Making the most of a stroke

Mickey Lemle’s documentary Ram Dass, Fierce Grace is a portrait of Ram Dass (Richard Alpert), author, 60s guru, spiritual teacher, cohort of Timothy Leary, & author of Be Here Now, one of the most influential books of the 1970s. The film begins in the present, as Ram Dass deals with the effects of a massive stroke he suffered in February 1997 that left him physically incapacitated, & with impaired memory & speech. Interweaving current conversations, interviews with people in his life, & archival footage, Lemle then looks back at his childhood, the controversy surrounding his research with Timothy Leary in psychedelics at Harvard, his studies in India with Neem Karoli Baba, who renamed him Baba Ram Dass (Servant of God), his work with the Seva Foundation in social action projects dedicated to relieving suffering in the world, & his impact as an author & guru to millions of followers.

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