Surrender Stillness Silence



The Beginning

​A young lad was greatly affected on hearing the name Arunachala, when his uncle mentioned it. Is it a place on this earth, he exclaimed. Ramana had heard his calling. At the age of 17, he embraced the fear of death and realized his Immortal Self. Very soon he left home and reached Arunachala, also known as Tiruvannamalai in Tamilnadu.

Extolled by sages of the lore, the love of Arunachala is rekindled by the sage of our times Sri Ramana Maharshi. A living example of simplicity, profound awareness and grace, Ramana beckons the hearts of those who look at him. His love of the mountain is an invitation to look deeper and realize the unbounded grace of Arunachala. To all his devotees the mountain is very precious bestowing supreme knowledge through stillness and silence.

Love of Ramana Maharshi brought Gopi and Chitra to Thiruvannamalai and in 1999 Sri AnanthaNiketan came into being. Starting with a few simple thatched cottages the Ashram has now grown into a retreat center.

​​Gopi and Chitra met Sri John de Ruiter in January 2000 and recognizing him as their Sadguru and have spent considerable time with him in Canada in the following years. ​Sri AnanthaNiketan was blessed by the gracious visit of the living Jnani Sri John de Ruiter in January 2014.


Gopi and Chitra - With the teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi their life took a new meaning.. They left their Corporate Career in pursuit of Truth. Spending the early years with Swami Ananthananda and Swami Sahajananda they were inspired to create an Ashram and Sri Anantha Niketan was born.

Chilakamma is devotee of Sri Ramana. She came into Gopi and Chitra’s life about 10 years back and has since become their daughter.

Dhandapaniji and Jogeshji – Friends of Gopi and Chitra and this place has ​been their home from the beginning. They have since moved to the neighborhood to be by themselves. Their good wishes, and support is heartening.

Tanuja Lakshmi, Murali, Sadhu Kumarananda Tatha, Maruthi, Rajaram, Venkatalakshmiand family were some of the early long term members and they have since moved on.

​​Sri AnanthaNiketan is supported by people from nearby village, some full time workers, and others are young volunteers and to all of them this is their second home. They are: Daya, Nehru, Saravanan, Pavan, Elumalai, Deva, Arumugam, Anita, Amsavalli, Shobana, Nataraj, Silambarasan, Venkatesh, Alodian, Amulu, Sampath, Anjala, Uthara, Kumari, Damodaran, Manimegalai, Yasodha Patti, Dhobi Patti, Vaidehi, Shanthi, Vasanthi and many others.

Welcome to Sri Anantha Niketan. We wish you a pleasant stay. We have listed down a few guidelines to facilitate a harmonious functioning.

Visitor Information All foreign Nationals have to fill in a Visitor’s record on arrival.

Kitchen: The Center serves lunch and dinner. Breakfast is also served whenever possible. (Check this at the kitchen). Kindly make entry for your meals in the food register preferably 24 hours early. This will help the kitchen to plan and execute. Please adhere to the meal timings to help the kitchen staff to finish their duties.

Participation: Help in the kitchen for cutting, cleaning and dish washing is welcome and much appreciated. Also any other help in the garden or maintenance would be a lovely contribution. Any such participation is purely voluntary!

Room Cleaning: We request you to keep your room clean during your stay. However if you are on a long stay for more than a week and you need additional help please check at the kitchen.

Toilet Paper: Our toilets get clogged if toilet paper is flushed. If you have to use toilet paper, kindly collect it in the garbage bin provided in the toilets and periodically burn them at the specified place.

Dressing up: Wear clothes that are appropriate for an Indian village and Ashram environment. (It will be good for women to keep their shoulders and legs covered) Kindly also avoid intimate physical contact with partners in public.

Electrical Equipment: Do not use any electrical equipment in your rooms as our power-supply cannot take much load - mobile chargers are OK.

Stillness and Silence: The ashram is a place for Self retreat, introspection, and surrender. We love the support the place is able to give toward this. We look forward to your contribution in supporting the stillness and silence of the place.

​The Ashram is a place for introspection, self-enquiry and surrender. It facilitates individuals and group retreats.

Green fields, lovely birds, trees and rocks make it easy to rest in the heart.​

The accommodation is simple.There are several cottages/rooms, some bath attached and others with bathrooms nearby. During retreats the rooms are shared.

There is no running hot water.

Vegetarian meals are served three times a day.

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