Gurudeva’s Legacy Revived In Sri Lanka
Sri Subramuniya Temple
A Spiritual Sanctuary
A new spiritual sanctuary is being built in the village of Alaveddy, a serene and beautiful gathering place for Sivabhaktars, meditators and seekers on all paths. It will be a refuge, surrounded by beauty, a place where devotees can sit peacefully, meditate, study scripture, do simple sadhanas and just be—Summa iru. The project has begun, and you can learn its history and its future below
It all began long ago with Gurudeva, Sivaya Subramuniyaswami whose connection with Sri Lanka dates back to 1948, when he journeyed there to find his guru. Gurudeva stayed with his adopted father Kandiah Chettiar in the village of Alaveddy, to learn and absorb the pure Saivite Tamil culture and did his sadhanas there in preparation for meeting Yogaswami. He was initiated by Jnanaguru Yogaswami on the full-moon day of May 12, 1949, in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, just days after he had attained self-realization in the caves of Jalani in southern Sri Lanka. Here is a brief timeline of events:
With Yogaswami’s blessings, Gurudeva established the Sri Subramuniya Ashram in Alaveddy in 1949 which serves the Saivite community in Jaffna. Gurudeva became the hereditary guru of the Sri Lankan Tamils after the passing of Yogaswami in 1964.
1949 – 1979, Gurudeva and his monks visited Sri Lankan and stayed in Alaveddy to broaden their personal exposure to Hinduism and gather scriptures for publication in the West.
1969 – 1983, Gurudeva along with his monks and disciples went on several pilgrimages called Innersearch to Sri Lanka. Gurudeva sponsored special feasts and festivities centering around the Sri Subramuniya Ashram. Gurudeva and the pilgrims stayed in Alaveddy.
In March 1972 Bodhinatha Veylanswami received his Sannyasa diksha at Sri Subramuniya Ashram in Alaveddy and to commemorate the initiation Gurudeva established a Siva shrine and a Siva Lingam was installed. Two years later again Gurudeva sent Bodhinatha to Sri Subramuniya Ashram in Alaveddy to live, meditate and do special sadhanas for six months.
In 1979, the Sri Subramuniya Ashram Complex building in Alaveddy was acquired, serving through its thriving children’s school of religion, spoken English, Saivite culture, music – miruthangam and veena, dance and yoga, and as well as a full-fledged religious and cultural center for adults. Daily worship, yagam and satsang were conducted for all age groups.
In 1982, a beautiful stage was completed for performances of plays and talks by the school children and orations by invited speakers. Hundreds of children who studied in the ashram are currently residing all around the world under the Hindu diaspora.
During the war in 1985, the Sri Subramuniya Ashram Complex in Alaveddy was closed down. Though it did not survive the war, it still holds the land. Till now only pujas are being performed at the Pasupateeswara Siva shrine.
In Feb 2015, Satguru Bodhinatha visited the Alaveddy village where Gurudeva had received his introduction to Hinduism and Jaffna Saivite culture. Bodhinatha visited the Kumbhalavalai Temple and Sri Subramuniya Ashram properties, Alaveddy Siva shrine and the surrounding properties.
In 2018, the land surrounding Alaveddy Siva shrine was cleared. During the Sri Lanka Innersearch, Satguru Bodhinatha blessed the land and the foundation for the Siva shrine which was built by Gurudeva in 1983.
In 2019 during Sri Lanka second Innersearch, special puja was conducted at the Siva shrine and Bodhinatha planted the first sandalwood tree and the landscaping of the compound began.