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The Yoga Zapper - A Novel
The Yoga Zapper - A Novel

In 1933 James Hilton, in his novel Lost Horizon, wrote about the legend of Shangri-La (a variant of the original Shambala,) a valley hidden deep in the Himalayas, whose inhabitants lead extremely long lives. He placed Shambala in the south-eastern part of China in the Himalayas. The book was instrumental in introducing the mysticism of the East to Western readers; yet Hilton had knowledge of only a small part of the entire narrative.

In his book On the Way to Shambala, Dr. Edwin Bernbaum writes about visiting a Buddhist temple in Nepal and coming across a scripture which described a passage to that mythical valley. He placed it as being somewhere in the north of Nepal. Over the years, some of the more esoteric locations described for Shambala are the Arctic, the Western Himalayas and even the middle of the earth.

Yoga has its own mythic stories – a recounting of its origins, its progression, its diminution over time, its disappearance and finally, its rebirth.

Both Hindusim and Buddhism describe time as being circular, and each cycle of time as being composed of four distinct ages or epochs: Satya yuga, the beginning age, then Treta yuga, Dwapara yuga, and finally Kali yuga. Moral characteristics such as honesty, non-violence and mercy decline steadily over the passage of time, until finally, at the end of Kali yuga, they are practically non-existent.

In a Hindu text, the Bhagavat Purana (also known as the Srimad Bhagavatam), it is mentioned that yogis and rishis meditate in an invisible state in Shambala. Their goal: to preserve within themselves the teachings of the Vedas and the Yogas and to reintroduce them to the world at the beginning of the coming Satya Yuga. Buddhism has a similar story: Shambala is a place where Buddhist wisdom is protected from degradation over time.

The Yoga Zapper - A Novel is the story of two young American brothers, who, thrust into strange worlds, find within themselves the courage and faith to grow, change and discover their unimagined destinies.

While trekking in the Himalayas, Steve and Jack encounter a dying priest who thrusts into their hands a Sanskrit scripture which Jack names the Yoga Zapper.

“You do not understand,” cries the old man. “Your lives, no, the future of the entire world depends on it!”

Little do the brothers know that the text is a prescription for time-travel. In the midst of a deep conflict with each other, they discover its powers. Steve, who has an intellectual approach to life, is transported to a peaceful village at the beginning of time. He falls in love with the beautiful Shanti and finally connects with his heart. In search of his brother, they join a group of yogis in a pilgrimage to Shambala. There, they learn how to live in an ethereal state for thousands of years.

Jack, irresponsible and immature, finds himself in a society ruled by an evil despot. Sucked into the intrigue and treachery of a civilization unraveling at the end of time, he is at last forced to become accountable for his actions. He is imprisoned, but escapes to Shambala.

When the dictator attacks this valley, Kalki Avatar descends and a great world-consuming struggle between good and evil at the end of time ensues, featuring mystical weapons, ancient flying craft known as vimanas, as gods and demons battle each other. The dictator who orchestrates the destruction is killed and the earth, abused for so long, blooms anew, the wheel of time turns again, the yogis are saved, and the eternal teachings of yoga are reintroduced to world.


By Mohan Ashtakala


Mohan Ashtakala is a writer and a yoga practitioner. He was editor of a regional publication in Colorado for thirteen years. He has studied the original texts of the yoga traditions for many years, and has lived in ashrams across India. His goal is to introduce the fascinating, authentic narratives and wisdom stories of the yoga traditions to the Western audience, The Yoga Zapper – A Novel is his first novel.  Visit www.yogazapper.com 

Check out Mohan's video about the Introduction to The Yoga Zapper FAQ video


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