It was in the early 1980s while I was living in the ashram. Someone told me that the ancient scriptures (Shastras) describe the makings of an enlightened city. All the parameters are given: elevation, slope of the land, nature of the climate, etc. It is said that all of the people who live in such a city attain and live in a state of spiritual liberation—enlightenment.
For some reason, unknown to me at that time, the idea of an enlightened city stuck with me. At the time it wasn’t that I had the thought I would build an enlightened city, but the feeling was there that I would. As the decades passed, the time came when we actually purchased the land. I was surprised to hear from my students that I had, from time to time, mentioned the idea in my classes. I guess it just came out of me. I certainly never planned to talk about it and don’t really remember doing so.
Oddly enough, once I decided to build the enlightened city, I couldn’t find that information anywhere. I asked Pandits and spiritual/Vedic scholars about enlightened cities and they just looked at me funny, as if they had no idea what I was talking about. I proceeded based on what I could remember, but also based upon what I could not remember—just from what I felt, what naturally emerged from within me. I decided that we needed a particular structure (Shiva Linga) in the middle of town, thinking we would just put it in a shack or something, because we had little money. One thing led to the next, and we built Sri Somesvara Temple. Even the material that the Shiva Linga would be made out of was a question to which I couldn’t find the answer. So I just went by what felt right within myself.
Now for the strange part of the story. After all this was done, it seemed like every Pandit or Vedic scholar I spoke with knew all about enlightened cities: “Oh yes, yes. An enlightened city requires….” Remarkably, we had done it all perfectly. Vedic architects from India even provided detailed plans for an enlightened city for which we had conformed to every detail.
This was the birth of Mount Soma, a living demonstration of how to apply the principles of ancient Vedic Knowledge. CRS was created to bring forth the subtleties of spiritual knowledge that have largely been lost to the ages.