Sivananda World News: The Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Ashrams
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Camp, Val Morin, Quebec, Canada
Om Namah Sivaya. The Yoga Camp Ashram had a wonderful celebration for Krishna Jayanti with Puja chanting and reading on the last day of August. Everyone enjoyed over 20 Prasads prepared by the Temple devotees. We had a group of 30 guests. It was a very nice and positive group, all very eager to learn. They left grateful for the experience at the Ashram. May the grace of God and the guidance of the teachers be with us in extending our service to all aspirants, students and guests who visit the Ashram website. Om.
Sivananda Dhanwanthari Ashram, Neyyar Dam, Kerala, India
Namah Sivaya to all. Greetings from Kerala. Visit www.sivananda.org.in/neyyardam/Covid-19-guidelines We look forward to welcoming you back and practicing together. We continue with online classes, courses & programs. Please visit www.sivananda.org.in/weekly-schedule
September started with a Guru Puja, conducted with the TTC students onsite and online, as well as, the staff and a few guests. Whilst the priest conducted Abhishekam and Archana, Kirtan was chanted enthusiastically, the Ashtastotra for Swami Sivananda reverently and the mantras joyfully. Everyone offered flowers and enjoyed the Prasad. The celebration of Master Sivananda’s birthday continued with chanting of Om Namo Bhagavate Sivanandaya until an Aarati in the evening. The kitchen provided an excellent Kerala Sadhya on banana leaf for lunch. There was more joy with the Gita Aarati, Krishna Bhajans and Prasad at the end of the last Bhagavad Gita class. Students took to busily studying, which for some included joining a 1 hour study period provided by Ravi online and Nataraj in person for the YCB specific topics. The TTC exam took place smoothly and was followed by 20 minute practicals/vivas for some of those who are also sitting the Government’s Yoga Certificate Board YPI exam. Srinivas from Hyderabad and Rekha from Trivandrum joined Kalyani for assessing the YCB entrants for half the day Saturday and all day Sunday. The written MCQ exam took place at 4 pm on Saturday. Srinivas’ organization of all this was appreciated. Then the feast was enjoyed for dinner before the graduation Satsang at 7.30pm. The students onsite and online were happy to be successful in the TTC and were abundant with thanks for the course, teachers and staff. The night ended with an energetic talent show. Anoop, Parvathy plus daughter Aadiyaa, karma yogis Sharantu and Nandalala all returned to Madurai having contributed hugely to the TTC. Athul and Mira both left to support the hosting of the Gudur Online TTC. With PCR-RCT Covid testing having been arranged in the Ashram most of the students left the day after graduation with the hope of returning to the Ashram in the future. May Master and Swamiji bless them with Abhyasa and Vairagya as they join the big world again.
With the onsite and online TTCs having finished by mid September, it has been relatively quiet in the Ashram. The new graduates’ teaching group started again in the morning with several staff and a couple of TTC students who stayed back a few days to get more practice and guidance. Staff took more time for Sadhana. The karma yoga was re-allocated and special cleaning projects are being planned. Testing of the new Yoga Vacation booking software began in earnest and a strong communication line between the registration and reception staff and the software creators was set up to fix bugs and enhance this and the course registration software more efficiently. Swami Gayatri returned after a month’s change at the Madurai Ashram. She is well. Om Namo Narayanaya chanting went on throughout the day to mark the occasion of Swami Mahadevanana’s cremation. The Ashram staff gathered for a half hour to witness via Zoom Swami Mahadevananda’s cremation in a short Buddhist ceremony in the northern Thailand Chiang Mai province with long time acquaintance Kun Da. Thailand Sivananda teachers attended and offered flowers with prayers for his smooth progress onwards. Many from around India and elsewhere in the world, including Swamiji’s sister in Italy attended on Zoom. May all have steady practice and attain the highest peace. The staff are in good spirits and doing lots of karma yoga and Sadhana. We are grateful for Master and Swamiji’s presence in all these activities. We wish all the Sivananda family good health and peace of mind. All of us send our Pranams. Om.
Sivananda Ashram, Netala, Uttarkashi, Himalayas, North India
Om Namo Narayanaya from Uttar Kashi. The Sivananda Kutir is open, following the MHA guidelines closely to ensure the safety and comfort of all. The continued practice of social distancing and limited class sizes are to meet these requirements. These guidelines will be posted in all our India Centres and Ashrams. Please familiarize yourself with these safety precautions: MOH Guidelines for Yoga Institutions. We look forward to having you at the Ashram.
Meanwhile in September the current Netala TTC taught 27 students. Anatomy and Physiology sessions progressed well under Dr. Ghanshyam ji. Ganapathy Homam & Mrityunjaya Homam was organized, bringing about positive vibrations uplifting the energy levels. By the grace of our Master and Guru everyone is happy and content.
