Gangaji (born Texas, 1942) is an American born spiritual teacher and author. She lives in Ashland, Oregon, with her husband, fellow spiritual teacher Eli Jaxon-Bear.
Gangaji was born Merle Antoinette Roberson (Toni) in Texas on June 11, 1942, and grew up in Mississippi. After graduating from the University of Mississippi she and her young family moved to San Francisco. After a divorce she sought to change her life via political activism and spiritual practice. She took buddhist Bodhisattva vows, practiced Zen and Vipassana meditation, helped in a Tibetan-style meditation center, and began a career as an acupuncturist in the San Francisco Bay area. Unfulfilled by her seemingly successful life, in 1989 she and Eli Jaxon-Bear moved to Hawaii.
At this time she met Andrew Cohen, a spiritual teacher and student of Sri H.W.L. Poonja, also known as Papaji. Impressed by Cohen’s "enormous confidence", she returned to California to sit with him for two months. In the meantime, Eli, who had become her second husband, met Papaji in India. Struck by the letters she received from Eli, Gangaji herself traveled to Lucknow, India to meet Papaji in 1990. In her autobiography Just Like You she wrote, “The extraordinary event in this life was that I met Papaji. Until then I looked everywhere for the transcendental or the extraordinary, but after meeting Papaji I began to find the extraordinary in every moment.”Papaji gave her the name Gangaji, and asked her to share what she had directly realized with others...
Quotes by Gangaji
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