Nestled amidst the lush green hills of Devprayag in Uttarakhand and located on the banks of the Holy confluence Ramakrishna Sarada Ashrama is a socio spiritual and socio religious institution with Sri Ramakrishna, Sri Ma Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda as the role models
The ashrama has grown over the years through the patronage of countless devotees across India and abroad, through the numerous blessings and benedictions of the Matajis of Sri Sarada Math and Ramakrishna Sarada Mission and by the grace of the Holy Trio
Benediction letters of Bhaktiprana Mataji, the erstwhile president of Sri Sarada Math and Ramakrishna Sarada Mission are provided here.
Himalayan ranges enhance and intensify the feelings of immensity and thus brings us nearer to the infinite. For ages the Himalayas are an inspiration to countless seekers of Ultimate Truth and Peace. It is an ideal setting for many ashramas dotting its vast landscape on the banks of the rivers and on the sacred spots and associated with Puranas and mythology. One such sacred place is Devprayag, the confluence of the rivers Bhagirathi and Alakananda. The legend has it that it was the spot of penance chosen by none other than the Lord Rama being stigmatized by the sin of Brahmahatya (killing Ravana - a Brahmin). Hence there is a very ancient Raghunath temple near the confluence. The sacred abode was founded by a Brahmin named Dev Sharma and hence was named after him
The Ramakrishna Sarada Ashrama modeled after the ideals of the Holy Trio and founded by Swami Sarvatmanandaji with generous contribution from devotees across India. The ashrama was inaugurated on the occasion of Ram Navami in 2014. Later in 2015 another wing was added to accommodate the growing number of guests on the occasion of the birth centenary of Revered Pravrajika Mokshaprana Mataji, former president of Sri Sarada Math and Ramakrishna Sarada Mission. The new wing also included a library, a swadhyay or self study centre and a retreat. The ashrama accommodates guests who are spiritual seekers, by providing a retreat. It offers free value education to local children and also provides food, lodging and education to few orphans.
The Himalayas, called as Devatatman by poet Kalidasa contain in its bosom so many holy places. It is truly an abode of God. It is said that the Lord of Lords Mahadeva Himself and His spiritual consort and the mother of the Universe goddess Parvati live in the Himalayas. Swami Vivekananda had a fascination for the Himalayas like all other seekers of truth. This is the place where Mahabharata was composed by Vyasa. Badarikashrama in Himalayas is the place where ancient sages Nara and Narayana perform eternal penance for the welfare of humanity. Shankaracharya found the new thoroughly renovated the four ancient pilgrimage spots of Gangotri, Yamunotri, Kedarnath and Badarinath and established the Jyotir Math near Badarinath. He also wrote the bhashyas or commenatries on Upanishadas in the laps of these majestic mountains. Swamiji established his advaita ashrama with the help of Seviers in Mayavati
A young boy of busy social life belonging to the Kolkata culture came in contact with Mataji Pravrajika Mokshaprana of Sri Sarada Math. He visited Pravrajika Mokshanprana in Sri Sarada Math in Dakshineswar accompanying his mother who was an initiated devotee. The revered Mataji, who was then the president, began discussing with the young man on photography and later gave him a responsibility of preparing the cover page for Nibodhata. He worked very hard for the whole day and came up with different compositions of which one was picked up. This was the beginning of his association with Sri Sarada Math and the president Mataji. As corrosive substance wears away even the hard surfaces, his mind was also being prepared by the revered Mataji for spiritual life. Before he himself realized he had decided to renounce. He decided to go to the banks of Narmada in Omkareswar He first went to Indore and stayed in a private ashrama for a few years. Later he joined an ashrama in Gwalior and took up administrative activities. However one of the resident monks advised him to go for seclusion instead of getting embroiled in worldly affairs. He therefore went to Kailash Ashrama in the Himalayas, studied Vedanta and took sannyas from Vidyananda Giriji in 1997. While travelling in the Himalayas he came to Devprayag for solitary tapasya and found refuge in a cave adjacent to the Raghunath temple. With help from the temple secretary and president and the pujari maharaj he was able to live on food provided by the temple. Also he began to teach Maths and English to the local students as a seva. Gradually a part of the temple premises was offered for free tuition to the local village children. Swami Sarvatmananda initiated them to the ideals of Sri sri Thakur, Sri Sri Ma and esp. Swamiji who had a profound influence on the young minds.
Ramakrishna Sarada Ashrama Devprayag- Genesis
The life and ideals of Swami Vivekananda were discussed and free books were given to the students for helping them in overcoming their fears and anxiety.
A Vivekananda Study Circle was thus established in Devprayag. The interest of the students led to the celebration of National Youth Day in Jan 12, 2003.
A number of festivals were organized to commemorate Swami Vivekananda's birthday. Indus Quality Foundation, New Delhi showed interest in holding personality development program in 2004. Acclaimed writer of history Dr. Shivaprasad Naithani and the then state education minister Sri Mantri Prasad Naithani graced the occasion by their presence in the Swami Vivekananda's birthday celebration. The number of devotees visiting the ashrama increased and in 2006-2007 a devotee couple purchased a land and handed over for ashrama construction. A European couple from Austria, Vienna, invited Swami Sarvatmananda for a trip to Europe and this trip resulted in his writing the book St. Francis of Assisi which was published by Sri Sarada Math.
After his return from Europe the plan for constructing a permanent ashrama for the Holy Trio took shape. The then president of Sri Sarada Math, pravrajika Sraddhaprana Mataji sent her blessings. After her, the next president Pravrajika Bhaktiprana Mataji also sent her blessings and with support from Sri Sarada Math construction began on the day of the Akshaya Tritiya in 2009 in presence of the revered nuns of Ramakrishna Sarada Mission. Appeals for funds were put up and donations came from all over India. The ashrama became a source of pride, joy and excitement among the locals. Even when Swami Sarvatmananda was not there the labourers used to treat the visiting devotees with tea, biscuits and refreshments. The ashrama was inaugurated on the day of Rama Navami (April 8) in 2014 and another wing was added to the main building in memory of Pravrajika Mokshaprana Mataji on her birth centenary in 2015.