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Ram Dass
Ram Dass changed the world in 1971 with the publication of his hugely influential “Be Here Now” - a book that quickly brought spiritual practice and meditation to millions of Westerners.

Not only did its stunning information and design impel readers right into a realization of the essential present, it introduced Eastern spiritual practice to the West in a totally accessible way. The book still stands as the highly readable centerpiece of Western articulation of Eastern philosophy, and how to live joyously a hundred per cent of the time in the present, luminous or mundane. 

It is still part of the timeless present. Being here now is still being here now.

Ram Dass – which means “servant of God” - was formerly Dr. Richard Alpert, the formidable Harvard psychology professor/researcher. He partnered with Dr. Timothy Leary, the brilliant, if incorrigibly controversial, thinker, writer and explainer of LSD. 

After their field trips to Mexico and their inner trips on teonanácatl or psilocybin, the brilliant duo’s writings and lectures on the psychedelic experience inevitably forced them out of the groves of academe – Leary to become a true sixties icon, Alpert to travel to India in 1967, discover Eastern thought and more significantly, meet his guru, Neem Karoli Baba, who gave him the name Ram Dass.

He has embraced a wide variety of spiritual traditions and practices, including guru kripa (grace of the guru), bhakti yoga focused on the Hindu spiritual devaHanuman; meditation in various schools of Buddhism including Theravada, Mahayana, Tibetan, and Zen; karma yoga; and Sufi and Jewish studies.Ram Dass became a powerful proponent of fierce self awareness and love as a constant motivator. His dedication to bhakti yoga – yoga of the heart – has brought a whole new generation of seekers to self-realization and service to those in need. 

His constant work with the dying added another dimension to his service.In February 1997, he suffered a stroke, which left him with expressive aphasia.  Nevertheless, he interprets his stroke as an act of grace and continues to teach via the internet and with frequent retreats from his permanent home base in Maui.  Ram Dass has said of himself, "I help people as a way to work on myself, and I work on myself to help people. To me, that's what the emerging game is all about." 

His unique skill in getting people to cut through and feel divine love without dogma is still a positive influence on many, many people from all over the planet.

Ram Dass

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