Rampuri became a disciple of a Naga Baba--a master shaman sadhu--from Rajasthan and, as foretold by astrological prophecy, soon found himself the first foreigner to become an initiate of the Juna Akhara, the oldest and largest grouping of Naga Babas with more than 50, sadhu members. Through his journey of extremes, Rampuri takes us into the mystic heart of India. Rampuri is the first foreigner to be initiated into the ancient society of yogis and shamans known as the Renunciates of the Ten Names, or Sannyasis. He has been a Naga Baba since A yogi and teacher who gives workshops and retreats around the world, he established the Hari Puri Ashram, in Hardwar in northern India in , where he continues the oral tradition of his lineage.
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After traveling at age 18 from his native California to India in , Rampuri was drawn to the Naga Babas, an ancient and wild order of naked yogis whom he calls the "Hell's Angels of Indian Spirituality.
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Rating details. More filters. Sort order. May 18, Adriana rated it it was amazing Shelves: must-read. Magic happens where worlds meet, as Baba Rampuri is fond of saying in his masterful book. Deepak Chopra wrote: "This book will entertain and enlighten you. A bold journey that explores the true intersections of Eastern and Western thought. Baba Rampuri talks about his travels in India, making pilgrimages to a 'crossing point between worlds', the hidden entrances to these other worlds, the meaning Magic happens where worlds meet, as Baba Rampuri is fond of saying in his masterful book.
Baba Rampuri talks about his travels in India, making pilgrimages to a 'crossing point between worlds', the hidden entrances to these other worlds, the meaning of 'darshan' the beholding, achieving immortality, the alchemical contribution to the world, expanding one's vocabulary, Hindu scriptures and words such as 'karma' and 'nirvana' and their relevance to the experience of living, Indian culture and the oral tradition of naga babas, the 'yogi shamans', the search for new meanings, Indian cannabis use, gurus and their communication of self-knowledge, the distortion of Hinduism by India's colonizers, the "book of the world," the Mother Goddess and her fruits spread across the world, the uncluttered mind of the yogi, his connection with the Goddess, and Amrita the Elixir of Immortality.
But that aside, for any reader of good literature, it's a great adventure story that leaves the reader anxious for his next book! Rampuri narrates and describes his life under his Guru, his subsequent wanderings through India and his encounters with other gurus, and often the ways in which their spiritual development endo Auto. Rampuri narrates and describes his life under his Guru, his subsequent wanderings through India and his encounters with other gurus, and often the ways in which their spiritual development endowed them with powers siddhis that can only be described as miraculous.
Having just read Yogananda's Autobiography of a Yogi, I was worried about redundancy, but thankfully, while many of his experiences with various Seekers were similar to Yogananda's, Rampuri's Autobiography of a Sadhu is told from the viewpoint of a Westerner and possibly because of this, his choice of words and his relatively less emotionally charged prose made such encounters easier to digest. Whether you believe what you read in his narratives or not, he writes well and tells his story on a level that seems very natural even though so many such encounters are laced with supernatural elements that Ramapuri, like so many other Indian mystics, offer without any explanation.
While that can be difficult to difficult to digest sometimes, it can be, at least for me, inspiring. Jan 24, Panda rated it really liked it. I enjoyed reading this book and found it light to read. I also acknowledge that others may find it hard to read.
Of the pages there were two pages that particularly piqued my interest and these contained the discussions around the number of nadis in the human body. From my personal point of view I would have loved some more depth around nadis.
This book is a great tool in illustrating the web of illusions that we tend to create for ourselves. An example given is of an enlightened soul that c I enjoyed reading this book and found it light to read. An example given is of an enlightened soul that crosses our path. Depending on our level of awareness, often the new teachings that are given may be gridded back into old belief frameworks and translated so that they can be understood.
By doing this we ultimately undermine the essence of the teaching. This book is about letting go, and not just on the mental or physical level. It goes a lot deeper than that and I feel that this is what Rampuri is hinting at in more than one occasion in this excellent book.
It is a book that almost requires one to read it without expectations, and by doing do so you become part of the narrative life of the author. Jul 12, Lisa rated it really liked it Shelves: autobiography. I could not put this book down once it got rolling. An excellent view of Indian mysticism from an American perspective. He has a slight flavor of Don Juan and Carlos Casteneda, as it shows how an American view is so limited to the unlimited world of the spirit.
