The activities offered at the Berkeley Ananda Center include:
Several weekly meditations
Weekly Hatha Yoga class
Monthly Kirtan, or devotional chanting
Monthly Sunday service
Instruction in meditation
Occasional classes and one-day workshops on a variety of subjects
Satsang, or community support and fellowship
The Berkeley Ananda Center is part of an international network of meditation centers and groups that practice the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda. Yogananda, born in India in 1893, was one of the first Indian yoga masters to settle in the West. He lived in America from 1920 until his death in 1952, introducing hundreds of thousands of people to the original teachings of yoga and founding an organization, Self-Realization Fellowship, headquartered in Los Angeles, California. His Autobiography of a Yogi, first published in 1946, is one of the best-selling autobiographies of all time, and has been translated into many languages.
Ananda was founded by J. Donald Walters, also known as Swami Kriyananda. Kriyananda was a direct disciple of Yogananda and lived with the Master in his monastery in Los Angeles from 1948-1952. Kriyananda remained a monk with Self-Realization Fellowship until 1962. In 1968, he founded Ananda Village on a piece of land in the Sierra Nevada foothills near Nevada City, California, as a vehicle to realize Yogananda’s dream of spreading spiritual intentional communities throughout the world. Ananda also has six branch communities elsewhere in the United States, in Europe and in India (including one in Mountain View, California), and many meditation centers and groups throughout the world.