Kuvalayananda, Swami (1883-1966)

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Kuvalayananda, Swami (1883-1966)

Famous Indian pioneer of the scientific study of hatha yoga. He was born Jagannath Ganesh Gune on August 30, 1883, at Dabhoi, Baroda. His first language was Marathi, but all of his publications on yoga in English. He was a noted scholar, educationist, and national freedom fighter. He organized the Khandesh Education Society in 1916 and was principal of the society's college (1921-23). He chaired the Physical Education Committee, appointed by the Bombay Board of Physical Education, and was a member of the Central Advisory Board of Physical Education.

Gune was one of Paramahamsa Shree Madhavadasji Maharaj's two major students at Malsar, on the banks of the river Narmada in Gujarat State. Paramahamsa Madhavadasji trained Gune and Shri Yogendra in yoga, which had died out in most of India; Paramahansa Madhavadasji was the major advocate of its revival. Yogendra founded a yoga center in Bombay, and Gune worked at it until 1932. He then left to found the Yogic Health Center at Santa Cruz, Bombay; new premises were secured in 1935 and the center was renamed Ishwardas Chunilal Yoga Health Centre, Kaivalyadhama. Later a spiritual center was added at Kanakesvara Hill in the Kolaba district of Bombay. An additional center, the Kaivalyadhama Saurashtra Mandal, was established in Rajkot in 1943.

By the end of 1943 it was decided to divide the main organization into two wings: Kaivalyadhama Ashrama with emphasis on spiritual development, and Kaivalyadhama Sreeman Madhava Yoga Mandira (SMYM) Samhiti at Lonavla, Poona, specializing in the medical and scientific investigation of yoga. The latter wing was officially recognized as a research institute by the government of Bombay and by Bombay State.

Since 1935 the Kaivalyadhama SMYM Samhiti has published the Yoga-Mimamsa journal, edited by Swami Kuvalayananda, with both popular and scientific sections devoted to the serious study of yoga.


Kuvalayananda, Swami. Asanas. Lonavla (C.R.), India: YogaMimamsa Office. Reprinted as Popular Yoga Asanas. Rutland, Vt.: C. E. Tuttle, 1972.

. Pranayama. Lonavla (C.R.), India: Yoga-Mimamsa Office. Reprint, Bombay: Popular Prakashan, 1966.

Melton, J. Gordon, Jerome Clark, and Aidan Kelly. New Age Encyclopedia. Detroit: Gale Research, 1990.

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