When the much-loved Temple of Light at the Yasodhara Ashram burned to the ground in 2014 the loss shook many area residents.
Now, on Saturday, June 23, a stunning and much different replacement opens officially at the 55-year-old yoga retreat and study centre.
“We are excited to celebrate the official opening of our new Temple of Light which recognizes the light in all spiritual traditions and the divine spark in each person,” Swami Lalitananda, Yasodhara Ashram president, said in anticipation of the event. “This is also a wonderful opportunity to thank our community and supporters for their contribution in the return of this special symbol of peace, hope and unity for all.”
Completed in the fall of 2017, the new temple was prefabricated by Spearhead of Nelson and designed by award-winning Patkau Architects of Vancouver.
The grand opening coincides with the annual Strawberry Social, which runs from 1-5 pm. It offers visitors a chance to “explore the Ashram and enjoy delicious Creston strawberries in a warm community gathering,” Swami Lalitananda said.
Ribbon cutting ceremonies will be held at the temple from 2:30-3:30 pm.
In addition to the opening and strawberry tea, the afternoon will include dance and the annual book sale, with proceeds to be donated to the Crawford Bay School hot lunch program.
Yasodhara Ashram was founded by Swami Sinananda Radha in 1963 in Kootenay Bay. One of the first ashrams established in Canada, the yoga retreat and study centre is an enduring and vibrant spiritual community where people of all ages and backgrounds can pursue self-development and discover the promise of yoga.
The Ashram offers a wide range of yoga programs year round – from a three-month intensive program to private retreats, teacher certifications and introductions to yoga.
“It is also a residential community, where we practice living what we teach,” Swami Lalitananda added.
To view a special video celebrating 2018 as the Ashram’s Year of Invitation, please visit yasodhara.org