These are not just influential individuals with expertise in diverse areas, but ones who have helped shaped our understanding through their insightful and galvanizing teachings, events, books, and multiple resources. Highlighting their works and contributions would be a grasp at what we should know about these lionized leaders, do feel free to check them out at the various links below each one.
1. Eckhart Tolle (Born on February 16, 1948)
“Wherever you are, be there totally. If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally. If you want to take responsibility for your life, you must choose one of those three options, and you must choose now. Then accept the consequences.” – Eckhart Tolle
A highly revered spiritual teacher, writer, and speaker. He is best known for his authorship of the book The Power of Now, a New York time bestseller and it’s follow-up A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose, whose teachings spanning from Zen Buddhism, Hinduism, the Bible, and Sufism, has influenced individuals across the globe. He raises the need for a conscious-mind, creating a spiritual awakening to a life of purpose and presence that has helped an innumerable number of people attain peace, understanding, and fulfillment. His works, lauded by Oprah is available in various information formats. For more updates on his work and upcoming events, visit www.eckharttolle.com.
2. Adyashanti (Steven Gray, American Author-Spiritual teacher; Born October 26, 1962)
“The biggest embrace of love you’ll ever make is to embrace yourself completely. Then you’ll realize you’ve just embraced the whole universe, and everything and everybody in it.” – Adyashanti
An inquisitive student, his studies spanned from Zen Buddhism to the Gospel and Christian mystics, with interest in enlightenment and awakening. He has eight published books, with is latest being Resurrecting Jesus Embodying the Spirit of Revolutionary Mystics (2014). His Sanskrit name was obtained over his growing years of startup, meaning Primordial peace. His works are in varied formats of meetings, silent retreats, online courses with viewers from across the globe, intensive weekends and live internet broadcasts. For more info about Adyashanti, visit www.adyashanti.org.
3. Thich Nhat Hanh (Nguyễn Xuân Bảo, Vietnamese Zen Master-Peace activist; Born October 11, 1926)
“People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar” – Thich Nhat Hanh
A Vietnamese Buddhist Zen master, prolific writer, peace activist and polyglot (5 international languages excluding his native). He believes that through mindfulness, we can learn the value of the present moment, which is the one way to true peace. Over several years, he has aided in introducing Buddhism to the western world, having pioneered six monasteries and thousands of mindfulness meditation centers in the US, and Vietnam (Sanghas).
He has been nominated for a Nobel prize award (1967), conferred an honorary doctorate in 2017 for his contributions to mindfulness and peace across the globe, has been featured in several films and authored more a 100 books in English, some of which are best sellers amongst others. He is currently based in plum village. Visit www.plumvillage.org, for more information.
4. Mooji (Anthony Paul Moo-Young, British Jamaican spiritual teacher-author; Born January 29, 1954 )
“If you do not trust life to unfold, the mind takes over and it becomes a game of strategy, motivated by anxiety. This mistrust is unfair. Life has given us so much, and yet we do not trust it.” – Mooji
The author of 8 books, with the Vaster Than Sky, Greater Than Space published in 2018. With an understanding of the philosophy of nondualism, he offers diverse visitors from across the globe an introduction to the direct path via self-inquiry for non-ephemeral self-realization. His teaching is based on self-inquiry, encouraging his students into non-dual self by their questioning on who or what they are at an in-depth level. He is a disciple of Papaji (Advaita master) and has contributed to the world in form of his one-on-one meetings, Satsang, retreat & charity (Mooji foundation, a charity that provides support for Satang events and outreach globally), to seekers of their true self. He has become itinerant while during this, sharing the truth he found while spending the most time in India, UK, and Monte Sahaja. For more information, please visit www.mooji.org.
5. Ram Dass (Richard Alpert, American Spiritual teacher-former psychologist-author; Born April 6, 1931)
“Your problem is you are too busy holding on to your unworthiness.” – Ram Dass
An inquisitive psychologist on the exploration of the human consciousness, his name ‘Ran Dam’ means ‘servant of God’, given to him by Neem Kanoli Baba (Maharaji) on his 1967 visit to India as a prominent Harvard psychologist and psychedelic pioneer with Dr.Timothy Leary. From 1968 forward, he has journeyed through spiritual practices from devotional yoga (karma yoga) primarily on Hindu deity, meditation in Zen Buddhism and Jewish mystic studies. His teachings are aimed at getting his students to experience the Godly-love, as he continually shares true knowledge and vision. They are available in forms of bi-yearly retreats on Maui, where he presently resides. His most recent books include Be Love Now (2011), Polishing the Mirror: How to Live from Your Spiritual Heart (2013), Cookbook for Awakening (2017), and Walking Each Other Home (2018). For more information, visit www.ramdass.org