served me with love. There has never been any ebb in her enthusiasm.

Today the long and sweet dream of four and a quarter years has come to an end. On the Guru Purnima celebration, I had declared that I’ll be going into seclusion. According to that decision, I am going into more restrictive seclusion. I beg your permission to say farewell. I belong to the Lord, and I deeply pray I will always belong to Him.

Beloved children, do not give up your virtuous conduct and self-discipline, even in the face of death. Keep unflinching faith in the holy lotus feet of the Lord and continue practicing mantra japa, bhajans. chanting His name, meditation, pranayama, postures, observing holy vows, fasting, moderation in diet, studying scriptures, and other disciplines. I extend my blessings to everyone.

Your loving Grandfather, Kripalu


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