In 2013 my wife and I bought 16.5 acres of land in Nosara, Costa Rica. We were inspired to create a spiritual sanctuary where guests could come to take respite from their daily lives, restore their physical health, and nurture their souls. The soon-to-be realized center is registered as “Subramuniya Sanctuary”, which is named after my late guru to whom I am in deepest gratitude for his life-transforming love and wisdom.
The sanctuary will consist of our future residence, a Hindu temple, a wellness center, spiritual walkways to foster self reflection, guests residence, and a botanical garden with overrun with flora and fauna. It is located on the banks of the Nosara river, and offers space where guests can take solace in the matchless abundance of nature. Ultimately, we hope that this place we are creating can serve the animals that are native to the area as well as visitors who seek to “know thyself” – a central teaching of my guru.
The land itself had been previously abandoned, and one of our main goals is to bring it back to its glory. We are reforesting it with both native and non-invasive exotic species in order to provide a haven for the local wildlife and food source as well.
I was 24 years old when I was initiated by my guru, Gurudeva Subramuniyaswami, to be a monk is his monastic order. For decades my family members have been disciples of this lineage. In the 1900’s my great grandfather was a disciple of Yogaswami, a renowned guru and mystic in Sri Lanka, and the guru to Gurudeva. I continued the family guru-disciple lineage when I joined Gurudeva’s monastery where I lived and studied for 10 years.
Their teachings have transformed our lives and many others along the way. In a small attempt to honor, celebrate and continue to share the work of Yogaswami and Gurudeva, my wife and I are building this sanctuary. It’s a place for those who are serious about personal growth, self-transformation, making progress on the spiritual path and ultimately Self-Realization.
We plan to create 7 main gardens that represent various aspects of spiritual development (more on this to come). Our gardens will boast rare and/or endangered trees such as the indigenous cocobolo, the giant Kapok. There will also be an abundance of medicinal trees and plants —nature’s gift to us— such as neem, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger and more. Most of the plants and trees that we’ve put into the property fall in the category of flowering, fruit, medicinal, or spice. There will be a feast of colors to behold, and will support the local bees, monkeys, birds and other animals that are being threatened by habitat loss in this area.
Between June 2014 and July 2015 we’ve planted about 260 plants and trees. The designs of the gardens were imagined by my wife and me as well as inspired by the sacred gardens of ancient Hindu temples and monasteries around the world.
Costa Rica is a beautiful and biodiverse country and there are so many breathtaking places to see and visit. Unlike most of Costa Rica, the Nicoya Pennisula where we are located, has 2 seasons, a wet (green) season from May-November and a dry season from (December-April). We were drawn to the area because of these 2 vastly different seasons.
When we found Nosara, we were struck by the wild beauty of the mountains and the world famous surfing and turtle beaches, wildlife, the great food and the community. The diverse community is made up of native Costa Ricans, Europeans and Americans who have made strong commitments to the environment and have generally created an amazing and sustainable atmosphere for surfers, families and spiritual seekers alike. We are located 10 minutes away from Playa Guiones, one of Costa Rica’s top surfing beaches, and 15 minutes from Playa Ostional, a black sand beach that is annually visited by tens of thousands of turtles. It felt like home to us and we look forward to sharing it with you.