Papaji in the Himalayas




  HWL Poonja (Papaji)

HWL Poonja, lovingly referred to as Papaji, was born on October 13, 1913 (or more commonly and controversially 1910, see page 16 of Nothing Ever Happened for a discussion and for documentation), in a part of the Punjab that is now in Pakistan. He had his first direct experience of the Self at the age of nine. He met his Master, Sri Ramana Maharshi, in 1944. Shortly afterwards he realized the Self in the presence of his master.

As a disciple of Sri Ramana Maharshi, the renowned Indian saint & sage who died in 1950, Papaji offered to speak about what he had experienced with his teacher.

Tens of thousands of people from all over the world visited Papaji, especially in Lucknow, his home, during the last years of his life. Seekers of truth from around the world visibly woke up in his presence. He had an extraordinary ability to seemingly transmit the experience of what has always been true and present: You are That!

Papaji continued to work and support the many members of his extended family until his retirement in 1966. After his extensive travel Papaji settled down in Lucknow, India, where he received visitors from around the world. Papaji died on September 6, 1997.

You're invited to read a first-person account of Papaji's life, written by David Godman and approved by Papaji himself. It is published as the first chapter in the Papaji: Interviews book. His complete biography Also, Papaji's biography is published online at the Satsang Bhavan web site,

In addition, a moving, in-depth biography of Papaji is published in the 3-volume set of books called, Nothing Ever Happened, edited by David Godman. One reader wrote, that these books are a clear picture of a great and unassuming man. Another reader wrote, "My mind is permanently 'ruined' [by] reading this...[It] has increased my desire to be simple and free." Still another wrote,"This is one of the best biographies of a spiritual being and teacher I have ever read...He always stayed a simple, ordinary, caring, unpretentious man, never declaring that he was on a `mission'. He always remained, simply, a free man.

For more information, check out The Satsang Bhavan website:


News from the new office:
OCT 26th
Avadhuta Foundation c/o
7088 Winchester Circle Suite 100
Boulder, CO 80301 Our phone numbers, e-mail addresses and fax numbers will all remain the same.
Om Shanti Shanti Shanti!


The Avadhuta Foundation was established as a non-profit organization - 501(c)(3), in 1993( click to see Papaji's Letter) to further the teachings of Sri H.W.L. Poonja, affectionately referred to as Papaji. Kamal Ruane, Raj Prabhu and Billy Pearlman were the first Board of Directors.

As Papaji directed, the Avadhuta Foundation now offers audiotapes, CDs, and DVDs of Satsangs that were recorded mostly from 1993 to 1997. In addition the Foundation also sells books about Papaji and about his teacher, Ramana Maharshi, along with photographs and music.

It is the mission of the foundation to catalog, preserve, and make available all that was and still is Papaji. As a non-profit organization we are supported by your donations and grants. If you would like to contribute to this on-going project, please contact us. All contributions are tax deductible.

Find out more about local events or about the tape remastering project at Avadhuta. If you think you may have copies of tapes we don't have, please check our listing of all satsangs. We will pay you the cost of postage, we will digitize your tape, send you a free copy and return your original. Please check. There are still some missing dates in the archives...not to mention any earlier videos - especially before 1990.

The Satsang Bhavan website has more information on Papaji Satsangs on the Web in text, video, and quotes; and about Papaji and the community in Lucknow, along with information about visiting during celebrations or for daily video satsangs.


AVADHUTA* | PAPAJI |Mission Statement

Papaji's official Avadhuta Foundation was established in 1993 to catalog, preserve, and make available to the public, information about the Indian teacher and guru, HWL Poonja, affectionately known as Papaji, and also that of his beloved teacher, Sri Ramana Maharshi. It functions both as a library and bookstore to loan, sell, and distribute books, tapes, DVDs, CDs, photos of Poonjaji and Sri Ramana. We are dedicated as stewards of Papaji's message to faithfully present his teachings. This requires that we are true to his words and that we present them as accurately and purely as possible.

*The word Avadhuta comes from an Indian term Avadhoot for one who has "shaken off" or "passed beyond" all worldly attachments and cares, including all motives of detachment (or conventional and other-worldly renunciation), all conventional notions of life and religion, and all seeking for "answers" or "solutions" in the form of conditional experience or conditional knowledge. (Quoted from The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam.)