Paul Rodney Turner
Also known as Priyavrata, a name given to him by his spiritual teachers, Paul is the international director of Food for Life and the founder of Food for Life Global, the world headquarters for the charity.
Paul was born in Sydney, Australia in 1963 and grew up in the Western Suburbs of Sydney. At the age of 19, Paul left home to live a reclusive life in Sydney's Blue Mountains. Soon after he joined an ashram of similar spiritual seekers and took a vow of celibacy. For the next 14 years Paul, now known as Priyavrata das by his fellow Vaisnava monks, studied the ancient teachings of the Vedas as taught by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami.
In the early years of Paul's life as a monk he learned vegetarian cooking and was soon cooking the Sunday feasts for the Sydney Hare Krishna temple, sometimes for as many as 300 guests. His desire to focus exclusively on India's Vedic culture of hospitality inspired him to start his own outreach project. At the time, Food for Life was a fledgling food relief organization with programs in Australia, USA, Western Europe and India.
Over the next 25 years, Paul traveled to more than 50 countries throughout Europe, Asia, and the Americas, helping to inspire and set up new Food for Life projects and train volunteers. He also raised millions of dollars in funds; appeared on television and radio, and met with numerous government officials. In 1994, Paul wrote the official Food for Life training manual and in 1996 he wrote, sung and produced the first official FFL music CD called Prasada Sevaya (Service to holy food)
From 1999 to 2003 Paul was a Council Member and Magazine Editor for IVU (International Vegetarian Union), the official umbrella organization for vegetarianism worldwide.
During Paul's travels he visited three war zones-Chechnya, Sarajevo and Sukhumi. In 2005, Paul led an international team of volunteers to set up makeshift kitchens in villages across Sri Lanka in response to the Asian tsunami, where volunteers served freshly cooked vegetarian meals to tens of thousands.
In 2010, Paul published an instructional book for volunteers wishing to start their own Food for Life project, called How to Build a Great Food Relief. In the following year he released a new edition of the Food for Life training manual.
In 2011, Paul published FOOD YOGA - Nourishing the Soul, an introduction to sacred path of becoming a prasadarian. He also helped organise a team of volunteers to respond to the Tsunami disaster in Japan.
Paul is also a billiards instructor and in 2004 he invented the world's the Billiard Aim Trainer, now considered the number one aiming trainer in the world. He also authored two books on billiards, The YOGA of POOL and the World's Best Aiming System for Billiards.
In 2011, Paul launched a new personal brand service, called SOUL YANTRA, that creates a unique geometric signature of a person's name and birthday.
Along with directing Food for Life Global, Paul currently conducts FOOD YOGA workshops and retreats throughout the world and is working on several new book projects.