Our Ashrams are located in 3 places in South India.
Lalitananda Ashram (Vadarevu, near Chirala), AP, India
Vadarevu Ashram is located on the east coast of India along the Bay of Bengal in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Chirala, a major railway station between Kolkata and Chennai, is about 8 kms from the Ashram. Buses run regularly from Chirala railway station.
This ashram was established by Lalitananda Swami about 70 years ago. Vadarevu Swami and PV Swami successively took care of the ashram. Suruli Arulananda Swami developed and expanded the Ashram with major renovations, addition of many temples, performance of regular hOmams, and initiating many charitable service activities.
The Ashram has temples for vallabha gaNapati, Adi parAshakti, danDapANi, shiva, and rAma, a gOshAla with many cows, yAgashAla, and a dining hall. Also, this ashram has a dispensary, vocational training centers, and residential buildings for visitors.
Ganapati temple: After the formation of Arulananda Trust, Lalitananda Swami appeared in Swamiji’s dream and asked him to build a powerful Ganapati temple that will be good for the devotees coming to the ashram. Swamiji had a vision of Vallabha Ganapati during his meditation. Accordingly, a Vallabha Ganapati temple was constructed. Ganapati statue was carved on stone obtained from Tiruvannamalai by sculptors in Mahabalipuram. Ashta Ganapathy Homam was performed and the Vallabha Ganapati moorti (statue) was installed following the Vedic rituals with a Kumbhabhishekam on completion. On the day of Kumbhabhishekam, after the vedic ceremony was over, a man in dirty white clothes appeared in the temple and spoke to one devotee in Hindi. This devotee did not take him serious, then he spoke to Swamiji in Tamil and asked if the Kumbhabhishekam was over and Swamiji acknowledged and asked him to have food. He spoke to few others in different languages such as English, Kannada, and Telugu. Then, he went to the building and sat on Swamiji’s chair. He was playing with the bottles of siddha medical oils. One devotee of Swamiji saw this person and asked him what he was doing like a mad person. He replied, “if you think I am mad I will go” and as he was going down the stairs, Swamiji realized he is the elderly person who had given the mantra to him at Papanasam and sent a Laddu for him through another devotee. He accepted the Laddu and put it in his bag and walked up to the Ganapati temple. Then he disappeared from the sight of people. As per Lalitananda Swami’s wish, this Ganapati temple is now visited by devotees as well as the local villagers and when they fulfill their wishes, they perform poojas at this temple.
Dining room and Guest house: When more people started coming to the ashram, a big dining room and a guest house was constructed for the devotees in the ashram in 2003. Visitors are fed nutritious and sattvic food everyday for free.
Sri Rama temple: In 2004, Sri Rama temple was built at the ashram. At the time of the Kumbhabhishekam of this temple, some devotees have seen two saints moving in and out of the ashram. They were not visible to everyone’s eyes.
Yaga Shala: As Lalitananda Swami was interested in performing homams, he appeared in Swamiji’s vision and asked him to build a yaga shala. A Yaga shala was built in 2003 according to vedic traditions. Ganapati homam is performed at this yaga shala daily.
Subramania Swami temple: Vadarevu Swami’s Samadhi was in a deteriorating condition. In the year 2004, as per devotees' request, the building was renovated and a Dandayudha Pani moorti (statue) was installed on Vadarevu Swami's Samadhi.
Daily activities in the ashram:
- Ganapati homam
- Ganapati temple abhishekam and pooja
- Gomaata pooja
- Morning Ambal temple pooja with Lalita sahasranamam and Sri chakra pooja
- Lalithanada Saraswathi Swami dhyana mandiram (Lalitananda Swami's hut has been converted to Dhyana Mandiram) pooja with Swamiji’s astothram and Subramania Swami astothram since the devotees believe that Lalitananda Swami is an avataram of Subramania Swami.
- Pooja to PV Swami’s Samadhi and Vadarevu Swami’s Samadhi; Navagraha pooja
- Sri Rama temple pooja with Rama astotharam
Monthly functions: Full moon day pooja to ambal, Sri Rama nakshatra pooja on punarpoosam
Annual functions: Maha Shivaratri, Sri Rama Navami, Sri Valli Kalyanam, Aradhana of Sri Vadarevu Swami and PV Swami (on the day which they attained samadhi), Guru purnima, birthday of Arulananda Swami, Navaratri, Aradhana of Lalitananda Swami are the main functions of the ashram.
