Alice Coltrane’s ashram destroyed in California wildfires
The former home of Alice Coltrane's Sai Anantam Ashram, a Hindu community of worship and education she built in the 1980s and was open until 2017, was lost in the recent, devastating Woolsey wildfires in Southern California. Alice's daughter, Sita, shared the news over the weekend:
In the early 80s, my mother Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda, purchased land in the Santa Monica mountains on which she built an ashram with the lord’s direction. She created a space for spiritual practice that sadly has been consumed by the devastating California fires. Most all of the structures have been burnt to ground, thankfully there was no loss of life.
Our family does not own the property anymore. My mother told me that there are no coincidences in life, only incidents. We can make our own plans, but God has a spiritual path and a divine order that will be followed. For over 30 years, the ashram was a haven and a home for community members and devotees of my mother's spiritual practice. Those memories live in my heart and the hearts of many, eternally.
Sunday services were filled with music, chanting, meditation and my mother's discourses. The fellowship, families, children who grew up on the land, celebrations of holy days, marriages that took place on the grounds, all of these things will last forever.
We are thankful to have been in the presence of such a spiritually aware being. The years of service, teachings and dedication that the guru exhibited will be shared with my children and grandchildren. They will remember Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda's legacy as it was always so much more than brick and mortar. She will live on in the hearts and minds of the students and people she affected.
Sita Michelle Coltrane
Some of the chants Alice Coltrane developed at the Sai Anantam Ashram were released last year by Luaka Bop as World Spirituality Classics 1: The Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda.