The Samadhi of Guru Sri Subramanium
The memorial and resting place of Guru Sri Subramanium, the founder of Skanda Vale, is located on the hill on your way up from the entrance to Skanda Vale and the Murugan Temple towards the Shakti Temple. There is a very large shaligram, a boulder, on a plinth, as well as a lifelike statue of Guru, all in a landscaped garden.
You are very welcome to stop by at the Samadhi site, which is open all the time. You can sit quietly, pray, make offerings or enjoy the garden, but please respect the sanctity of the place.
History of the Samadhi
Guru Sri Subramanium died in 2007. He had instructed that he was to be buried in the ashram, not cremated. After his passing, we were trying to decide on a suitable structure for his Samadhi. While at prayer in Mother’s Gopuram, the inner sanctum of the Shakti temple, asking for guidance, one of the Swamis saw an image in his mind’s eye of a massive shaligram on a plinth. A few days later, another Swami had a similar image while in the Sri Ranganatha temple, and also felt a strong conviction that the shaligram needed to be found straight away.
As providence would have it, there was a seminar in Switzerland that same week, and so the search began there. The first place people searched was in the Schraubach river, close to the chalet which has now become Somaskanda Ashram. Of course, in that first search, an enormous shaligram was found. The great stone had an incredible magnetism, and while the group spent the day looking at other rocks, ultimately this only confirmed that that first find was the shaligram we needed.
Arrangements were made, and the eight-ton boulder was extracted from the riverbed and transported to Wales, where it was polished and installed on the great plinth where you can see it today. The more it was cleaned and polished, the more the subtleties and intricacies of its patterning were revealed. The more you look at the great stone, the more it reveals, and the more its mystery becomes apparent.
Days of celebrations and ceremony ensued, with a yagnam conducted, as is our custom at Skanda Vale when a new image or statue of the Divine arrives and is installed. At the end of all this, the vibration of the shaligram itself was so ensconced, so magnified, that it retains a peaceful environment for pilgrims right through until the present day, and is an important site for special yagnams and pujas conducted by the Community.
You see people going to various parts of the world in search of the wrong guru. The Guru is there inside you. And it is my duty not to make myself so important that I obscure the power of God within you. But to create within you the deep consciousness… the deep awareness that Krishna dwells inside your heart. That the Lord is there… Christ is there… inside you.
Tips on engaging
Spirituality and connection to the Divine and yourself is something incredibly personal, the most personal (and universal!) thing in the world. But these are some tips for how you can engage with the Samadhi site on your visit.
Firstly, put away your phone, set aside distractions for the duration of your time at the Samadhi, and even your whole stay at Skanda Vale. Unclutter your mind and be receptive. Quietness and calmness provide fertile ground for growth, healing, inspiration.
The Samadhi is an ideal space for meditating. Sit down quietly on the ground, the benches or the stone steps, and feel the energy of the space, the energy of the Guru, or be in the presence of your own being, explore the source of your consciousness, or chant the names of God according to your own inclinations and background.
Lord Murugan Temple
Established in 1973, the Lord Murugan Temple was the first temple at Skanda Vale. Open for darshan every day at 05:00, 13:30 and 21:00.
Sri Ranganatha Temple
The Sri Ranganatha (or Lord Vishnu) Temple was inaugurated on the millennium. Open 24 hours a day, with daily pujas at 09:30.
Maha Shakti Temple
Consecrated in 1991, the Maha Shakti (or Kali) Temple was the second temple at Skanda Vale. Open for darshan every day at 06:30 and 18:00.
Inaugurated in 2016, Somaskanda Ashram is our mountain temple in the Swiss Alps.