Monday, June 13, 2011

Photos from Rishikesh

Rishikesh, one of the landmarks of spiritual India. A yoga market place with yoga ashrams everywhere you go and even an adventure sports destination. Yeah, many people come for rafting in the holy river Ganga. During my 15 days stay in Rishikesh I spend almost all the time at the Swami Rama Sadhaka Grama ashram, so actually I didn't see much outside the ashram premises, but at least I manage to visit the town center a couple of times.

Narendra on the right
On my first visit I contacted Narendra, a really nice Indian guy from Rishikesh that I got to know through Elena, a spanish girl that I've met thanks to this blog. Narendra is a very dedicated yogi, he normally teaches hatha yoga but at the moment he is more dedicated to the practice of Tantra under the guidance of his guru and he is also studying for a degree in yoga at a university in Haridwar.

We met at one of the landmarks in Rishikesh, the Ramjula bridge. From there Narendra drove me around in his bike and he took me to visit The Beatles ashram. It is actually abandoned and not much to see except for a building that is almost collapsing down, but it was nice to visit. For some reason many people like to visit this abandoned ashram. Then he took me to visit his guru, the Tantra master. Very interesting but unfortunately I couldn't talk to him since he didn't speak any English at all.

The Beatles ashramNarendra's guru

Later on Narendra dropped me at the Kriya Yoga Ashram and I continue visiting other places around Rishikesh by myself:

The Ganga RiverHoly cow! the Laxman Jhula bridge

The Kriya Yoga Ashram. An ashram founded by Swami Shankarananda Giri that is dedicated to Kriya Yoga practicioners. It is a round white building that includes very basic shared rooms for guests and a meditation hall in the middle. I'm not sure how people meditates in this hall, there is a remarkable acoustic inside. Even my barefoot steps made a strong eco.

Following the advice of my cool laughter yogi friend Shankari I visited the Sivananda Ashram at the Divine Life Society founded by the famous Swami Sivananda. I also visited the Sivananda Kutir which is just next to the Ganges where I joined the evening chantings and the arati next to the river.

Swami Dayananda's ashram. It is an ashram dedicated to the studies of Vedanta philosophy. Unfortunately at this time of the year Swami Dayananda cannot be found in the ashram and there is no program at all. There is a three years program for really serious students but in another location, in Coimbature. Elouise, a good yoga friend from Holland, is doing this training and she is having an amazing experience learning Vedanta directly from Swami Dayananda. You can read her amazing stories in her blog "A Yogini in India".

No comments:

Post a Comment