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Sivananda World News: The Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Ashrams

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Camp, Val Morin, Quebec, Canada

Om Namah Sivaya. The TTC started with an uplifting Ganesha Puja performed by Swami Vasishtanandaji who also gave an introduction on Bhakti yoga and the basic steps of worshiping in a temple. After the Puja everyone partook of the special prasad.
The students are adjusting very well to the TTC schedule and showing enthusiasm and interest for all programs. On Thursday the warm weather allowed for a lively bonfire evening Satsang with enthusiastic Jaya Ganesha, kirtans sung by different staff and more joyful songs offered by the TTCs. Besides the TTC we also welcomed a group of guests for the Yoga and Vitality retreat. By the grace of God, the mountains of accumulated snow have melted under the sun and rain and staff and guests enjoyed cleaning the garden paths. On Sunday Swami Vairagyananda went to Montreal for Satsang and Sunday prayers and gave a message on the Inner Path. The Satsang was followed by a delicious meal prepared by a close karma yogi.
The following week went by inspiring us with many events. We welcomed our close teacher Anjaneya who came from Ottawa and led a 5-day retreat focused on stress reduction. Every day he gave asana class, theory class explaining stress/relaxation responses and a workshop where students could share their experiences and ask questions. We are grateful to Anjaneya for his time and inspiration given to the students.
On the weekend we welcomed another group of students who came for the retreat “Yoga and nature”. Beside the regular classes & Satsangs, several longer nature walks were done.
TTC students entered their second week and on Saturday delighted us with different performances in the talent show. Acts included a small theatre play, devotional song, prayer, recitation of the Rumi poem, different balancing with objects, swallowing the sword, chanting from the Koran and more.
Mataji hall renovations were finalized, and Swami Vasishtananda performed an Inauguration Puja. We started to use the room for the asana classes.
As the week blessed us with sunnier days, we held our first classes on the platform.
On Sunday we were happy to drive to Montreal and give a Satsang which included wholehearted chanting of the Sunday prayers and small talk on Faith.
The TTCs completed their 3rd week in very good spirits. They all enjoyed the anatomy lectures and fearlessly took part in the kriya workshop.
Two groups of guests participated in the detox programs. The week retreat focused on a raw food diet ending with a cleansing technique. The weekend retreat consisted of different juices and broths. We could feel a change in atmosphere as with each day students experienced a deeper transformation. Many afternoon classes were given on our outside platform as the weather was warm enough.
The TTC students completed their last week and on Tuesday all students were initiated into a mantra and received a spiritual name. They competently taught their last group teaching classes and enjoyed the advanced pranayama lesson as well as the final chapters of the CIBY presented in the main lectures. Everyone passed the exam with flying colours. The course ended with a warm and uplifting graduation ceremony. We congratulated the TTC group for their amazing regularity since not a single student missed any class, lecture or Satsang during the whole course. Two students of the course decided to stay and serve for some time as staff.
The week-end retreat was a long weekend on the topic of “The power of mantras”. It attracted a large group of guests, as well as many close teachers from the Montreal centre. The evening bonfire at the Subramanya temple was the highlight of the weekend.
We welcomed Marilyn Rossner who came to visit the Ashram for 2 days and shared with us lots of joyous and loving energy.
We are grateful to Master and Swamiji for all possibilities to share yogic teachings and to serve in so many ways. OM

Sivananda Dhanwanthari Ashram, Neyyar Dam, Kerala, India

Om Namah Sivaya. Fifty-one lively children have energised the Ashram, and the Kids Camp staff have channelled their energy marvellously, bringing the best out in the children. A special treat for the children, including some Yoga Vacationers, was a half-day visit to Magic Planet. The variety of shows and magic was appreciated by kids and adults alike. Three keen TTC students have stayed back after the last TTC to take advantage of the new teachers’ coaching classes. Their teaching skills rapidly improved with feedback. All staff, apart from the Kids Camp staff, have started regular chanting of ‘Om Namo Narayanaya’ for world peace. Regular maintenance works continue in the background after the COVID break.
The Kids Camp ended with a graduation ceremony attended by the parents. The children gave a synchronised yoga demonstration and received their certificates of participation. Most Kids Camp assistants moved onto Meenakshi Ashram later in the week to assist the upcoming Teens’ Camp there. Nataraj and Kalyani took advantage of the post-Kids Camp lull to attend a Somayagnam near Payyanur in north Kerala. This is an ancient and elaborate Vedic ritual performed for the world’s well-being.
With Kids Camp over, we moved into the low season with decreasing guest numbers. Panchakarma continues to be an attractive resource in the Ashram under the expert guidance of Dr Vidhya. Mangala Chaitanya keeps guests and staff busy with karma yoga projects such as firewood carrying and general cleaning. Seven new teachers continued to perfect their teaching skills with morning training classes. Additionally, staff are committed to at least half an hour of Om Namo Narayanaya chanting daily. Swami Gayatriananda, Kalyani and Sajan departed on Sunday for a one-week special program in Sivananda Kutir, Netala. Back in Neyyar Dam, the weather is hot and humid, with occasional thunderstorms providing relief from the heat. To add to our challenges, our supply of mangoes has been spoiled by marauding monkeys.
Despite the ‘low season’ ashram activities continue to keep everyone engaged. The second STIC (Sivananda Teachers Immersion Course) started in Meenakshi Ashram. Nataraj met up with the two participants on a video call to review next year’s programme. They are from Canada and France. Three TTC graduates from the last TTC have stayed on and are appreciating the new teachers’ classes alongside our junior staff teachers. Our biogas unit has been serviced after several years. It has taken a week to remove approximately forty tons of bio-waste. After refilling with cow dung, we can add the food waste again to produce methane cooking gas for the kitchen. Padmanabha is working on painstakingly restoring the Ashram murals.

