Samyak Yoga Blog

Yoga Ashrams India – What’s it? Why Do we need it?
By Yogacharya Rakesh
March 4, 2015

Most of the Yoga practitioners and Yoga teachers have heard of “Yoga Ashram”. And many of us have wondered, got curious about Ashram. Some of us have already been to “many Yoga Ashrams” which are everywhere in the world now. What is the meaning and concept of Yoga Ashram? How typically a Yoga Ashram looks like? Is there any symbolic meaning behind the creation of Yoga Ashrams? What are the main goals of Yoga Ashrams in India?

Yoga Ashram – Sanskrit Meaning

Ashram or Ashrama comes from Shrama and means “making a meaningful effort in the path of Self-realization”. Often it is the place or group of people who are together making inner research towards liberation are considered as “Ashram”.

How typically an Ashram looks like?

Ashram generally is set up away from the crowd, from the worldly affairs so that the research inwards will be easier. Generally headed by a Guru, a tradition of Gurus Ashram will have a community of people working together in the path of spirituality.

Does a Yoga Ashram have a symbolic spiritual meaning?

Yes! Yoga Ashram is a space wherein the inner research takes place which is the heart. Every aspirant in the path of spirituality has to create and reside in a Yoga Ashram which is inside. Your physical body should be considered as a Yoga Ashram and the Heart is the core, the center, the Guru of the Ashram. The Heart has to be kept pure, serene, and holy so that it can lead the entire Ashram (Body) on the right path of spirituality.

What is the goal of Yoga Ashrams in India?

Though every Ashram can have its own way of lifestyle, customs, and goals, the foundation was to help each aspirant to find the light within, the Guru within. The Guru in the Ashram won’t ask the disciples to follow him but to follow their hearts. He won’t ask them to keep himself as the Guru but will guide them to find their Guru inside.

You need spiritual, eastern, or mystical insight to understand the concept of the Master. A Master is one who does not teach, but a guide. He does not even create disciples but shows the master inside you. He clears the way for you to become a master!

Yoga Ashram is a place or should be a place wherein the seekers are guided, not asked to follow to seek the master inside, and find the union with that Guru who is nothing but the “Light”.

It does not necessarily be a physical place too. A place, space wherein you find the unity with your own Light, the real master. You can also create a Yoga Ashram in your heart. A serene place, undisturbed, calm, and a lab for inner research with a balance in all actions.

Samyak Yoga Ashram in this perspective is an effort to find the union with light, guide the seekers to find their own masters, and be the Guru. Let all Yoga Ashrams, Yoga Ashrams with physical existence find the union with the master in the hearts and minds of seekers, the light inside, and spread the message of union, Light, and awareness through actions.

Some Popular Yoga Ashrams in India can be as follow:

1. Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry, Tamilnadu

Courses offered: Collective Meditations are held. But there are no mandatory meditation practices.

2. Mata Amritanandamayi Ashram (Amma Ashram), Kollam, Kerala

Courses offered: Integrated Amrita Meditation Technique, Meditation and prayer sessions, and Karma Yoga.

3. Art of Living Ashram of Sri Sri Ravishankar, Bangalore, Karnataka

Courses offered: Art of Living technique, Meditation techniques, Vedic Maths, etc.

4. Sri Ramanashram – in the name of Yogi Ramana – Tiruvannamalai, Tamilnadu

Courses offered: Vedic Chanting and Puja (worship) in the temple.

5. Shanti Kunj Ashram (also called Gayatri Parivar) – Haridwar

Courses offered: Spiritual development, Music and advance Yoga Courses

6. Samyak Yoga Ashram – Mysore, India

Courses offered: Professional Yoga Teacher Training Courses in Ashtanga Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, and Hatha Yoga

7. Shivananda Ashram – Neyyar Dham, Kerala and Madhurai, Tamilnadu

Courses offered: Yoga Teacher Training Courses in Shivananda Yoga

8. Paramartha Niketan, Rishikesh

Courses offered: Yoga Teacher Training Courses, Meditation techniques

9. Isha Yoga Center, Coimbatore, Tamilnadu

Courses offered: Tours to pilgrimage centers and trekking to places of Yogic Significance, Meditation classes

10. Vipassana Meditation – Many Locations

Courses Offered: Vipassana Meditation Courses are 10 days and held for general practitioners, children, Executives, and old students of Vipassana Practice.

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