A Place Called Ananda, Music and the Arts

Day 4 on the set

Today feels really good so far, and I’m getting more and more comfortable with the whole process. We started with shots at Lotus Lake, with the gorgeous natural morning light. It is a joy to see the directors work together, searching for “where the money is”, or the best shots for light and color. One of the scenes we shot … Read More

A Place Called Ananda, Music and the Arts

Day 3 on the set of Cities of Light

I’d like to introduce our director, Ted Nicolaou, who is an extraordinary gentleman and director. Ted has been working with us on this film for the past 2 years, and is an extraordinarily good fit. He describes himself as “a storyteller with an open mind”, and has a vibration about him that is quite contrary to what you think a … Read More

A Place Called Ananda, Music and the Arts

Cities of Light Day 2 of filming

Good morning! So here we are in Crystal Hermitage dining room, where we come first thing for makeup and wardrobe. Here is Sarah Kreutz on the left, wardrobe director, and Elisabeth Granli on the right, who is here from LA to assist Elisabeth Rohm during the filming. This morning we will be shooting a “point of view” shot as we … Read More


Where there is Dharma, there is Victory!

Nayaswami Dharmadevi

Question from Max: I have a PhD but my academic career didn’t work out. Now I have a dilemma: if I put the PhD and postdoc years in my CV it will be next to impossible to find a “normal” job like in a supermarket; if I don’t put it I have a big gap in my CV. I think finding a job … Read More


Did Yogananda Mention Swami Vivekananda?

Nayaswami Savitri

Question from mangesh: Was Swami Vivekananda’s role in the West for Paramhansa Yoganada the same as the role of John the Baptist for Jesus Christ in Israel? Why did Yogananda never mention Vivekananda?

A Place Called Ananda, Divine Love, Spiritual Growth

Catching the “Bug” of Service

I was working at the publications building at Ananda Village one day in the summer of 1976, when Swami Kriyananda stopped by. He asked for my help with photographing some art for a project he was working on. I followed Swamiji and several members of the publications staff outdoors where the light was better for photography. Swamiji described the pink … Read More

A Place Called Ananda, Music and the Arts, Spiritual Growth

Learning to Sing Ananda’s Music

When I moved to Ananda Village in 1976, I was offered a job at “Pubble,” the department where Swami Kriyananda’s books were published. Not long after I arrived, Swamiji invited the staff to his home to discuss some projects. Swami’s house was on the other side of the ridge from the main part of the Village. I hiked over the … Read More

A Place Called Ananda, Spiritual Community

News of Swami Kriyananda

Brahmacharini Narayani has been travelling with Swami Kriyananda for the past several years through all our Ananda Communities. She has become one of his personal staff. Dear friends, Swami Kriyananda’s health has in general been doing very well, and his spirit is always soaring in divine joy. As you may know from having seen the pictures, we have been enjoying … Read More

A Place Called Ananda, Divine Love, Spiritual Growth

Learning to Love

How can we love? I’m grateful to Swami Kriyananda for helping me deepen my understanding of this essential point of the spiritual path. For years, after I moved to Ananda in 1976, I felt painfully self-conscious at group gatherings. I wanted to fit in, but I didn’t know how. The place where I felt most uncomfortable was at “Swamiji’s” – … Read More


Why Did God Create Us?

Nayaswami Anandi

Question from Bhaskar: I have heard that the reason for our existence and taking birth in this world is due to our Karmas and We need to elevate ourselves to get back to the Divine in our life. But since we all are a part of The Divine, why in the first place we took birth Long long ago. ( As in the … Read More