On 26th February 1890, a boy was born in Engelsberg, Austria, the youngest of six Roman Catholic children. His name was Rudolf Bautsch, (later to become Randolph Stone). He didn’t cry. He didn’t move. So everyone thought he’d been born dead. They tried to get baby Rudolf to breathe, but in vain. Funeral candles were lit and placed on each side of him. However, just before the infant body was about to be taken away for burial, it slowly came to life. Rudolf’s mother died when he was only two and, at the age of thirteen, he emigrated to the USA with his father and one of his four sisters. He immediately began earning his own living as a farm hand in Turtle Lake, Wisconsin. Due to his diligence and devotional tendencies, he was given a scholarship to Concordia College in Saint Paul, Minnesota, where he studied to be a Lutheran minister and learned English by comparing the German Bible with an American translation.
In 1909, at the age of nineteen, Rudolf realised that orthodox religion could not satisfy his spiritual craving. He studied the works of Vivenkananda, Ram Tirtha, Yogananda, Krishnamurti, Swedenborg, Blavatsky, and others, as well as practising solitary meditation. But all of this failed to satisfy him, because he wanted to help relieve human suffering, as well as his own. So he decided to become a doctor. He studied osteopathy, chiropractic, naturopathy, naprapathy and neuropathy, and won degrees in all of them. He passed his State Board Examinations in 1914; was granted an Other Practitioners Licence, which permitted him to perform all methods of drugless healing without surgery; set up practice in Chicago; and started teaching at the newly formed Eclectic School for Doctors.
For sixty years, Dr Randolf Stone ran a successful practice in Chicago. Throughout this period he studied many ancient traditions of natural healing – Ayurvedic, yogic, cabalistic, hermetic and alchemic – and developed his unique system of polarity therapy. He says, “I have stumbled onto a science which blends the old concept of energies in the constitution of man and have linked it with the scientific research in space.” Hand in hand with his health research, Dr Stone pursued his spiritual quest. For him the two were inextricably intertwined. “As above, so below; as within, so without” he often told his students.
His big breakthrough came in August 1945 when he stayed up all one night reading Mysticism the Spiritual Path, Volume 11 by Lekh Raj Purl. The next morning he exclaimed, “This is exactly what 1 have been looking for all my life!”
Dr Stone was excited because this book explained explicitly where all energy comes from and how it can be harnessed for ‘spiritual development. It also gave him insights into how the blockage of this physical energy results in illness and unhappiness.
Three years later, Dr Stone published his first book on polarity therapy, ‘The New Energy Concept of the Healing Art’. In 1955, ten years after he was initiated in surat shabd yoga (the Spiritual Sound Current, the Word) he visited his teacher’s ashram in the Punjab for the first time. Some years later he divided his professional life between here and Chicago, spending six months of the, year treating Americans for a fee and lecturing to other doctors and students, and six months in India, treating patients free of charge. He says, “To help others by means of these new principles of polarity I have travelled around the world three times and treated many patients, mostly in India. I have large free clinics to help the helpless and hopeless cases. As a result, I am known from Bombay to Calcutta, and wherever I go, patients are waiting for me as their last their hope. I only take cases that f failed to respond to other methods of treatment. This I consider a fair test of polarity therapy.”
He never used spiritual power for medical or material ends, and strictly forbade his students from doing so. “Miracles and psychic healing are not dealt with in this course” he declared. “It describes a rational therapy.”
By 1957, Dr Stone had published five major works on polarity therapy, plus a book about surat shabd yoga entitled ‘The Mystic Bible’, and had pioneered the techniques of craniosacral therapy thirty years before John Upledger’s seminal textbook on the subject.
Dr Stone’s headquarters remained in Chicago until May 1972 when he gave up his practice and moved to California, continuing his teaching there for the summer months and visiting India annually.
Before leaving for India in September 1973, at the age of 83, Dr Stone announced that he had finished his work and appointed his oldest student, Pierre Pannetier, as his successor. He then gave away all his personal possessions and retired to the ashram of his spiritual master at Dera Baba Jaimal Singh, near Amritsar in the Punjab. There he devoted most of his time to spiritual practice, thus fulfilling a life-long desire.
On 9th December 1981, Rudolf Bautsch, known for sixty-five years as Dr Randolf Stone, passed away peacefully and joyfully at the age of ninety-one years and ten months.