Ananda is a global movement based on the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, who showed how everyone can realize God in their daily lives as a tangible, loving reality.
Ananda was founded in 1968 by Yogananda’s direct disciple, Swami Kriyananda.
Yogananda’s non-sectarian teachings embrace the truths that underlie all the great religions. People from all faiths and backgrounds are welcomed at Ananda.
Expand your sense of harmony, and gain an increased sense of God’s loving presence in your life through ancient and effective techniques including meditation, Kriya Yoga, spiritually oriented Hatha Yoga, community, and divine friendship.
We invite you to join us at our temples, yoga retreats, meditation groups, and communities to experience the joy of your own being.
Kriya Yoga is a meditation technique that quickly accelerates one’s spiritual growth.
It was first made widely known by Paramhansa Yogananda in his Autobiography of a Yogi. According to Yogananda, Kriya is the most effective technique available to mankind today for reaching the goal of Yoga: union with the Divine.
What Is Kriya Yoga?
Kriya is a technique of energy control, or pranayama. It is also a comprehensive spiritual path, which includes additional meditation practices, right living, and a link to the enlightened Masters mentioned in Autobiography of a Yogi.
The Technique Of Kriya Yoga
Kriya Yoga is so effective because it works directly with the source of growth — the spiritual energy deep in our spines. The Kriya technique is much more direct. It helps the practitioner to control the life force by mentally drawing it up and down the spine, with awareness and will. According to Yogananda, one Kriya, which takes about a half-minute, is equivalent to one year of natural spiritual growth.
The technique itself is taught through initiation. As Yogananda said in his autobiography, “Because of certain ancient yogic injunctions, I cannot give a full explanation of Kriya Yoga in the pages of a book intended for the general public. The actual technique must be learned from a Kriyaban or Kriya Yogi; here a broad reference must suffice.”
You can learn more about the technique by reading “The Science of Kriya Yoga” in Autobiography of a Yogi.
“Practice Kriya night and day. It is the greatest key to salvation. Other people go by books and lesser practices, but it will take them incarnations to reach God.” – Paramhansa Yogananda
The Origin of Kriya Yoga
Kriya Yoga is an ancient technique that was hidden in secrecy for many centuries. It was revived in 1861, when the great yogi Mahavatar Babaji taught the technique to his disciple Lahiri Mahasaya during their meeting in the Himalayas
“Kriya Yoga is an instrument through which human evolution can be quickened. The ancient yogis discovered that the secret of cosmic consciousness is intimately linked with breath mastery. This is India’s unique and deathless contribution to the world’s treasury of knowledge.”
—Swami Sri Yukteswar, quoted in Autobiography of a Yogi
Learn Kriya Yoga
You can learn Kriya Yoga from Ananda, where people have practiced it daily for over 40 years. In addition to preparing you to receive Kriya, we offer extensive ongoing support.
Paramhansa Yogananda taught Kriya Yoga as a spiritual path that includes three other techniques, along with discipleship to the Kriya line of Masters namely Christ, Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya, Sri Yukteswar, and Paramhansa Yogananda.
Ananda teaches the four techniques that encompass the Path of Kriya, just as Yogananda taught them: the Energization Exercises; the Hong-Sau Technique of Concentration; the Aum Technique of Meditation; and the Kriya technique.
“The Kriya technique will bring you to the source of inspiration and will give you answers, clear the brain and stimulate it, strengthen the medulla, and open the spiritual eye, as well as greatly magnetize the body.” – Paramhansa Yogananda
THE PATH OF KRIYA YOGA COURSE STRUCTURE:
LEVEL 1: Lessons in Meditation
Yoganandaji taught two basic techniques that can be learned and practiced by anyone, of any faith, on any path. The Hong-Sau technique of concentration and the Energisation Exercises. The introductory “level 1″ series is offered as a four week class course.
The practice of Kriya Yoga rests upon a foundation of daily meditation, service and devotion. This workshop will help you learn the basics of meditation and the Kriya science, with a focus on the Hong-Sau technique of meditation as originally taught by Paramhansa Yogananda.
You will be given tested techniques to still your body, free your mind from restless thoughts and direct your inner awareness upward toward subtle spiritual realms within. These practical methods will quickly help you to relax both body and mind, focus your concentration, and expand your consciousness. Learn through direct experience what joy, peace, and deep calmness are really like and discover how quickly, through daily practice, these qualities can be yours in all aspects of your life!
Topics to be covered:
The theory of Kriya Yoga and the steps to Kriya initiation
How to establish a daily routine of meditation (sadhana)
How to reduce tension and stress at will
How to concentrate more effectively
Correct meditative posture
Text-book for Level 1: Lessons in Meditation by Jyotish Novak
Level 2: Raja Yoga
Completion of level 1 and a regular practice are pre-requisites for taking Level 2.
Each of the six level 2 classes will involve a guided Hong-Sau meditation, pranayama and asanas. We will also cover the 40 Energization Exercises taught by Paramhansa Yogananda with guided practice at each class.
The six classes will also give the students a thorough grounding in Raja Yoga as expounded by Paramhansa Yogananda. Specific topics that will tentatively be covered in the six classes are:
The Goal of Yoga: The True Purpose of Life
Paths of Yoga and Ashtanga Yoga
Ego Transcendance – The Soul and God,
Right Action & Behavior – Yama and Niyama
Attitudes, Habits and Affirmations
Satchidananda and the Law of Life;
The Three Gunas
The Power of Japa and Mantras
Text-book for Level 2: The Art and Science of Raja Yoga by Swami Kriyananda
Level 3: Discipleship & the AUM Technique
Involves learning AUM technique and understanding and accepting Guru-disciple relationship. Completing Level 2 and a regular practice of techniques previously learnt is a pre-requisite to take up level 3.
Level 4: Preparation for Kriya Yoga
This level contains the preparatory exercises and specific techniques to prepare for Kriya initiation. Classes include the history of Kriya, the astral spine, and how to bring the benefits of Kriya into daily life.
The Kriya Yoga Technique:
Once the student has completed all the levels and after about one year of preparation and upon approval by an Ananda Kriyacharya, one can take initiation. The technique is given in an initiation ceremony.
A Kriya technique review, checking, and question and answer session is held after the initiation for the Kriyabans (one who receives Kriya Initiation). Continued support is provided through a monthly inspirational newsletter, individual guidance by phone, e-mail or in person, as well as through guided Kriya meditations and retreats.