The Power to Learn
Swami Radhananda, 2001
In this 2001 video, Swami Radhananda speaks to the YDC about how the effort and the choice to learn must start with each individual. She reminds us of how special it is to be learning in such a sacred place.
View the video
Waiting for The Temple to Arrive…
In the eight months since the Temple fire, the Ashram has been preparing to rebuild and re-dream a new Temple of Light. Here, Swami Lalitananda responds to what it feels like to start again.
You were Swami Radha’s assistant during the building of the original Temple. What was it like to work with her at that time?
It was thrilling. She was so excited to see the Temple manifest after a lifetime of dreaming it. For her it was literally a dream come true. She always said the Temple was built in the unseen, so its presence joined her inner and outer worlds.
She emphasized that the Temple’s real importance was as a reminder of the Light in our own hearts – a symbol, not a building.
What does the rebuild mean to the Ashram community?
It feels similar to the first Temple in demanding us to align in harmony. Swami Radha held her vision for so long. The Temple was one person’s dream and now she has passed it on to all of us. I feel like she is saying, “You’ve lived through my Temple and seen how it happens. People will come together to help. If you want a new Temple, you have to do it. Now is the time for the next generations.”
Click here to follow all the Temple updates.
The Art of Giving – In Gratitude
We want to thank each of you for your generous contributions to the Temple Rebuild Fund and to the General Fund (for maintaining the Ashram). Your support ensures the teachings and your spiritual home are well cared for. One shining example of this generosity recently arrived in the form of a significant bequest from Swami Durgananda. Swami Jyotihananda offers this tribute to her.
Giving was an intrinsic part of Swami Durgananda’s nature. Even before coming to the Ashram, she sent Swami Radha whatever money she could to support her work. Once here she made annual donations from her pensions. This was just one reflection of a person who deeply cared for everything around her, and who continues to give even now.
Her generous bequest goes directly to the Temple fund. Her enthusiasm and love of the Temple always shone out from her. My last memory of Swami Durgananda is seeing her dancing from the altar to the sound of the bhajans as she left the Temple – a generous soul who knew that giving back to life was a true joy.
Swami Durgananda first arrived at the Ashram in 1978 and passed into the Light on July 19, 2013. Thank you from all of us!
(US donors click here to donate to the ADHP)
How Guenevere Lives the Teachings
Guenevere Neufeld is using what she learned at Yasodhara Ashram to bring Light into the world. This spring, she’ll be graduating from Montreal’s Concordia University with a Graduate Diploma in Journalism. “I come back to the Ashram when I can to remember who I am. In this trip the softness of the water drew out the softness in me that city life had obscured.”
Listen to Guenevere’s short audio documentary to hear about what she is learning and her New Year’s stay.
Growing Yasodhara Yoga in Halifax
Momentum is building for Yasodhara Yoga Halifax since Silver Frith and Carol Putnam started offering classes and satsangs three years ago. During a recent visit to the Ashram they talked about what is happening.
Becoming an official Yasodhara Yoga centre last spring along with the website support was a boon and an honor. Most significantly, two Outreach visits by Swami Samayananda in 2013 and 2014 quickened the interest in our area. And it feels that interest is building.
The presence of a senior Ashram teacher offering rich day-long and evening workshops brought forward a positive response. We are now forming an alliance with a local yoga studio for a more consistent presence for our own classes.
We draw from people who aren’t already connected with Yasodhara Ashram. The simplicity of our satsangs, which are full of ritual and devotion and Silver’s heart-felt music, seems to meet people’s needs.
Since taking the Yoga Development Course together in 2011, our own devotional aspects have flowered. It has taken some courage to let that sensitivity come forward so visibly.
46th YDC Journey Begins
On January 8, twenty-two participants began their three-month journey of deep self-inquiry and learning through the Yoga Development Course (YDC). In their introductory comments, many students talked about completing their preparations and knowing the time was right.
2015 is the 46th year for this life-changing course created by Swami Radha. The group offers a diversity of ages, life experience and familiarity with Yasodhara Yoga teachings. For five students, this is their second YDC.
An evening tea hosted by karma yogis rounded off the opening day.
YDC 2014 graduate Linda Windrum, at the Ashram for a few weeks, commented, “I wanted to send off the new YDC class and to be here at the beginning, serving them.” Similarly 2014 graduate Lindsey Curtis reflected on how the YDC and living at the Ashram for the past year has “changed how I look at my life. Everything is learning. I credit the YDC for making the opening. And staying on after the YDC has been a big part of it.”
Interested in the YDC 2016? Find out more! The 10 Days of Yoga, offered in May, July, August and October 2015, is also a great first step.
Making Music an Offering
Flamenco guitarist Holly Blazina came to the Ashram at Christmas with the intention of integrating her musical practice with her spiritual practice. Besides working on her music, she participated in a Renewing in the Light retreat and daily Karma Yoga.
With the Karma Yoga and retreat I had tremendous insights that were really helpful for me. I thought of pushing certain issues away while here, but wonderfully they raised themselves and provided insight that I can take back into the world.
I was happy to share my love of the Flamenco tradition in a “Lunch and Learn” session and to offer a new musical composition at satsang.
Performing music in a spiritual environment is completely different from just giving a performance. The idea of actually doing my musical practice as an offering to the Divine came to me during the Renewal in the Light retreat. A delicious piece came up. Now I want to offer my musical practice as part of my spiritual practice. This has really made itself clear in my time here.
To get a taste of Holly’s music visit www.hollyblazina.com
Check our website to learn more about retreat opportunities at Yasodhara Ashram.