Lake Shrine Meditation

Lake Shrine

A few weeks ago I was graciously invited to join a group of my fellow spiritually connected friends for an afternoon in the Malibu area. Our first order of the day: a trip to Lake Shrine in Pacific Palisades. This gorgeous place has been around longer than I have.

I am almost embarrassed to say I have passed it dozens, if not hundreds, of times in my life and never even knew it was there. I was moved by the peace, serenity and beauty of this place. We were all able to get a quiet meditation in and share the beauty of the locale with good friends. I know I will return and I highly recommend you make the trip as well.

The Self-Realization Fellowship Lake Shrine is a mere few blocks walking distance from the Pacific Ocean, on Sunset Boulevard in Pacific Palisades, California. On the weekend its tiny parking lot is often full, so walk you might. But trust me, it’s well worth the hike up hill.

Founded by Paramahansa Yogananda, yogi and guru who introduced many westerners to the teachings of meditation and Kriya Yoga through his book, Autobiography of a Yogi.

Since 1950, this 10-acre site with gardens and natural spring-fed lake has been home to a variety of flora and fauna, including swans, ducks, koi, lotus flowers and rose garden. Try to find a place devoid of peace and beauty here, it’s impossible.

The grounds also include the Mahatma Gandhi World Peace Memorial, where a portion of Gandhi’s ashes are enshrined, a small museum with exhibits on Paramahansa Yogananda’s work, some of his collections, a Dutch windmill converted into a chapel (if you can, spend some time in here the energy is amazing) and a gift shop with arts and crafts from India.

The rose garden is  home to the Court of Religions featuring the symbols of the five principal religions of the world: a cross for Christianity, a Star of David for Judaism, a Wheel of Law for Buddhism, a Crescent Moon & Star for Islam, and the Om symbol for Hinduism.

No one will bother you here. No one will preach at you, lecture you, or try to convert you. The grounds are open to the public and are as non-intimidating as a park. The gardens are designed to offer peace and serenity to all visitors, of all faiths; a spot where you can relax amidst the natural surroundings and contemplate the mysteries and miracles of life. My preference is weekday visits due to the parking constraints and fewer visitors, but either weekend or weekday, this is a must visit.

Address
17190 Sunset Boulevard
Pacific Palisades, California 90272-3099
Telephone: (310) 454-4114

Hours of operation
Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Mondays and holidays closed

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