Bhagavan Das (yogi)
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Kermit Michael Riggs
May 17, 1945
|Occupation||Spiritual teacher, singer, writer|
Bhagavan Das (Devanagari: भगवान दास) (born Kermit Michael Riggs on May 17, 1945), also known as Baba Bhagavan Das, is an American yogi who lived for six years in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Bhagavan Das is a bhakti yogi, kirtan singer, spiritual teacher and writer.
In 1963 at the age of 18, Bhagavan Das left California and journeyed solo through Europe, Northern Africa and the Middle East, eventually arriving in India. During the six years he spent as a wandering ascetic in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, he received numerous initiations and teachings from various saints and sages. In 1965, Bhagavan Das met his guru, the Hindu holy man Neem Karoli Baba. He became an initiate and devotee of Neem Karoli Baba.
In 1967, Bhagavan Das guided spiritual teacher Ram Dass (known then as Dr. Richard Alpert) throughout India and introduced him to Neem Karoli Baba. Bhagavan Das was featured in Ram Dass' 1971 book Be Here Now, which described Bhagavan Das' role in Ram Dass' spiritual journeys in India.
Bhagavan Das is the author of the 1997 autobiography, It's Here Now (Are You?). In 2002, he released his seventh full album, called Now, that was produced and arranged by Mike D of the Beastie Boys, an East-meets-West musical pairing that broadened the scope of Bhagavan Das' audience.
In 1972 in California Bhagavan Das married his girlfriend, Bhavani, who was expecting their child; subsequently their daughter, Soma, was born in New York. In 1974 in Berkeley, California, he met Usha, who eventually became his common-law wife and they had a son, Mikyo, and a daughter, Lalita.
Bhagavan Das was married to Sharada Devi for 12 years.
Bhagavan Das and his current wife Amulya Maa originally met in 2007, but it was not until late 2018 that they reconnected, both personally and professionally. In early 2019, they began singing, teaching, and offering sessions and events together. On October 1, 2020, Bhagavan Das married Amulya Maa.
- The Fourth Tower of Inverness, 1972, Bhagavan Das's singing is the voice of the Bodhisattva Jukebox.
- Moon Over Morocco, 1974, Bhagavan Das's singing is used in Sunny Skies' dream sequence.
- AH, 1972
- Now (produced by Mike D of the Beastie Boys), 2002
- Holy Ghost Sessions (with Richard Sales), 2004
- Golden Voice, 2007
- Love Songs to the Dark Lord, 2009
- The Howler at Dawn, 2009
- Mother Light, 2014
Selected video appearances (self)
- What is Yoga? (with David Life, Sharon Ganon, and Willem Dafoe), 1998
- Ram Dass, Fierce Grace, 2001
- Crazy Sexy Cancer, 2007
- Spiritual Revolution, 2008
- One Giant Leap 2: What About Me?, 2008
- Kumaré, 2011
- Bhagavan Das (1997): "[I] wasn't divorced from Bhavani, and yet I already had 'wife' number two."
- Rottenberg (2016).
- Richardson (1998), p. 87.
- Sharada Devi (n.d.).
- Bhagavan Das (1997), p. 265.
- Bhagavan Das (1997), p. 179.
- Bhagavan Das (1997), p. 151.
- Ram Dass (1971), p. [page needed].
- Now at AllMusic
- Bhagavan Das (1997), pp. 190, 194.
- Bhagavan Das (1997), pp. 220, 221, 238.
- "Updates". bhagavandas.com.
- Bhagavan Das (1997). It's Here Now (Are You?): A Spiritual Memoir. Broadway Books. ISBN 0-7679-0008-1.
- Ram Dass (1971). Be Here Now. San Cristobal, NM: Lama Foundation. ISBN 978-0-517-54305-4.
- Richardson, Derk (July–August 1998). "Bhagavan Das is Here Now Again". Yoga Journal.
- Rottenberg, Paul (2016). "Book Review: The Autobiography of a Western Yogi: Review of "It's Here Now (Are You?)" by Bhagavan Das (Kermit Michael Riggs)". Michael Laughrin's North American Jyotish Newsletter. Retrieved February 27, 2022.
- Sharada Devi (n.d.). "Sharada Devi". Motherlight.com. Retrieved February 28, 2022.
- Black, Lee Bob (June 10, 2016). "The Dharma and Cult of Bhagavan Das: An interview". Medium. Retrieved February 27, 2022.
- Brown, Jeff (2010). Soulshaping: A Journey of Self-Creation. North Atlantic Books. pp. 149 ff. ISBN 978-1556438103.
- Brown, Jeff (2019). Grounded Spirituality. ENREALMENT Press. ISBN 978-1988648033.
- Clores, S. (2000). Memoirs of a Spiritual Outsider. Red Wheel Weiser. ISBN 978-1573241724.
- Heilig, Steve (December 1, 1997). "Bhagavan Das' Spiritual Journey Has Been a Wild Ride". SFGATE. Retrieved February 27, 2022.
- Ingram, M. (2020). Retreat: How the Counterculture Invented Wellness. Watkins Media. ISBN 978-1912248780.
- Johnsen, Linda; Jacobus, Maggie (2007). Kirtan!: Chanting As a Spiritual Path. Yes International. pp. 37–51. ISBN 978-0-936663-43-2.
- Liechty, M. (2017). Far Out: Countercultural Seekers and the Tourist Encounter in Nepal. University of Chicago Press. pp. 146 ff. ISBN 978-0226428949.
- Narayan, K. (2008). My Family and Other Saints. University of Chicago Press. pp. 129–30. ISBN 978-0226568218.
- Newman, David (2014). The Timebound Traveler. Non-Duality Books. Ch. 4. ISBN 978-1908664426.
- Osborne, Adam (n.d.). "Bhagavan Das". the-wanderling.com. Retrieved February 27, 2022.
- Osborne, Adam (n.d.). "Kermit Michael Riggs: Bhagavan Das and the Laguna Beach Connection". the-wanderling.com. Retrieved February 27, 2022.
- Smith, H. (2015). "Allen Ginsberg and Bhagavan Das: January 1972". The Smith Tapes: Lost Interviews with Rock Stars & Icons 1969-1972. Princeton Architectural Press. pp. 386 ff. ISBN 978-1616893835.