Swami Ramdas

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Swami Ramdas
Born (1884-04-10)10 April 1884
Kanhangad, Madras Presidency, British India (present-day Kerala, India)
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Swami Ramdas (born Vittal Rao 10 April 1884 – 25 July 1963) was an Indian saint, philosopher, philanthropist, pilgrim. Ramdas became a wandering ascetic at a young age. His story and his teachings have been presented in several different books.


Ramdas was born as Vittal Rao in Kanhangad, in northern Kerala, India on 10 April 1884,[1] to Balakrishna Rao and Lalita Bai. Ramdas worked as a spinning master in a cotton mill, and in 1908 was married. He experienced difficulties, both in his financial pursuits and domestic life, leading him to seek relief from his circumstances. Ramdas began to chant "Ram" – a name used by Hindus to refer to an important deity. Soon afterward, his father instructed him to repeat the mantra Ram Mantra: "Sri Ram jai Ram jai jai Ram". Ramdas then added the "Om" to each repetition: "Om Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram," and he found the benefit at least threefold.[citation needed]

He became detached from the material world and embarked on a pilgrimage, thereby taking on the name Ramdas, and living on charity (though he never accepted money[citation needed]). His practice was to view the world as forms of Ram – and thus to see everything that might befall him as the will of Ram. His mantra practice also gradually became a round-the-clock practice.

In 1922 he met Ramana Maharshi. As a result of this, he went into his first retreat, living for 21 days in solitude in a cave in Arunachala. Upon leaving this cave he began claiming that, "All was Ram, nothing but Ram"[2]

After continuing to live as an itinerant for many years, his devotees established Anandashram for him in Kanhangad, Kerala in 1931. The ashram worked to improve the living conditions of the local people, and continues till present day to share Ramdas’ teachings.

A list of Ramdas' well-known disciples includes Mataji Krishnabai, Swami Satchidananda, Swami Muktananda and Yogi Ramsuratkumar.

Ramdas died in 1963.


See also[edit]


  1. page xiii in: Swami Satchidananda (1979). The Gospel of Swami Ramdas. Published for Anandashram by Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css" />OCLC 7173794
  2. [1] The Mountain Path
  3. Ramdas, Swami. The Essential Swami Ramdas, World Wisdom, 2005.
  4. The Tribune, Reflections
  5. The Times of India, SACRED SPACE: Caring and Sharing

External links[edit]

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