Swami Ramdev (1965 – ), also known as Baba Ramdev, is an Indian, Hindu swami. He is particularly well-known for his efforts in popularizing Yoga. His yoga camps are attended by a large number of people. People follow his yoga camps through TV channels and video. He is also one of the founders of the Divya Yoga Mandir Trust that aims to popularize Yoga.
Ramdev was born as Ramkishan Yadav in 1965, in Alipur in the Mahendragarh district of Indian state of Haryana. He attended school till the eighth grade in Shahjadpur. He then joined a gurukul in Khanpur village to study Sanskrit and Yoga. Eventually, he renounced worldly life and entered into Sanyas (monastic living) – taking his present name.
He then went to Jind district and joined the Kalva gurukul and offered free Yoga training to villagers across Haryana.
Ramdev spent many years undertaking an study of ancient Indian scriptures. At the same time, he also practiced intense self-discipline and meditation.
In 1995, Ramdev established Divya Yoga Mandir Trust with Acharya Karamveer and Acharya Balkrishna. Acharya Karmaveer is well-versed in Yoga and Veda while Acharya Balkrishna is a physician with a degree in Ayurveda.
He has also founded the Patanjali Yogpeeth Trust, an institution for treatment and research in Yoga and Ayurveda, in Haridwar. The trust provides several free services to all visitors.
Ramdev has taught several aspects of traditional Indian scriptures such as Ashtadhyayee, Mahabhashya and Upanishads along with six systems of Indian Philosophy in various Gurukuls. He has helped establish Gurukuls in Kishangarh, Ghashera, and Mahendragarh in India.
His educational show is broadcast on the religious TV channel Aastha, as well as shows on Zee network, Sahara One and India TV.
He has been regularly conducting yoga camps all over India and even abroad.
Awards and recognitions
* In January 2007, KIIT University awarded Swami Ramdev with an Honorary Doctorate degree in recognition of his efforts at popularizing the Vedic science of Yoga. The degree was presented to him in a ceremony presided over by the respected scientist and Nobel laureate Richard Ernst.
Claims of curing AIDS
In December 2006, press reports claimed that Ramdev had made claims of being able to use Yoga to cure AIDS.
A website promoting his products states that the CD4 cell count in some AIDS patients has improved after practising Yoga. This statement was translated by certain journalists as claiming a cure for AIDS.
As a consequence of these press reports he was sent a cease and desist order by the Indian Union Health Ministry and threatened legal action from medical NGOs. Ramdev responded by saying that he had been misquoted. His position was that Yoga and Ayurveda together can alleviate the suffering from AIDS, not cure it. He also added that Yogic education was preferable over sex education in response to the AIDS crisis.
Claims of curing Cancer
Other press reports quoted him as claiming to have a cure for cancer of the breast, liver, prostate, uterus, pituitary gland, brain tumors and leukemia by practicing the seven breathing exercises. They also said that he claimed to have documented proof of his successes.
Swami Ramdev was born in 1965 as Ramkishan Yadav in Alipur, Mahendragarh district of Indian state of Haryana. He attended school through the 8th grade in Shahjadpur. Thereafter, he joined a yogic monastery (gurukul) in Khanpur village to study Sanskrit and Yoga. Eventually, he renounced worldly life and entered into Sanyas (monastic living) – taking the name Swami Ramdev.
Then he went to Jind district and joined the Kalva gurukul and later imparted free Yoga training to villagers across Haryana. It is said that he travelled the Himalayas for several years before he settled in Haridwar. He discovered several medicinal plants in the Himalayas which he uses in treating his patients. Swami Ramdev started relentless efforts to popularise Yoga in 1995 with the establishment of DYM Trust, along with Acharya Karamveer and Acharya Balkrishna.
In 1995, Baba Ramdev joined the order of swamis after being initiated into the ascetic order by Swami Shankerdevji Maharaj. While training to be a Swami, Baba Ramdev spent many years undertaking an intense and thorough study of ancient Indian scriptures. At the same time, he also practiced intense self-discipline and meditation.
He teaches that God resides in every human being and that the body is God’s temple. He is a firm believer in the concept of Vasudaiv Kutambakam (the whole World is one family) and decries practices that discriminate on the basis of caste, creed or gender. His fundamental belief is that expressions of love, affection and compassion towards all living things are the true worship of the Creator.
Swami Ramdev has taught several aspects of traditional Indian scriptures such as Ashtadhyayee, Mahabhashya and Upanishads along with six systems of Indian Philosophy in various Gurukuls (traditional Indian systems of education). He has helped establish Gurukuls in Kishangarh, Ghashera, and Mahendragarh in India. He has also founded the PYP Trust which has built several institutions. In addition to helping people learn about Yoga and spirituality, these institutions also provide a comprehensive facility that promotes the practice of Ayurveda – the traditional system of holistic medicine developed in India.
He teaches Pranayama which is a series of techniques for breath control that were developed as a part of the ancient Indian system of Yoga. Heretofore, these techniques were often thought of as being esoteric and complex and portrayed as being unsuitable for lay people. Consequently, their use was often limited to advanced practitioners of Yoga and undertaken only under the strict supervision of an experienced teacher. Swamiji has worked diligently to break these barriers and help make the practice of Pranayama achievable by the ordinary layperson.
He has devised a set of six simple Pranayama breathing exercises as listed in the section below. These techniques have been readily embraced by the general public as evidenced by the following facts:
His educational show is broadcast on Indian TV channels from morning 6-8 am and evening 8-9 pm (IST) & also several times a day on different TV channels and he also has dedicated shows such as Total Tandurusti airing ona network, a show on another one at 9:00 am, Yoga Science on still another at 7:30 am & 1:30 pm. Total viewership is in millions. According to the synopsis that is available to Sky Digital viewers, Swami Ramdev “claims that he was a paralytic” prior to taking up yoga, but this claim has yet to be completely verified.
He has been conducting week long training camps in cities all over India. Total attendance in these camps exceeds tens of thousands. In 2006 Summer, the Swami spent almost a month in London teaching Pranayam & yoga.
Viewers of the TV show and attendees at the camp have reported significant improvements in their health – citing relief from many illnesses such as Diabetes, Heart Disease, Arthritis, Thyroid Problems, Hypertension, Stomach ailments and different types of cancer without the use of any medicines. But it should also be noted that most of these ‘patients’ speak on television for the first time and are over awed by the situation. Like most human beings in such situations, which may explain the miracles he is believed to perform.
Offical website : http://www.divyayoga.com/