Gurugram April 2021 | Preface
Om Namah Sivaya
Greetings from all staff in the Sivananda Centres and Ashrams!
April 2021 and it is now over one year since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and with no clear end of the crilusis in sight. It feels many are pushed to their physical and mental limits in their capacities to adapt to this unprecedented situation. Life seems to compel us to go deeper within ourselves to find new strength to overcome the fatigue and stress the world’s situation has generated.
We begin to see the need to rethink our World, review our values and look afresh at the meaning of Life.
Spring is the time of renewal and new beginnings. Can we together set a strong intention that this challenging year will give birth to a transformation, both individual and collective. A transformation, to be lasting and sustainable, needs to come from within. It does not look like the World, as we knew it, is going to come back, so let us not just hope for a return to “normality”, but aspire with courage, creativity and enthusiasm to a “True World Order”, as Swami Vishnudevananda envisioned.
The work is immense. But we need to start where we can act, and that is with ourselves. It is a time to look at our intentions, our values, our unaware patterns and make strong decisions to work on them with determination. It seems we will not get away from this situation at a lesser cost.
What looks like a calamity could turn into a blessing. However, it is up to us to look at it this way and to see it as an opportunity to uplift our values and improve our lifestyle. We know this is not easy, the mind likes status quo and tamas does not go without resistance.
It seems however that humanity is at a crossroad and has to make a stand.
Let us together assert the Vedantic vision of “Unity in Diversity”. Let us pray that we find the strength to overcome the lower instincts, the pride, jealousy, greed, and hatred. Let us decide to serve the World with good will, detachment, all the while doing our best to see the Self in all.
Let people from all countries, social and religious backgrounds come together with respect and understanding and work together in this spirit of unity.
This is the ancient message of Yoga, more relevant today than ever before.
As support, the Sivananda Centres and Ashrams continue to offer many in depth programs online, including teachers training courses and yoga retreats. Some locations will hopefully be able to reopen soon for onsite programs.
The Acharyas remain very committed to continuing the work they inherited and look for new ways to share the life-giving message of Yoga with all.
We wish you and your family good health, inner strength and connection to the Self within.
Om and Prem,
Swami Kailasananda for the Acharyas of the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres
Donations: With many of the International Sivananda Yoga Centres and Ashrams teaching online, finances are a concern, so if this is at all possible for you, your financial support would be very gratefully received by contacting any Ashram or Centre.
Live in Atman. – Sri Swami Sivananda
2021 COVID-19 Update:
Please check with each TTC/ATTC location whether COVID-19 has affected your selected course.
The SIVANANDA YOGA Teachers’ Training Courses are available either online (TTCOL) or in residence, depending on the location. Please check with each TTC/ATTC location whether your selected Teacher Training Course is available online or in residence as some Ashrams have opened, while others remain closed. Thank you for your patience as schedules change during COVID.
To view all 2021 TTC/ATTC/SI courses on the Sivananda website: https://sivananda.org/teachers-training/programme-calendar/
See the full list of other international courses and events: https://www.sivananda.org/
Love knows no fear. – Sri Swami Sivananda
From Chapter II: “Sadhana Pada – On Spiritual Disciplines”]
II.14. TE HLADA-PARITAPA-PHALAHPUNYAPUNYA-HETUTVAT.
‘They have pleasure or pain as their fruit, according to whether their cause is virtue or vice’.
Understanding this, the yogi strives to do only good actions and to accept peacefully the ill that comes his way so that all his seeds of Karma are burned and no new ones are known.
Meditation and contentment are the secrets of good health and longevity. – Sri Swami Sivananda
Bhagavad Gita Quote
Chapter II: Sankhya Yoga
(Krishna speaking to Arjuna)
Raagadwesha viyuktaistu vishayaanindriyaishcharan;
Aatmavashyair vidheyaatmaa prasaadamadhigacchati.
II.64. But the self-controlled man, moving amongst objects with the senses under restraint, and free from attraction and repulsion, attains to peace.
Lord Krishna talks about a self controlled man and his vices. Lord Krishna says that only a person who is self controlled can attain peace. That attaining peace is process that starts with the person moving away from the objects. After moving away from the objects he needs to bring all the senses under his control. When senses are under his control he is neither pulled towards attraction or pulled away from repulsion and that person who is not affected by both attains peace. When peace is attained all miseries end.
A craving for comforts weakens your fibre. Lead a simple life. Be strong; be sinewy. – Sri Swami Sivananda
There is no virtue like Truthfulness. – Sri Swami Sivananda
APANA – a vayu; the negative vital air; the opposite to prana (positive vital air)
Hatha Yoga means the Yoga or union between ‘Ha’ and ‘Tha’. ‘Ha’ means the sun. ‘Tha’ means the moon. Prana is known by the name of sun. Apana is known by the name of moon. Hatha Yoga is the union of the Prana and the Apana.
KUMBHAKA – retention of breath during pranayama practice; a pause where there is no exhalation and no inhalation.
When both air currents are completely stopped, one is said to be in Kumbhaka. Through Kevala Kumbhaka, the knowledge of Kundalini arises. Kundalini is aroused and the Sushumna is free from all sorts of obstacles, attaining perfection in Hatha Yoga. You can practice this Kumbhaka three times a day. He who knows Pranayama and Kevala is the real Yogi. This Kumbhaka cures all diseases and promotes longevity.
Saturate your mind with divine thoughts. – Sri Swami Sivananda