Our Gurus

Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda

His Holiness Swami Chinmayananda (Pujya Gurudev), founder of Chinmaya Mission, taught spirituality as the art of living. Through the path of Jnana Yoga, or path of knowledge, he emphasized the balance of head and heart, pointing out selfless work, study, and meditation as the cornerstones of spiritual practice.

Not satisfied with his literature and law degrees or other worldly aspirations, Balakrishnan Menon pursued the spiritual path for nine years in the Himalayas, under the guidance of Swami Sivananda and the tutelage of Swami Tapovanam. He eventually chose to share his direct experience of Vedantic knowledge with the masses, and roared forth like Mother Ganga in the form of the dynamic spiritual master known as Swami Chinmayananda.

Gurudev is renowned worldwide as one of the foremost teachers of Shrimad Bhagavad Gita. He is credited with the renaissance of cultural values in India and with the spreading of the ageless wisdom of Advaita Vedanta, as expounded by Adi Shankaracharya, throughout the world.

Gurudev attained mahasamadhi on August 3, 1993 . His legacy remains in the form of written, audio, and video publications; social service projects (schools, hospitals, rural development programs, and more); and the missionaries who carry on his vision to this day.

Pujya Guruji Swami Tejomayananda, the former spiritual head of Chinmaya Mission worldwide, is fulfilling the vision that Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda charted. As he puts it, "I am not in Swamiji's shoes; I am at His feet."

Pujya Guruji has served as acharya , or dean of the Sandeepany Institutes of Vedanta ( gurukulas of Chinmaya Mission) in India and as acharya in Mission centers in India and the US . He has written commentaries on scriptural texts, translated Pujya Gurudev's commentaries into Hindi, and authored a number of books. A key contribution is Hindu Culture: An Introduction, a text acclaimed for its clear description of the basics of Hinduism and adopted as a reference text in some high schools.

Pujya Guruji excels in expounding a wide spectrum of Hindu scriptures, from Ramayana to Shrimad Bhagavad Gita to the Upanishads. He conducts discourses around the world and his easy manner and devotional rendering of Vedantic texts has drawn many newcomers into the spiritual fold.

Pujya Swami Swaroopananda serves as the current Head of Chinmaya Mission Worldwide. He formerly served as the Regional Head of Chinmaya Mission Australia, United Kingdom, Middle East, Africa and Far East, and presently Chancellor of the Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth Trust (University for Sanskrit and Indic Traditions) and Chairman of the Chinmaya International Residential School. 

Born and brought up in the bustling commercial capital of India, Swamiji had always been convinced that beyond life's superficial, everyday joys and sorrows, there was something more enduring and satisfying. As a child he heard from his grandmother many religious stories based on the great Indian epics and the history of saints. These stories suddenly came to life, acquiring new meaning and depth, when as an adolescent he encountered the preeminent Master of Vedanta, Swami Chinmayananda.

His heart completely moved and inspired, in 1984 Swami Swaroopananda gave up his family's thriving business in Hong Kong to undergo intensive training under Swami Chinmayananda and Swami Tejomayananda at Sandeepany, Mumbai. He was initiated into the monastic order in 1992. Since then, he has touched thousands of lives across the world, and his tremendous work in bringing out the essential wisdom and underlying unity of all religions has garnered him a place among the vanguards of self-development philosophy.

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