UNITED STATES, May 22, 2018 (Patheos, by Mat McDermott): The phenomenon of non-Indians adopting Hinduism is not new. However, the stories of how individuals came to the religion have not been regularly recorded. I hope to rectify that by time to time publishing interviews with those people who weren’t raised Hindu but now publicly identify as such, in the hopes of shedding some light on what drew them to Sanatana Dharma. The following is an interview with Ram Goodman, a yoga teacher and student of Vedanta, who lives in Kansas City, Missouri.
“I grew up in Kentucky in the late sixties and early seventies and I did not personally know any Hindus. My first exposure to Hinduism was through Theosophy, which is a mix of Eastern and Western spirituality, much of it borrowed from Hinduism. By age twelve I was familiar with reincarnation, karma, meditation, and hatha yoga. Over the years I continued an interest in various spiritual practices, but felt particularly drawn to yoga. I practiced yoga asanas and meditation, learning mostly from books and VHS tapes. In the early 1990s, after reading Sivaya Subramuniyaswami’s book “Dancing With Siva” I decided to visit a Hindu temple. Through the temple I met Swamini Krishna Kanta. I visited her ashram in Kent, Ohio a few times and decided I wanted to become a yoga teacher.”