Apart from all these programs, maintenance of Goshala (cow shed), Veda Pathasala and nitya annadanam for the devotees who visit the ashram are maintained by the Arulananda Trust. All visitors to the ashram are fed for free and can stay for free for a few days. To continue and extend these services, Swamiji decided to visit overseas. Swamiji first visited Germany in June 1998. Since then, annually he has been visiting Europe for 2-3 months to guide his disciples. Disciples and devotees from within India and various foreign countries have visited and stayed at the ashram. Within the last five years, overseas devotees' contributions have made a tremendous impact in expanding the service activities of the Ashram through the Arulananda Trust.^ TOP
Brahmendra Ashram (Chillakallu, near Vijayawada), AP, India
Chillakallu Ashram is established by Suruli Arulananda Swami and located on the national highway between Hyderabad and Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh, India.
During the initial days of Swamiji at Chirala in the early 1990's, he treated a patient from Hyderabad who was suffering from leukemia. Upon their request, he started visiting Hyderabad twice a month to see the devotees there. One day when Swamiji was traveling to Hyderabad, they stopped at a place, called Chillakallu, to have their lunch in the afternoon. A small boy, who was apparently dumb, approached Swamiji and asked if he could have some food. Swamiji asked the people who were traveling with him to provide him with some food. When he was served, the little boy consumed all the food the group had brought for their journey. After eating, he gave Swamiji twenty five paisa (a quarter), crossed the road, and started across a piece of land and at a certain spot he disappeared. That night, Agastya Maharishi appeared in Swamiji’s dream and said to him, "I came to you today but you did not recognize me; I want you to establish a center at that spot and perform medical and public service to the society." In 1994, Arulananda Trust has purchased 7 acres of land, at the spot where the little boy disappeared in Chillakalu and Swamiji named it Ananda Ashram.
Following this, when Swamiji went to Papanasam Kalyana Teertham Shiva temple in 1996, he had a vision of Agastya Maharishi. When Swamiji asked about the state of the land in Chillakallu, Agastya Maharishi asked him to wait for 4 years before starting any work. In 2000, when Swamiji visited Suruli hills, the old man with a stick appeared again to Swamiji and said "now the four years is over, you can start the work at Chillakkalu, that is not a place for worship, it will be a centre for treating patients and serving humanity." After getting instructions from the old saint, Swamiji visited papanasam. On a full moon day, chitra pournami, when Swamiji was meditating after performing abhishekam to Shiva, Agastya appeared and asked Swamiji to name the ashram as Sadasiva Bramhendrar ashram. Agastya said that he did not ask Swamiji to name the ashram as Ananda ashram and that he only instructed to construct an ashram. Agastya instructed Swamiji to change the name to Sadasiva Brahmendra ashrama and asked Swamiji to visit Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's Samadhi mandir in Nerur in Tamilnadu. Accordingly, Swamiji started filling the land in Chillakkalu in preparation for the building construction. In 2006, a building with a dining room on the ground floor and 20 rooms on the first floor and a guest house with six rooms were completed.
Swamiji never heard about Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami nor about his mandir. Around this time, when Swamiji went to Tiruvannamali and stayed at Gingee, one person came from Coimbatore named Bhupathi. While taking blessings from Swamiji, a photograph of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami and a small vibhoothi packet fell down from his pocket. He mentioned to Swamiji that this was the photo of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami and that he visted his Samadhi mandir just before coming to see Swamiji. Swamiji took him and went to Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's mandir at Nerur near Karur. There is a Bilva tree on Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's samadhi and Swamiji felt the place to be very familiar to him.
About Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami: Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami is a great saint who achieved jeeva samadhi at Nerur. He took sannyasa deeksha from the 57th Peethadhipathi of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham, His Holiness Sri Paramasivendra Saraswathi Swamigal. After getting initiation from Paramasivendra Saraswathi Swamigal, he started his sannyasa life. During this period, he has constructed Tanjavur Punnanallur mariamman temple (presently called as Tanja Mariamman temple). Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami drew a yantra and made a small vigraha and performed abhishekam at this temple. Even today, though the letters in the yantra are barely visible, abhishekam is still performed to it. Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's statue can still be seen on the rajagopuram of this temple. During the early days of his sannyasam, Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami used to talk and debate much and in the process he would develop more doubts and discuss with everybody. One day, Paramasivendra Saraswathi Swamigal, with a disturbed face, asked Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami to stop talking too much. Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami took that as an order from his Guru and from that day, during his entire life, he never uttered a word. He became a muni and stopped all form of verbal communication. Till he left his mortal he maintained his mounam (silence).
In those days (mid-18th century), Pudukkotta Maharaja used to rule this area and he was very interested in following spiritual and divine life. One day, he saw Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami who was without dress and roaming like a mad man but the king felt that there is some secret with him. Then he started following Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami for some time and after the Swami saw the King and his devotion, Swami wrote a mantram on sand and showed it to the king. The king started chanting the mantram and took the sand and kept as a prasdam with him. Another time, Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami entered the quarters of a Muslim nawab inadvertently. On seeing Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami naked, the nawab cut his hand in rage at this intrusion. However, God-intoxicated Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami continued on while bleeding and without any reaction. The nawab felt remorse and fell at his feet and asked for forgiveness which is only when Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami realized that his hand has been cut off. He took the severed arm and attached it back to his body and then just went along.
Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami has performed a lot of miracles and helped a lot of people during his lifetime and even after he had taken Samadhi. Before he took to Jeeva Samadhi, he had informed all of his devotees. At the time of Jeeva Samadhi, Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami sat in samadhi in a pit, absorbed in Bhagavan, and the devotees filled it up. That same night, Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami appeared in the dream of Pudukkottai Maharaja and asked him to plant a bilva tree and place a lingam on his Samadhi. Only then did the Maharaja know that Swami had left his mortal. After planting the bilva tree, the Maharaja performed all the pujas according to the Sastras and from then on sent all the materials required for the maintenance of the Samadhi.
The 33rd Peethadhipati of Sringeri Peethan His Holiness Sri Sacchidananda Sivabhinava Narasimha Bharati, learned about Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami and visited his Samadhi at Nerur and stayed for a couple of days in meditation. The Peethadhipati's desire was to become like Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami in spiritual and meditative life. He wrote his experiences about Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami and drew a picture of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami as appeared in his vision. With that picture, an idol was recently installed in Chillakallu ashram along with a Shiva lingam by the site of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami.
Coming back to Arulananda Swami's visit to Nerur, Swamiji performed puja after visiting Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's Samadhi for the first time. The same night, while in meditation Swamiji saw a big black cobra around the bilva tree of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's Samadhi and slowly the snake came with Swamiji to Chillakallu ashramam. The snake stopped at a particular spot in Chillakallu ashram and danced. After one week, Swamiji went to papanasam and in meditation asked Agastya what needs to be done in Chillakallu next. Agastya instructed to construct a Dhyana mandir and install the idol of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami and his statue is installed right at the spot where the snake had danced in Chillakallu. The main temple is also constructed right at that spot.
Since then, Swamiji had visited Nerur a number of times and currently Arulananda Trust is helping the Nerur ashramam. The bilva tree, which was installed by the Pudukkottai Maharaja, on Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's Samadhi is drying. On a recent trip to Nerur, Swamiji heard the sound of Shankhu Nadam (Sound of Conch) from Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's Samadhi from which Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami appeared and asked Swamiji to install 3 bilva trees at Chillakallu ashram by the side of Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's mandir and said that he will give darsan from Chillakallu ashram. Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami also said that it is he who elected the place and that he will guide Swamiji. In Chillakallu ashram, by this time the construction of Subramania Swami temple and Ganapathi temple already finished. Fortunately, there was some gap in between and the bilva trees were planted in that gap.
Kumbhabhishekam and Inauguration of Chillakallu Ashram in 2009: The ashram became fully functional in 2009 with the inauguration of temples for Ganapathi, Subramania, and Shiva. Ganapathi vigraham inside the temple is named, Vijaya Ganapathi and the one at the entrance of the Ashram is named as Veera Ganapathi. Subramania Swami with Valli and Devasena are installed in another temple inside. The Shiva temple includes Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami's idol and Siva linga. The kumbhabhishekam for Brahmendra mandir was held from March 12-14, 2009. Mandalabhishekam was performed on the May 4-5, 2009. Foundation was laid for office, library, guest rooms, and siddha research institute.
The Ashram already has 12 single bed room quarters constructed for the staff which are now occupied. The staff includes driver, manager, accountants, cooks, and other kitchen staff. Currently, there are 6 rooms for visiting guests and another 20 rooms above the kitchen. There is also a goshala that has a few cows and a Yaga Shala for performing homams. A veda pathashala has also been started with 12 students in May 2009 with one Veda Acharya. Currently, Yajur Vedam is being taught and and Atharvana Vedam will be starting soon. We are also planning to include instruction in Rig Vedam and Sama Vedam. The boarding, food, and education expenses are completely borne by the Trust so it is entirely free for the students. The plan is to expand the Veda Pathashala to accommodate at least 100 students. When Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami was physically alive, he was in charge of the establishment of Veda Pathashala at Kanchi Peetham. Nearly 32 people are working in the ashram including the purohits. Currently, two priests take care of the temple.
After the Kumbhabhishekam, a number of people are getting benefited by meditating in the Dhyana mandir and by worshiping Sadasiva Brahmendra Swami. In India, Swamiji is mostly available at Chillakallu.
