A short distance to the west, between the Expanding Light Temple and Lotus Lake, lies the Lahiri Mandir, a small temple dedicated to Lahiri Mahasaya (1828–1895). Lahiri was an Indian saint and a householder yogi whose mission was to offer Kriya Yoga initiation to householders, making it available to all who so desired, and not just monks or monastics. Lahiri Mahasaya demonstrated that when one “lives in the world” it can actually be the higher path, provided one maintains a mental uninvolvement with egotistical desires, and plays their part as a willing instrument of God. In his role as a householder, Lahiri Mahasaya was an accountant who was married and had children.

The Lahiri Mandir was built in 1995 by a group of Ananda builders wishing to honor the householder yogi. During the process of creating this small temple, several builders had spiritual experiences of great saints blessing the temple. An older man working as a carpenter saw a great beam of light descend from the sky, and within the beam, an image of Lahiri Mahasaya illuminated the entire shrine. When Swami Kriyananda first blessed this shrine in 1995, he lay on the floor in full prostration to the statue of the Indian guru. Lahiri was a disciple of the great Mahavatar Babaji. Yogananda included many stories of Babaji in his spiritual classic, Autobiography of a Yogi. Lahiri was the guru of the Indian saint Swami Sri Yukteswar (1855–1936). Sri Yukteswar was guru to Paramhansa Yogananda (1893–1952) who was the guru of Ananda’s founder, Swami Kriyananda (1926–2013).

Today, the Lahiri Mandir can be visited on a guided tour, as a guest staying on retreat, or with permission from The Expanding Light Retreat.