From its inception, Muktidham has been a sacred place. Muktidham, or "Abode of Liberation," was built in 1973-74 by the residents of the original Kripalu Yoga Ashram in Sumneytown, Pennsylvania as a place of seclusion for Yogi Amrit Desai. Amrit Desai remarked, "One day, Bapuji will do his Sadhana here." This wish became a dream for Bapuji's American disciples. Repeatedly, Amrit asked Bapuji to visit America. However, Bapuji was firm in avoiding long travel or anything that might disturb his Sadhana.
Finally in 1977, Bapuji came to America from India to meet his American followers and to continue his advanced meditation in solitude. He found Muktidham an ideal place for his Sadhana. The secluded, wooded surroundings at the top of a steep hill were perfect for his meditation; therefore, he was able to extend his stay to four and quarter years. Here in Muktidham, Bapuji did his ten hour a day Kundalini Yoga practice eventually reaching the highest stages of yoga, Nirvikalpa Samadhi, the thought-free, formless state of ultimate union.
On September 29, 1981 Bapuji left Muktidham for the last time to return to his homeland, India. There he took Mahasamadhi (passed on) on December 29, 1981 leaving behind a great spiritual legacy.
Ever since Bapuji left Muktidham, it has been preserved as a sacred pilgrimage place for seekers and disciples. Through Muktidham, we can experience Bapuji's special blessings as we connect with his subtle, loving presence.
Downstairs at Muktidham
The downstairs room is Bapuji's darshan room where he wrote his articles and gave darshan (audience). He wrote at the low desk and kept his books within easy reach by the side of his chair. The chair and cloth covering, desk, wall and shelf cloths are all the original furnishings.
Bapuji loved Muktidham because in India it was difficult for him to remain secluded since there were so many demands on him. Here, his desire for seclusion was respected, enabling him to do Sadhana for ten hours every day.
When he left to go back to India, he prostrated in front of Muktidham, expressing his gratitude and devotion to the place where he attained Samadhi, the rare state of total enlightenment.
Upstairs at Muktidham
Bapuji did Sadhana in this upstairs room where he slept and meditated on a 4" thick mat. The altar is the original one he used.
The Radha and Krishna picture is the one he placed on the altar.
(2) The picture of the swami with the hat is Swami Keshavanandji Maharaj. He was the originator of the path that Swami Shantanandji followed which is called the Udisain Order.
Bapuji also had a picture of Dadaji on his altar. The statue there now was made by a devotee in California, who gave it to Bapuji as a gift, and was not on his altar while Bapuji was here.
Click on the picture for a larger format close-up of the altar.
Kripalvananda Yoga Institute