Please note we also continue to offer classes, courses & programs online. Details regarding this can be found at sivananda.org.in/Online-sessions. Please like our Facebook page to stay notified about live open classes, Satsangs & other programs. Our thoughts are with you all and we pray that you keep well and positive during these challenging times. Om.
Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Meenakshi Ashram, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India
Om Namo Narayanaya. Namaste from Madurai. We are happy to announce that we are accepting guests to the Ashram. Pre-booking via [email protected] is necessary. Terms & conditions apply. Visit https://sivananda.org.in/madurai/Covid-19-guidelines/ We look forward to welcoming you back and practicing together. We are continuing classes, courses & programs online. Please visit www.sivananda.org.in/weekly-schedule
During early September the online TTC moved onto its final week, accentuated with the theory and practice of Advanced Pranayama. Also the students finished teaching the Open Class which they again have to teach in person when they join us later for the onsite completion of course. We celebrated Master Swami Sivananda ji’s 134th birth anniversary with a Guru Puja seeking his blessings to guide us always through thick and thin. A traditional South Indian feast which is always a gourmet’s delight was prepared and served on this auspicious occasion. We also had Akhanda Naama Japa of “Om Namo Bhagavate Sivanandaya” at the Mahakali Temple with staffs taking turns to chant that concluded with an Arati in the evening. One of our staff, Rahul Saga, left for Gudur Ashram on his bike to help with the upcoming TTC preparations. The Yoga Vacation program was quiet with only 2 guests but all the while attending classes and Karma Yoga with enthusiasm. We had more enquiries for the Yoga Vacation program and hoped to ring in the high season with good student numbers. We were part of Online TTC from Gudur Ashram with a small yet vibrant group of 8 students. On the online front we also have a group of students religiously attending our free open class in the evenings. Along with Prahlada ji, Dr. Narayanasami ji, Suresh ji and other Ashram staffs, we witnessed the cremation of Swami Mahadevananda ji with the accompaniment of Om Namo Narayanaya mantra chanting which concluded with Maha Mrithyunjaya Mantra praying for the departed soul. Sending Prem and Om to all from our family of staffs. May Master and Swamiji bless all the efforts to follow the teachings. Om.
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Ranch Colony, Woodburne, NY, USA
Om Namah Sivaya from the Ranch. The Sivananda Ashram Yoga Ranch is opening cautiously for guest stays shorter than a month. We are maintaining the CDC restrictions, requiring all guests to show proof of completion of vaccination, and limiting guest stay to a maximum of 10, maintaining social distancing. We continue to offer online programs such as TTCs, courses and classes. We are grateful for all your support and connection in these times! It has and continues to be an innovative time where we can see how easily accessible it is to connect & share the teachings with people everywhere in the world! https://sivanandayogaranch.org/
In September morning Satsangs continued on weekdays with talks on Swami Sivananda’s commentary on the Bhagavad Gita, given by Srinivasanji. The Facebook Satsangs are attended by between 70-180 participants daily, are free of charge and without registration. Staff continued to give thanks to Master and Guru for the opportunity and structure for Sadhana, and continual yoga practices. May Masters’ Blessings and Gurus Grace be with us all. Pranams from the New York mountains. Om.
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm, Grass Valley, California, USA
Om Namah Sivaya. By the Grace of Master and Swamiji, in September the Ashram celebrated a beautiful Ganesha Chaturti with small Pujas at the RK Hall and a main Puja conducted by Swami Vasishtanandaji at the Ganesha Shrine. All swamis and staff were present with joyous chanting, offering flowers and mantras. It was especially auspicious as rain drops began to fall during the Puja and culminating in a near downpour during the Arati. This was the first rain the Ashram had seen in months. We all felt Lord Ganesha was very pleased. A 9-day TTC Immersion course concluded with 3 students receiving their Siromani certificates. The students were grateful for this time in the Ashram, visiting the Temples, having Satsang, and feeling the Ashram energy. This was Swami Vasishtananda’s last week in the Ashram before moving to the Yoga Camp. Swamiji took care of the Temples, shrines and Ashram energy for the past 7 years with true dedication and spirit of service. We are ever grateful for his presence and contribution to the Yoga Farm. Swamiji did a Puja to each Temple and shrine, concluding with the Ganesha Chaturti Puja and rain storm.
As September progressed Swami Sitaramananda visited the LA Centre. Swami Jnaneswariananda taught the online Glories of the Upanishads course with an in-depth study of teachings from the Taittireya Upanishad. Meanwhile, the Ashram staff and karma yogis focused on their Sadhana. Hara Mahadev led the new deck project for the Radha Krishna Hall. The deck will be large enough for outside classes and practice. Work continued on getting garden beds ready for planting. Staff and KYs were dutifully taking care of the Temples and shrines each day to keep the Ashram energy strong. The weather began to cool as we head into the Fall season. We are grateful for this opportunity to serve. May all feel Master and Swamiji’s blessings. Om.
