Pujya Swami Purushottamananda was one of the foremost and senior disciples of Pujya Gurudev, Swami Chinmayananda. Serving as the Resident Acharya of Chinmaya Mission Kolhapur and Chinmaya Mission's Regional Head of Maharashtra, Goa and Gujarat, Swamiji was a spiritual beacon for devotees the world over, and loved most for his simplicity and endless Guru-bhakti.
Swamiji was born in a very small village in the Yavatmal District of Maharashtra, and grew up as an ardent devotee of Lord Dattatreya. Even today, people of this village have vivid memories of how this young man performed tapas in a remote spot on the village outskirts.
This spiritual seeker's in-depth scriptural studies awoke in him a burning desire to meet a realized master, a satguru. He visited numerous holy places in his search, and at one pilgrimage centre, came across an advertisement of Chinmaya Mission's first Vedanta course to be conducted in 'Sandeepany Sadhanalaya' in Mumbai. Thus, the Lord brought a zealous disciple to an illustrious master.
Swami Purushottamananda was trained and taught by Pujya Gurudev in the very first batch of brahmacharins. Upon completion of the course, the young brahmachari was entrusted with the work of spreading the message of the Geeta and the Upanishads. In 1977, Pujya Gurudev blessed and initiated him into Chinmaya Mission's monastic order with sannyasa diksha.
Swami Purushottamananda served as a Chinmaya Mission Acharya for over 40 years, and conducted satsang all over India. It is of no small significance that Pujya Gurudev said of him, "Swami Purushottamananda is my Marathi mouthpiece".
In addition to conducting the Mission's two-year Vedanta course in English, Swamiji has authored various print and audio publications in Marathi through Central Chinmaya Mission Trust. His fluency in both languages, as well as Hindi, has allowed Swamiji to travel widely throughout India and in other countries. Swamiji's discourses have been acclaimed to masterfully blend the simplicity of Geeta, and the subtlety of the Upanishads, with the devotional literature of Maharashtrian saints.
As an innovative seeker, Swamiji initiated the concept of Chinmaya spiritual camps, as popular and common as they are around the world today, by conducting the first camp in Uttarkashi, India. He also successfully introduced the concept of shravana sadhana, wherein a series of jnana yajnas are conducted at the same venue every month, taking up one chapter of the Gita in sequence every time.
With Swamiji's blessings, the beautiful ashram of Chinmaya Mission at Kolhapur was built, and today houses 'Chinmaya Ganadhish,' the world's tallest murti of Lord Ganesha. On May 21, 2006, the foundation stone for a new Sandeepany (Vedantic institute) was laid by Mahamandaleshwar Swami Vidyanandagiri Maharaj. Under Swamiji's guidance, the ashram's first Vedanta course in Marathi was inaugurated by Pujya Swami Tejomayananda on July 18, 2008.
Swamiji attained Mahasamadhi on 17th January, 2011 at 7:45 AM.
Countless spiritual seekers have benefitted from, and been blessed by, Swami Purushottamananda's teachings, love, and care. Indeed, they have said that they feel Pujya Gurudev's grace and blessings flowing through Swamiji.