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Satchidananda Ashram-Yogaville
Integral Yoga Yantra.jpg
Integral Yoga Interfaith Yantra. Symbols in the petals, clockwise from top: Faiths Still Unknown, Hinduism, Judaism, Shinto, Taoism, Buddhism, Other Known Faiths, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, Traditional African Faiths, Native American Faiths.
Motto Truth is One, Paths are Many
Formation 1981
Type Ashram
Purpose To disseminate the teachings of H.H. Sri Swami Satchidananda
Headquarters Satchidananda Ashram-Yogaville Virginia
  • Buckingham, Virginia
Affiliations Sivananda Ashram

Satchidananda Ashram - Yogaville was founded in 1980 by Yogiraj Sri Swami Satchidananda, whose western renown stems from his opening of the Woodstock festival. The ashram is the international organizational headquarters of Swami Satchidananda's documented teachings, located in the county of Buckingham, Virginia. The primary vision of this world-traveled guru Yogiraj Sri Swami Satchidananda (1914-2002) was interfaith understanding as a vehicle to world peace. To this end, with his vision and much work from thousands of disciples and admirers, the LOTUS (Light Of Truth Universal Shrine) was constructed and inaugurated in 1986. Swami Satchidananda was living in Yogaville at the time of his death though he was visiting Madras (city now known as Chennai), in South India at the time.[1]

The property in rural Virginia, along the James River, was identified for the community from the air as the swami flew over, looking for land farther south than his ashram in Pomfret, Connecticut. Swami Satchidananda acquired 600 acres in 1979 to form his town, financing it by selling property in Falls Village, Connecticut that had been given to him by Carole King.[1] As of 1986, when the LOTUS was dedicated, around 120 people were living on a total of 750 acres. Reports cited plans to eventually house a population between 600 to 1,000.[2] According to the official website, there are around 200 residents as of 2015.[3]

In addition to the Virginia and Connecticut ashrams, Yogaville-West was founded in Seigler Springs, California in 1972.[1]


Costing $2 million (financed through donations and tithes) and dedicated on July 20, 1986,[2] the shrine is the centerpiece of Yogaville. The structure is shaped like a lotus flower, features a gold-leaf dome, and houses 10 altars representing Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Shinto, Tao, Buddhist, Islam, Sikh, Native American, and African religions.[1] Blue neon tubes extend from each altar up along the spines of the vaulted ceiling.


  1. ^ a b c d Martin, Douglas (21 August 2002). "Swami Satchidananda, Woodstock Guru, Dies at 87". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ a b Baker, Donald P. (20 July 1986). "Swami Dedicates $2 Million Temple in Va.". The Washington Post. 
  3. ^ "Yogaville - About Us". 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°39′56.9″N 78°41′8″W / 37.665806°N 78.68556°W / 37.665806; -78.68556