Easwaran, Eknath
(1910–1999)
   founder of Blue Mountain Center of Meditation
   An Indian-born proponent of MEDITATION, Eknath Easwaran was the first to teach the practice in an American academic setting. For four decades he taught nonsectarian techniques of meditation through courses, lectures, and more than two dozen books.
   Eknath Easwaran was born on December 17, 1910, into an ancient matrilineal family in Kerala, India. He grew up under the guidance of his grandmother, whom he was later to honor as his spiritual teacher. From her he learned the tradi-tional wisdom of India’s ancient scriptures. When he was a boy, she sent him to the temple priest to learn SANSKRIT from one of the purest traditions in India.
   Easwaran fell in love with English literature in high school. At 16 he left home to attend a Catholic college. Here he excelled in debate and read columns by Mohandas Karamchand GAN-DHI (1869–1948) in Young India. Easwaran spent his 20s as a journalist in Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh, where he soon became recognized as a public speaker. During this time he visited the ASHRAM of Mahatma Gandhi, where Gandhi’s teaching impressed him greatly, particularly Gan-E

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

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