Indian Yogi, Mystic and Author Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev has been nominated for the prestigious Gandhi Mandela Award to be held later this year. He founded the Isha Foundation, a non-profit organization which offers Yoga programs around the world and is involved in social outreach, education and environmental initiatives. His books have appeared in The New York Times Best Seller list in multiple categories like "Health", "Religion, Spirituality and Faith", and "Advice, How-To & Miscellaneous".
Sadhguru was conferred the Padma Vibhushan civilian award by the Government of India in 2017 in recognition of his contribution to the field of spirituality.
Born in Mysore, Karnataka, India, in a Telugu speaking family, Jaggi Vasudev was the youngest of four children – two boys and two girls. His mother was a homemaker and father was an ophthalmologist with the Indian Railways. After his schooling at Demonstration School and Mahajana Pre-University College, Mysore in 1973, he graduated from the University of Mysore with a bachelor's degree in English literature.
As a child, Sadhguru was inclined to view the world around him with wonder and was disinterested in the conventional forms of knowledge seeking. He skipped school to explore nature, and posed questions to his teachers that left them speechless. He unknowingly discovered meditation due to his intense fascination with the swaying action of the trees, and was intrigued by questions pertaining to God and existence. At the age of 25 on 23 September 1982, he rode up Chamundi Hill and sat on a rock, where he had a spiritual experience.