About

My name is Ryan Altman. I’m a spiritual mentor, meditation teacher, and student of Kriya Yoga and Advaita Vedanta Master Rajivji Kapur.

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I direct my attention to the individual, to make him strong, to teach him that he himself is divine, and I call upon all to make themselves conscious of this divinity within. That is really the ideal - conscious or unconscious - of every religion.

Swami Vivekenanda

I offer content, workshops, mentoring, and courses using the time-tested paths of  yoga as a framework to help people actualize their human potential, and realize their divine nature.

The Supreme Yoga is my unique framework that synthesizes the four traditional paths of yoga along with modern scientific research and modern design.

These paths have been practiced and refined by spiritual masters and aspirants for thousands of years. They offer a time-tested path for wholistic human evolution. I’ve adapted the four paths of yoga, and made the ancient spiritual technology they offer accessible to anyone.

 

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I blend the traditional with the progressive, the ancient with the modern, the metaphysical with the scientific, and the divine with the daily grind — in short, a teaching designed for authentic spiritual awakening in the modern world.

“Although starting out separately, the four paths share the same source. The further an aspirant travels, the more each yogic path feeds and empowers the others, eventually merging the separate paths together into their source–The Supreme Yoga.”

My Purpose

I share what yoga is really about. 

Not the consumerist form of yoga as exercise in popular culture, or the superficial spiritual materialism of influencers on social media, but the transcendent path of union with higher consciousness that yoga really is, adapted for the minds and attitudes of our modern age.

I believe that the ancient and time-tested spiritual teachings of yoga are a solution to many of the problems of the modern world.

Our minds dominate our lives, and we lack a sense of control. We are overloaded with stress and stimulation, and have lost connection to our transcendent nature. We need the science of yoga, and connection to our divine nature now more than ever.


Yoga is traditionally divided into four main paths, with each one directed at evolving one of our human qualities into its highest potential. 

Each yogic path is a harmonious method of inner practice depending on the inclinations of the person, and eventually combines together to create your unique spiritual journey. All spiritual and religious practices can fall within one or more of these ancient paths of yoga.

My purpose is to share the power of yogic knowledge and practices, so we can awaken to our divinity and cast out the darkness of division caused by misidentification and attachment with the body and mind.

Join me on this journey of divine realization. Find your path, realize the divinity within your Heart, play freely throughout your life, inspire others by your example, and together we will create the world of the future — right now.

The personal guidance I offer through The Supreme Yoga empowers you to find your spiritual path with the right balance of authentic practices and principles to guide you successfully towards spiritual awakening, and material success.

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My Journey

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Growing Up

I grew up a sensitive, playful kid with a loving family in the suburbs of Tempe, Arizona. As a teenager, I struggled with emotional challenges, low self-confidence, bullying and bouts of serious depression.

Eventually, I was diagnosed with ADD and Bipolar Disorder. From the emotional pain came the big questions like Who Am I?, Why Am I here?, and Why is there so much suffering in life?

I came to understand that consciousness was fundamental to the big questions that puzzled me since I was a kid.

These big questions led to an interest in philosophy. I earned a BA in philosophy from Arizona State University with an emphasis on philosophy of mind, philosophy of cognitive science and a minor in ethics.

“The privelege of a lifetime is being who you are."

Joseph Campbell

However, during my studies, I also realized that Western scientific and philosophical explanations of consciousness were only conceptual, objective explanations.

They couldn’t answer the big questions about who I was, why I was here, or explain my subjective, inner world of experiences, emotions, thoughts, and desires.

A part of me always had faith in a higher power and knew there was more to life than meets the eye. I experimented with psychedelics to explore this ‘other’ world.

From these explorations I received confirmation that there was more to life than my ordinary perception, but the experiences were only fleeting glimpses. Others were terrifying and confusing.

I still hadn’t found meaningful transformation or lasting answers to my questions.

Journeying From Philosophy to Spirituality

I continued searching after graduating from university, shifting my studies to existentialism and philosophers like Kierkegaard and Heidegger who offered ways of being as answers to life’s big questions, rather than philosophical explanations.

I was getting closer.

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Me with a meditation cushion I made with my mom when I started meditating. I’ve since used it for thousands of hours of mediation practice, and still practice with it everyday.

Finally, I read Joseph Campbell’s influential work The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Upon reading about this thing called “enlightenment” and the Hero’s Journey towards awakening to it, I immediately knew spirituality was the path I was looking for.

