Basking in the Warmth – Newsletter Issue 4, 2016

YAS Newsletter Header
Feature Photo
Basking in the Warmth Issue 4, 2016
Summer at the Ashram and we are basking in the warmth of all who gathered in programs like Family Week and our first, very exciting Decelerator and Yoga & Nature programs. Now we are immersed in Teacher Certification, Discover Yasodhara and 10 Days of Yoga. The bumper cherry crop has been processed and the very beautiful garden bursts with abundance. The Ashram is full of people, ideas and teachings. Diligent Karma Yogis humbly give and heartfully learn.

As summer progresses and fabrication starts across the lake, we dream of the Temple of Light – a symbol of hope, unity and peace. We try to stay centred through wild weather and saddening news of the world, and we remain grateful for this sacred refuge whose only purpose is to help. Together we deepen our practice and beam out Light to all who suffer, to all in need. Please join us!

 Upcoming Courses

See more in the 2016 Program Calendar online and in this programs-at-a-glance poster.

Story 3 photo

10 Days of Yoga: Journey of Self-Discovery
Aug 11-21, Oct 13-23
Give yourself ten days to expand your understanding of who you are and who you want to be – ten days of reprieve from stress in a safe and nurturing place of reflection. For students of all levels, this course offers practices that support your personal and spiritual development.
Relaxation Retreat
Aug 12-14, Dec 2-4

In this retreat, you will focus on going inward, stilling the mind and body, connecting to your inner source of peace, harmony and joy. Each day you will go deeper into a relaxation practice to emerge renewed and full of Light. Re-enter your life with sustaining practices to keep the relaxation, with all of its benefits, alive.

Cultivating Compassion

Sept 2-4

Being compassionate towards ourselves, those around us and the world requires the willingness and courage to be kind-hearted. How do you live an ideal of compassion in a world that seems to express so much of the opposite? Using practices of visualization, meditation and breath, experience the gift of an open heart.

One Month Karma Yoga Introduction

Starting Aug 22, Sept 19, Oct 17, Nov 14

This program is for anyone interested in living in a spiritual community to explore work, develop self-knowledge and gain skills. Experience yoga and work in a truly transformative way!Special Offer for 2016 only! Come for three months and pay by contribution (value of $2,475).

Personal Retreats, Artist and Professional Renewal Retreats and Karma Yoga are available year-round. Our popular Taste of the Ashram program runs at least once a month on Saturdays.

  A New Publication by Swami Radha

Story 3 photo

Riches come in many shapes and forms, and one of the greatest treasures at the Ashram is the collection of more than 2000 transcripts of talks by Swami Radha. Her archive dates from 1955 to her passing in 1995 – 40 years of informal talks, lectures, workshops and satsangs. From this rich resource comes a new Timeless Books offering, Yoga, A Path to Awareness.

This new publication will be available mid-August in paper and e-formats. A collection of 20 essays, the contents are grouped in four sections for easy reference: “Liberation: The Path of Yoga,” “Kundalini Yoga: The Foundation,” “Mind & Consciousness” and “Knowledge.”

Swami Lalitananda writes in the introduction:

“As I reviewed this collection I was touched by the power of her words, and how they resonated for me personally, and how they reflected the way she herself lived. Her advice to others was based on her own deep exploration, experimentation and understanding of what it takes to walk the spiritual path. She understood the stages, the obstacles, the desires and fantasies, the need to discern. She lived a life of loving the Divine and not fooling herself.”

Your support for the publication of Swami Radha’s new book – produced on 100% recycled paper at our carbon-neutral printer – is greatly appreciated. You can make a donation below by selecting the Education & Outreach Fund.

(US donors click here to donate to the ADHP)

  Video: Image, Essence, Devotion

Listen to Swami Radha’s words about the power of creating and worshiping images of the Divine accompanied by lovely images of Divine Mother photographed by Swami Radhananda.

Watch the video.


 The Temple is Being Fabricated!

