Vedanta Society of Southern California, Hollywood, USA

Started in 1930, this branch of Ramakrishna Math has Swami Sarvadevananda as the minister-in-charge, assisted by a few monks and nuns.

Activities:

  1. Daily meditation, worship and vesper service.
  2. Retreats, monthly Ramnam Sankirtan and 24-hour vigils.
  3. Celebration of religious festivals such as Kali Puja, Shivaratri and Christmas, and the birthdays of Sri Ramakrishna, Holy Mother Sri Sarada Devi, Swami Vivekananda, Swami Brahmananda, and
  4. Weekly classes and Sunday lectures at the
  5. Vedanta Press (publication unit) and a book showroom.
  6. Active participation in several interfaith
  7. The minister-in-charge and other monks and nuns lectured in schools, colleges & universities and held retreats at numerous places in Los Angeles and across the
  8. Support to a dozen private Vedanta centres run by devotees, across the U.S.A.
  9. Assistance to the poor and homeless.

The Vedanta Society has six sub-centres in San Diego, Santa Barbara, South Pasadena, Trabuco Canyon, Ridgely and Greater Washington.


  1. Vedanta Monastery, San Diego: This was founded in 1983.

Activities:

  1. Daily meditation, worship and vesper service.
  2. Classes, lectures and retreats.
  3. A library.
  4. Celebration of religious festivals.
  5. Active participation in and hosting of Inter-religious council.
  6. Talks at local colleges and universities, and retreats at local yoga studios and other places of the USA.

2. Sarada Convent and Vedanta Society Temple, Santa Barbara: The sub-centre was started in 1947 and is nestled against a scenic mountain range overlooking the Pacific

Activities:

  1. A convent and a book showroom.
  2. Daily meditation and worship.
  3. Retreats, classes and lectures, both at the centre and elsewhere.
  4. Celebration of religious festivals.
  5. Monthly feeding of homeless people.
  6. Talks at local schools and colleges, and participation in local interfaith activities.
  7. Weekly Sunday School.

3. Vivekananda House, South Pasadena: Swami Vivekananda stayed in this house for 27 days in 1900 as a guest of the “Mead Sisters”. The house came into the hands of the Vedanta Society in 1956 and is maintained as a shrine and a memorial since

Activities:

  1. Monthly retreats.
  2. Annual open house and reception.
  3. Showing around the place to visitors and pilgrims.

4. Ramakrishna Monastery, Trabuco Canyon: The monastery was founded in 1949 and sits atop 40 acres of largely undeveloped rolling hills.

Activities:

  1. A library and a book showroom.
  2. A Sunday school.
  3. Daily meditation and worship, and vesper service.
  4. Classes and lectures in English, and local and online classes in Spanish.
  5. Celebration of religious festivals.
  6. Karma Yoga Day on alternate months.
  7. Monk for a month program.
  8. Participation in inter-religious dialogues.
  9. Weekly feeding of homeless people and rehabilitation programmes for alcohol addicts.

5. Vivekananda Retreat, Ridgely: Swami Vivekananda stayed at this place on three occasions – twice for ten days in 1895 and for ten weeks in 1899. This retreat spanning eighty-two acres with a few structures was acquired in 1997 and is maintained as a

Activities:

  1. Guided tours of the place to pilgrims.
  2. Regular classes, lectures and retreats.
  3. Special programmes with distinguished guests.

6. Vedanta Center of Greater Washington, D. C.: The centre was established in 1997 on a two-and-half acre plot of land surrounded by woods.

Activities:

  1. Daily worship, meditation and vesper service; weekly Karma Yoga day.
  2. Regular classes and lectures.
  3. A book showroom.
  4. A summer camp for children.
  5. A free medical clinic.
  6. Food assistance to the poor.
  7. Celebration of festivals such as Kalpataru Day, Shiva Ratri and Kali Puja and the birth anniversaries of religious personalities.

7. Piñon Hills Retreat : The retreat house was built by Dr. Amar Pierce and Barbara Paul Pierce (Sati) in 1990, where they held small retreats related to health and spirituality.  Later it was donated to the Vedanta Society in 2005.

Activities:

  1. Weekly scriptural classes
  2. Monthly day-retreats
  3. A book showroom

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Hollywood Shrine
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Vedanta Monastery, San Diego
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Sarada Convent and Vedanta Society Temple, Santa Barbara
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Vivekananda House, South Pasadena
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Ramakrishna Monastery, Trabuco Canyon
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Vivekananda Retreat Ridgely
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Vedanta Center of Greater Washington DC
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Piñon Hills Retreat