Sivananda Ashram, Netala, Uttarkashi, Himalayas, North India

Greetings from Sivananda Kutir, Netala. We had a beautiful Sudarshan Homa at the end of the third week of TTC. The next day we had a mantra initiation ceremony, which went very smoothly. Almost all students were initiated, and they had a pleasant morning ceremony with Swami Hariomananda ji after which they practiced japa meditation and felt more comfortable and in harmony with the practice. Students were also given their spiritual names which they thoroughly enjoyed. On Thursday we also had the Pregnancy yoga class. The Vishnu Hall is now ready for the Yoga Vacation. We went for a long trek to a nearby village, everybody rejoiced in the break from normal routine, walking through the path surrounded by beautiful scenery of the Himalayas overlooking the Ganga River.
On Saturday, the students started with the second round of teaching groups, in which they have improved tremendously and feel more confident with the instructions and sequence of the class and have overcome their initial fears. In the evening, all students had a fun-filled time with various unique performances and group games in the talent show.
During the last week of TTC we had the Lalita Sahasranama Puja on Tuesday which went beautifully well. All the TTC students and Yoga vacationers participated creating lots of auspicious energy. Sandeep ji arrived with family and everyone is happy to see baby Avyaan running around in the Ashram. We then had the Advanced Pranayama class by Vijay ji for TTC. Students enjoyed the practice and took some time off in the sun going revising through the syllabus. We have our first group of Yoga Vacation here. All are actively participating in Satsang, Asana class and lectures as well. The work for Vishnu Kutir is going smoothly and on time for Bhagavata Saptaham. Friday being their day off, the students were studying for the exam, which on Saturday showed brilliantly on their papers as everybody did an excellent exam. After the graduation there was a combined talent show for the TTC students and Yoga vacationers where everybody joined together for one last night of joy and fun. On Sunday almost all the students left, and it was an emotional but peaceful conclusion to the entire month.
After all the students left, our quiet Ashram experienced the openness of the Yoga Vacationers. Though many missed the energy, some enjoyed the silence. We had the kriya practice of Jal neti and sutra neti on Monday for the vacationers and they were delighted to learn about these new techniques of keeping the body clean. Everyone walked to a nearby temple amidst the hills and plantation on Wednesday for the morning walk. Side by side, we kept the preparation for the upcoming TTC going on. Swami Hariomananda ji arrived on Wednesday to be part of the upcoming TTCs. He will be taking the YCB talks during the TTC.
We took the guests for an outing/trekking to a hill nearby, where we meditated and chanted together. It was an exciting finale for the yoga vacation.
Nirmala ji will be taking up the Main lectures, Hatha Yoga Teaching classes, Meditation and Chanting classes for the TTC and Sunita ji will be teaching Bhagavad Gita, Anatomy physiology and practical Hatha Yoga.
Most TTC students arrived on Saturday, and we gave them a tour of the Ashram along with the guidelines. All enjoyed a fun filled ice-breaking talent show with music and games.
The Initiation ceremony of the new TTC was done with Guru’s grace. As the Yoga Vacationers were there to witness the initiation, the energy levels were high.
The first week of TTC started with a Bang! We had the Ganapathy Homam and the start of Bhagvatam Saptah on Monday.
Kalyani ji, Mata Gayatriananda ji arrived with Sajan ji to be part of the poojas and saptah.
Nandini arrived at the ashram who will be here for a couple of months assisting TTC.
Trustees Anantha Krishnan ji and Priya ji arrived with family, to be present in the Saptah and the homas in the ashram.
We conducted a pooja for Gauri ji at the bank of Ganga and Vyasa ji immersed her ashes in the holy river. We pray for the departed soul to reach higher abodes.
Brahmachari Sajith ji reached the ashram with 3 priests who conducted the temple pooja for 3 days along with the chanting of Vedic mantras which are known to have immense powers and deep meaning.
The temple anniversary poojas started on Wednesday evening and continued everyday till Friday night. We had a combined Satsang with homa on Friday morning and evening.
The TTC group seem to be very fortunate to witness many poojas.
The villagers and the local leaders gathered on Saturday evening for the inauguration of the medical clinic. Everyone was grateful to Swami Gayatriyananda and the Guru Parampara for enabling the restart of the clinic which will allow villagers from many nearby villages to avail health benefits and treatments for which they would have had to travel to the Uttarkashi Town otherwise. All of them spoke a few words of gratitude. We are all thankful to the doctor who will be taking his time to come to the clinic to serve the patients here.
With Guru’s grace we organised a Bhandara for 50 sadhus, which went well.
The past week had been that of high energy with pooja, homa and practices that had created a divine aura in the space around.
On the last day of Bhagvatam Saptah, we had the final pooja invoking the blessings of the lord for the entire Sivananda Family and the villages at Uttarkashi. Netala was blessed with good weather and the Sun was out as if bestowing its own prana for the pooja. We were reminded of Swami ji’s vision to spread yoga to the world and how the local community has been a part of the mission by continually supporting the Ashram. Attendees were delighted to know that, through the ashram, the villages are being recognised across the world and many staff in the organisation, working towards the cause, are locals from the villages of Netala and Siror.
Swami Hariomananda ji thanked all mothers for encouraging the children to attend the Saptah, which allows our culture to be preserved and understood by the upcoming generations. Swami Janardananda ji explained about the two paths of Sreyas and Preyas, i.e of the good and the pleasurable respectively. By conducting and attending the saptah, we are taking the path of the good which leads to a happier life bringing one closer to liberation.
The ashram, Sivananda Community, and the people of this region are thankful to all the people involved in making the Saptah happen. We will try to conduct the saptah every year with different speakers so that the essence of the teachings is assimilated by everyone.
Also, locals are welcome to visit the Ashram temple twice a year for their pooja towards the Shiva Linga installed in our Ashram temple. Kalyani ji, Mata Gayatriananda and all staff who were visiting for the Bhagavatam we left on Sunday afternoon.
Also we thank Satya ji. He was at the Ashram for last two month, he was taking care of all the technical side and he was making sure before starting yoga vacation everything will be ready, Satya ji went back to Kerala along with Kalyani ji.

Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Meenakshi Ashram, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India

