Kriya Yoga Lineage


Mahavatar Babaji

Lahiri Mahasaya

Swami Sri Yukteswar

Paramahansa Yogananda

Roy Eugene Davis


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Kriya Yoga in this tradition has been passed on through the centuries from guru to disciple through instruction, initiation and transmission. This lineage begins with Mahavatar Babaji, the great avatar or yoga master, whose mission is to support the awakening of souls and planetary evolution. Through him, the teachings were transmitted to his disciple Lahiri Mahasaya.

After receiving permission from Babaji to make the teachings of Kriya Yoga more widely available to sincere seekers, Lahiri Mahasaya, a family man known as a householder yogi, initiated thousands of students, including Swami Sri Yukteswar.

Swami Sri Yukteswar trained and initiated, Mukunda Lal Ghosh, one of his foremost disciples who would later be instrumental in the worldwide dissemination of the teachings of Kriya Yoga. Mukunda had been initiated into the practices of Kriya Yoga early in life by his father who was also a disciple of Lahiri Mahasaya. Yet, his destined guru-disciple relationship was with Sri Yukteswar who faithfully guided him and supported his unfolding spiritual realization. After years of devoted study and practice with his guru, he entered the swami order and took on the monastic name, Swami Yogananda.

It was Swami Yogananda who came to America in 1920 with the blessings of his guru, to spread the liberating teachings of Kriya Yoga to the West. He remained in the West initiating thousands into the spiritual practices of Kriya Yoga and inspiring seekers worldwide to discover the liberating truth of their spiritual nature and their relationship with the Infinite. Among those he trained, ordained to teach, and initiate others into Kriya Yoga, was his disciple Roy Eugene Davis.

Roy Eugene Davis met Paramahansa Yogananda in 1949. He was accepted for monastic training and later ordained by him in 1951. Mr. Davis dedicated his life to offering these teachings worldwide for over 60 years.

The vitality of Center for Spiritual Enlightenment, with the spiritual direction of Yogacharya Ellen Grace O'Brian, a disciple of Mr. Davis, abides in the living legacy of this teaching tradition.



The founding teacher and spiritual director of Center for Spiritual Enlightenment, Yogacharya Ellen Grace O'Brian, met her guru, Roy Eugene Davis, in 1979. She was trained and ordained by him to carry on the mission of Kriya Yoga to bring the liberating teachings of Self- and God-realization to seekers of truth everywhere. CSE's service in support of individual and planetary spiritual awakening is carried out today by many CSE ministers and meditation teachers.

Center for Spiritual Enlightenment is a meditation center in the spiritual tradition of Kriya Yoga that welcomes people from all backgrounds who are seeking Self- and God-realization—a path to spiritually conscious, fulfilled living in the world. 

"Life and all its experiences magnetically draw us towards God-realization. We have the freedom to accept or resist that pull. By cooperating with divine will, we become partners in the divine plan for healing and blessing the world."

–Yogacharya O'Brian