Top 10 Spiritual Masters (Gurus) from India for Inspirational Insights

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India is the birthplace of numerous age-old rituals and faiths aimed at elevating individuals’ spirituality. The goal of most Indian faiths, including Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism, is to connect with the higher self and achieve a stage of salvation. This blog will talk about the Top 10 spiritual masters from India, who are highly regarded for their spiritual practices and teachings. Many people, regardless of their faith, have developed fervent devotion to these spiritual teachers in an attempt to find the light they have been seeking.

Exploring the Legacy of Famous Indian Spiritual Gurus

India has a rich and diverse tradition of spiritual masters, gurus, and teachers who have made significant philosophical and spiritual contributions and have guided millions of people on the right path. Our curated list of spiritual mastersis a priceless resource for everyone who is interested in learning more about India’s rich spiritual traditions.

1. Shri Shri Ravi Shankar

He is one of the most popular spiritual masters from India. Many people refer to him as Guru ji, Gurudev, or Sri Sri (honorific). He believes that human virtues like love, compassion, and excitement are enhanced by spirituality. He launched a worldwide series of practical and experienced spirituality courses.

Background

  • Birth and formative years: May 13, 1956, in Tamil Nadu, India, marked the birth of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. He has a doctorate in clinical psychology and a bachelor’s degree in Vedic literature.
  • Early in life, Ravi Shankar embarked on a spiritual quest and trained under Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the creator of the Transcendental Meditation method.
  • He studied and taught meditation and ancient Vedic wisdom for several years.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

He established the nonprofit organization “Art of Living” to help those who are socially and economically disadvantaged. He is also known for founding the International Association for Human Ideals, which promotes universal ideals among all people, regardless of colour, nationality, or religion.

Core Philosophy

He claims that the only way to elevate fundamental principles and improve the quality of human life is by spirituality. Love should be extended to all people, regardless of their religion, colour, culture, or ethnicity. It should also extend to other sentient beings, such as animals.

2. BK Shivani

She goes by the moniker “Sister Shivani” or “Shivani Didi”. Because of her highly inspiring seminars and workshops, she is among the well-known spiritual masters and a teacher at the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University.

Background

  • Better known as BK Shivani, Shivani Verma was born on May 31, 1972. At Savitribai Phule Pune University, she earned an academic gold medal for her electronics engineering undergraduate studies.
  • The popularity of BK Shivani can be partly ascribed to her TV show, which debuted in 2007 on the Aastha channel.
  • Her online presence and media appearances have helped her become more and more well-known. She has been assisting people in navigating life’s challenges with greater clarity and purpose.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

She recommends Raja Yoga meditation as a way for people to discover inner calm, develop spiritual understanding, and establish a connection with themselves. She stresses the significance of living a life that is harmonious and fulfilling by ensuring that one’s thoughts and deeds are in line with these principles.

Core Philosophy

The core of BK Shivani’s teachings is self-transformation, which calls on people to adopt self-awareness, break free from destructive thought patterns, and find the inner fortitude to confront life’s obstacles. She emphasizes the importance of the mind and meditation, saying that people can discover their inner potential, gain clarity, and develop a sense of purpose via meditation.

Also Read: 15 Best Meditation Apps To Help You Meditate Anytime, Anywhere

3. Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev

Sadhu Sadhguru, often referred to as Jaggi Vasudev, is an Indian mystic, yogi, and renowned spiritual master from India. He is the creator of the nonprofit Isha Foundation, which provides a range of activities and programs aimed at advancing mental, emotional, and spiritual health. , and he is regarded as one of India’s most contemporary yogis.

Background

  •  Sadhguru was born on September 3, 1957, in Mysore, India.
  • After finishing his schooling, he decided to pursue a business career. He had a typical upbringing. In 1982, he had a tremendous spiritual revelation while riding a motorcycle through Mysore’s Chamundi Hill.
  • His spiritual path and his dedication to imparting his knowledge to others began with this life-changing event.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

He began advocating for spirituality and the practice of yoga. He went on to teach yoga and thereafter became a well-liked motivational speaker. He highlights that to feel happy and enhance well-being, people must engineer their inner selves. Practices like yoga, Meditation, and self-awareness are part of this.

Core Philosophy

Sadhguru is a fervent supporter of preserving the environment. For example, his “Rally for Rivers” campaign sought to draw attention to the dire state of India’s rivers and the necessity of their preservation. Sadhguru advocates for a straightforward and uncomplicated lifestyle, stressing that lowering needless complications and cravings can lead to inner serenity and well-being.

4. Osho

Osho was an Indian spiritual master who was also known as Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and Osho later on. He was well-known for his contentious teachings, magnetic demeanour, and the founding of a distinctive spiritual organization.