Namaste. The week was exciting as we were preparing to receive our students for Teens Camp. We had Suresh ji and his team reaching to direct and to be part of the camp on Saturday, right after successfully concluding the Kids Camp at Neyyar Dam Ashram. The children were given a hearty and warm welcome to the Summer Camp, our able staff taking their responsibility keeping in mind how much they would be missing their parents and home.
We have 50 enthusiastic children enrolled for the camp and being given the best possible care at the Ashram. After the parents left around 2 pm on Sunday, they had a brief introduction amongst themselves. This was followed by outdoor games which saw their active participation in cricket, volleyball and the like. They were served dinner after which they all dressed up in their uniform and assembled for the Initiation.
They were all welcomed officially by way of initiation ceremony in the name of our Master Swami Sivananda ji and Guru Swami Vishnudevananda ji. They gave their introduction to the gathering of other guests at the Ashram.
The major highlight of the week was the Teens camp moving to the second and final week. As days progressed the children started to develop new acquaintances both amongst themselves and the staffs. There had been quite a few exciting happenings like pizzas, ice cream and bonfire satsang to name a few.
They also had a Rain Dance where they were watered with hose pipes to the accompaniment of music which was enjoyed by all alike. On Saturday they put in lots of effort and love into the final talent night with remarkable dancing and singing performances. We all felt happy to have been part of a camp with so many blessed and talented children. On Sunday we had a meeting with their parents who came to pick them up, where most of them wanted to stay back as staff and some even thinking of doing TTC. This was followed by their graduation where we could see the faces of parents swelling with pride and happiness on the kids receiving the certificate. Most of them left after the sumptuous South Indian style feast served on banana leaf, while a few stayed back for the night. Wishing all of them a fruitful academic year ahead and hoping to meet them again in the next camp or future TTCs. Sending Prem and Om to all from our group of guests, students and staffs. Om shanti.

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Ranch Colony, Woodburne, NY, USA

Om Namah Sivaya. The Ashram is currently closed for the winter. We will re-open from mid-May until mid-September 2023. As always, the Ashram continues with a lot of hard work from Karma Yogis, and Gurus’ grace. Om shanti.‎

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm, Grass Valley, California, USA

Om Namah Sivaya. We were blessed to welcome Swami Sitaramananda back to the Ashram after being away for the past 6 months in Vietnam. She returned to begin the TTC. Swami Adiparashaktiananda also returned after 3 months in Vietnam. Meanwhile, the 7-day Permaculture Design Certificate course concluded with students making their design presentations that worked to enhance features of the Yoga Farm, adding swales to catch water, walking paths, adding trees, and natural water filtration designs using plants. We thank Spencer Nielsen for leading the course and inspiring the students and staff with his knowledge and vision. We are grateful for Arun Deva leading the weekend Emotional Intelligence: Rasa Bhava course, drawing on Yoga and Ayurveda to understand the nature of emotions and how to work with them with Yoga sadhana.
The May TTC began with an early morning Ganesha homa at the Krishna Temple. Swami Sitaramananda led the Initiation with inspiring words and encouragement for the students and teachers. Students are all living in the US but are a diverse group and originally hail from India, Lithuania, Malaysia, and Canary Islands. Swami Sitaramananda is leading Satsangs; Swami Jnaneswariananda: Main lecture, Anatomy and Physiology, Satsangs; Swami Dharmananda: Bhagavad Gita, Meditation, Chanting; Swami Adiparashaktiananda: Hatha Yoga, Satsangs. Hatha Yoga team includes Radha, Kanti, Anandamayi, Swami Hamsananada and Tara Durga Devi. We thank Stephen Longfellow Fiske for his presence to kick off the TTC with a peace workshop and evening Satsang concert, giving great encouragement and inspiration to all.
The TTC group enjoyed their first week of intensive practice and teaching, quickly bonding with each other and are very engaged and inspired! We had beautiful morning satsangs on the Krishna Temple deck as well as many of the lectures outside when possible. We offer our thanks to Durga Leela for her Introduction to Ayurveda talk.
Meanwhile we have a steady stream of Yoga Vacationers visiting the Ashram. Anandamayi led the monthly Sacred Tour, introducing guests to the Ashram history, visiting the temples, and attending Asana class. The weather has warmed up and we had classes on the outdoor platform under the oak trees, and Satsangs outdoors at the Krishna temple with bird songs. We now have many projects underway with garden beautification, mowing lawns, and trimming lavender.
TTC continued to do well, very inspired and dedicated to their practice. The group enjoyed the kriyas practice and have begun their teaching groups. We thank our special guest presenters Ram Vakkalanka teaching on Nada Yoga and offering a sitar concert accompanied by our talented staff Samrat on tabla. Mahavidya presented Ayurveda psychology on “Prana, Tejas, Ojas”. The TTC Talent Show was multicultural, very sweet and featured original songs, traditional Japanese folk song, and Vietnamese song performed by Swami Sitaramananda, Swami Adiparashaktiananda and the staff in full outfit. The TTC had an outing to the roaring and enchanting Yuba River on the day off.
Swami Sitaramananda led the weekly International Satsang with students joining from US, Japan, Vietnam, and Taiwan. Swamiji and Swami Adiparashakti also led the monthly full day program in San Francisco on the topic of “Stress and Health”. We are grateful for this opportunity to serve. Om shanti.

