Group Homes

The educational arm of Lomaland was the Raja Yoga Academy, established in 1901. "Raja Yoga" meant divine union, and the educational goals of the school involved not only intellectual formation but also moral and spiritual development. The Raja Yoga Academy was a boarding school; students lived together in group homes that were know as "Lotus Houses."

This view of the Lotus houses looks south from the Academy Building. Only one of these homes remains on the PLNU campus today; the square-shaped Group Home #9 is visible in the distance at the middle of this image. It currently stands behind Cabrillo Hall at the Dupont Street entrance to campus.

Collection of Dr. Dwayne Little PLNU# HV6

(Below) Interior of Lotus House.

The group homes were originally topped with a canvas roof. The interior of the group home provided classroom space and sleeping areas for the children. Later a roof and skylight was added to each building but the Group Homes retained their tent-like conical shapes.

Collection of Dr. Dwayne Little PLNU# HV7

(Below) Interior of a group home porch, looking south.

The simple furnishings of the group home, like the discipline of silence during meals, were designed to promote spiritual mindfulness, aesthetic simplicity, and to create an easy-to-care-for surroundings for the children.

Archives, Theosophical Society, Pasadena, California 91109 PLNU# 2 KTDR09.tif

(Below) Child Care Center.

As a utopian community, the Theosophical Society emphasized early childhood education. Children as young as three years old, called "Lotus Buds," began instruction at the Raja Yoga Academy.

Archives, Theosophical Society, Pasadena, California 91109 PLNU# 2 PBT 17 tif

(Below) The Life of Children

Children at the Raja Yoga Academy contributed what they could to community life. Boys and girls were given chores appropriate to their ages. These boys were assigned to work in the gardens.

Archives, Theosophical Society, Pasadena, California 91109 PLNU# 2 PBT 16 tif