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Questions and Answers About Meditation, Yoga, the Spiritual Life, and More

Category: Kriya Yoga

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Learning Kriya Yoga
April 6, 2010

Linda Hagen
United States


I am currently going to a Yoga teacher who is teaching me Kriya yoga. I have been studying the Raja Yoga book by Kriyananda. I do asana's each morning prior to meditation but do not do the energization exercises. Do I do both the asanas and energization exercises each day? My teacher is not able to initiate me into Kriya yoga. Do you recommend that I take your courses in order to be initiated?

Nayaswami Devarshi

Nayaswami Devarshi

Ananda Village


Yes, in order to be initated into Kriya Yoga, one must study all three parts of the Ananda Course. Click here to learn more.

Yoga postures are not required as part of the path of Kriya, but daily practice of the Energization Exercises are integral to learning Kriya.

Paramhansa Yogananda taught Kriya as a spiritual path that includes a regular daily meditation practice using the techniques of hong-sau and Aum (taught in Part III of the Ananda Course), along with the Energization Exercises.

The final step of initiation into Kriya can take place after about one year of regular practice, beginning with when one learns Hong-Sau and Energization.

Because the path of Kriya is so individual, it's best to email the Ananda Kriya Sangha for your country. Contact information, and more information about the path of Kriya Yoga, can be found at:

Peter Claver


My name is peter. I love God and I have dedicated a big part of my life to self realization. i would so much like to acquire the Yogoda Satsanga home lessons, but the information seems only to cater for those in the indian sub continent. How do I acquire them and the subsequent holy art of kriya yoga? Do i have to travel to india?


Dear Peter,

Thank you for your question. There are many devotees who would like to study Yogananda's teachings but who live far from a teaching center. I myself was one such devotee.

Ananda is a separate organization from Yogoda Satsanga Society. We do offer a home study course in Yogananda's teachings. You can learn more about it here, if you haven't already.

I learned Yogananda's teachings this way and worked my way up to receiving kriya initiation (in person from Ananda Kriya minister).

I'm not sure if we can ship the course to Uganda. You could ask a question on the course ordering page above. In any case, you get started with our on-line course, Lessons in Meditation.

We've created it for devotees all over the world to learn Yogananda's teachings and techniques, and work towards kriya initiation, from their own homes.

I should add that, although it is not required, if you can travel to India, it would be wonderful to meet you.

May God and Yogananda ever bless your spiritual efforts, Peter.


Kriya Yoga in Australia
December 11, 2009



I want to learn kriya yoga.

just now i live in australia .sydney

originally i m from india

plz help me

Nayaswami Devarshi

Nayaswami Devarshi

Ananda Village



Kriya is a very effective practice - I recommend it very highly.

We teach Kriya just as Paramhansa Yogananda taught it. This includes learning and practicing all the techniques that are part of Kriya Yoga practice.

The final step of initiation into the Kriya technique can take place nine months to a year after starting on the path of Kriya.

The first step is to learn the meditation techniques taught in Lessons in Meditation, which is Part One of the Ananda Course in Self-Realization (a home study course).

In order to receive Kriya Initiation, we ask people to study all three parts of the Ananda Course, and to establish a regular daily meditation practice using the techniques that are taught in the Course.

Since you live outside the U.S., and far from one of our teaching centers in Europe or India, you can eventually receive the Kriya technique through our Kriya Lessons and a Kriya Ceremony you can do at home (after studying the Ananda Course).

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. The process for getting Kriya is individual, so we offer ongoing support - both before and after people get the actual technique. And again, I recommend Kriya very highly - it really is an extraordinarily effective practice.

Joy and blessings to you,

Nayaswami Devarshi
for Ananda Kriya Sangha



how does one kriya breath equal one year of evolution?

yogananda said that a thousand kriyas equal one year of evolution.

therefore one might be inclined to think "well if i do 1000 kriyas a day,then in one year i should be a full blown saint."but this is not the case.

then yogananda says,if you think you can enslave god by your meditations,you are mistaken.

is this not a contradiction?if kriya is mathematical,then the question appears justified.

tell me what you think

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle


In our attempt to understand with our minds alone, the intricacies of the spiritual path we inevitably encounter paradox. A master often speaks in ways that confound the student in order to help us go beyond merely thinking.

However, that having been said, it might be helpful to consider that the statement that each kriya breath is equivalent to one year of living has one or more conditions! The kriya must be done correctly. This includes not only the correctness of the technique but of attitude, concentration, AND devotion.

Devotion includes the intention and act, with will power, of offering oneself to God and Guru, to the Divine. Thus we hint at the hidden efficacy of such a technique: the grace of God and Guru. As even "a little practice of this inward religion" reveals, we, by our will power alone, cannot make a deep and uplifting meditation experience happen. There's a delicate balance between applying our will and opening our hearts to God's presence and God's will.

So, it IS, and it ISN'T. You see? It IS mathematical if all the conditions are satisfied but yet it ISN'T mathematical because what is hidden from us are the inner workings of our karma and God's grace. Just because these are hidden do not mean they are whimsical, only that we are not yet aware of their workings.

Yogananda, by emphasizing the ineluctible efficacy of kriya yoga, seeks to inspire us to apply our will in the right way towards achieving liberation and freedom in God.

