Sri Chinmoy (born Chinmoy Kumar Ghose) was born in Shakpura, Chittagong, East Bengal (now Bangladesh) in 1931.
At the age of 12, the young Chinmoy entered the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry, south India. In the Ashram, the young Chinmoy spent time in meditation and excelled at athletics. In particular, he enjoyed sprinting; but he also played football, volleyball and was twice the ashram decathlon champion. In 1964, Sri Chinmoy followed an ‘inner command’ to come to America and share the spiritual wisdom of the East with aspiring seekers in the West. Sri Chinmoy lived in New York, US from 1964 until his mahasamadhi in October 2007.
On arriving in America, Sri Chinmoy gave lectures on yoga and spirituality, and also taught meditation. During his time in the West, Sri Chinmoy Meditation Centres were founded in more than 60 countries across the world. As well as emphasising the importance of the inner life – meditation and prayer, Sri Chinmoy also encouraged his students to give importance to physical well being and feats of self-transcendence. The Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team, founded by Sri Chinmoy, is one of the world’s leading ultra distance organisers. They hold an annual 6 day and 10 day race, and also the world’s longest certified footrace – The 3100 Mile Self Transcendence Race.
Other aspects of Sri Chinmoy’s service can be viewed at