Today, mental peace is our crying need. We are at that point in human history when technological advancement is at its peak, but nourishment for the heart is minimal. Despite so much ease and comfort, we are plagued with mental and physical ailments. Depression, anxiety, panic disorders, behavioural problems, and lifestyle diseases are rampant. We have lost touch with our hearts.
It is easy to say ‘hit the pause button and tune in to your heart and mind’.But how do we find the path to inner peace and happiness ? Daaji Kamlesh Patel, the current global guide of Heartfulness meditation and modern-day pioneer of wellness has offered a simple and easy method – Heartfulness yoga and meditation with Pranahuti. This system starts with a nice relaxation and meditation in the morning and ends the day with a rejuvenative cleaning. Meditation is not just ‘thinking of one thing repeatedly’, but it is a process of moving from thinking to feeling the peace and love within, then moving from feeling to becoming, and then being, to achieve a refinement in attitudes and lifestyle permanently. Daaji’s teachings inculcate a deep respect for all spiritual traditions and the techniques of the Heartfulness system are acceptable and user-friendly whatever their nationality, background or preference.
Starting his journey in the humble village of Bharuch in Gujarat, he graduated in pharmacy and worked and built a successful pharmaceutical business in New York. His interest in personal spiritual fulfilment started in his youth, guided at first by his father, then a monk on the banks of River Narmada, who sent him back home, and then his spiritual Guru, the founder of Shri Ram Chandra Mission, Shri Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur.
Daaji devotes his time and energy to scientific, spiritual and medical research in the field of yoga and consciousness. He motivates research on the management of anxiety, anger, stress and addiction relief. Many revealing scientific discoveries on the neurological impact of meditation on physical and healthcare are being made through the Heartfulness institute under his patronage. Publications based on his research and findings appear in scientific journals regularly. His popular Udemy Online course on Meditation and the Evolution of Consciousness, and regular articles in Indian and American media inspire many. His best-selling books starting with The Heartfulness Way, Designing Destiny, and Wisdom Bridge provide clear insight into the art and science of meditation and demystify old ideas of spirituality.
Children create the future of this world. Daaji’s aspiration is to expand the minds of children and inculcate positive values, and a good lifestyle, for a bright future. His work in creating the Heartfulness Learning Centre in Kanha, in an atmosphere of learning from nature, and developing skills is a forerunner of such schools. He has published a bestseller for children, Tales from the Vedas and Upanishads, and many more such interesting books are on the anvil. These children’s books and narratives of well-known ancient stories are utilised to ask modern questions and locate alternate solutions to solve current crises in individual and social life. He has also pioneered numerous other initiatives for children like “Brighter Minds” that improve cognitive learning and help unleash their hidden potential. His best-seller, The Wisdom Bridge guides young couples in the preparation of their marriage and parenting.
Daaji’s team has done groundbreaking work in the conservation of rare and endangered species of medicinal and aromatic herbs, plants, and trees at Kanha Shanti Vanam. He has implemented many dynamic ideas in agriculture, saving endangered species, and profitability for the small farmer. The ‘Tree Conservation Center’ houses a tissue culture lab to help propagate the endangered plant and tree species indigenous to our country. Kanha named, “The Pride of Telangana” has been awarded the “Haritha Mitra” award for its green initiatives, and is a place of awe and wonder.
The vision of Kanha Shanti Vanam, the world headquarters for the Heartfulness Institute, was inaugurated by the President of India in 2020. Today Heartfulness has a presence in over 160 countries with millions of practitioners and 16,000 certified trainers. It houses the world’s largest meditation centre with adjunct facilities that can seat almost 100,000 meditators at a time. Heartfulness Institute launched the Heartfulness App, allowing anyone with a phone to meditate with Yogic Transmission, anytime, anywhere. Daaji’s grand vision is to bring Heartfulness meditation to the doorstep of every home in every city, village, town, and doorstep. He is fulfilling the dream of his Guru, who said, “Spirituality is the birthright of every human being”.
In recognition of the inspired work by his team, for the better physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health of humanity, a number of felicitations and awards have started coming. The latest is the prestigious Padma Bhushan award by the honourable President of India, Smt. Draupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhawan on the 22nd of March 2023 for distinguished service in Spiritualism. The great minds who felicitated him on the occasion include the Vice President of India, Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, Lok Sabha Speaker Shri Om Birla, Union Minister for Home Affairs and Minister of Cooperation, Shri Amit Shah, and more.
Numerous ceremonies followed to honour Daaji and his work, by Union Minister for Ayush & Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shri Sarbananda Sonowal and MOS Ayush Dr. Munjpara Mahendrabhai, Secretary Ayush, Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Joint Secretary Shri Rahul Sharma, Dr. Manoranjan Sahu, and Dr. Gopalasamy Veluchamy; Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, Chemicals & Fertilizers, Shri Mansukh Mandaviya and Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Mrs. Bharati Pravin Pawar.
A large-scale felicitation ceremony was organised by Shri Parshottam Rupala, Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying with the Hon’ble Vice President of India Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar ,Shri Om Prakash Birla, Speaker of Lok Sabha; Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Housing & Urban Affairs; Shri G Kishen Reddy, Minister of Tourism, Culture & Development; Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal, Minister of Education; Acharya Lokesh Muni, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister of Agriculture; Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of Textiles, Commerce, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution; Shri Devusinh Chauhan, Minister of State for Communications and more than thirty members of the Lok Sabha.
Smt Meenakshi Lekhi, Minister of State External Affairs & Culture; Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs & Culture; Smt Uma Nanduri, Joint Secretary Ministry of Culture; Dr. R C Agarwal, DDG ICAR; Shri Yogender Kumar, Director-Member of Board IFFCO and Dr. Gautam Sharma, AIIMS, Shri Sushil Salwan, and Smt Rupa Salwan from the Salwan Group of Institutions and Shri Himanshu Gupta, Director Education of the Delhi Government, Prof R C Agarwal, President and Dr. P K Upadhyay, General Secretary of the Indian Society of Genetics, Biotechnology Research, and Development (ISGBRD) – a premier research organisation of the country, felicitated Daaji and presented the Prakriti Prerak Award.
All these indicate that the future is very bright, although the road ahead is very long. The trickle has become a flood, a mighty River Ganga, and soon an ocean of spirituality in the world. As the great modern-day saint Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur predicted, “No nation can survive without spirituality at its base, and India (Bharat) will again lead the world.”