Paramahamsa Vishwananda carries the grace of prestigious spiritual lineages. In 2008, three years after He launched the Bhakti Marga public mission, Paramahamsa Vishwananda began initiating devotees into the Bhakti Marga Spiritual Order. Taking initiation under Him affords initiates simultaneous membership into the Bhakti Marga Spiritual Order and the Sri Sampradaya.
The One and Only Satguru
The relationship with one's satguru is an eternal one, as the satguru guides the soul, life after life, toward the ultimate perfection of God-realisation. Paramahamsa Sri Swami Vishwananda is, and always will be, the only satguru in Bhakti Marga.
As a satguru, Paramahamsa Vishwananda can see the truth of a person’s soul dharma and knows exactly what is needed to carry them to God. Through His grace and commitment, He takes on the responsibility for the spiritual advancement of all who take initiation under Him and who make a sincere effort to follow His teachings and guidance.
Swamis & Swaminis
The Sanskrit word swami means ‘master of the self’. Swamis and Swaminis, through the grace of the satguru, can bless people and represent Him in their travels, teachings and governing of their assigned duties. Bhakti Marga has numerous Swamis and Swaminis who are stationed in countries around the world.
The role of Swami/Swamini is not something you choose for yourself, it is a divine assignment given by Paramahamsa Vishwananda. All those in the role wear orange robes at all times.
Rishis & Rishikas
Rishis of ancient times were wise men, holding and passing on knowledge to ensure the continuation of the ancient spiritual teachings. Bhakti Marga Rishis (men) and Rishikas (women) are traveling teachers who carry a special blessing to spread the mission and share the teachings of Paramahamsa Vishwananda. Rishis and Rishikas are chosen by the Master, they always wear red and are considered to be Swamis in training.
Taking initiation into the Spiritual Order as a devotee or brahmacharya (as described below) is purely optional. It is a personal choice that should only be made by listening to the wisdom of one's own heart. For those who are clear that they have found their Master and who are ready to make a commitment to living His teachings and following His guidance, it is a natural step on the journey to God.
Please note, initiation is in no way a requirement for participation in the vast majority of Bhakti Marga events, activities, and courses.
Brahmacharinis & Brahmacharis
For those who feel a sincere inner calling to dedicate their lives to selflessly serving guru and God, Bhakti Marga offers Brahmacharya Initiation. Taking the vow of Brahmacharya is meant to be lifetime commitment and not to be taken lightly.
In addition to following all the guidelines of being a Devotee, being a bramacharini (nun) or brahmachari (monk) means living a celibate life, renouncing the material world to the best of one's ability, and committing oneself to supporting Paramahamsa Vishwananda and His Bhakti Marga mission as one's first priority.
Devotee Initiation is for those who know in their hearts that they have found their path and are ready to seek the shelter and guidance of Paramahamsa Vishwananda as their guru.
Initiation formalises one's personal commitment to live His teachings, follow His guidance and uphold the Bhakti Marga values to the best of one's ability.