Sahajananda (Brother John Martin), born in 1955, was one of the closest followers of Father Bede Griffith, who strongly influenced him. He made his theological studies at St.Peter's Seminary of Bangalore, where he discovered the writings of the founders of Shantivanam (Jules Monchanin and Henry Le Saux). This discovery has transformed his vision of Christ and Christianity.
In 1984 he left his diocese and joined the community of Shantivanam to live as a Benedictine monk close to Father Bede Griffith.
Shantivanam belongs to the Congregation of Camaldolese in the Order of St.Benedict. Sahajananda has obtained a Licentiate in Spirituality from the Gregorian University, Rome. Today he is a spiritual director in the ashram.
He is very much interested in the Inter-religious dialogue, particularly between Hinduism and Christianity. He teaches "Indian-Christian Spirituality" to the visitors of the ashram. It is a form of spirituality, which shows the unifying elements among the religions and also the uniqueness of each spiritual tradition. But it also opens to a spirituality that goes beyond the religious boundaries.
He is frequently invited to Europe to give lectures, retreats and seminars and to share his unique vision of Christianity for the third millennium.
He has written many books and articles (See Bibliography).