Tree of Life Talks

wisdom of illuminated master teachers

Thom Knoles

Maharishi of Vedic Meditation

Thom Knoles is a maharishi (or pre-eminent master-teacher) of Vedic Meditation. Thom is a thought-leader and celebrated speaker on the cognitive sciences, on the potential of the brain and health of the body, on the relationship between quantum physics and human consciousness, and on the 5,000 year-old body of wisdom known as the Veda (knowledge governing the unity of the laws of nature and human consciousness from which yoga, meditation, and Ayur Veda are derived).

In India, he is called “Maharishi Vyasananda.” It means “the great seer who sequentially elaborates knowledge blissfully.”

In the ’60s, Thom discovered yoga and his life was changed. He learned Vedic Meditation from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who became Thom’s personal mentor and his predominant spiritual and educational influence over the next two decades.

Anand Mehrotra

Founder of Sattva Yoga

Anand Mehrotra is a visionary master teacher, community and thought leader, and conscious entrepreneur. Born and raised in Rishikesh, India – the birthplace of yoga – Anand combines the ancient wisdom of his upbringing with a lighthearted rebelliousness to support the transcendence of the individual and the collective.

Anand is the founder and master teacher of Sattva Yoga, a radically holistic, ever-evolving, transformational practice. Anand teaches around the world giving wisdom talks, offering satsangs and meditations, providing Vedic astrology readings, leading Sattva Yoga journeys, and guiding students through profound transformations in wisdom immersions, retreats, and trainings.

Elena Brower

Yoga teacher and author

Mama, teacher, speaker, and co-author of Art of Attention, Elena has been teaching yoga and meditation since 1999.  After graduating from Cornell University in 1992 with a design degree, she worked as a textile and apparel designer for 6 years, and has been studying with master yoga teachers since 1997. Elena offers yoga and meditation as a way to approach our world with realistic reverence and gratitude. Her classes are a masterful, candid blend of artful alignment and attention cues for your body, mind and heart.

Currently Elena teaches weekly and monthly classes in New York City, as well as retreats and trainings worldwide. She is also the founder of Teach.Yoga, a global hub of content and inspiration created by the teachers, for the teachers.

Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati

Spiritual teacher at the Parmarth Niketan Ashram

Sadhviji was raised in an American family in Hollywood, California. She graduated from Stanford University, and was completing her PhD when she left America in 1996 to live permanently at Parmarth Niketan Ashram in the sacred Himalayan town of Rishikesh, India. She was officially ordained into the order of Sanyas (monastic renunciation) in 2000, by His Holiness Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji, one of the most renowned spiritual leaders of India. Sadhviji is President of the Divine Shakti Foundation, a foundation dedicated to bringing education and empowerment to women and children which runs free schools, vocational training programs and empowerment programs. She is also Secretary-General of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance, an international interfaith organization dedicated to bringing clean water, sanitation and hygiene to the children of the world.

At Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh, where she lives most of the year, she teaches meditation, gives spiritual discourses, provides counseling and oversees myriad charitable and humanitarian projects and activities, including directing the annual International Yoga Festival.

She has a PhD in Psychology and was the Managing Editor for the monumental project of the 11-volume Encyclopedia of Hinduism.

Fabian Piorkowsky

Herbalist, Biochemist and Shamanic Plant Healer

Fabian Piorkowsky is an herbalist, biochemist, and shamanic plant healer who has transformed the lives of thousands of people around the world for over 20 years. His unique approach integrates modern science, ancient healing modalities, spiritual philosophies, and sacred plant medicine.

This diverse background includes studying chemistry, physics, physiology, Ayurvedic medicine, Kabbalah, Buddhism, the Vedas, training with multiple shamanic lineages and dietas with dozens of indigenous healing plants.

Fabian was the first to develop a methodology of working with Ayahuasca that allows people who are excluded by most practitioners to safely access the medicine. His innovative healing prac- tice integrates multiple master teacher plants to empower people to achieve deep healing and energetic balance. Fabian was also the first to develop sacred plant spagyric microdosing that enables people to safely and legally work with the powerful healing energy as a daily practice athome and still achieve a profound level of wellness, personal growth and self-optimization.