Sri M – spiritual teacher, social reformer, educationist, author and global speaker – was born Mumtaz Ali, into a Muslim family on November 6, 1949 in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. His transformational journey, from a young boy to a living yogi, is a story of single-minded discipline and dedication.
At the age of nineteen, irresistibly drawn to the snow clad Himalayas, Sri M embarked on his journey to seek a true Master. Maheshwarnath Babaji, a senior disciple of Sri Guru Babaji, took Sri M under his tutelage and initiated him into the Nath tradition. For three and half years, Sri M lived and travelled extensively through the Himalayas with him. What he learnt from Maheshwarnath Babaji transformed his consciousness.
As instructed by his Guru, Sri M returned to the plains and led a quiet, working family life while preparing to teach all that he had learnt and experienced. A few years after his Master’s passing, Sri M received the signal to commence his teaching mission.
Sri M established The Satsang Foundation twenty years ago, as a meeting point for spiritual seekers of all persuasions. Conversant with the teachings of most major religions, Sri M’s teachings seek to transcend the outer-shell of all religions by exploring the core and nurturing the innate goodness in every human being. In his words: “Go to the core. Theories are of no use.”
Under The Satsang Foundation, Sri M has initiated projects for social development in the areas of education, health, skill development and environment. The Foundation runs free schools and a skill development centre in Madanapalle in Andhra Pradesh and Lathira in U.P., India. It also has a community health centre where it facilitates quality free treatment for the community in Madanapalle. MyTree is an initiative which actively encourages planting of trees. Projects on the anvil are a hospital to provide quality health care in Madanapalle and a Centre for Exploring Consciousness in Chowdepalle.
The Foundation advocates that humanity is One — transcending religious, racial, geographical, cultural and ideological differences. To spread the message of Peace and Harmony, Sri M led the Walk of Hope in 2015-16 from Kanyakumari to Kashmir spanning 15 months and 7500 kms across 11 states of India, touching more than 10 million lives.
Sri M’s autobiography, “Apprenticed to a Himalayan Master – A Yogi’s Autobiography” was published in 2011 and became an instant bestseller. A sequel, “The Journey Continues” was published in 2017. Sri M has also authored several texts on the Upanishads, on Meditation, and a novel “Shunya”. His book ‘On Meditation – Finding infinite bliss and power within,’ was published by Penguin India. Two books were released in 2020 – ‘Homecoming and Other Short Stories’, a collection of short stories again by Penguin and a translation and commentary on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras – titled ‘Yoga also for the Godless’ published by Westland Publications. All his books have been translated into many Indian languages.
As a key-note speaker, Sri M has been invited to many institutions like the World Health Organization, United Nations Office in Switzerland, World Bank in the United States of America and the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. He has addressed corporates in India and overseas. To name a few, Google and Yahoo in the US, respected business and technical education institutes like the Indian Institute of Managements in Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Kolkata and Mumbai, Indian Institute of Technology, in Delhi, etc.
Sri M is also the Chancellor of Maulana Azad National Urdu University, a Central University and also on the Faculty of Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
Among the many awards and honours he has received for his contribution to society, Sri M was conferred with the Padma Bhushan in January 2020, one of the highest civilian awards of India, for distinguished service of high order in spirituality.
Sri M is married and has two children. Based in Madanapalle, Andhra Pradesh, a three hour drive from Bangalore, he leads a simple life. Appreciative of music, he also paints in his leisure time.