About Satguru Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati

Satguru Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati leads Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram in Downingtown PA. Honored both in India and America, she is an inspiring teacher with a loving manner and a great sense of humor. Before becoming a swami (yoga monk), as Rama Berch, she served the yoga community as the founding president of Yoga Alliance. Traveling and teaching nationally and internationally, she is authorized to initiate people into deep meditation through Shaktipat, as did Swami Muktananda, her own Guru. The Ashram website features extensive Freebies, including articles and audio recordings on the principles of consciousness as taught by the sages of India, as well as how to apply them in your life today.

All posts by Satguru Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati:

Happiness & Bliss

Enlightenment will not give you happiness.  Instead you will abide in unending inner bliss.  This bliss is not the same as happiness, not even the same as lots of happiness.  Happiness is an emotion; bliss is a state of being.  Happiness comes and goes; bliss is constant.  Happiness is dependent on external things; bliss is […]

International Day of Yoga

“If yoga goes mainstream, I’m going to quit,” a passionate yogini exclaimed to me.  I was representing Yoga Alliance as its first President, traveling to yoga conferences to explain what we were creating — a self-governing body of yoga teachers.  She was more invested in being “alternative” than in doing yoga.  Yet yoga is mainstream […]

The Waiting Game

I remember high school dances, with us girls all lined up waiting for a teenage boy to come ask us to dance. Only once a year could the girl offer the invitation, on Sadie Hawkins Day. The rest of the time, it was a waiting game. It’s a waiting game again. How long will this […]

How Much Yoga?

When you decide how much yoga you are going to do, you are deciding two things:  (1) what to do with some available time (a simple thing), and (2) what your goal in life is (a really big deal!).  You are really choosing —do you want to be happy or do you want to be […]

Devotion in Yoga

Family and holidays are at the fore of your mind this time of year, with yoga often receding to the background. Of course, you use yoga to recover from overdoing it, whether it’s the food, other pleasures, or the pressures of inner and outer expectations. Yet the sages of India describe devotion as an essential […]

Sensory Impressions

I watched the fiery sun rise over the Ganga (Ganges River) in Varanasi.  Surya wiggled through the layers of clouds and became round again, reflecting across the water shining in my eyes.  People around me were doing other things:  watching a passing sheep, playing with a ball, washing laundry on the stones, walking and talking […]

Family

I remember being surprised by how I felt at a family reunion many years ago, sitting in a room with 25 blood relatives, many of whom I hadn’t seen in decades.  I could feel the bond with them so tangibly, so physically.  It’s like my DNA recognized their DNA.  Thus while we were getting caught […]

My First Yoga Teacher

You never forget your first yoga teacher. She has a special place in your heart. While I’d begun with TV yoga at age 12, my first in-person class wasn’t until 10 years later. The teacher both wowed and horrified me by demonstrating Shavasana with Ujjayi Pranayama, emphasizing the expansion of her belly on the inbreath. […]

Yoga: Classical, Modern & Authentic

I helped create Yoga Alliance by serving as the founding President. I learned a lot from the many yogis involved in establishing national standards for yoga teachers. Three of yoga’s then-living masters sent personal representatives: BKS Iyengar, Swami Satchidananda and Yogi Bhajan. Each of them emphasized yogis getting together. In spite of the differences we […]