In the stately Darbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan, Swami Sivananda walked barefoot, earning the respect of the public as he received the Padma Shri award from Ram Nath Kovind on Monday. The long and healthy life of Swami Sivananda, as well as his commitment to promoting COVID vaccination after immunizing himself at the age of 125, have attracted international attention.
Born on August 8,1896, in the then undivided district of Sylhet (now Bangladesh), Swami Sivananda is currently the world’s oldest living human being. He lost both parents at the age of six. Because of their extreme poverty, his beggar parents provided him with only boiled rice water when he was a boy.
He was taken to his Guruji’s Ashram in Nabadwip, West Bengal, after the funeral rites. Guru Omkarananda Goswami raised him and provided him with all the required knowledge, including Yoga, without requiring him to attend school. Swami thinks that Yoga is the means to live a healthy life since it governs the senses, mind, and will. It’s a path to divinity and godhood.
Since 1958, Swami Sivananda has been personally visiting 400 to 600 leprosy-affected beggars in Puri in the hutments of those in need with dignity. Swami considers them as living Gods. He organises various resources such as food, fruits, clothing, winter coats, blankets, mosquito nets, and cooking equipment according to their specified needs. He urges others to donate various products to the impacted individuals in order for them to experience the best of giving and be inspired to perform similar humanitarian activities in their own communities.
‘The world is my home, its people are my fathers and mothers, to love and serve them is my religion’
Aside from his strict yoga regimen, his eating habits are something we should all be aware of. The majority of them are difficult to follow, but they have helped the Yoga guru live a disease-free and tension-free existence. Swami Sivananda has always stated that he eats extremely plain, oil-free, spice-free meals. Rice and boiling daal are his favourite foods (lentil stew). He also refuses to eat milk or fruits since he considers them to be posh meals.
“I lead a simple and disciplined life. I eat very simply — only boiled food without oil or spices, rice and boiled daal (lentil stew) with a couple of green chilies”
He is still in good health and has no medical issues at the age of 125. He still gets up at 3 a.m. every day to begin his day. His lengthy and robust existence has drew the attention of worldwide news organisations.
In celebration of World Yoga Day, Mr. Raman was the oldest elder to participate in a yoga demonstration. On November 30, 2019, Respect Age International honored him with the Basundhara Ratan Award for his contributions to society.
At a Civil Investiture Ceremony-I conducted at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Monday, President Ram Nath Kovind bestowed the Padma Shri award to 54 eminent individuals, including 125-year-old Swami Sivananda for his contribution to Yoga.
The yoga practitioner bowed down in front of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President before accepting the medal, earning another wave of applause from the civic investiture ceremonial guests.