This video follows Yogi Rambhauswami, the Fire Yogi, as he practices his claim to fame, the yogi’s elaborate fire ritual.
The Fire Yogi: A Story of an Extraordinary Journey, directed by Mike Vasan. Golden Treasures International
Yogi Rambhauswami, the 63-year-old yogi on the “extraordinary journey” of this video’s subtitle, claims that in 1975 he stopped drinking more than a few drops of water each day, that two years later he began limiting his daily diet to a banana and a cup of milk, and that he sleeps only three hours each night. By all rights the Sanskrit scholar should be malnourished and dehydrated, but in director and producer Mike Vasan’s documentary, he appears to be a relatively normal, if somewhat slender, senior citizen. Rambhauswami’s real claim to fame, however, is his elaborate fire ritual.
The ritual begins with his taking a bath, then moving on to meditation, Pranayama, and a ceremony honoring Ganesha. The fire portion of the ritual is conducted over a sunken pit, into which Rambhauswami offers rice, coconut, sugar cane, and gallons of ghee. As he’s doing this, he goes into a deep meditative state. He enters the blaze and rolls around, protected by only a wool shawl, and remains there, in the fire, for up to 10 minutes at a time.
When Rambhau emerges from the flames, though, there’s little evidence that he’s just been charbroiled. Even his shawl is intact, its preservation credited to a protective aura. The shawl was later tested for fire retardant, and results showed that the material hadn’t been treated.
Why does he do this? Director Vasan insists that Rambhau is humble, down-to-earth, and open to questioning about his actions, and that the yogi’s motive is simply to promote world peace and universal welfare by offering himself as a peaceful sacrifice. (Still, you have to wonder how all the food offering being incinerated during the ritual will improve universal welfare.) But everyone has to work for the common good in their own way, and Rambhau seems determined to make the world a better place.
See also YJ Asked: Is The Age of Gurus Dead?