Vimala Thakar was no ordinary teacher. She herself would say that she is not a teacher at all but a friend who comes to share her perception of life as she understands it. Vimala was passionate about life, full of compassion for her fellow being. Her total dedication to the search for ever deeper and subtler truths began at the very early age of five, and had not stopped till her death. She said, “the day I stop learning, I will stop speaking.”
Vimala Thakar was born in India and spent her childhood amidst the deeply spiritual atmosphere of her family and their friends. Her father soon noticed his daughter’s aspirations, and made her promise not to depend on the authority of teachers, past or present, but to rely on her own inner understanding as her guide in life. She met many spiritual teachers of her day, read eastern and western philosophy in university, and met Vinoba Bhave, a renowned scholar, saint, and social activist. She participated in Vinoba’s Land Gift Movement for 10 years, during which she walked the length and breadth of India, sometimes alone, sometimes in the company of Vinoba and his friends, convincing wealthy land owners to willingly gift part of their land to poor farmers.
After a forced retirement from the Land Gift Movement due to illness, she realized that only inner transformation could over violence and aggression, the source of so many misery in the world.
Thus, she began, at the request of a few friends, to share her deeply felt realization. Invitations to other places began coming in. And so gradually, during the next 30 years, Vimala undertook an ever increasing schedule of travel, to places such as North America, South America, Australia, Japan, and many countries in Europe. However, having to adjust to such widely different climates, foods, and cultures began to slowly tax her health, so in 1991, she had to tell her audiences abroad that this was her last visit. She then lived in India, her home base.
She continued seeing friends, who came to her from all over the world, to be with her and to listen to her talks. She put into words that which is in fact beyond words. And those who had privilege of being present at such gatherings have felt and purity and compassion that fills not only her words but also her very presence.
“Live is divinity. There is no divinity apart, outside, or independent of life. And divinity is creativity… It seems to me, my friends, that to live is to perceive divinity, to be aware of the creativity of divine life, partaking of that creative energy, receiving it, assimilating it, and sharing it with all the fellow beings that inhabit this planet… The act of living implies and interaction with that sanctity of life, with that creativity of life.
Vimala Thakar passed away on March 11, 2009, in Mount Abu, Rajasthan, India, but her teachings and sharings live for ever for all of humanity.
For more information on Vimala Thakar, you can read an interview of her available here.