He devotion to his guru is reminiscent of Paramahansa Yogananda from his autobiography. This I could not put this book down once it got rolling. This is a must-read for anyone who is looking into an Indian path of spiritualism. His is one of Bhakti, devotional service, and also of complete renounciation - but he learns that it much more than just abandoning things of physcial attachment.
I really enjoyed it! Feb 01, Zuzana rated it did not like it Shelves: dropped. Jun 12, Sai Nandan Reddy rated it really liked it. This book takes you into the life of a young american fascinated by Indian mysticism and journeys to India to become a renunciate. He takes us into what it is to become a baba, and the initial resistance he faces by his fellow renunciates for being a foreigner. Events are well narrated without any exaggeration and you feel as if you are in the authors shoes.
He talks about his gurus,chelas,juna akhara , mystical teachings ,tradition of guru shishya parampara, Kumbmela,etc. All together its a fasc This book takes you into the life of a young american fascinated by Indian mysticism and journeys to India to become a renunciate. All together its a fascinating read for everyone and specially for spiritual enthusiasts.
Thanks Rampuriji. This man had an opportunity to tell us of the day to day lives of babas, tell us about great happenings in detail, and he absolutely glossed over everything.
A shame. Aug 30, Ludo rated it really liked it Shelves: vedanta. Very subjective rating, since I was in India in and met an Australian and an American, the latter whom was the disciple of a baba. We were not alone, since we had, being invited by the American, joined his baba and a few dozen other sadhus that were staying in a temporary tent camp in some field in the middle of nowhere.
The meeting was meant for the inauguration of a tiny temple a few miles outside of a village. This special occasion lasted for about a week, where I shared a tent, the brahm Very subjective rating, since I was in India in and met an Australian and an American, the latter whom was the disciple of a baba.
This special occasion lasted for about a week, where I shared a tent, the brahmin food, the river bathing etc. There was also one baba everybody there referred to as "godman". I was only 17 and didn't quite know what to think about the whole happening, but realized it would probably be a once in a lifetime experience. Baba Rampuri's book showed me some insights with his story, about the sadhus' way of life, that I was unaware of. Completely unexpected, his story also had some fascinating turns and cliff-hangers, which I couldn't ignore, but had to read more about immediately.
It was a pleasure to read. PS Adi Shankaracharya was mentioned a few times, placing him 2. Nitpicking ;- and not important in the context of this book. May 07, Keshav Tiwari rated it it was amazing.
A wonderful read, Baba Rampuri describes the journey of an 'Angrezi' Sadhu into the realm of the mystics. I feel the book aims to instill a sense of curiosity in the readers mind and should not be looked upon as a factual guide to the Hindu view of life.
However, the wonderful way in which the story is narrated makes it a must read for everyone including Indians. I particularly enjoyed the emphasis given to the the cyclic nature of time in the Indian discourse.
It might seem hypocritical that we A wonderful read, Baba Rampuri describes the journey of an 'Angrezi' Sadhu into the realm of the mystics. It might seem hypocritical that we try to understand a oral culture by reading a book. Moreover, a comparison to existing texts on the Indic discource is not fair since the motives are varied. Highly recommended both, for the style of writing and the content. Feb 01, Jim Johanson rated it it was ok. There's a lot of superstitious, unsubstantiated claims here, which is a shame, because the Sadhu philosophy is fascinating in its own regard without the need for supernatural supplementation.
The Sadhu philosophy mostly gets buried under the rug here in favor of building faux-mysticism.
Autobiography of a Sadhu: A Journey into Mystic India
Baba Rampuri , born William A. He claims to be the first westerner to become a Naga Sadhu , having been initiated in Baba Rampuri was born William A. Gans    on July 14, in Chicago where his father was a dental surgeon,  possibly Jewish. In , at the age of 18, after experimenting with psychedelics, and viewed as a dropout, Gans left his prosperous family and headed for India to find himself, and as a spiritual quest. He divides his time between his ashram in Hardwar, Ujjain , and Goa.
Autobiography of a Sadhu
A rare and fascinating story of a young mans journey to the unknown in his search for knowledge. One of the few books and maybe even the only one, about Naga Babas sadhus and the magical world they Magic happens where worlds meet, as Baba Rampuri is fond of saying in his masterful book. Deepak Chopra wrote: "This book will entertain and enlighten you. A bold journey that explores the true