Asha PraverSpiritual Directors
of Ananda Palo Alto

A team of three helps to guide Ananda, sharing their unique perspectives and gifts with both long-time disciples and students just beginning their spiritual explorations. They are gifted teachers, leaders and counselors — and helpful examples for many of what it looks like to walk the path with sincerity and courage.

Asha Nayaswami

Asha’s talks and online classes are a spiritual lifeline for people of many faiths around the world. Thousands have received training from her over the past 40 years, and have been helped immeasurably by her unusual insight and clarity.

She serves as Ananda Sangha's global ambassador at the request of her lifelong teacher, Swami Kriyananda. A long-time disciple of Yogananda, she is author of Ask Asha, Loved & Protected, Swami Kriyananda as We Have Known Him, and has appeared in the film Finding Happiness. Asha is one of the spiritual directors of Ananda Palo Alto, but her home is increasingly in every corner of the globe. She regularly gives Sunday services when she is in the Bay Area, and teaches often on Saturdays and Tuesday evenings (a book study series based on Paramhansa Yogananda or Swami Kriyananda's writings). Further links:

Calendar | Asha's classes | Sunday sermons | YouTube Channel | Webinars
Letters from Asha | Transcribed talks | Upcoming tours | Asha's website


shantiShanti Rubenstone, MD

Loving, enthusiastic, energy personified — Shanti is an Ananda minister and life-long devotee, as well as a Stanford trained M.D. Her sermons and classes are rich with experiences and stories from her life as a physician, woven together with years of experience on the path and her inherently devotional nature. She coordinates much of Ananda's day to day world, which has grown amazingly complex and rich in recent years to include nearly daily classes, special events, pilgrimages, and a large team of staff and volunteers. She is a much-loved counselor and teacher.

Classes and satsangs | Sunday sermons


David PraverDavid Praver

David has been the foundation and steady hand guiding Ananda Palo Alto since 1987. He has long experience and patience working with a wide range of personalities (a rare skill, indeed). Under his guidance, Ananda has grown in many areas, expanding East West Bookshop, developing the Living Wisdom School, acquiring a large residential community (Ananda Community in Mountain View), and most recently magnetizing the rather miraculous Ananda Valley Farm that is giving so much joy (and food!) to so many. Before coming to Ananda Palo Alto, he developed and managed many enterprises, including an alternative high school, a restaurant, Ananda’s publishing company, and Ananda’s guest retreat (now the Expanding Light near Nevada City, CA). He has been meditating for over 35 years; he specializes in teaching advanced meditation and Yogananda’s Energization Exercises.