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat, Nassau, Bahamas
Om Namo Narayanaya, Blessed Selves. Please visit our Online Program page for the latest schedule. https://sivanandabahamas.org/visiting-the-Ashram/Online-program/ We look forward to continuing to add Online programs, courses and guest speakers to our calendar. https://www.sivanandabahamas.org/travel-update/
September 2021 in the Bahamas: We exited August with a beautiful celebration of Krishna Jayanti. Krishnan Namboodiri led a special Puja at the Bala Krishna Temple during the evening Satsang, and we sang kirtan in praise of Lord Krishna. We heard a compelling narration of the birth of Krishna at the hour of midnight, and good cheer was felt by all. On Thursday we celebrated the birthday of Gauri Devi, who has been dedicatedly serving at the Ashram since 2018. Kumari and Sivakami Chaitanya left for the US for a couple of weeks – we wish them safe travels and look forward to seeing them again soon! At the very end of the week, Rukmini Chaitanya returned from Israel. Outside workers can regularly be seen around the Ashram grounds, preparing the rooms and common areas for reopening this season. Online teaching continues apace. This week Swami Hridyananda and Narayan Jyoti began a new session of Yoga of Mantra and Chanting for Peace of Mind and Heart.
Mid September we observed the holiday of Yom Kippur with prayer, feasting, forgiveness, and fasting. There was another occasion to celebrate – Swami Paramananda’s birthday! We also welcomed back Narayani Chaitanya, Kumari, and Radha, who had been travelling for a couple of weeks. Swami Swaroopananda offered a session of questions and answers, providing insights on many topics pertaining to the spiritual path. Shambhavi and Narayan Jyoti taught the Advanced ThetaHealing course. There were many holidays: a feast and observance of Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year), the birthday of Swami Sivananda, and Ganesha Chaturthi. May all be well and may this be an opportunity to turn inward to that which is eternal and ever-free. Om Shanti. Om.
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat House, Reith or Mittersill, Tyrol, Austria
Om Namah Sivaya. In early September the Ashram saw a wonderful inauguration for a new group of TTC students. They slowly got used to the place and the daily schedule. Fortunately, the weather was still so beautiful that almost all classes could take place outside. We also had some nice morning walks. The guests enjoyed yoga classes, lectures on the topics “In peace lies strength” and “Yoga fitness” and some hikes. The TTCs and guests where inspired by Swami Sivananda´s birthday Puja. Chandrika went back to Munich. We were grateful that she was with us for two weeks. During that time she gave interesting and inspiring lectures.
The TTCs did very well in their second week. They practiced diligently in the daily headstand workshop and started to teach each other. Besides the usual philosophy and Bhagavad Gita lectures they had a talk on yoga lifestyle together with the vacation guests. The TTCs really enjoyed chanting in a powerful kirtan during Satsang. Guests and TTCs enjoyed two morning walks which we did after a short Satsang and an early morning class. A group of German speaking participants arrived for the 3 days further education course “Yoga Psychology” with Swami Ramapriyananda. Narada from Hamburg arrived to help us for 10 days. Madhavi and Padmini left after two weeks of translating in the TTC. We were very grateful for their support. We pray that all remain healthy and safe. OM.
Sivananda Ashram Chateau du Yoga, Orleans, France
Om Namah Sivaya. The Ashram remains closed due to Covid restrictions. However, in September we welcomed many French students online for the newly planned weekly French Satsang. Swami Kailasananda gave the Satsang. We planned upcoming online courses and continued to teach some set classes for the Paris and London Centre. We also did two online presentations for the TTC online planned in October in French. There was some positive feedback since then. The construction and maintenance works continued in various places around the Ashram.
Later in September we started a course with Swami Kailasananda “Live without Fear” online in French and it attracted a good crowd. The students were very happy to have a course in French with Swamiji on a very timely topic. We gave the online European Satsang. A teachers’ development course started with Narayana, in English, with teachers from France and England participating. Parvati gave a free basic “Kriya in Daily Life” workshop, the students were keen and interactive. A new student on the YOGA LIT six-month residential programme joined the Ashram and was initiated. A highlight of the month was the launch of the Sivananda Yoga Academy with the inauguration weekend of the Practical Vedanta Training course of 9 months. We did the inauguration weekend online as the Ashram is closed. Swami Nityananda joined us for the inauguration weekend. We have a good number of sincere students participating. The final preparations were made and we started with separate French and English asana classes. The students had Academy retreat-Satsangs in the mornings and evenings. The European Acharyas graced the event. Swami Durgananda addressed the students. The students were initiated by Swami Sivadasananda and Swami Kailasananda. Mentors from the European Ashrams and Centres participated. Yagneshwara Dixit connected from India for the inauguration. We had an online Saraswati Puja with the students of the Academy with Yagneshwara connecting from India. The weekend ended very nicely.