What I didn’t know, was that finding the spiritual path was not the same as walking it with clarity and confidence.

Which tradition to choose? Which teacher to follow? What books to read? And what practices to do?

As with many new seekers, I was frustrated that there wasn’t a better way to understand the spiritual path and struggled to find my way.

I researched extensively for almost a year initially taking a deep dive into various forms of Buddhism.

Disappointed with the emphasis on emptiness, suffering, and monastic life in Buddhism, I continued searching for a path that resonated with my Heart.

Until, one day, I stumbled across the website of The Wanderling, an old Zen and Advaita master, and read about the nondual teachings of Advaita Vedanta and Jnana yoga.

I had finally found my path.

The Path Unfolds

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Ed Muzika, my first Advaita teacher, and I at one of his satsangs in Los Angeles in 2011.

At 22, I sought out my first Advaita teacher Ed Muzika, a disciple of Robert Adams who was Sri Ramana Maharshi’s foremost American devotee.

Under Ed, I began a disciplined spiritual practice I continue to this day. My initial practice focused on Sri Nisargadatta and Sri Ramana style Self-inquiry.

I devoted my life to searching for the ‘I Am’ and ‘I-sense’ in formal sitting practice and daily life.

I devoured stacks of books by these Masters, as well as works by Sri Shankaracharaya, Paramahansa Yogananda, Sri Siddharameshwar, the Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Vasistha (my all-time favorite scripture, and the inspiration for the name of The Supreme Yoga), and many other texts.

I changed my lifestyle, became vegetarian and started regularly volunteering at a skilled nursing facility near my home. It was through practicing service and Karma yoga that I first experienced the joys of the spiritual path. 

"Human life - your life - and its humdrum, ordinary business, have a meaning which is divine, which belongs to eternity."

Saint Josemaría

Initially, I couldn’t find the ‘I Am’ sense in my Self-inquiry practice, but slowly over time I began to feel inner expansion and awakening to the peace and stillness of the ‘I Am’ beyond the mind.

After two years of intense practice I had achieved exceptional spiritual progress, but I was unfulfilled living at home.

I was no longer content with my outer circumstances, and vowed that I would continue working on myself until the time came when I could express my new inner freedom in the world.

Adventures & Challenges in Thailand

This inner change finally sparked outer growth when a friend offered me a job teaching English abroad in Thailand.

I loved living and teaching in Thailand, but youthful desires flared, and although I continued my disciplined meditation practice, I fell into the pseudo-spiritual party scene on Koh Phangan and got lost in the parties and drugs.

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Inside my room at Wat Suan Mokkh during a 10-day silent retreat. Full days of meditation, concrete beds, and wooden pillows were a stark contrast to the party pleasures of Koh Phangan.

At first, the parties were magical, transformative, and healing, but eventually the dark side of substance abuse, superficiality and addiction revealed itself at the underbelly of the scene.

The intense contrasts of my lifestyle were best summed up when I partied for 12-days straight on Koh Phangan, and then a few days later, went to a 10-day silent Thereveda Buddhist meditation retreat at Wat Suan Mokkh in Chaiya. I was living two extremes.

Much change happened during this time, and I left Ed Muzika in search of a more consistent and compassionate source of guidance.

I was regularly experiencing states of meditative absorption, but my emotional state had become a wreck.

My intense Self-inquiry practice had helped me go deeper into the ‘I Am’, but my practice along with the substance use also magnified my emotional problems, making me extremely sensitive and emotionally out of control.

Meeting Rajivji

Around this time of struggle in Thailand, I started having reoccurring dreams about Rajivji.

I first heard about Rajivji years before when I read his dialogues with Ed Muzika that would later become the popular book Autobiography of a Jnani.

In my dreams, I was having awakening experiences with Rajivji. I contacted him.

Rajivj’s teachings and guidance gave me the tools I needed to mature, and he skillfully guided me through the challenges I was facing in practice and in life.

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Rajivji and I on Juhu Beach in Mumbai. Photo credit Richard Altman.

Rajivji’s inclusive teaching style and unique blend of Kriya Yoga, a form of Raja Yoga, and Advaita Self-inquiry helped ground, purify and empower my sensitive state of being, drove my inquiry deeper, and brought clarity to the states of absorption I was experiencing.

Living in Abu Dhabi & Traveling the World

This inner growth again created outer expansion, and by the Grace of a close friend, I moved to Abu Dhabi to take a teaching position at a private international school.

