Welcome

 

Welcome to Saraswati Ahimsa Vana, also known as Wisdom Forest. We are a diverse community living by Vedic principles within a unique hidden paradise in the Amazon Rainforest, with a shared vision of teaching our visitors and Ecuadorian neighbors about simple living, high thinking.

In Sanskrit, Saraswati represents ‘wisdom and knowledge’, Vana means ‘forest’, and Ahimsa means ‘non-violence’. Ahimsa is also another name for truth or love providing a path towards uninterrupted peace and bliss. We believe that one of the most important steps for man to attain peace is by not injuring living creatures. Saraswati Ahimsa Vana can therefore be translated to “the forest of love and wisdom”.

Our Mission

Through our legally-recognized foundation named ‘El Bosque de la Sabiduria’ we desire to network communities throughout the Napo Province and Ecuador, raise awareness of environmental issues, teach alternative sustainable ways of living and create a better future for Ecuador and its people. We are also creating a large Rainforest reserve that will act as a haven for the wild animals and plants of the Amazon.


Our Five Basic Steps to Saving Rainforests

Teach others about the importance of the environment and how they can help save rainforests.
Restore damaged ecosystems by planting trees on land where forests have been cut down.
Encourage people to live in a way that doesn’t hurt the environment.
Establish beautiful reserves to protect the rainforest and wildlife.
Support companies that operate in ways that minimize damage to the environment.

Our Team

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Benjamin Munro

Benjamin, more commonly known as Bhaga, started the volunteering program in 2010 after being inspired by community-living on another beautiful eco yoga farm situated near the city of Baños ‘“Vrindavan Jardínes Ecológicos”.

Bhaga was born in the UK, brought up in Cyprus and has been living in Ecuador for over 16 years. He left the UK at 18 years of age in search of a home in the rainforest, hitched hiked across the Atlantic on a yacht and spent 6 months exploring the Caribbean Antilles.

Venturing down to South America he ended up in the heart of Colombia’s Sierra Nevada on the Caribbean Coast. Whilst living in the forest he met an incredible Yogi who inspired him to inquire into the path of Bhakti Yoga. His desire to learn more about Vedic culture led Bhaga to move from the rainforest to a yoga monastery near Bogota. Here he met his spiritual master and was tasked with the service of looking after a rainforest Ashram in Ecuador. Bhaga spent six wonderful years volunteering at this Ashram where he also met his Colombian wife, Tulsy. Both sharing the ideals of Bhakti yoga they got married in 2006 and moved further into the Amazon to start their family and life project.

After arriving, Bhaga started his own English school in the center of the city to help finance Saraswati Ahimsa. Despite spending his afternoons teaching he has spent as many mornings as possible building, cooking and gardening alongside the volunteers. Even with a very rigorous schedule, Bhaga has loved every moment and has strived to create a life changing community with love, peace and service as the guiding principles.

Bhaga, still as busy as ever currently lives near the farm with his wife and two children. He continues to practice mantra meditation at sunrise and supports the reserve through answering mails, coordinating projects, doing the shopping and giving morning yoga classes.

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Gopal Bhatta Das
Coordinator
Born in Colombia in the city of Bogota, from a very young group that works for the protection of animals and supports the different projects of Mission Vrinda in Colombia and Ecuador, he now helps the Wisdom Forest Foundation in Permaculture, recycling, and social work with others. He practices Vedic philosophy (yoga and mantras), vegetarianism and meditation. He enjoys the natural life and conscious music.

“Discover the reason for living is to make life happy” -Swami Paramadvaiti

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Guillermo Andy
Reforestation Coordinator

Guillermo Andy was born in the Shandia community in the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon, and now aged 57 years has a lifetime of experience as a reforestation specialist handling native plants and protecting wildlife. He discovered his interest in protecting the environment when working in a tourism community around the Amazon forest. This interest was intensified by being named Forest Keeper of the “Llanganates National Park”. He is currently the coordinator of the reforestation project for the Wisdom Forest Foundation with an aspiration to plant 400,000 trees to help his community.

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Leidy Tapuy
Volunteer Coordinator

Leidy Tapuy was born in the city of Tena in the Tamyaiura community. She is 30 years old and specializes in medicinal plants and handicrafts with local seeds. She has worked for 10 years as a guide in the Ethno Agro-Ecological Farm in her community, developing reforestation projects with local flora, volunteering, writing manuals of Amazonian medicinal plants, and teaching typical Kichwa dance. She currently works in the Forest of Wisdom as a volunteer coordinator, teaching indigenous workshops and sharing ancestral knowledge.

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Daniela Rogel
Ecuadorian
Licensed in Educational Sciences

Daniela is inspired to care for the environment, reduce her ecological impact through recycling projects and raise awareness of environmental issues in the children of the community.
In her spiritual exploration she practices yoga and meditation, vegitarianism and natural medicine (ayurveda and homeopathic).

“Seek to be so influencial that all people want to reach for you and so humble that everyone wants to be with you”.

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Limber Andy
Nursery Coordinator
Eldest son of Guillermo Andy, lives in the Shandia community and, following in his father’s footsteps aged only 27, he specializes in the management of nurseries with Amazonian plants, identification and collection of native seeds. At the Wisdom Forest Foundation he supports the reforestation project.