Story 3 photo

Although site preparation for the new Temple has yet to begin at the Ashram, parts of the structure are currently being built off-site at Spearhead’s facility.

Dan visits Spearhead to give us an update on the Temple’s fabrication and timeline.

Watch the update


 Investing in Myself – The Yoga Development Course

Story 3 photo

The Yoga Development Course (YDC), offered each year from January to April, is a truly transformative learning experience. Laura Vanags, a commercial photographer, recently shared how taking the YDC for a second time helped her develop the confidence and courage needed to make positive changes in her life.

In 2011 I moved from Canada to Australia. Adapting in another country was a tremendous challenge. The yogic tools I’d gained in my first YDC helped but I found myself relying heavily on my partner for emotional support. Although he endured that period like a champion, it was not sustainable and I knew it. I needed to interrupt the pattern and re-centre myself so that I could contribute to our relationship and budding life together in a powerful way.

Three months after getting married, I decided to go back to the Ashram for the YDC. I knew if I went back I would be able to reconnect to the teachings, to my inner guidance, my self-confidence. Everyone thought I was crazy to leave my husband so soon after marriage but I knew it would be the best move for myself and my relationship in the long-term.

When I returned to Australia I came back with renewed inner spiritual strength, confidence and courage. I was ready and eager for my husband and I to start our newlywed life together. Our time apart showed both of us how precious our time together is and it’s been a powerful way to start a marriage! My husband and I now attend meditation classes twice per week and we are growing our spiritual life together, something he didn’t know he wanted until I returned from the Ashram.

Read the full interview with Laura


  Reflections from the Path – Compassionate Challenge

Swami Lalitananda reflects on what she learned about compassion, liberation and leadership from her guru, Swami Radha.

“Swami Radha established integrity, and its momentum carries us forward. This is the kind of support I feel from her. On a personal level she was tenderly embracing and incisively fierce; both qualities came from a place of compassion. She helped me to let go of self-protection and become free.”

Read the article

  Entering the Wild Landscape

Story 3 photo

Poet, editor and publisher Autumn Richardson recently came to the Ashram from Britain for a month-long Artist Retreat. She and her husband Richard Skelton created Corbel Stone Press, which is based on their passion for nature, conservation and poetry. Autumn describes her process.

We want to share the overlooked, the forgotten and the hidden in nature. This prompt, this intuitive leaning, became Corbel Stone Press. The form that our work takes is diverse and multi-sensory, encompassing poetry, literature, music, film, art, research and forms of medicine. Behind all of this, our primary focus is landscape and nature, poetics of place, conservation, ecology and mythology. We immerse ourselves in a landscape and try to learn from it.

For myself, the work becomes a process of uncovering worlds beneath worlds. It involves undermining my own sense of certainty regarding ‘What Is’. I want to understand a landscape as more than what I’m now seeing in front of me; to uncover its history, revealing the layers of time and life that once existed there – to acknowledge absence, and to try to understand how what is missing has helped shape the ecosystem I’m experiencing today.

Read more


  Decelerator: Innovative Retreat an Awesome Success

Story 3 photo

Our inaugural Decelerator Retreat in June was an awesome success. Dr. Don de Guerre, Concordia University professor in Montreal, joined Alicia Pace MA and Dan Seguin MA to lead the five-day retreat that encouraged professionals to slow down, rebalance and align inner intentions with outer realities. Dr. de Guerre reflects on his experience of this programming pilot that will be offered again in 2017.

I’m a professor at Concordia University in Montreal and I teach Human Systems Intervention (HSI), which is easier to describe by saying what it’s not: it’s not community or organizational development, not personal development or social change. HSI is all of those things.

Decelerator proved to be an example of the positive forces I see in the world today. It was a joining, a collaboration of Yasodhara Yoga and HSI, a looking for new partners in new ways that combine strengths. It offered a focus on positive processes as opposed to problem-solving processes. Decelerator was a manifestation in how consciousness is shifting globally. The world is in crisis, but at the same time there is something emerging that is healthy and healing. I sense it, others are saying it, and the Ashram is doing it.

