Friday, May 21, 2010

Yoga Ashram Days 3-6

You're probably all wondering what an Ashram is right? Bascially a place where people who are trying to find their passion, a place of self-discovery, a place to learn more about yoga or relax from their choatic world. They want you to come to the Ashram strong because Ashram life is rigorous. Not just physically, with days beginning at 5:20AM and ending at 10:30 PM, but also psychologically. You're spending hours and hours a day silent meditation and contemplation, with little distraction or relief from the apparatus of your own mind. Plus, your living in close quarters with people from all around the world. Here was the schedule that each of us followed from Saturday to Tuesday:
5:20AM wake-up bell
6AM Satsang (group meditation, chanting...sing, talk)
7:30AM tea time! chai tea is amazing
8:00AM Asana class yoga (beginners and intermediate... 2 hours)
10AM Vegetarian meal... Eat in silence with right hand
11AM Karma yoga (each person gets a task/daily chore to do).
12:30PM coaching class (optional)
1:30 PM tea-time with snack
2PM lecture
3:30 Asana class yoga again... 2 hours
6PM Vegetarian meal
8PM Satsang (group meditation, chanting, talk).
10:30PM lights out

We were busy for four days straight... No cell phones and 1 hour of internet. The outside world was basically turned-off, thats why no one really heard from me, haha. What did I think about the Ashram? I was a bit critical at first. It is a different world. We do chanting (sing), mediating, cross legged with your back perfectly straight. For me the last eight months have been filled with being a dietetic intern. My world was normally filled with waking up early, materialism, multitaking, routine distractions, school assignments, stress, and technology. Whereas Ashram world... is one of no stress, mindful eating, sing, ego, no technology (limited), positivity, reincarnation, mind, body and spirit to finding ones self. The set-up seem crazy but that is because we are used to our routines and lifestyles... As much as I complatined at first I truely did enjoy the Ashram way of life to relax my mind and soul. Ashram = refreshing only for a few days! Mediation and breathing in general were the hardest things for me to do. I can't seem to get my mind to hold still. I always seem to be in a dream world of some sort. Meditation is the act of listening. However, when I ask my mind to rest in stillness, it quickly turns to boredom, emotions or anxious thoughts. You are after all what you think right? Your emotions are the slaves to your thoughts, and you are the slave to your emotions. I quickly really had to focus and try to not get bored. I tried many times to go out of body like I did when I was getting chemotherapy needles in me years ago, but thoughts kept arising... Like... should I travel more after India?... Do I really have to get a job when I get back?... Aw, more studying for the RD exam, bummer... etc... I think if I continue to mediate and have a focus point of words it will hopefully get easier... We will see...
A few memories:
--> Feeling like I am in a sauna 24/7
--> The group I came with are awesome... So many different, unique personalities... I love them dearly :)
--> Watching Lynne eat her food with her right hand = hiliarious
--> Practicing my breathing skills and learning how to do yoga the right way.
--> Lectures were one of my favorite parts.
--> My pants falling off during intermediate yoga and the teacher later telling me that he noticed that I was having issues with my form and that it would be best to go back to the beginners class... haha
--> Laughing until my abs hurt
--> Bus-ride and rickshaw... I have the best videos EVER!!!
--> Doing mediation and trying to relax my mind.
--> Taking photos with random Indian boys
--> Hiking to the lake and not being able to go in due to not having the correct clothing... Lame but whatever...
"India is India... what can I say"

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