Samson Love (an author of the Mythica) and I took a brotherly day of emotional support and mystical adventure to explore two of Southern California’s most enchanted locations: Paramahansa Yogananda’s Lake Shrine, and the Sunburst Community.
The Self Realization Fellowship
This is Paramahansa Yogananda’s Ashram and lake where he wrote most of “The Autobiography of a Yogi” on the boat shown in the gallery below. Samson Love and I immersed into the meditative wonder of the Shrine Lake, visiting an altar containing some of Mahatma Gandhi’s Ashes, meditating in the Ashram, and walking around the lake. Samson was processing potent transformational emotions on that day, and this was the perfect place to integrate and renew!
A community center in Lompoc, California, started by the main builder of Paramahansa Yogananda’s Shrine Lake, and dedicated to “Spiritual Practice, Conscious Living, and Earth Stewardship.” Auspiciously, right at the top of their website is their mission statement: “Realize who you truly are and the power you have to create heaven on earth, through spiritual practice, supportive community, and selfless service.” This is in FULL alignment with the narrative of Into the Mythica. Furthermore, they follow that statement with this one: “Sunburst is a community of practice dedicated to personal and planetary awakening” Check them out here: “https://sunburst.org/?v=7516fd43adaa.”
We met the current architect of Sunburst’s newer structures, an elderly man who studies and applies principles of sacred geometry to his architecture (i.e. the first photo in this gallery). Then we visited the Star Pilot room, where they have weekly Sunday meditation sangha and other community events. We walked around the main gardens, visiting beautiful statues of Yogananda, St. Francis, Buddha, and other meditating guides.
And we got to visit the Permaculture garden which was TEEMING with thriving vibrant plants! Though the garden was relatively small, it was filled with abundance, enough to feed around 50 people every Sunday plus the several residents throughout the week. I asked the farmer (pictured in the final photo of this gallery) about their technique, and he told me: They dig about five feet down, create a “lasagna mulch” bed, essentially stacking layers of cardboard + compost + cardboard + compost until they fill in the five feet, and cover it all with mulch (organic material that covers the garden bed and holds water well). This creates a giant water sponge, retaining water way longer and distributing water more efficiently. They then plant all their veggies in polyculture guilds, which means planting plants next to other plants that get along well to create a symbiosis of co-supportive community amongst the plants in the garden. Because of this, they only have to water the garden for about 15 minutes a few times a week. The water is retained and the symbiosis of the healthy ecosystem self-regulates and the garden thrives. SO inspiring!
We also walked around and visited a cob (natural Earth building) cabin, a cob oven, and some wood cabins which are perfect for guests at retreats (hint hint!) I’m considering organizing a retreat here! We finished our time at the center by walking through the labrynth, a practice which was important to our ancestors, and we saw a family of deer in the field as the sun set, an affirmation that we were in the right place at the right time in the perfect process and divine alignment.
Samson Love and I had a truly mythical visit to this quaint yet extraordinary community.
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