I spent 7 years in Abu Dhabi focusing on my sadhana (spiritual practice), traveling around the Middle East and Asia, and visiting Rajivji whenever I could, making dozens of trips to India during that time.

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Inside the Jagadeeshawara Temple at Chinmaya Mission in Powai, Mumbai during the evening aarti (light ceremony). My time meditating and studying there was purifying and transformative.

My favorite memories come from staying at Chinmaya Mission in Powai, Mumbai, an ashram close to where Rajivji lived with his family, and where he had visiting students stay.

I fondly remember spending days and weeks meditating at the ashram, and visiting with Rajivji when he was free from his householder duties.

I would mediate and read scripture during the day, attend religious ceremonies in the temple, meet with Rajivji in the evening, and then for an hour or so at night, play badminton with the brahmins and staff of the ashram. It was a special time of much spiritual growth.

Awakening to Joy

My hard work on the cushion culminated in a beautiful awakening experience, when I began to experience the transcendent, objectless bliss in the Heart.

It appeared slowly and gently like a flower bud slowly unfurling, a pure-feeling of joy beyond any relative emotion of sadness, happiness, or anger.

It has stayed with me in the background of all experience ever since.

"Happiness is your nature. It is not wrong to desire it. What is wrong is seeking it outside when it is inside."

Sri Ramana Maharshi

Awakening to this joy in the Heart opened up a deep sense of devotion that was echoed in Rajivji’s teachings as devotion to Ma, Kali and Shakti — the divine feminine life-force within all creation. 

I became naturally drawn towards Bhakti yoga, and devotional yogic practices.

I read The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna and was deeply inspired by Sri Ramakrishna’s teaching of universal consciousness as both personal and impersonal, masculine and feminine, manifest and unmanifest, and as the goal of all religious and spiritual traditions.

Becoming A Spiritual Mentor & Meditation Teacher

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One of my meditation groups in Abu Dhabi. I met many amazing people leading them.

After consolidating this awakening, the desire arose to share with others what I had learned from Rajivji, and through my own spiritual journey. 

I wanted to help others experience the joy in their Heart and to navigate confidently on their path.

Rajivji authorized me as a mentor, and I began teaching meditation groups in Abu Dhabi. I led groups every Saturday at a cafe in the city. 

The groups steadily grew in popularity, and I started offering satsangs to attract more serious seekers.

As I was mentoring seekers, I began to notice they had the same struggles I had when I first began my journey. 

They were confused about which path to choose and what practices were right for them.

The question of how to give clarity to seekers with different attitudes, abilities and backgrounds began to stir ceaselessly in my mind.

The Supreme Yoga

After years of attempts, painstaking research, and deep reflection I began to piece together the idea that the four traditional paths of yoga were a perfect framework for helping people get the clarity and confidence they need on the spiritual path.

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The Supreme Yoga logo symbolizes the unity of The Four Paths of Yoga, and the individual with the divine.

Based on the teachings of Rajivji, Swami Sivananda, Swami Vivekananda, Sri Aurobindo and my own personal experience, I realized that each yogic path is a harmonious method of practice depending on the inclinations of the person. 

There was also no need to separate spiritual and worldly life. Each played an essential part for the development of the other.

An integral path unites human and divine life, and this was exactly what made my path so rich and complete, and what other modern seekers need as well. 

 

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I went about organizing the different paths, so that seekers could understand their broad and rich philosophies and practices. I created symbols to represent each of The Four Paths of Yoga. I also broke down each yogic path into areas that make them easy to understand.

I also realized that each of the paths of yoga has something to offer, a unique gift, and as you progress down one yogic path, it begins to merge and combine with the other paths as well.

Although starting out separately, the further an aspirant travels, the more each yogic path feeds and empowers the others, eventually merging the four separate paths into a single supreme path – The Supreme Yoga.

The Present

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My partner, Soisci and I.

As I was formulating the ideas that would become The Supreme Yoga, I met my beloved partner at a meditation retreat with Rajivji in India, and eventually moved with her to Australia.

I now live, practice and teach in Australia sharing the power of the ancient teachings of yoga with seekers from around the world. 

Guiding them personally on their path, and sharing the transformative power of yoga to a growing audience online. 

This new chapter is just beginning. Connect with me to become part of it, and together we’ll bring the light of our divine nature into the world!

Are you ready to strive for your highest potential?

Learn how the ancient science of the four traditional paths of yoga can help you attain your spiritual birthright of freedom, love, success and bliss.

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