Daily activities in the ashram:
- Veda classes start from 4:30 AM - 8:30 AM; resume at 9:30 AM and continue till 11:30 AM; After lunch resume from 3:30 PM to 7 PM
- Temples open at 5 AM
- Bhajans are sung at 6 AM
- Harathi in all the temples at 6:30 AM
- Go puja at 7 AM
- Swamiji comes out of his meditation at 9:30 AM and meets with devotees till 10:30 AM
- Temples close at 12 PM
- Swamiji meets with devotees from 5-6:30 PM
- Veda pathashala students meet with Swamiji at 7:30 PM
Arulananda Trust plans to establish a mini-hospital by the side of Chillakallu ashram with focus on a trauma center and women's/children's health. The Trust also plans to maintain a mobile vehicle with medical officers and medical technology to visit the surrounding rural villages and bring awareness on hygiene and promote health through screening. When necessary, the patients will be brought to the hospital at the Ashram and given needed treatment. There are also plans to have an old age home by the side of the ashram.^ TOP
Pasumalai Ashram (near Tiruvannamalai), TN, India
Pasumalai Ashram was established by Lalitananda Swami and is near Melolakkur, in Sengi Taluka, South Arcot District near Tiruvannamalai. Lalitananda Swami's samAdhi is located here.
In 1993, Swamiji visited the Pasumalai ashram with his devotees according to Lalitananda Swami’s instructions. Swamiji performed a pooja and donated some amount for the maintenance of the ashram. After Swamiji returned to Vadarevu, the villagers and the Panchayat president of Pasumalai visited Swamiji at Vadarevu and asked him to help develop Pasumalai village and help with children’s education etc. Swamiji was invited by this group of villagers. When Swamiji visited Pasumalai next time, they welcomed him at the entrance of the village with traditional music and a procession of villagers. The procession ended at the Pasumalai ashram and a public meeting was convened. The headmaster of the local school and the Panchayat president requested Swamiji to develop the facilities at the local school and also start a secondary school for local children as there were no facilities for secondary education in the local village. At that time, children aspiring secondary education traveled 10km to the nearest school. Within two years of this request, Arulananda Trust paid more than 150,000 rupees lawfully to the government to upgrade the local school to higher secondary level. Since there were no teachers at this school, the Trust appointed teachers who were able to teach at primary and secondary level. Arulananda Trust also inaugurated a vocational training center to teach sewing and typing for poor women in the Pasumalai village. When women completed sewing courses, they were given sewing machines for livelihood. Arulanada Trust also provides financial help for poor students for their higher education. Some sick people in the area receive aid from the Trust for their health needs. Arulananda Trust maintains the Pasumalai ashram and has also constructed a building called “Sri Valli Nilayam” for the purpose of feeding people and also constructed a guest house for pilgrims visiting Pasumalai.
Looking at the developments of this Pasumalai village, several other local villagers in the surrounding areas have approached Swamiji and requested help to renovate old temples. Swamiji has helped for the renovation of Ambal temples, Ganapathy temples and Subramania Swami temples in the local vicinity and celebrated Kumbabeshekam as well. Lalitananda Swami used to visit a nearby village, called Thanial, at the beginning of his spiritual life. He visited a Chelli Ambal temple in Thanial and asked the villagers to dig the ground at a particular spot and they excavated a lingam from underground. This Lingam was installed in front of the ambal temple. Following this resurrection, Lalitananda Swami performed a “Mahachandi homam” for forty eight days, which was attended by people from all walks of life such as cine actors, politicians, the rich, and the poor. Almost ten thousand people were fed daily during this homam. During this period, Ambal has appeared to Lalitananda Swami and also to several devotees participating in the homam in different forms.
At this period, Lalitananda Swami installed a Subramania Swami statue and constructed a temple in the local Shiva temple in Thanial for the benefit of the villagers. After the homam was over, Sri Shanmuga Mudaliyar, his relatives, and the villagers convened a meeting and asked Lalitananda Swami to remain in Thanial. Lalitananda Swami had then told them that whenever he visits Pasumalai, he will visit Thanial. He also said that another saint from the Yogar family will come and renovate these temples and develop the villages around here. This story was relayed to Sri Arumugam by late Shanmuga Mudaliyar.
In 2002, when Swamiji was visiting Pasumalai, a group of Lalitananda Swami’s devotees from Thanial visited Swamiji and requested him to renovate their Ambal and Shiva temples. The renovation of these temples was completed in 2007.
In 2003, in recognition of Swamiji’s social services to Pasumalai and surrounding villages, a meeting was convened by the district collector and the district education officers and others at the high school of Melolakkur village near Pasumalai ashram.
Arulananda Swami developed Lalitananda ashram in Vadarevu through Arulananda Trust by donations received from the devotees and the public who visited the ashram. While this ashram was developing rapidly, Lalithananda Swami asked Swamiji to help maintain the Pasumalai Samadhi temple. Swamiji visited the Pasumalai Samadhi temple with a group of devotees and decided to help with the maintenance through the Trust. Arulananda trust is further developing the Pasumali Samadhi temple with building accommodations and providing for maintenance of the temple.^ TOP