His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and His Grace Bishop Stephen Randolph Sykes, IOC Orthodox Bishop of Hawaii met for tea on April 9, 2010, to discuss shared spiritual values and the further fostering of a "Violence-Free" America. It is reported that by age four years old, the young Ravi Shankar could spontaneously recite verses of the "Bhagavad Gita." He graduated from Bangalore University at age seventeen. A Bal Brahmachari (a celibate renunciate from birth), Shankar joined the late Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, founder of Transcendental Meditation, in 1973, after graduation and was taught by Vedic pundits under the Maharishi's tutelage at Rishikesh, India. [Of note, IOC's First Hierarch, Archbishop Daniel J. Dahl had been a member of the Maharishi's USA staff in 1972, and also a student of Vedanta, who stayed in 1973, at the same Himalayan ashram at Rishikesh in Northern Uttar Pradesh, India].
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is an exponent of Advaita Vedanta and is currently spiritual leader of the Art of Living Foundation, a United Nations NGO. He introduced to the world the Sudarshan Kriya yoga practices. The President of India in 1986, awarded Sri Sri Ravi Shankar the title of Yoga Shiromani ("Supreme Jewel of Yoga"). His Holiness established in 1997, a Geneva-based charity, the International Association for Human Values, an NGO aimed at fostering shared global values. He has also served on the advisory board of Yale University School of Divinity and is currently on a twelve-city tour of the United States.