Yogacharya J. Oliver Black
September 1, 1893 - September 16, 1989
The Golden Lotus Yoga Teachers Association was founded by J. Oliver Black, known to thousands of Self-Realization Fellowship followers as Yogacharya Oliver. Yogacharya means yoga teacher. This title was given to him by his Guru, Pararmahansa Yogananda, founder of Self-Realization Fellowship and author of the spiritual literary classic, Autobiography of a Yogi.
Yogacharya Oliver was an industrialist, building a multi-million dollar company, and an avid inventor, holding several patents. He decided to give up the business world to dedicate his life to instructing others in Yogananda's teachings. He succeeded in enhancing the lives of thousands by sharing the knowledge and understanding he himself had received.
Yogacharya founded The Self Realization Fellowship Yoga Teachers Association in March of 1966. Later in 1976 the name was changed to The Golden Lotus Yoga Teachers Association to avoid conflicts with Self Realization Fellowship. The Association is made up of qualifiedHatha Yoga teachers who have undergone a specialized yoga training program under the guidelines set down by Yogacharya himself. Yogacharya's purpose for creating the Association was to provide a corps of qualified and dedicated teachers to introduce to Westerners the ancientscientific methods of Eastern exercises. He taught that although Yoga has a spiritual aspect, bringing its students a deeper awareness of life, Yoga is not a religion but a way of life, a practical science refined over thousands of years that anyone and everyone can enjoy.
Song of The Morning Ranch
Main House
In 1970 he transformed 800 acres nestled in the northern woodlands of Michigan into a spiritual retreat that reflected his, interest in blending Eastern and Western cultures. This Yoga Retreat of Excellence he named Song of the Morning Ranch. The Ranch demonstrates the practical applications of Yoga culture in everyday life, offering accommodations year round in its modern facilities.
Sunday services are based on the philosophy of Self-Realization Fellowship. The Ranch also offers Hatha Yoga classes evening group meditations, vegetarian meals. swimming and boating on a private lake, hiking, and cross-country skiing. The Ranch's pristine beauty offers a perfect setting with tranquil pine woods, fresh air and a sparkling river to relax and commune with nature.
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