Publisher’s Notes

Notes on the Original First Edition
Frequently Asked Questions About the First Edition


Autobiography of a Yogi is not an ordinary book. It is a spiritual treasure. To read its message of hope to all truthseekers is to begin a great adventure.

Paramhansa Yogananda was the first yoga master of India to take up permanent residence in the West.t. In the 1920’s, as he criss-crossed the United States on what he called his “spiritual campaigns,” his enthusiastic audiences filled the largest halls in America.

His initial impact was truly impressive. But his lasting influence is greater still. This single volume, Autobiography of a Yogi, first published in 1946, helped launch, and continues to inspire, a spiritual revolution in the West.

Only rarely does a sage of Paramhansa Yogananda’s stature write a firsthand account of his life experiences. Childhood revelations, his visits to saints and masters of India, the years of training he received in the ashram of his guru, and long-secret teachings of Self-Realization are all made available to the Western reader. Followers of many religious traditions have come to recognize Autobiography of a Yogi as a masterpiece of spiritual literature. Yet for all  its depth, it is full of gentle humor, lively stories, and practical common sense.

Notes on the Original First Edition

This online edition is identical to the text of the first edition, published in 1946, by Philosophical Library in New York City. This volume also contains reproductions of the photographs from the original edition.

Although Yogananda himself participated in preparing both the second and third editions of the Autobiography of a Yogi, correcting spelling and grammatical errors and addressing questions raised by his readers, there is a unique power to the original that we feel is particularly worth preserving. In order to be faithful to the original edition, we have not corrected errors of spelling, grammar, or punctuation.

Editions past the third have been prepared since the author’s passing in 1952. In 1953, Self-Realization Fellowship, the organization founded by Paramhansa Yogananda in Los Angeles, California, acquired the rights to Autobiography of a Yogi from Philosophical Library; it has been the publisher of all subsequent editions, until the reprint of the first edition by Crystal Clarity Publishers in 1993.

Crystal Clarity, Publishers, is the publishing house of Ananda Church of Self-Realization.

Ananda, dedicated to the dissemination of the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, was  founded in 1968 by one of Yogananda’s direct disciples, J. Donald Walters (Kriyananda).

If you find this book inspiring and would like to learn more of the life and teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, Crystal Clarity has many resources  to share with you. For more information, visit the Crystal Clarity website, or write Crystal Clarity, Publishers, 14618 Tyler Foote Rd., Nevada City, California, 95959, 1-800-424-1055.
Frequently Asked Questions

Who owns the copyright on the Autobiography of a Yogi?

The first edition is in the public domain.

Why do you spell Paramhansa Yogananda’s name differently than most people?

We’ve chosen to honor the way Yogananda himself wrote his name. Some years after his passing, editors decided to change the spelling of his name by adding an extra ‘a’, turning it into ‘Paramahansa’. According to some pundits in India, the extra ‘a’ makes the spelling a proper translation from the original Sanskrit. Other noted Sanskrit scholars say the way Yogananda wrote his name is the correct way.

Ananda chooses to respect the way that Sri Yukteswar (who gave Yogananda the title ‘Paramhansa’) and Yogananda spelled it. You can see Yogananda’s original signature in the first edition, reproduced on the title page, just as he wrote it.

How much has been changed in later editions?

Yogananda made a few changes leading up to the third edition. Later editors made changes numbering in the hundreds after Yogananda’s passing.

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