As a postscript, the astral anatomy of how a single breath equates to one year of natural living is well described in Chapter 26 ("Kriya Yoga") of Autobiography of a Yogi. Here he describes the movement of energy (prana) in concert with the physical breath up and down the spinal centers which, by polarity, represent the inner zodiac of karmic tendencies. I refer you back to that passage for an excellent description of this process.



I have been doing kriya for about a year. I wanted to know if kriya is known to have any specific effect on lowering of blood pressure.

Also are there any specific yoga postures or breathing techniques related to our practice that are specifically meant for addressing hypertension?


Tyagi Shanti, M.D.

Tyagi Shanti, M.D.

Ananda Palo Alto


Hypertension, or high blood pressure is one of the most common physical ailments in our country.

Meditation of any sort definitely lowers blood pressure. At the Harvard hospitals all patients who come to the hypertension clinics are taught meditation as part of their treatment.

Certainly Kriya practice has the potential to do this. I do not know of any specific yoga postures for HTN but I imagaine if we aksed a Hatha Yogi they might. On the other hand, HTN is not easily treated and its effects on the body are widespread and debilitating. High blood pressure sends that high degree of pressure into all of what are called "end organs" - heart, eyes, kidneys, and brain - and they don't like it!

Practice your Kriya, maybe even consciously asking for your pressure to drop before you start. Also, exercise and diets lower in salt are definitely shown to lower blood pressure in many people. Even eating three stalks of celery/day can help. Qui Gong has been shown to lower blood pressure and is a good practice.

But, and here is what is most important, if, after some time of practice (a few months at most) your blood pressure remains up please consider traditional treatment. I have seen many people who have been trying to lower their blood pressure with "natural means"... medtation, naturopathy, homeopathy, and more, for many years and still walk around with all of that pressure pounding through their body.

The medicines are not bad, albeit they are over-used in our society. Everything is God. If your blood pressure remains up after trying to lower it "naturally," take your medicines, keep them on your altar, and ask God to bless you as you swallow those pills every day.

You will be blessed.

Kriya Yoga and Buddhism
November 2, 2009



i am a buddhist, i have complete faith in the buddha and his dharma. moreover i am also attracted to yoga as it is explained by yoganada in his classic autobiography. i want to be clear if i will be welcome when i approach ananda to learn kriya yoga. will my buddhist faith be a disqualification for initiation into the method of kriya yoga? does your community insist on converting to hinduism or sanathan dharma before any real empowerment can be given?

Nayaswami Bharat


Dear Avin,

Your Buddhist faith does not disqualify you from Kriya Yoga initiation.

However, the Kriya Yoga technique does require on the meditator's part a receptive openness and love for Paramhansa Yogananda and our other lineage of gurus.

Kriya isn't a mechanical technique, it is one that is empowered by the magnetic influence of the guru. So there should be a strong bond of deep appreciation and gratitude for our line of gurus. If this is something you deeply feel, then I would encourage you to contact us. Paramhansa

Yogananda taught several meditation techniques like Hong Sau that one can learn without taking discipleship. This is a very profound practice and it is one that he called baby Kriya. You can learn this right away on our website.

Blessings and light,


upper midwest


Can one be a Christian and still receive Kriya initiation?

To be a Kriya yogi does one need to become vegetarian?

Nayaswami Devarshi

Nayaswami Devarshi

Ananda Village


Christ is one of our line of Kriya Gurus, along with Mahavatar Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya, Sri Yukteswar, and Paramhansa Yogananda. In the highest sense, Kriyabans are following the teachings of Christ - not the "churchianity" or narrow sectarianism that states that there is only "one way" - but what Yogananda called "original Christianity."

So yes, one can still be a Christian and receive Kriya initiation. However, initiation into Kriya does mean acceptance of all of our line of Gurus, along with Christ.

Kriya Yoga does not require vegetarianism. Eating lighter foods, including eliminating or cutting down on meat, can definitely help one with meditation. But it's not required for initiation into Kriya. Over time, with the practice of Kriya and meditation, those types of changes will happen naturally.



Namastey Guruji

I have read the book "Autobiography of a yogi" and was inspired by the true relation between the technique in Kriya Yoga and the invention of J.C.Bose Crescograph.

Swami Paramahamsa Yogananda clearly signified that when one gets initiated into Kriya Yoga and following certain techniques he can burn his Bad Karmas and attain Enlightment. Can you please explain me clearly about this and how does a yogi attain Samadhi and Liberation with the help of Kriya Yoga.

Nayaswami Devarshi

Nayaswami Devarshi

Ananda Village


Kriya Yoga speeds up our spiritual growth in several ways. One of them is the rapid burning up of past bad karma. According to our Kriya Gurus, kriya helps to increase the current of energy in the astral spine. This strong current carries along with it the vrittis of past karma — much like a river in flood will sweep away all the stagnant eddies and whirlpools, and carry all the old debris to the ocean.

Kriya also gives us pranayama, or control of the life force. This control enables us to offer all our life force at the spiritual eye, where we are eventually united with God. Of course all of this can't be done soley through technique. It also requires devotion, and the guidance and grace of the Guru. But when done properly, Kriya is extraordinarily effective in liberating us. I've personally seen spiritual growth in many Kriya Yogis that is quite remarkable.

You can learn more about Kriya by contacting Ananda Kriya Sangha in the following location nearest you:

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