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat, Nassau, Bahamas

Greetings from the Yoga Retreat! We celebrated Adi Sankaracarya Jayanti during Upanishad class with parayana of his bashya of the Chandogya Upanishad. In the evening the priest performed a special Puja. We welcomed Jonathan Schooler and Amanda Gregory for the program Resonance, Consciousness, and the Impact of Sound on the Mind. We bid farewell to Swami Sarvananda Giri on Saturday, with much love and appreciation for coming to the Ashram to teach us chapters 1,3, and 6 of the Chandogya Upanishad with so much devotion. Mantra initiation was on Sunday morning, the students rest and study day. The Ashram was still and peaceful during the morning hours of initiation. On Sunday evening we started a new program with Ram Vakkalanka on 16 Bases of Energy, Beyond the 7 Chakras. Ram will be with us for several days leading satsangs and workshops, teaching about mantra, sound, and meditation.
The following week’s theme was Yoga of Recovery, with workshops and satsangs focusing on the health and healing process from addiction of all kinds. The week was organized and led by Durga Leela, an Ayurvedic and Yoga Therapy Specialist, who also ran 12 step meetings the entire week while she was here. The presenters came from varied backgrounds, bringing a wealth of knowledge, advice, and support to all participants. Durga Leela opened the program with teachings of Ayurveda to establish balance and wholeness. Dr. John Kelly, professor of Psychiatry in Addiction Medicine at Harvard University, presented on “The New Science on Addiction Recovery” focusing on addiction treatment and the recovery process. Dr. Ramkumar Kutty, Ayurvedic Doctor and founder-director of Punarnava Ayurveda, in South India, talked on “Overcoming Anxiety and Stress with Ayurveda” giving deep insight into the 3 gunas. Katie Papo Ambika, led mid-day workshops on food addiction and the link between stress and food. Dr Ram Rao, with a Ph.D. in Neuroscience and Biochemistry, concluded the program with 3 evening talks on the mind-body connection, and shared principles to live with an integrated body, mind and emotions. During the week Stacey Dorreck (Saraswati), founder of Sunlight Chair Yoga, taught a Chair Yoga certification course with several participants wanting to learn for their own personal practice. We inaugurated the May TTC with a small group of 6 students onsite, and 3 online.
We welcomed Sushri Rameshwari Devi (Didi Ji) to the Ashram, who received training in scriptural knowledge and music from her guru Jagadguruttam Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj. Didi Ji gave a week-long program, leading morning and evening satsangs, a series on Bhakti Yoga, giving spiritual discourses, quoting from various scriptures, and leading us in devotional chanting, uplifting and inspiring all in attendance on devotion to Sri Radhe, Lord Krishna and Guru.
On Wednesday we celebrated the birthday of Swami Brahmananda, the Ashram manager, with heartfelt best wishes and a huge mango and coconut cream birthday cake we all enjoyed. It was inspiring to hear the other Swamis of the Ashram tell of their inspiration from Swami Brahmananda, and stories of their years serving alongside him. It was a joyous and happy celebration.
The TTCs concluded week 1 and on the morning of their day off, the Ashram priest performed a Ganapati Vidya homa on the beach. It was a powerful ceremony as the sun rose over the ocean, with chanting to Lord Ganesha to remove obstacles for all in attendance.
Week 2 of TTC went smoothly, as the students have quickly become part of the Ashram family, making friends and supporting each other on this journey. The week ended with Swami Brahmananda giving a Satsang on the article for Sivananda Upanishad, “How God Came into My Life”. Swamiji gave beautiful, engaging teachings on how everyone is searching for God, knowingly or unknowingly, and that God appears to us through our varied daily experiences. He encouraged us to increase our yearning and desire to realize God.
The following week we welcomed Swami Paramananda Giri, who studied and mastered the Prasthana Traya of Advaita Vedanta, and other subsidiary texts of Vedanta, and who currently resides in the Tattvamasi Ashram, in Haridwar, where he teaches Vedanta and Sanskrit. Swami Paramananda Giri is here to continue the teachings of Vedanta. On the first day of classes the priest performed Guru Parampara puja. We will be studying chapters 2, 4, and 7 of Chandogya Upanishad.
Pranava Chaitanya’s birthday was on Tuesday, and he would have been 50 years old this year. To commemorate his birthday, we put together a video, spanning Pranava Chaitanya’s 16 years of service to the organization, with photos and video clips of him and various staff, karma yogis, and students, whose lives he touched throughout the years.
On Thursday morning, our priest, Krishnam Namboodiri, performed an ocean Puja at sunrise on the beach. The priest led the Swamijis, who were carrying murtis, into the ocean to take 3 dips, submerging themselves and the murtis in the ocean. All in attendance were invited to dip 3 times in the water. It was a powerful and inspiring experience for all. The TTCs entered the third week, and started volunteering to lead chants at satsang, which is always a delight. On Friday, Manu Dawson started a Spring Detox Juice Fast program, which was fully booked, with participants ready to reset their digestive systems. On Sunday evening, Swami Paramananda Giri started a series of satsangs on Sat Darshana of Ramana Maharsi. The discourse will take a week, and we eagerly await the teachings. Pranams to all!

