Ahymsin Newsletter: Yoga is Samadhi

In Memory of Swami Veda Bharati

by Sudhansu Misra

It is around 1975 my wife and I met our beloved Swamiji when he was Dr. Usharbudh Arya, as a disciple of Swami Rama of Himalayas. Dr. Arya considered himself blessed as a disciple of a great master of our times.  During his short stay as a professor at the University of Minnesota, he received the highest reward from the University of Minnesota as an educator.
He was attracted to Swami Rama who influenced his life a great extent. Swami Rama could see Dr. Arya’s talent is more valuable in a global level than being confined at the University. Dr. Arya knew that he has found his true Guru with Swami Rama. They were bonded as Guru – disciple. Swami Rama, in his usual way, prepared his disciple to expose his talents as a great teacher and scholar. He gave him the Title of “Pandit”, which means a Scholar. All those who came to know him called him Panditji (Respected Pandit).  

With his wife and four children to support, he ventured to leave his job at the University of Minnesota and start a new career as a teacher of spirituality and philosophy. He was taught by his father in India from his childhood. He learnt to recite Vedas and Upanishads from early childhood and give talks on spiritual subjects from the age of nine. Coming abroad, when he was in his twenties he completed a doctorate in language and literature from Holland. He was well prepared to teach with his vast knowledge of Sanskrit and English.

Initially he started teaching in the attic of his apartment. Once, when Swami Rama paid a visit to his class, he found the space in the attic was too small for some 90 students he was teaching at that time. Swamiji advised him to find a bigger place. Panditji took his advice and ventured out to find a bigger place, which he did by establishing The Meditation Center at 631 University Avenue in the year 1974. Classes were given in yoga and meditation. Panditji used to lecture during the week and taught classes.

Panditji can recite ancient scriptures and translate easily into English. There are topics in Indian Vedas and Upanishads that takes a great effort to understand. But for Panditji it comes naturally to explain the complex verses without any effort. He used to say that there are layers of meaning in Sanskrit verses that will take many words to explain. He knew all of them. The core of Panditji’s teaching is to realize inner self by meditating on it until one becomes one with it. When that happens one is in Samadhi and all thoughts disappear and body becomes one with the mind.

After moving to India in 1980, he took the vow of Swami from his beloved Guru, Shri Swami Rama. Swami Rama ordained him with Swami-hood under a new name, “Swami Veda Bharati”.

In 1980 Panditji left America to establish a center in India at Hrushikesh. It took a lot of effort to complete such a project. His dedication paid off and resulted in a beautiful spiritual enclave near the Ganges in Rishikesh, India. Swami Veda named it “Swami Rama Sadhaka Grama” (SRSG).

Being a Swami one gets rid of all his material possessions to the extent one renounces his family. He accepts all humans as his family and the universe as his home. He propagates his knowledge and message of universal truth. We are our consciousness that never dies. Only the body that contains it separates at the time of death.

Swami Veda never was attached to his body. He was a victim of several painful diseases. He went around the world with his frail body teaching the spirituality as has been taught be ancient Indian sages. He controlled his mind by silencing the mind. The last part of his life was spent in silence which led the way to liberation of his consciousness from his body.

We will miss him from among us as a mortal body. But his subtle consciousness will always be dwelling in the space, where he is in eternal peace.



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