Background

  • Osho was born in 1931 in Central India.
  • While attending the University of Saugar, he experienced the holy experience of Samadhi at the age of 21. After earning his master’s degree, he started working as a philosophy instructor at the University of Jabalpur.
  • Osho attracted attention in the 1960s and 1970s with his lively talks about spirituality, meditation, and self-awareness.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

Osho had a distinct kind of spirituality in which he felt that everything was divine and that humans are divine. He never adhered to any one religion. He held that inner peace can only be attained when we use meditation to let go of our attachments to the past and the future.

Core Philosophy

Osho developed a type of meditation known as “Dynamic Meditation,” which combines vigorous exercise, cathartic emotional release, and silent introspection to assist people in overcoming emotional and psychological obstacles. Osho urged his disciples to challenge conventional religious and social standards and to go out on their spiritual journeys.

5. Sri Aurobindo

He is one of the top spiritual leaders whose teachings are still being promoted by the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry, along with its affiliated institutions and schools, drawing scholars and spiritual seekers from all over the world.

Background

  • Sri Aurobindo Ghose was born in Calcutta, India, during the British colonial era on August 15, 1872.
  • He was educated in a Western-style classroom and spoke English and numerous Indian languages with ease.
  • He was active in the Indian liberation movement for independence from British colonial control before pursuing spiritual endeavours.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

In 1908, while incarcerated in Alipore Jail, Sri Aurobindo underwent profound spiritual awakenings and states of transcendent awareness. During this time, he experimented with many yogic practices and meditation techniques. In 1910, Sri Aurobindo moved to the Indian French colony of Pondicherry, abandoning his political career. He established an ashram there and developed his spiritual practices and teachings there.

Core Philosophy

Through spiritual practice, he taught, people may encounter this divine consciousness directly and transformatively. According to Sri Aurobindo’s philosophy, human life is merely a transitory stage in the evolutionary process rather than the final stage. In his view, consciousness is evolving toward a more advanced, enlightened state of existence that he dubbed the “Supramental.”

Also Read: Top 11 Motivational Speakers In India: How To See Their Videos

6. Swami Gyanvatsal

Swami Gyanvatsal is a famous spiritual master from India, who known for his sense of humour and his ability to connect with people on a personal level. He founded several ashrams, which are hubs for spiritual instruction and practice.

Background

  • India’s Bagpat district is home to a farmer’s family where Swami Gyanvatsal was born in 1947.
  • At an early age, he started receiving religious instruction, and in 1970, he became a monk. Under the direction of distinguished spiritual instructors, he studied the Vedas, Upanishads, and other Hindu texts.
  • Early in the 1970s, Swami Gyanvatsal set out on his path of spiritual teaching. He made a lot of trips around India, leading spirituality retreats and seminars.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

Swami Gyanvatsal is renowned for his distinct style of spiritual instruction. He can convey difficult spiritual ideas clearly and understandably. He made a lot of trips around India, leading spirituality retreats and seminars.

Core Philosophy

He stresses the value of self-realization, love, and compassion. He preaches that realizing our essence is the goal of existence and that all creatures are divine. He advises his disciples to be careful of their words, behaviours, and ideas while living in the present. He also emphasizes the value of compassion for all living things and selfless service.

7. Sadhvi Ritambhara

Sadhvi Ritambhara, fondly called Sadhvi Ritambhara Ji, is a well-known speaker and spiritual master who has made significant contributions to the advancement of Hinduism. Sadhvi Ritambhara is well-known for her speeches, discourses, and spiritual talks. Her talks are called kathas.

Background

  • India’s Churu, Rajasthan, was the birthplace of Rirambhara ji in 1963.
  • Her upbringing in a Hindu household instilled in her a strong predisposition for spirituality and religious studies at a young age.
  • She has been a strong supporter of several Hindu causes and is intimately connected to the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP), a well-known Hindu nationalist group.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

Sadhvi Ritambhara is a strong supporter of preserving Hindu customs, heritage, and culture. She encourages reading classical literature and participating in Hindu holidays and rituals. She is the creator of Param Shakti Peeth, an NGO that assists individuals and strives to encourage women to practice devotion.

Core Philosophy

The fundamental principles of Sadhvi Ritambhara are firmly anchored in Hinduism and its conventional ideals. She stresses the significance of abiding by one’s dharma, a term used to describe one’s obligations and moral responsibilities. Sadhvi Ritambhara is a strong supporter of preserving Hindu customs, heritage, and culture.

8. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Maharshi, the creator of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) movement and a well-known spiritual master from India, is sometimes referred to as just Maharishi. He put forth the “Maharishi Effect,” which postulated that collective Meditation would have a beneficial social impact and lower crime and conflict rates.

