Nayaswami Jyotish and Devi
Spiritual Directors Ananda Sangha Worldwide
Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi have served as the spiritual directors of Ananda Sangha since 1984. They have been devotees of Yogananda and have served closely with Swami Kriyananda for many decades helping to build the work of Ananda. Swami Kriyananda, before his passing, named Nayaswami Jyotish making him the Dharmacharya of Ananda and his spiritual successor.
John E. Novak (Nayaswami Jyotish) met Swami Kriyananda in 1966, when he was only 20 years old in San Francisco, California. Swami Kriyananda and he worked closely for many years together. Jyotish is a Kriyacharya (one who has been allowed by Swami Kriyananda to initiate and teach Kriya Yoga technique of Paramhansa Yogananda’s lineage) and in 2013 he was also named as the spiritual successor of Swami Kriyananda.
In 1968 he became one of the founding members of Ananda Village located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. The community officially opened its doors on July 4, 1969. For nearly a decade he served as the community’s General Manager.
In 1979, he and his wife, Nayaswami Devi started the first city ashram for Ananda in San Francisco. Nayaswami Jyotish has travelled to and taught in Ananda communities throughout the world, and has lectured widely in the United States, Europe, Russia, and India. Nayaswami Jyotish holds a B.A. degree in Psychology from University of Minnesota. He has over 40 years of experience in teaching meditation to a global audience.
Nayaswami Jyotish is also an author of books on meditation, career and marriage. Some titles include How to Meditate and Lessons in Meditation, along with Thirty Day Essentials for Career and Thirty Day Essentials for Marriage. He also is the creator of Meditation Therapy(TM) which addresses topics such as emotional health, relationships, stress and change.
After graduating from college, Nayaswami Devi met Swami Kriyananda in 1969 and dedicated her life to God and Guru. She was trained and mentored by Swami Kriyananda to teach and held the position of Community Correspondent.
She and Jyotish were married in 1975 and were blessed with a baby boy in June 1976. By 1984, Swami Kriyananda named them as Spiritual Directors of Ananda Worldwide in 1984. Nayaswami Devi, too is a Kriyacharya named by Swami Kriyananda.
Apart from being a founding member of the Ananda Village, Nayaswami Devi is also involved in other organizations associated with Ananda. She is on the board of directors of Education for Life Foundation, the Janaka Foundation, and The Ananda Institute of Alternative Living.
Nayaswami Devi is a published author and has written books such as Faith is My Armor: The Life of Swami Kriyananda; she has been the editor of The Light of Superconsciousness and Intuition for Starters, both by Swami Kriyananda.
Nayaswami Jyotish and Devi are co-authors of the book “A Touch of Light: Living the Teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda”, which is a compilation of their weekly blog.
Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi, are designated as the Spiritual Directors of Ananda Worldwide and are at the heart of the Ananda Worldwide community’s spiritual activities. They have dedicated their lives to inspiring and guiding people to God, by living the spiritual teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda and Masters of his spiritual lineage.