Documenting Yogananda

By Rachel Sandstrom

awakeyoganandaFBYoga has taken the Western world by storm, and it is, in part, thanks to the life and work of  Hindu mystic Paramahansa Yogananda. He brought yoga and meditation to the West from India in 1920, making the ancient Vedic teachings accessible for a modern audience. His work laid the groundwork for yoga as a physical practice to take hold in the West. The teachings of Yogananda attracted many followers, including celebrities like George Harrison of The Beatles, and Steve Jobs, the late Apple CEO, and continues to attract millions of new followers daily. His book, Autobiography of a Yogi is the go-to book for anyone on a spiritual quest, and is required reading in most Yoga Teacher Trainings.

Awake: The Life of Yogananda is an award-winning historical and biographical documentary that tells the story of this inspirational yogi and Hindu spiritual leader whose legacy lives on. Awake is a captivating film that includes a mix of real footage and recreations. It is both the filmmaking by Paola di Florio and Lisa Leeman, and the teachings of Yogananda himself that are propelling this documentary to break records nationwide, and sell out in Corvallis. With a  local community of yogis 4000 strong and growing, this film is sure to be the documentary event of the year.

Showings January 07, 2015 at Carmike Theatres, and again January 21, 22, 23 2015 at Darkside Cinemas. Tickets available online only at and are on sale for$10.

-Rachel Sandstrom