Newsletter November 2011
Upcoming Events 2012
After the successful Nurturing Positivity event held this Easter, Anahata will again be hosting Nurturing Positivity through Yoga 2012 over Easter. This is a special time for many of Yoga community throughout New Zealand and abroad to get together and reconnect. We are fortunate to have the inspiration, experience and presence of Rishis Nityabodha and Yoga Diwali at this event. The weekend will also include a performance from local musicians Caitlin and Sika, as well as an evening of Akhanda Kirtan (12 hours of singing and chanting, and of course dancing).
Another special guest who will be sharing her wisdom and knowledge with us in 2012 is Swami Muktimurti who spent many years living with Swami Niranjanananda in India; she returns to Anahata for Navaratri celebrations in March. Swami Muktimurti is an expert in mantra and ancient Sanskrit, so this is a great opportunity to be lead and taught by someone of her calibre.
There are many events happening at Anahata through summer, including the popular annual Celebration of Sound workshop, our first ever Yoga & Ayurveda Weekend Retreat, delve into The Art of Living & Dying through Yoga and relax with a therapeutic Yoga Nidra weekend. Be sure to check out the website for details on these and other events!
Swami Gyan Dharma has been sharing his wisdom and guidance with us, while Swami Muktidharma and Swami Karma Karuna are in India. A number of inspiring retreats have been offered including Explore Your 'Self’ retreats, where guests have the option to stay for a week or a whole month. These continue to attract people from a variety of places around New Zealand, as well as overseas, and are experienced as being very beneficial for introducing basic concepts on applying the principles of yoga into one’s life.
The Mantra and Meditation Retreat during Navaratri (nine nights) held in September included chanting and ancient fire ceremonies and created a powerful and peaceful environment at Anahata.
After these nine days of greater intensity we all took some respite and came off the mountain (literally) for an afternoon outing to Wainui Falls.
Anahata continues to host events around New Zealand, sharing with many the benefits of yoga. Over Queens Birthday weekend Swami Muktidharma was joined by Swami Kailash to lead the annual retreat at Aio Wira (West Auckland). The theme this year was Tantra - Tools for Expansion and the participants were treated to nurturing morning yoga sessions incorporating the seed sounds, beautiful kirtans and a meditation painting session of the Sri Yantra (sacred geometry). Swami Muktidharma has also been working with Sannyasin Adhyatma in Wellington in bringing his joy of sound and music to kirtan sessions held there in September.
Precluding the annual September retreat at Tauhara (Taupo), Swami Muktidharma held a day workshop on managing asthma and diabetes through yoga at the Hirangi Marae in Turangi. A powhiri was held to welcome him on to the marae. One participant at this event was so inspired by what Swami Muktidharma had to share that she followed Swami Muktidharma on to the retreat at Taupo, and has come to Anahata for an Explore Your 'Self’ month intensive to further expand her knowledge of yoga in order to share it with her people at Turangi. A word that came to mind when asked her impression of the workshop was kotahitanga, which translates to oneness. The experience felt like a weaving together of two different cultures, which she views as having many similarities and parallels based on indigenous knowledge. What was special about the day for the people involved was being able to learn yoga practices inside their own Whare Tupuna (ancestral house). The kaumatuas (elders) attending the workshop were very pleased with the practices taught, so a seed has been planted and Swami Muktidharma will return next year to continue forging this new relationship with Ngati Tuwharetoa.
A Yoga Buffet programme has started up on Wednesdays bringing guests up the hill to join us for a yoga class and meditation practice, followed by a shared meal and kirtan session in the evening. This has brought greater volume and energy to our regular Wednesday night kirtan practice and is a great way to get people in the area to share in this wonderful environment that Anahata has created.
Over Labour weekend a workshop was held titled Weeding the Garden of the Mind, exploring how our inner and outer worlds can be connected through yoga practices. Participants got to experience the interrelationship between yoga and ecology through working with John Massey (an expert in gardening and herbalism) on projects in the garden, as well as participating in yoga practices with Swami Gyan Dharma, which have a focus on the external environment such as havans and tree pooja. All the participants left with a smile on their face, feeling very nourished internally by their experiences over the weekend.