"The Ashram is a place for those who wish to serve
the Divine," said the Mother. Sri Aurobindo has said,
"This Ashram was created with another object than
that ordinarily common to such institutions, not for the renunciation of the world but as a centre and a field
of practice for the evolution of another kind and
form of life which would in the final end be moved
by a higher spiritual consciousness and embody
a greater life of the spirit."
In Sanskrit, a peetham is described as a sacred place or seat for tapasya (spiritual discipline). In 1993 this name was given to us by a revered elder of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram after our center reincorporated with the aspiration to become a true place for the practice of Sri Aurobindo's Integral Yoga in a collective ashram environment. The aim of this small ashram is to provide a place for those who, in The Mother's words, "wish to serve the Divine" and offer themselves in all their parts and activities in a collective sadhana (practice of yoga), in a place where food, shelter, simple basic necessities, and a field of work are provided for this purpose.
The Lodi Ashram, which houses the Relics of Sri Aurobindo, sits on 3 acres in an agricultural area surrounded by fields and vineyards. There is a main house and a few outbuildings. The community is self-supporting through sales of books, incense and Ayurvedic products. Karma-yoga work exchange programs are offered, and visitors are welcome. If you'd like to visit, please call in advance to arrange your accomodations. We host monthly collective yoga retreats, Darshan gatherings, daily meditations, and a weekly study group. We also have an extensive library, host speakers from India, and collaborate with other centers in the region. Though our primary purpose is to maintain a residential community for intensive sadhana of the members, we have an extended family of friends and visitors, especially those who come each month to the retreats, and this aspect of our collective life has become equally important in our work here. Sri Aurobindo Sadhana Peetham is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization.
At present we are four full-time residential members, though a growing number of friends come on a regular basis. Every evening there is a collective meditation at 8:00pm, with study groups being held at 7:00pm every evening. A vegetarian diet is observed in the Ashram, though members are free to eat non-vegetarian food outside occasionally if they need to. On the third Saturday of each month, there is a collective yoga retreat attended by friends from the surrounding Sacramento and Bay areas of northern California. During the retreats, we have group meditation, bhajans, study circles, or poetry and play readings, but one of the main and most appreciated activities is the collective karma yoga where we have the chance to put the teachings into practice by working together.
No member plays the role of the spiritual leader of the Ashram. The cultivation of the inner Guru, and reliance on the Divine force of Mother's and Sri Aurobindo's Presence and teachings provide the guiding principles. The practical direction of the day-to-day operations is overseen by a board of directors.
As a registered nonprofit religious organization, we receive donations that help considerably, however, the main financial support of the Ashram is provided through the Ashram-owned and operated business, Auromère. Auromere imports and distributes Sri Aurobindo books, classical spiritual texts and children's books from India, incense, and ayurvedic products. Members of the Ashram work in the Auromere business as part of the collective work.
For those interested in visiting, membership, retreats, or work-exchange programs, more information is available. We also publish a descriptive catalog of Sri Aurobindo books that is free on request. Write or call: