New Rishikesh
by Hamsavatar das
Posted April 26, 2003

Nestled in a lush valley of the Santa Fe National Forest in New Mexico, USA, protected by mountains all around and situated directly on the pristine Pecos river lies New Rishikesh. New Rishikesh is in a region of great natural beauty offering varieties of recreational opportunities including hiking and horseback riding.

The main house of this beautiful 3 acre property features a temple room and yoga studio where regular programs and classes are held. There is also a small ayurvedic clinic in a separate building. New Rishikesh is the home and inspiration of Hamsavatar das and Yogamaya devi dasi. Hamsavatar, a disciple of Srila Prabhupada, is a vedic astrologer and internationally renowned ayurvedic gem therapist. Yogamaya devi is an accomplished yoga instructor, ayurvedic practitioner, reflexologist and nutritionist. In this idyllic setting they have developed vegetable gardens, fruit orchards, a large pond with ducks and geese and also maintain several horses and even 3 vegetarian dogs.

New Rishikesh is located near the city of Santa Fe. On October 27, 1968, Srila Prabhupada himself visited Iskcon Santa Fe, one of the first 6 temples opened in the world. Here, in one of the world's most important areas for new age thought and alternative healing, the devotees have been teaching Krishna Consciousness through the vedic sciences of jyotish, ayurveda and yoga, which are becoming increasingly popular all over the western world. The devotees hold workshops, teach classes and give personal consultations. They plan to eventually buy an adjacent 100 acres to build a large complex which will facilitate retreats and regular classes in the vedic sciences, house a large temple, a school for children, a guest house and restaurant, and which will provide facilities for cows, horses and gardens. Importantly, prime land will be set aside for devotees' homes.

Due to the great diversity of the people of New Mexico, the state government is unusually sympathetic to alternative lifestyles and cultures. Thus, Hamsavatar and Yogamaya devi are beginning to work with the state government in the hopes of making New Mexico the first state in the USA to fully legalize the medical science of ayurveda. Once achieving this goal the hope is to eventually expand the ayurvedic clinic at New Rishikesh into a diverse and world-class healing center.

Immediate plans call for the opening of a Govinda's restaurant in nearby Santa Fe within the next 12 months. The restaurant will provide employment opportunities for a number of devotees. Profits will help to fund a Food-For Life program in northern New Mexico.

Devotees interested in New Rishikesh are invited to correspond with Hamsavatar by e-mail at balaji@newmexico.com or by telephone at 505-757-6194. Yogamaya may be reached by e-mail at yogamaya@newmexico.com or at the same telephone number.