Prayer Mountain

By John Ernst on

For those who may have read about the Spiritual Crisis Hot Line, you will know that this idea came from an experience I had during a recent health crisis. The idea for Prayer Mountain came at the same time. In this case, I asked myself what was the one experience that seemed important to have if I were to die fairly soon. The answer came that I wanted, at least once more, to meditate on the horizon.

Although I live in Nevada City, California, I have a strong interest in moving to Los Angeles and go there at least twice a year. While there, one of my most meaningful experiences is to meditate at the beach or in the Santa Monica Mountain Range, looking long and steadily at the horizon. That method of meditation was suggested by my guru, Paramhansa Yogananda.

There’s something about looking at that dividing line that causes the mind and consciousness to change. Physically, I suppose, it looks as if it is the dividing line between water and space. I wonder, however, if our soul recognizes this sight as the dividing line between the astral and physical world. Yogananda states that this is what is meant when in Genesis it says, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.”

When I travel, and even at Ananda, I also love to climb to high places and look out at the vastness of the earth below. I think my soul loves that sense of freedom, the confirmation that it is not this little person in a body that lives in a small house on a small plot of land, but is something much greater, much more expansive.

Personal reasons aside, Prayer Mountain is meant for two primary purposes. The first is to provide others that same expansive view and uplifting experience that I myself often seek out.  Secondly, it is to create a pilgrimage spot for those seeking a place for prayer and meditation. Pilgrimage is a very important and useful form of worship. Yogananda said that “Environment is stronger then will power.” Through the ages, certain places have been magnetized by the spiritual efforts of others. Those who come to visit such places are supported and uplifted by this past effort. With God’s blessing, may we not just take from these holy places, but also give of our love and devotion as well.


The exact location for Prayer Mountain has not at this time been found. It may be that it is one of the tall hillsides behind the five properties along Triunfo Canyon Road, but more likely, it will be a location in the Santa Monica Mountain Range that overlooks the ocean. Possibly a former Native American place of worship. A search for the property is set to take place next January.


1. People interested in developing this concept.



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