Ananda Meditation Retreat History

Swami Kriyananda (J. Donald Walters}
Direct Disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda

Founder of Ananda Meditation Retreat 1967
Ananda Village 1969 and
Ananda Sangha Worldwide


  • Swami Kriyananda on Meditation Retreat Holy Land
    Swami Kriyananda tuning into the land that was to become the Meditation Retreat.
  • One of the original Temples

    One of the original Temples. People have been meditating on this spot for over 50 years!
  • swami chanting

    Swami Kriyananda chanting for Sunday Service.
  • 1st Temple

    Aerial view of the retreat and Geodesic Dome buildings in early years.

  • Vedic fire ceremony

    Swami Kriyananda conducts a sacred Vedic fire ceremony in Temple of Leaves.
  • Blessing Ceremony 1980s

    Many guests come for weekend retreats offered by Swami Kriyananda, and are introduced to the transformative teachings of Yogananda.
  • Jyotish

    Jyotish teaches meditation at an early Spiritual Renewal Week.
  • Sharing Nature

    Joseph Bharat Cornell leads Sharing Nature activities, helping guests experience the Divine presence in nature.

  • 1st Sign

    Joyful service in the original propane-powered retreat kitchen
  • Guest is God

    ”The Guest is God” – Love is an important ingredient in preparing food
  • houses

    Early dwellings provide simple guest accommodations
  • Discover Peace of Meditation

    Guests discover the peace of meditation