Yogi Bhajan was born Harbhajan Singh Puri, on August 26, 1929, in a part of Pakistan that is now India. When he was just eight years old, he began his yogic training with an enlightened teacher, Sant Hazara Singh. Later, he proclaimed Yogi Bhajan to be a Master of Kundalini Yoga when he was just sixteen and a half years old. When he arrived in the West in 1968, he announced he had come "to create teachers, not to gain students”. For the first time in recorded history, he openly taught Kundalini Yoga, a very old and sacred science for awakening spiritual consciousness within the individual.
A strong community quickly came together around these teachings and lifestyle, which he called the "3HO" (Healthy, Happy, Holy) way of life. Founded in compassion and a commitment to sharing teachings that would help free people from their pain and confusion, Yogi Bhajan’s mission was developed for nearly 40 years. Under his spiritual guidance, ashrams, yoga centers, Gurdwaras and communities sprang up all over the world. He was also a pioneer in the interfaith movement and a friend and mentor to public leaders everywhere.
In 1994, the International Kundalini Yoga Teachers Association (IKYTA) was founded by Yogi Bhajan. He said the acronym IKYTA is pronounced “ik-ta”, meaning Oneness. He said “It is very fortunate you have this Association. When I’ll be physically gone, search me out spiritually. You’ll need to sit together to do it.”
Yogi Bhajan left his physical body at 9:05 p.m. MDT on 6 October 2004. His legacy lives on in his teachings and continues to spread around the globe through all the people who practice and teach Kundalini Yoga. Today Kundalini Yoga is being taught in over 52 countries and on every continent by over 28,000 Kundalini Yoga Teachers.
His motto: "If you can't see God in all, you can't see God at all."
His credo: "It's not the life that matters, it's the courage that you bring to it."
His challenge to students: "Don't love me, love my teachings. Become ten times greater than me."