Background

  • Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was born in Jabalpur, India, on January 12, 1917, as Mahesh Prasad Varma.
  • At Allahabad University, he majored in physics before starting a spiritual quest.
  • He started following Swami Brahmananda Saraswati, popularly known as Guru Dev, the leader of the Himalayan Jyotir Math. Mahesh received instruction from Guru Dev in the Transcendental Meditation technique, which would serve as the cornerstone of his teachings.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

He suggested that group meditation might have a beneficial effect on society’s collective consciousness, which would lower stress levels, crime rates, and war. The goal of this idea was to use group meditation to bring about universal peace and harmony.

Core Philosophy

Transcendental Meditation is a technique where a person has to close their eyes for 20 minutes and repeat the hymes in their mind. This meditation technique helped people attain a deep state of relaxation and consciousness, eliminating stress and other negative emotions that people have to face in their day-to-day lives.

9. Mata Amritanandamayi

Amma, also referred to as Mata Amritanandamayi, is a highly esteemed Indian spiritual leader and humanitarian who is renowned for her teachings, tender embraces, and substantial charitable endeavours.

Background

  • Mata Amritanandamayi was born Sudhamani Idamannel in a small coastal town in the Indian state of Kerala on September 27, 1953.
  • When Amma first began to experience states of Meditation and divine love in her early years, it was the beginning of her spiritual path.
  • She began aiding the underprivileged even though her own family was struggling financially.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

The fundamental lesson imparted by Amma is the value of love and compassion for all living things. Amma’s physical hug, which is commonly called a “mother’s hug,” is an essential component of her spiritual routine. She thinks it has the power to provide consolation, healing energy, and spiritual enlightenment.

Core Philosophy

Amma stresses the significance of selfless service as a way to advance spiritually and to lessen other people’s suffering. Her charities help needy individuals by offering them food, healthcare, housing, and other charity endeavours. Amma is a fervent supporter of interfaith communication and collaboration.

10. Paramhansa Yogananda

The famed spiritual master from India, Paramhansa Yogananda, is credited with bringing Kriya Yoga to the West. When Yogananda visited the US in 1920, he brought Kriya Yoga, an ancient yogic science, to Americans.

Background

  • Paramhansa Yogananda, originally named Mukunda Lal Ghosh, was born on January 5, 1893, in Gorakhpur.
  • He displayed a deep interest in spirituality and a quest for self-realization from a young age.
  •  He became a disciple of Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri, a revered spiritual teacher, and studied under his guidance.

Journey of Spiritual Teaching

Despite his lack of interest in academics, he eventually acquired samadhi with the help of his master, Shri Yukteshwar. Following this experience of being outside of his body, he began working as a teacher in a Ranchi school. He began an official tour in 1924, speaking to audiences on the principles of Vedanta in a way that was understandable to the modern world.

Core Philosophy

To promote yoga and Meditation, he founded the Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF) in Los Angeles, California. Yogananda’s autobiography, “Autobiography of a Yogi,” was one of his most important achievements. It was released in 1946. This work has inspired innumerable searchers all over the world and has established itself as a classic in the field of spiritual literature.

Also Read: 10 Famous Poets In India And Their Inspirational Works Of All Time

These top 10 spiritual leaders have influenced India’s spiritual and cultural environment over the ages. From the ancient teacher Adi Shankaracharya, who elaborated on the Advaita Vedanta teachings, to the modern humanitarian work of Mata Amritanandamayi, who preaches love and compassion, each of these gurus meets the many requirements of spiritual seekers.

These spiritual masters’ teachings and lives are examples of self-realization, compassion, and the search for a greater truth. They encourage us to seek transcendence beyond the physical world through love, peace, and introspection.

FAQ:

What is the spiritual master from India called?

A spiritual leader in India may go by many different titles, such as “Guru,” “Swami,” “Sadhguru,” “Sant,” “Maharshi,” or “Mahatma” depending on the particular spiritual school and the individual’s degree of spiritual development.

Who is the biggest spiritual leader in India?

The designation of the “biggest” or most well-known spiritual leader in India might change based on an individual’s viewpoint and beliefs. The Dalai Lama, Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev, Mata Amritanandamayi, and Shri Shri Ravi Shankar are a few of the prominent and well-known spiritual figures in India.

Does one need to accept a spiritual master?

It is a personal decision to accept a spiritual master. To expand their spiritual practice and understanding, many people decide to consult a spiritual master for advice. It’s not necessary for everyone, though; self-discovery and introspection can also be used to pursue spirituality.

What is the role of a spiritual guru?

A spiritual guru, often known as a teacher, is a mentor and guide for their followers or students. Their job is to support people on their spiritual path by offering spiritual practices, teachings, and wisdom. They provide direction, encouragement, and understanding to aid seekers in advancing their spiritual and individual development.

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