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Sivananda
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Sivananda

Swami Sivananda (1887-1963) was born in Pattamadai South India and named Kuppuswamy. He went to medical school in Tanjore and then took up the job as a doctor in Malaya.

Although a very successful doctor, he wished to renounce the world and become a Hindu swami. In 1923. He left Malaya for India on an extensive pilgrimage. At Banaras, he had the Darshan (vision) of Lord Vishvanath. Dr. Kuppuswamy next went to Rishikesh where he became a disciple of Swami Vishvananda Saraswati. The Guru gave him the name Swami Sivananda Saraswati.

Swami Sivananda performed austerities for many years but he also continued to help the sick. With some money from his insurance policy that had matured, Swamiji started a charitable dispensary at Lakshmanjula in 1927.

Swamiji traveled the whole length and breadth of India during his Parivrajaka (wandering monk) life. He visited important places of pilgrimage in the South, including Rameshvaram. He conducted Sankirtan and delivered lectures. He visited Aurobindo Ashram and met Maharishi Suddhananda Bharati. At Ramana Ashram, he had Darshan of Sri Ramana Maharishi on the Maharishi's birthday. He sang Bhajans and danced in ecstasy with the Bhaktas of Ramana. Swamiji went on a trip to Kailas-Manasarovar and Badri.

He returned to Rishikesh and in the year 1936 sowed the seed of The Divine Life Society on the bank of the holy Ganga. The free distribution of spiritual literature drew a steady flow of disciples of Sri Swamiji. With the getting of able hands, he started the various departments of the Society to provide suitable fields of activity for the purification of their hearts and to grow spiritually.

Swami Sivananda believed in synthesis in everything, in Yoga as well as in the alleviation of human suffering. The Allopathic treatment was inseparable from him and the Society, even from the earliest days of his life at Swargashram. He now felt the need to serve the people with genuine Ayurvedic preparations out of the rare Himalayan herbs. He therefore instituted the Sivananda Ayurvedic Pharmacy in 1945.

Swami Sivananda organized the All-world Religions Federation in 1945 and established the All-world Sadhus Federation in 1947. He called his yoga the Yoga of Synthesis.

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Early Hinduism | Hinduism | Hindu Philosophy
Primary Scriptures: Vedas | Upanishads | Bhagavad Gita | Itihasa | Tantras | Sutras
Concepts: Brahman | Dharma | Karma | Moksha | Maya | Punarjanma | Samsara
Schools & Systems: Vedanta | Yoga | Tantra | Bhakti
Rituals: Aarti | Darshan | Puja | Satsang | Thaal | Yagnya
Hindu Teachers/Gurus and Saints: Sankara | Ramakrishna | Vivekananda | Aurobindo | Ramana Maharshi | Sivananda
Denominations: Vaishnavism | Shaivism | Shaktism | Neo- and quasi-Hindu movements