Read more


  Finding Yoga – Picking up the Sword

Bryn Bamber reflects on how practising discernment is helping her create the life she wants.

“I often wish to be perfect. I wish that I could work full time, cook healthy food for every meal, keep my apartment perfectly clean, be liked by everyone that I meet, and write this memoir that I care so much about. But I can’t do it all. I have to make choices. I have to decide what is essential and cut away the rest.”

Read the article

Story 3 photo

Swami Matananda and Swami Satyananda travel to eastern Canada for the Ashram’s annual tour. Tell your friends so they can experience the teachings of the Ashram close to home!

Transitions Weekend Retreat
Sept. 9 – Sept. 11
Lotus Heart Centre, Brighton, Ontario (1.5 hr east of Toronto, 3 hours from Ottawa)

Halifax – Sept. 15 – 18

Montreal – Sept. 15 – 16

Ottawa – Sept. 21 – 25

Toronto – Sept. 29 – Oct. 2

Calgary – Oct. 28 – 30

Cranbrook/Kimberley – Oct. 29 – 30

International Conferences

Cultivating Compassion through Peace with Ashram President Swami Lalitananda
Sept. 22 – 24, Nelson, BC – International Peace and Justice Studies Conference

Intersectionality of the Senses: A Yogic Perspective with Ashram board member Alicia Pace
Oct. 22 – 23, Tacoma, Washington – International Transformative Learning Conference


Online Store

Photo of the month thumbnail

Yasodhara Ashram Prayer Flags

Let the air currents carry these sacred messages! Featuring five of our mantras. Available in 3 sizes –
5 flaps, 10 flaps and 15 flaps.

Desktop Photo

Photo of the month thumbnail

Make this photo my desktop image

New! Make this photo my iPhone wallpaper

News at a Glance

Family Week 2016 – Nineteen families joined us for our 4th annual Family Week! We kicked off the week with a joyous opening night and families enjoyed doing Karma Yoga together, from working in the garden to helping with the abundant cherry crop. Watch a video of highlights of the week. Stay tuned for details about Family Week 2017.

Sacred Dance Offering – We were honoured to welcome Anusha Fernando, Artistic Director of Vancouver’s Shakti Dance, back to the Ashram for a weekend of sacred dance. She offered a weekend workshop and a two-hour introductory class on Bharata Natyam Indian Classical Dance as well as an inspiring evening performance. View photos from the performance.

Celebrating National Aboriginal Day – We celebrated National Aboriginal Day with a special ceremony in our Tipi. Chuck, a long-time Karma Yogi and First Nations Cree, offered a reading and smudging. Watch a short video of the ceremony.

Meet Our Bees – In the spring we welcomed two new beehives to the Ashram. The hives are located in the north end of the garden, a perfect spot close to many fruit trees, vegetables and flowers that will benefit from the bees’ pollinating power. Recently Shakti, Julie and Sofia split a very full and productive beehive into two hives. We now have three hives named Light, Durga and Gaia. The bees in the new hive are adjusting well and are busy growing a new queen. View photos of our beekeepers and the new hive.

Using Light to Power the New Temple of Light – This week we installed solar panels that will help generate energy for the new Temple! The photovoltaics (PVs) were installed on top of the roof of the wash & weigh station in the southern corner of the garden, an ideal spot given its location and the angle of the roof. The PVs are part of our plan to make the Temple an energy efficient building and will compensate for an estimated 50% of the annual energy consumption of the Temple. View the photos.

Find a Teacher Near You

Saraswati Salon Icon

Expand your experience of Yasodhara Yoga and find a teacher near you.


Facebook icon Twitter icon Vimeo icon YouTube icon

Personal Practice Guide
Visualization – Explore developing inner sight and connecting to the Divine within with these reflections from Yasodhara Yoga Halifax.

Growth and Blooming – Pursue the desire to develop potential and rise above limitations with these reflections from Yasodhara Yoga Cranbrook.




Comments are closed.