25 October, 2017

Life in the Ashram

30 of October 2014,Rishikesh, India. We just had arrived in Tapovan after 10 hours of bus. Indian buses are a different thing. You need to be prepare psychologically for it. The Ashram is located in the international village of spiritual seekers in Rishikesh. We are surrounded by The Ganges river valley and the gateway of the Himalayas. They receive us in the ashram with flowers and offerings. I can predict already how that was going to be an amazing experience. We are planning to stay 6 weeks in the Ashram while studying our 500 hours YTT. Is this what someone has to do in other to purify themselves in the physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritual level? Maybe. Everyone is different and has a different approach but definitely to become a yogi is not a easy job!

  • 5:00am: the strident sound of the bell tell us that it’s time to wake up! Our room was right next to the bell, so there was no way we couldn’t hear it. We were three girl in the room, but somehow we managed to get into meditation on time!!
  • 5:30am: meditation time. There is a small studio downstairs where the people from the YTT met everyday for meditation. Everyday we learned a new meditation technique.
  • 6:00am: asana time. The asana practice is on a big and beautiful studio upstairs. The room is illuminated with candles and many people from outside the Ashram are already sitting waiting for the class to start. I always sit at the front, close to my teacher, in front of the windows so I can see the sunrise from the Himalayas. There is Shiva statue in front of me. Everything is so inspiring. My teacher come into the room and he starts the practice for the next two hours.
  • 8:00am: The bell sounds again. It’s time for breakfast. The dinning room is downstairs. We have a tray, a spoon and a fork for all our meals during these 6 weeks. We have small tables and we sit on the floor all together. People who are staying at the Ashram serve the food, as a Karma Yoga. We wait for everyone to get serve and to chant an opening mantra before we eat. The food comes from an organic farm and it’s fresh cooked static vegetarian.
  • 8:30am: Its time for Agni hotra, the Fire Puja ceremony. It’s an accident ritual where we chant Vedic mantras, offering Ghee and Hermes to the fire. It’s a metaphor for releasing and letting go of negative emotions.
  • 9:00am-5: 30pm: It’s time for our theory classes, philosophy’s for Yoga a judgments, anatomy, and a full day of yoga is ready to start.
  • 6:00pm: dinnertime. The last meal of the day, and its still 6pm!!!
  • 7:00pm-8:00pm: it’s time for Kirtan. We chant names while we play instruments in a circle. It’s twice a week. The rest of the days we have Transformational Experiences.
  • 9:00pm. Silence time starts until 9:00am. Twelve hours of silence.
  • 9:30pm: The doors are close and it’s time to sleep.

As hard as it seems, it’s was a very spiritual and transformative experience I had while I was at the Arshram. I’m sure it wouldn’t be the same if we were staying at an hotel. Everyone should have Ashram experience once in their lives. 🙂