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat House, Reith or Mittersill, Tyrol, Austria

Om Namah Sivaya. The participants of the TTC Online had an exciting week. On Tuesday we did a live cooking class with them. Mirabai demonstrated cooking in our online studio and the participants were cooking simultaneously in their own kitchen. From Tuesday onwards they started teaching each other in groups. Everybody enjoyed the special lecture on “How yoga works from a scientific perspective” given by Chandrika on Wednesday. The anatomy lectures started on Friday. A constant group of diligent students is joining the online morning pranayama classes which have been taught 4 days a week for the past 3 years. Swami Narayanananda and Swami Ramapriyananda went to Vienna to work on maintenance and renovation projects in the Center and Narada from Munich arrived for the weekend to do sadhana and support us with some karma yoga projects.
The participants of the TTC Online went deeper into the teachings and the practice. They had a small kriya workshop and performed a nice online talent show. Chandrika gave another lecture on Ayurveda on Sunday. The TTCs were happy to join the online lecture “Life after Life” with Marily Rossner from Canada. It was a well-attended introduction into her new online course “Life is ONE”.
Besides the online activities the staff were busy with preparations for the vacation programme in Mittersill near Salzburg and the next on-site TTC. Mirabai and Vishnupriya went to Mittersill to teach the programme at the Hotel Sonnberghof. Swami Ramapriyananda and Swami Narayanananda came back from Vienna and the Pointner family prepared for the 50th anniversary of the hotel.
The TTC Online finished with the last exam and a lovely graduation ceremony. Students, teachers, and mentors expressed their gratitude for this wonderful experience of teaching and learning yoga online. During the week we prepared the yoga hall for the upcoming TTC and the Ascension retreat. Twenty TTCs from various countries arrived on Saturday. They quickly got used to the new environment and were very open during the Inauguration. On Wednesday evening we participated in the 50th anniversary celebration of Hotel Pointner, where yoga guests and TTCs are staying. Swami Jyotirmayananda from London visited us for one week.
The retreat in Mittersill near Salzburg was well attended. Some of the guests who had been here the last few times had arranged to come again for a yoga holiday in Mittersill. The relatively cool and rainy weather allowed only one yoga class in the garden pavilion, which was much appreciated. There was interest in the topics of the four yoga paths, and positive thinking. Some new guests came just for the weekend. The yoga classes were focused, with participants eager to deepen their practice. The talks on how the mind works were received with interest. Two beautiful, refreshing silent morning walks rounded off the weekend. We had a great farewell on Sunday noon with lots of positive feedback for the yoga program and the hotel.
During their first week the TTCs got used to their daily schedule. It is an open and lively group. The Ganesha puja on Wednesday they enjoyed very much. On Wednesday the Ascension retreat with the topic “A healthy back with yoga” started. Every day we took a plumbline photo of the newly arrived guests. At the end of the retreat, they could see whether their alignment had improved after a few days of yoga practice.
Shanti Kumar Kamlesh from Lucknow India gave an Ayurveda lecture and a wonderful outdoor cooking class which was very much appreciated by guests and TTCs.
Swami Satyananda and Kailas came for the retreat together with a group of students from the Vienna Center. Swami Vidyananda arrived from Mittersill near Salzburg to teach the further training “Yoga for Children” which started on Thursday. Gayatri from Munich supported us in the yoga vacation programme during the week and in the further training. The vacation programme in Mittersill near Salzburg went on for the whole week.