Meanwhile, we continue to participate in the online European activities. The staff were full of gratitude for this opportunity to serve dynamically. OM.
Please accept this invitation to join us for the Unite for a Healthy Planet worldwide meditation – Every 1st Sunday of the month at 2PM Continental European Time, for 30 minutes. https://sivanandaorleans.org/unite-for-a-healthy-planet
Sivananda Ashram Dà Lat, Vietnam
Om Namah Sivaya from Da Lat Ashram. In early September the Ashram continued to be quite quiet as we are still unable to receive new guests or visitors due to Covid-19 restrictions. The staff continued with an intensive Sadhana program. A third group of staff took their turn for a week of reduced karma yoga, and increased practice with additional early morning pranayama and study of Raja Yoga sutras. Karma Yoga projects at the Ashram continued well. We made every effort to prepare for reopening soon. Online class participation steadily increased. A public holiday weekend in Vietnam saw us hold a special online retreat program which was much appreciated by all participants. All were happy to join Satsang online, with Swami Sitaramananda, streamed from the Yoga Farm. All staff are well. We were grateful for Guru’s grace during these challenging times. Om.
Sivananda Ashram Tapaswini, Gudur, Andra Pradesh India
Om Namah Sivaya. Namaste. We are delighted to welcome you to Sivananda Tapaswini Ashram. Our Ashram will follow the MHA guidelines closely to ensure the safety and comfort of all. Every guest/student must arrive with a negative Covid-19 (RT PCR) test. The continued practice of social distancing and limited class sizes are to meet these requirements. These guidelines will be posted in all our India Centres and Ashrams. Please familiarize yourself with these safety precautions. https://sivananda.org.in/gudur/Covid-19-guidelines/
In September the Ashram started TTC with 8 Online and 8 Onsite Students. Swami Janardhanananda ji was here with us for the main lectures and Bhagavad Gita. To help us with technical side, Athul from Neyyar Dam also joined us. Onsite students were from Chennai, Bangalore, Delhi and Haryana. We had 4-5 Yoga Vacationers staying with us. The energy was very positive and we were happy to see so many faces in the Ashram after a long time. On the auspicious day Swami Sivananda’s birth anniversary we also celebrated 4 years of our Ashram with a special Puja and Satsang. A hatha yoga session was conducted with Japanese students. Seeking Masters blessings for the smooth running of the course with a Ganapati Homa. This was our first time conducting TTC online, progressing without any glitches. Praying to Masters to bless us so that we continue on this selfless path. We continued to offer classes, courses & programs online. Details regarding this can be found at https://sivananda.org.in/online/Ashram/. Please like our Facebook page to stay notified about live open classes, Satsangs & other programs. Our thoughts are with you all and we pray that you keep well and positive during these challenging times. May Master and Swamiji bless us with true devotion and blessings be with us all! Pranams. Om.
Adapt yourself to your surroundings and environments. You will enjoy peace and strength. – Sri Swami Sivananda
TYAGA – renunciation; giving up with generosity what one could probably have kept
There are three kinds of Tyāga – Sattvika, Rajasika and Tamasika. Whereas acts of sacrifice, charity and penance, the purifiers of wise men, must be performed without attachment and hope of award.
Renunciation of physical objects is no renunciation at all. The real Tyaga (renunciation) consists in the renunciation of egoism (Ahankara). If you can renounce this Ahankara, you have renounced everything else in the world. If the subtle Ahankara is given up, Dehadhyasa (identification with the body) automatically goes away.
Hope and anticipation are the opposite of Vairagya and Tyaga. They fatten the mind. To be perfectly hopeless is a very high state for a philosopher. It is a very bad state for worldlings. They always say with contempt: “He is a hopeless man.” Worldlings and philosophers move towards diametrically opposite poles.
The mind is the all-in-all and its mastery leads to the renunciation of all. Chitta-Tyaga alone constitutes the renunciation of all. True renunciation lies in the abnegation of the mind. It consists in renouncing all desires and egoism and not world-existence. Through such a mental abnegation, you will be able to free yourself from all pain. Then will come immortality in life or enjoyment of the infinite delight of existence free from ego, founded on oneness of all in Brahman.
You must renounce the Tyagabhimana also. The Tyagabhimana is very deep-rooted. You must renounce the idea, “I have renounced everything.”
Everything happens for a reason. Develop faith that you will understand everything and see the bigger picture in due time. – Sri Swami Sivananda