- About Us
MeditationBench.com is owned and operated by Ananda Woodworking, Inc., a family-run business located at Ananda Village, a cooperative spiritual community in the beautiful Sierra Nevada Foothills of Northern California.
Ananda Woodworking was founded by Tim Kretzmann, who lived at Ananda Village from 1978 until 2012 when he passed away after a battle with cancer. Tim lived a life of joy and service as he made quality products that his customers have enjoyed for over 30 years. Today MeditationBench.com is made up of a cheerful bunch of Tim’s friends and family who love meditating and want to help everyone make their meditation practice deeper, longer and more fruitful.
The grandmaster of all things here at MeditationBench.com is Jaya. Originally from Argentina, Jaya first started working here 4.5 years ago and took over operations over a year ago.
She has a sharp mind and a keen eye for details of all kinds, being in charge of sales, customer service, quality control, and product development just to name a few! We couldn’t ask for a better boss!
What would we do without him? Christian is our shop manager. He is a woodworker by trade and at heart, and knows wood better than all of us combined! Being a business owner himself he understands attention to detail and production work.
He is the funniest, most kind and joyful person you will ever meet. If you need a hand, he'll be there. Certainly, he is always here for us!
Nandadevi is our newest team member but by far one of the quickest learners! She handles the majority of the sewing and upholstery needs, as well as the assembly of the benches. You can feel her calm, centered focus all through the shop, and is seldom seen without a smile. She and Jaya have been friends for over 15 years, herself also having grown up in Argentina.
David has been our bench leg extraordinaire for a long while! He is one of those angel workers that you hardly see He comes in on the weekend and makes sure we all well stocked for the week. Besides working with us, he is a magnificent builder. He finds joy in telling people stories... And even performing a few magic tricks! He has a clever sense of humor, and a clever mind. A clever English man indeed!
Everyone has that friend where nothing ruffles their feathers; that's Gitabai. Her years of experience on the spiritual path has made her a bubble of joy and strength that blesses our shop 2 days a week when she comes in to sew. Her presence is one that was appreciated and that we felt thankful for starting on day one!
Prita is a volunteer and divine friend. She has been helping us for the last year, doing whatever is most needed! From cutting bench tops and cotton to keeping our plants happy and making our shop a clean space. Her sweet presence and kindness fill our Tuesdays with comfort and much-appreciated company. She also loves to tell us stories over a cup of tea!
Our youngest and creative intern, Neha, is responsible for all the beautiful videos and many pictures you will see on our site, facebook, and Ig. She attends our community’s High School: Living Wisdom School and this internship is part of her school program that helps students develop their area of interest and acquire experience in it. Neha has a knack for videography and hopes to go to college to continue learning!
Krishnabai is one of the unsung heroes of this family business. Before she came to work here, Meditationbench.com was just that, meditation benches, nothing more. It was her expansive spirit that brought in many of the products that we have to offer. In fact, it was Krishnabai who single-handedly designed all of our pillows and bags. She has a keen mind for business, is great with people,and has a very kind heart. Though no longer dealing with any of the day to day activities, she still checks in regularly to see how everyone is, to offer an open ear and to give help if help is needed.