Meet Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati
Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati is the spiritual head of the Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram. Having led Master Yoga Foundation for 20 years, she founded the Ashram after taking sannyas vows and becoming a swami (yoga monk) in 2009.
“All that she does leads to the Truth, and to the Core. It is really dazzling.” — Kim Orr
“Hosting Swami Nirmalananda in Brisbane, Australia, I found her wonderfully personable and relatable.” — Leela (Lyndall) Madden
As a modern-day sage and Guru, she awakens Kundalini, your inner spiritual energy, through Shaktipat. She addresses your yearning to know the multidimensionality of your own Being. She empowers you to experientially know your own Divine Self within, as well as recognize the Divine in everyone and everything. With Swami Nirmalananda as your teacher, you can experience Divine Consciousness in your own human form.
Swami Nirmalananda leads seekers to the wider and deeper possibilities of human life. She pioneered the Svaroopa® Sciences, based in the ancient teachings of Kashmiri Shaivism. These comprehensive practices include:
- sutra study
- guided self-inquiry
- breathing practices
- yoga poses (asana)
- and seva.
These practices support the process that has been awakened within you, furthering your experiential knowing of your own Divine Essence. No matter which ones you undertake, she is always pointing you inward, to your own Divine Essence.
One branch of the Svaroopa® Sciences is Svaroopa® yoga. Swamiji created it in order to bring asana practice back to its original purpose, the awakening of Kundalini and the knowing of Self. Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram continues to offer Svaroopa® yoga teacher training, with Swamiji serving as Master Teacher, directing and supporting our other Teacher Trainers.
In “Yoga, Sweat and Mysticism,” an article written for Yoga Alliance, she explains,
"Yoga itself claims to be a science. It uses proven methodology to get predictable results, just like the battery in your car. On the physical level, the methodologies provide reliable results, often likened to medical therapies, yet the sages always targeted a deeper goal… [to] become one with consciousness… to know your own Divine Self (svaroopa), inherent within you. The results are reliable: if you do what the sages teach, you will experience what they promise. This is yoga — pure mysticism, meaning it is about the mystery of life, the mystery that is hidden inside every human heart and being."
This perspective informs all of Swami Nirmalananda’s teaching. Warm, lighthearted and down-to-earth, she makes the mystical teachings accessible through examples from our everyday lives and relationships. Students cherish their relationship with Swami Nirmalananda, as it carries them forward into yoga’s ancient promise:
"Swami Nirmalananda never ceases to amaze me… she is a master teacher and is both forthcoming and real in every moment.” — Rudrani Nogue, Calgary AB, Canada.
"Her presence is like tapping into the main stream. The hot socket." — Lori Kenney, Portland OR.
“She knows my mind better than I do.” Yogeshwari (Melissa) Fountain
Swami Nirmalananda credits her own Guru, Swami Muktananda, with everything. She describes that years of living in Baba’s Ashrams in the USA, Europe and India allowed her to indulge her total focus on Baba and his teachings. She says, “Six weeks before he left this world, he sent me back to America to raise my children and to teach.”
Now Swami Nirmalananda ensures these ancient teachings are alive and thriving. In Downingtown PA, the Ashram provides Lokananda, your “Bliss Place,” a full-service retreat facility for immersion programs, including Swamiji’s Shaktipat retreats, immersions for deeper practices, and professional training courses for yoga teachers, yoga therapists and meditation teachers. Weekly, Swamiji offers satsangs (free meditation programs) including chanting, meditation and teachings to guide you on your path.
Swami Nirmalananda also travels throughout the USA as well as to Canada and Australia, offering free programs as well as weekend Shaktipat Retreats. She regularly leads pilgrimages to Ganeshpuri, India, the home village of her Guru with the Samadhi Temple of his Guru, Bhagawan Nityananda.
Free online teachings from Swamiji are available on this website. They include contemplation articles, daily e-quotes and recordings from her Satsangs and celebrations. She also offers tuition-based, multimedia distance learning in a year-long programme, beginning each spring.
Under her guidance, the Ashram runs charitable projects in the USA and India. In Downingtown PA, we offer Stress Relief Inservice, training schoolteachers in centering self-care, so they can better serve their students. In India, we have partnered with Fire Mountain Ashram to offer Yoga in the Village, bringing yoga to school children in impoverished areas.
Swamiji says, “It is such a privilege to give yoga back to the land of its origin, especially in the local schools in Ganeshpuri and the whole Tansa River valley. The native population of this region never had access to the yogic or Vedic tradition. Like Native Americans or Australian Aborigines, they were the forgotten people, now working to find their place in mainstream society in India. To bring them the heritage of their own land is a deeply fulfilling project.”