Ashram de Yoga Sivananda, Orleans, France

At the ashram in France, we welcomed guests over the 1st of May long weekend for various lengths of stays. The programmes were adjusted to take care of their needs. Swami Kailasananda also gave a certificate course , the “Light of Hatha Yoga” which was transmitted online for students who could not make the travel to the Ashram. During the 8th of May long weekend, more guests and teachers arrived to recharge and rejuvenate. Towards the end of the month, we had other special programmes for the last long week-ends of May. Swami Kailasananda taught a further training course “How to Teach Meditation and Mantras”, also broadcasted online, in French. Everyone was grateful to be able to have those hours of Satsang with Swamiji

The TTC ended mid May. The students had a very nice mantra initiation in the temple, a successful exam and graduation. Another TTC started at the end of May. In between, we have various projects at the ashram : maintenance and garden works. The grounds are getting greener with a warmer spring. By the end of May, we had a good number of flowers to be auto-sufficient. The permaculture grounds are also blossoming.

All the staff are well and looking forward to a busy summer.

Sivananda Ashram Dà Lat, Vietnam

Om Namah Sivaya. The Ashram was especially busy this weekend, which was a major national celebration in Vietnam for Liberation Day, followed immediately by the Labor Day holiday. A large group of guests joined us, mostly from Vietnam but also a good number of international guests. All enjoyed the full Yoga Vacation program, including daily workshops on bringing classical Yoga practice into daily life. We were happy to be able to celebrate some of our satsangs outdoors. This week also saw the start of this season’s Ayurveda Therapist Training, led online by specialist Nitya, who joined us for the first days from her current location in the Bahamas Ashram. The course is also taught by doctors from the Vaidyagrama Ayurveda village in Coimbatore, India, who also join us online. Onsite Shambhu is the main teacher, assisted by a team of karma yogis who have specialized in Ayurveda treatments. The course got off to a good start. Swami Narayanananda left for a few days to join Swami Sitaramananda in Ho Chi Minh City and Vung Tau on the last part of their current trip in Vietnam.
After the concluding days of the Liberation Day retreat the Ashram was quiet once more, with just a few Yoga Vacation guests left. Staff took advantage of the time to recharge and regroup, taking care of different tasks around the ashram. The Ayurveda therapist training continued, with classes being taught online by Nitya and doctors from the Vaidyagrama Ayurveda center in Coimbatore. Swami Sitaramananda continued her travel back to California, first stopping in Tokyo and Shojiko, Japan, to lead retreats there along with Swami Adiparashakitiananda.
The last week at the ashram was quiet. A small group of guests arrived for the Ayurveda and Yoga detoxification program. They are following a special program, including daily treatments at the Ayurveda Center. In addition, guests arrived to take part in a SYHET practicum course on Spine Wellness. We are also hosting a small number of Yoga Vacation guests. Swami Narayanananda left for the weekend to offer programs in Ho Chi Minh City.

Sivananda Ashram Tapaswini, Gudur, Andra Pradesh India

Om Namah Sivaya. Greetings from Tapaswini ashram, Gudur. With Summer coming along and a sudden influx of foreign and Indian guests the Ashram has come alive. The energy and excitement they feel while attending the yoga vacation classes is seen in their enthusiasm. We had enough numbers for a talent show and they all took part in that with good cheer.
The normal yoga vacation routine is being followed at the Ashram and with guests coming and going things are exciting as the infectious energy of the guests is felt by all. On Friday we had the Lalita Sahasranama chanting at the temple which was devoutly attended by everybody. Om shanti.

Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre, Tokyo, Japan

Om Namah Sivaya. Swami Sita and Swami Adi came to Japan for the first time in 4 years and offered a 1-day workshop in Tokyo. More than 40 students joined us for the program, enjoying a reunion with the classmates from the Sivananda Yoga Tokyo Centre, which had been closed. The students were so attentive and receptive to the dharma talk on how we lead our day-to-day life after Covid and how to live with yoga. On Sunday they gave another satsang at a private yoga studio run by an ATTC graduate at Machida City. We are grateful to Swami Sita and Swami Adi that they offered another satsang and stopped by Japan on the way back to California from Vietnam to share beautiful teachings with us.
After the program in Tokyo, a 3-day Retreat program guided by Swami Sitaramananda and Swami Adi Parashaktiananda was held at the Shojiko Retreat, joined by TTC graduates and long-time committed students. They learned beautiful teachings to be able to deal with difficulties and challenges in life directly from Swamiji, being filled with prana with their faces shining, and then returned to their daily life with such powerful lessons to take away. On the very next day after the program was completed, Swamiji immediately left for the U.S. for the upcoming TTC in California.
A Study session on Sivananda Yoga led by Atmashakti Chaitanya was given online from the Yoga Farm in California, joined by good number of students, deepening their knowledge.
A Trial class was offered on Wednesday and Sunday, in which some students from the workshop given by Swami Sita several weeks before in Tokyo also participated. The monthly Vedanta study session called Iswaraya Namah taught by Yashashvin was also held. Online programs are going well in progress. The Sanskrit course taught by Vanidevi was held on Saturday. The program is reaching the midcourse of 12 weekly sessions, and the students deeply engage in reviewing the pronunciation, grammar, and so on. Online programs including Satsang, and asana classes are going well. Guests from so many different countries come visit us at the Shojiko Retreat since the suspension on issuing a visa to tourists from overseas has been lifted. Guests from European countries, especially from France and Belgium, with a longer period of stay are growing in number. They enjoy not only yoga but other activities such as trekking, hot springs, etc. Staff are happy about the opportunities for guests to learn about the Japanese culture. Om shanti.

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Spiritual Calendar

JUNE 2023
04 Full Moon
14 Ekadasi
18 New Moon
29 Ekadasi

JULY 2023
03 Full Moon
03 Guru Purnima
13 Ekadasi
14 Swami Sivananda Mahasamadhi
17 New Moon
29 July Ekadasi

You live, because you share the universal life. – Sri Swami Sivananda


The full moon day in the month of Ashad (July-August) is an extremely auspicious and holy day of Guru Purnima. On this day, sacred to the memory of the great sage, Bhagavan Sri Vyasa, Sannyasins settle at some place to study and discourse on the thrice-blessed Brahma Sutras composed by Maharishi Vyasa, and engage themselves in Vedantic, philosophical investigation.
Sri Vyasa has done unforgettable service to humanity for all times by editing the four Vedas, writing the eighteen Puranas, the Mahabharata and the Srimad Bhagavata. We can only repay the deep debt of gratitude we owe him, by constant study of his works and practice of his teachings imparted for the regeneration of humanity in this iron age. In honour of this divine personage, all spiritual aspirants and devotees perform Vyasa Puja on this day, and disciples worship their spiritual preceptor. Saints, monks and men of God are honoured and entertained with acts of charity by all the householders with deep faith and sincerity. The period Chaturmas (the “four months”) begins from this day; Sannyasins stay at one place during the ensuing four rainy months, engaging in the study of the Brahma Sutras and the practice of meditation.
Mark fully the deep significance of this great day. It heralds the setting in of the eagerly awaited rains. The water drawn up and stored as clouds in the hot summer now manifests in plentiful showers that usher in the advent of fresh life everywhere. Even so, all begin seriously to put into actual practice all the theory and philosophy that have been stored up in them through patient study. Aspirants commence or resolve to intensify with all earnestness, their practical spiritual Sadhana right from this day.
Generate fresh waves of spirituality. Let all that you have read, heard, seen and learnt become transformed, through Sadhana, into a continuous outpouring of universal love, ceaseless loving service, and continuous prayer and worship of the Lord seated in all beings. Live on milk and fruit on this day and practise rigorous Japa and meditation. Study the Brahma Sutras and do Japa of your Guru Mantra, during the four months following the Guru Purnima. You will be highly benefited.
From Hindu Fasts and Festivals by Swami Sivananda