Swami Ramdas (1884 – 1963)
Swami Ramdas, who was known as Vittal Rao during his pre-Sannyas days, was leading an ordinary life till God's grace descended on him in or about the year 1920. Then he was made to think deeply about the futility of worldly pursuits and the absolute necessity of taking to the divine path for realising one's identity with the Supreme Being, as a result of which alone one can get 'Peace-eternal.' He placed himself totally at the altar of God. At this time his father initiated him with the holy and all-powerful Ram Mantra. Prompting came from within to renounce the worldly life and he took to a wandering mendicant's life. Intense aspiration coupled with earnest practice to attain the Highest quickened his spiritual progress and in a short time he had the vision of his Beloved – God – everywhere, within and without. The result was unending Bliss. Having thus attained the supreme goal of life, he started on his mission to guide and serve mankind, to awaken it to the awareness of God, by founding Anandashram. Innumerable persons in India and abroad took advantage of his most enlivening and inspiring presence till he dropped his mortal coil in 1963.
- Swami Ramdas