Independent Lens 1999 | TV Show Watchlist

Independent Lens

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Independent filmmakers are spotlighted in this anthology, which concentrates on documentaries, but occasionally features artist profiles and offbeat fictional films.

Premiered: August 9, 1999

Rating: TV-PG

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Season 5, Episode 21 Ram Dass: Fierce Grace

First Aired: April 20, 2004

“Ram Dass: Fierce Grace” follows the hippie-era consciousness guru as he ruminates while recovering from a 1997 stroke. It's “like a whole new incarnation,” he says. Directed by Micky Lemle, an Emmy nominee for his 1992 PBS profile of the Dalai Lama, the profile also recalls Ram Dass's association with Timothy Leary at Harvard in the early 1960s (when he was known as Richard Alpert); his discovery of the Indian guru Maharaj Ji (“a doorway towards God”); and his own impact on people who consider him to be a guru. He was, says one, “a light at the end of my tunnel.”