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Paramahansa Yogananda

Born in India in 1893, Paramhansa Yogananda was trained from his early years to bring India's ancient science of Self-realization to the West. In 1920 he moved to the United States to begin what was to develop into a worldwide work touching millions of lives. Americans were hungry for India's spiritual teachings, and for the liberating techniques of yoga. In 1946 he published what has become a spiritual classic and one of the best-loved books of the twentieth century, Autobiography of a Yogi. In addition, Yogananda established headquarters for a worldwide work, wrote a number of books and study courses, gave lectures to thousands in most major cities across the United States, wrote music and poetry, and trained disciples. He was invited to the White House by Calvin Coolidge, and he initiated Mahatma Gandhi into Kriya Yoga, his most advanced meditation technique. Yogananda's message to the West highlighted the unity of all religions, and the importance of love for God combined with scientific techniques of meditation. Swami Kriyananda was a direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda, trained by the great Indian master to spread the life-transforming teachings of Kriya Yoga around the globe. He was widely considered one of the world's foremost experts on meditation, yoga, and spiritual practice, having authored more than 100 books on these subjects. Kriyananda was the founder of Ananda Sangha, a worldwide organization committed to the dissemination of Yogananda's teachings. In 1968 he founded Ananda World Brotherhood Village, the first spiritual cooperative community based on Yogananda's vision of "world brotherhood colonies." Today Ananda includes nine spiritual communities in the U.S., Europe, and India, and more than 100 meditation groups worldwide.

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