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It’s the Experience of God That Counts (With Swami Kriyananda)

Swami Kriyananda
June 24, 2023

Swami Kriyananda discusses the limits of individual perception in seeing things for what they are. He shares an insightful story about the “6 Blind Boys and the Elephant” that demonstrates the limitations of individual beliefs and experiences for perceiving truth.

Kriyananda talks about his early days with his guru, Paramhansa Yogananda, and the many challenges that some of the early devotees faced in trying to understand Yogananda's profound teachings and spiritual experiences. He emphasizes the importance of having a personal experience with God and finding one’s own connection instead of relying on dogma and scriptures.

Everyone, Kriyananda says, is a potential saint and has the responsibility to seek and find God for themselves. He urges everyone to look beyond their limiting beliefs and embrace the possibilities of the direct experience of God’s presence and guidance in their lives.



In 1948 at the age of twenty-two, Swami Kriyananda (J. Donald Walters) became a disciple of the Indian yoga master, Paramhansa Yogananda. Yogananda is best known for his spiritual classic, Autobiography of a Yogi. In his book he recalls his experiences growing up in India and his life in America. He writes of meeting the great spiritual master Babaji, and how Babaji reintroduced the life changing meditation technique of Kriya Yoga. He tells of his life with his guru, Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri, of his guru Lahiri Mahasaya, and his meeting with Anandamayi Ma. Yogananda moved to America and developed the energization exercises and taught the meditation techniques of Hatha Yoga and, especially, Kriya Yoga.

At Yogananda’s request, Swami Kriyananda devoted his life to lecturing and writing, helping others to experience the living presence of God within. He taught on four continents in seven languages over the course of 65 years. His talks, his music, and his many books have touched the lives of millions. An advocate of simple living and high thinking, his 150 books emphasize the need to live wisely by one’s own experience of life and not by abstract theories or dogmas. A composer since 1964, Walters has written over 400 musical works. His music is inspiring, soothing, and uplifting.


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