Swami Mukundananda is a world-renowned spiritual teacher from India. He is the founder of the yogic system called Jagadguru Kripaluji Yog, widely known as JKYog. Swamiji is a unique sanyasi (monk), who has a distinguished technical and management background, from highly esteemed Indian institutions, which complements his profound spiritual knowledge.
Most of his time is spent in serving people and helping them lead healthier, happier, and more fulfilling lives. His lectures and teaches yoga and meditation almost every day of the year. In between his hectic schedule, he writes books and commentaries, records CDs and DVDs, and guides a worldwide congregation of devotees. His presence radiates love for the divine and for all souls who approach him for guidance.
Swamiji’s lectures are humorous, his arguments are logical and well laid-out, and most of all, his advice is practical. His lectures are much sought after and include various topics such as Art of Mind Management, Good Health Through Yoga, Meditation, and Spirituality, Developing our Relationship with God, Bhagavad Gita for Everyday Living, Patanjali Yog Sutras.
Academic and Professional Accomplishments
Swami Mukundananda finished his B.Tech. from the world-renowned Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi. He then completed his MBA from the equally revered Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Kolkata. After that, he worked for some time with one of India’s topmost industrial houses. However, distinguished material education and a promising corporate career did not quench his thirst for knowing the Absolute Truth. His penchant for a deeper understanding of the nature of divine love and bhakti (devotion) would drown his mind in spiritual thoughts for long periods. Soon, the longing for God was so strong that he renounced his career and traveled throughout India as a sanyasi.
The Call of God
In 1984, he renounced his professional career to accept the order of sanyas. As a sanyasi, he travelled the length and breadth of India. During these travels, he associated closely with many elevated saints of India, read the writings of the great Acharyas of the past, and lived in many famous holy places. Ultimately his search took him to the lotus feet of his Spiritual Master, Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj.
It was in 1989 that Swamiji met Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj. He was spellbound by the limitless scriptural knowledge and ocean of Divine love that he saw manifest in Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj (who is lovingly called “Maharajji” by his devotees). He could not believe his good fortune upon meeting such an elevated Saint and accepted Shree Maharajji as his Guru. Recalling his first meeting, Shree Maharajji later remarked, “He recognized me as one would recognize his mother.”
Swamiji extensively studied the Vedic scriptures, Upanishads, Bhagavatam, Bhagavad Gita, and the Indian and Western systems of philosophy under Shree Maharajji’s tutelage. He also perfected the meditation technique called “Roopydhyan,” as revealed by Shree Kripaluji Maharaj. After intensive study for two years at the ashram, Shree Maharajji directed Swamiji to spread the true knowledge of the scriptures to the masses.
Igniting the Divinity Within All
Swamiji initially conducted spiritual programs around the cities near his Guru’s ashram. Later, upon the instructions of Shree Maharajji, Swamiji started preaching in the state of Odisha. From thereon he has spent extensive time guiding souls in other parts of India such as New Delhi, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal etc., and also in other countries such as Nepal, Singapore, Malaysia, etc.
Over the last three decades, Swamiji established ashrams, temples, and satsang centers in many cities in India and the US. The Jagadguru Kripalu Yog Trust (JKYog India) established in India with its headquarters in Odisha. Today, it hosts a Naturopathy Hospital, Charitable Clinic, and an upcoming University that is under construction.
Since 2009, Swamiji has been spending increasingly more time preaching in the US. To further aid the dissemination of the knowledge, he founded JKYog, a 501(c)(3) organization headquartered in Plano, TX.
The congregation has been growing steadily as people who attend the lectures find them relevant and applicable in their day-to-day life. In the words of one attendee:
One of the topics that changed my perspective on life was our view towards PROBLEMS. The perspective with which Swamiji discussed problems was very enthralling. Problems are a means of growing us, making us proficient, and are bestowed upon us by the Almighty to bring us closer to Him.
People whether in India or in the US flock to listen to him because of the ease with which he explains the topics, the humor with which he drives the point, and the inspirational stories and anecdotes that makes the theme relatable.
“Each soul who comes in Swami Mukundananda’s presence leaves feeling more blissful and at peace because he ignites the divinity within each of us. Swami Mukundananda rejuvenates our souls with his simple and thought-provoking profound lectures that give clear direction and hope as we embark on our own spiritual journey. ”
Gargi Mukherji, Houston, TX
The depth of Swamiji’s knowledge is manifested in the range of topics that he talks about. It is not surprising to hear him give a discourse on the Ramayan or Taitttriya Upanishad one week and then switch to a self-help topic such as Art of Mind Management or 7 Mindsets to Succeed in Life and Beyond the next week. Swamiji masterfully quotes not only from the Vedic scriptures but also from other scriptures such as the Bible, Quran, Dhammapada, Tao Te Ching, etc. He freely includes examples from the Eastern sages, Western philosophers, and modern scientists alike.
JKYog hosts numerous weeklong programs annually across India and the US. In addition, three or more sadhana shibirs are held in India, and four retreats are held in the US every year.
Desiring to inculcate noble values in children and enable them to build their character, Swamiji designed a program for children, called “Bal-Mukund Playground for Vedic Wisdom.” It is aimed at instilling the KRIPALU values of Kindness, Respect, Integrity, Perseverance, Accountability, Love, and Unassuming (humility) via simple inspirational stories taken from the Indian culture and heritage. Bal-Mukund centers are functioning in many cities around the world.
For the youth and young adults, JKYog has launched multiple initiatives such as Toastmasters Gavel Club and Bhagavad Gita Study Circle.
Swamiji has given illuminating discourses at the United Nations, and Fortune 500 companies such as Google, Oracle, Intel, etc, and also in many colleges and universities in USA and India, such as Stanford, MIT, Kellogg, Princeton, Yale, IITD, IIMC and much more.
Swamiji has penned numerous books such as a
- Bhagavad Gita – Song of God (commentary),
- Spiritual Dialectics,
- Art of Mind Management,
- Yoga for the Body, Mind, and Soul,
- Science of Healthy Diet, etc.
He has also created many books for the Bal-Mukund program, such as
- Inspiring Stories Vol 1 to 4,
- Saints of India,
- Festivals of India,
- Wisdom Book,
- Essence of Hinduism,
- My Best Friend Krishna
In addition, Swamiji has also recorded many melodious kirtans and bhajans, to assist aspirants in their spiritual endeavor.
Swamji’s presence emanates love for the Divine and for all the souls who approach him for guidance. It is astounding to see his commitment towards serving humanity and how he manages to take out time from his busy schedule for almost every person who seeks his help. He continues to be an inspiring beacon for many hundreds of thousands of followers around the world on the path towards self-realization and divine love.