Newsletter May 2014
In February, Phumla stayed at Anahata for one month as a Yogic Lifestyle Participant. Here she shares her thoughts and impressions of her experience:
Sometime in our lives we have all had the urge to say “stuff it I’m done” – the urge to just break free and run with the wind. The desire to be free from the conditioning of selfish-ism and consumerism! That deep desire to find a quiet place so I could hear the soft humming & gentle song of my soul was what drove me to Anahata.
I had been on a yoga retreat before and had thoroughly enjoyed it. But I was younger then and my needs were different. I needed to connect to my soul through the beauty of yoga asana and that’s what I got at an intense Ashtanga yoga retreat. Leaving that retreat I felt empowered, inspired and ready to face the world. A year after my Ashtanga training I left the corporate world and began to teach yoga full time. My life was now dedicated to this poetic journey of the yogic life.
After years of doing two or three yoga classes a day I had a deep desire to take a ‘sabbatical’ from my asana practise and submerge myself in the more spiritual aspects of yoga. I still loved and respected the power of moving meditation (asana and pranayama) but as with everything, the more you learn the more curious you become. My soul wanted to know what it would be like to be free of the everyday conditioning we are subjected to and very often chase in a desperate need to feel ‘normal’ and connected somehow to our community. How different would life be in a place where I didn’t have the excuse of being ‘too busy’ to do the hard work on me and my spiritual life?
So I made the very, very long trip from Johannesburg to Golden Bay.
My first day at Anahata was quiet, the second day was very quiet and the third day was not only too quiet but also way too slow! “What exactly happens here?” I asked myself. The routine is simple, effective but monotonous – why wasn’t this place not full of different distractions like the life I’m used to? My monkey mind was so used to ruling my life that it began to throw a tantrum. Day four I was so agitated and desperate for a distraction I turned to pranayama to calm myself. As I sat quietly breathing and feeling myself calm down I remembered the Anahata quote by Paramahamsa Satyananda;
"There is no noise in the world. There is no peace in the Himalayas. Both are within you."
I would only get out of this what I put into it. Anahata already had everything I had been craving; remote location in the mountains, simple lifestyle without materialistic distractions, simple but effective daily routine, Swami at my disposal any time of day. Sometimes even when we have everything we asked for we still search for it outside – believing that it’s out of our grasp. So I very swiftly put on my big girl shoes and dedicated myself to the life at Anahata. I poured my whole being into everything I did and suddenly life at Anahata made sense.
The daily schedule starting at 6am with yoga asana class, followed by chanting meditation, breakfast and Karma yoga most of the day, sealed with silence after dinner sounds mundane and indeed it was. What made the experience phenomenal was the opportunity to wake up every day and be challenged to make the ‘mundane’ an act of meditation and devotion. Having daily themes that help us focus on different aspects of our spiritual journey and require one to be honest without the ‘luxury’ of distraction was what made the experience worth it.
My stay at Anahata was way too short but looking back I feel like I experienced a whole lifetime in my few weeks there. The amount of energy one is able to shift and create in this safe environment is amazing. I left feeling like I had received a gift from the gods, for indeed I had. I was back home in my true self, back home in the warmth of the universal energy, back home in the light and what could be a better gift?
Now I have the joy of sharing this fresh, recharged and inspired ‘me’ with those I love. Connecting to others from my Anahata chakra, thanks to Anahata Yoga Retreat.
For details on staying at Anahata for a month or more, please contact us
Come and join the Anahata Team on our mission to inspire, educate and evolve!
Anahata is looking for skilled karma yogis for full time live-in positions. We welcome people who are passionate about living in a close-knit, disciplined environment, dedicated to simple yogic ashram lifestyle. Living at Anahata, you will reap many benefits; taking part in various classes, sessions and ancient ceremonies, gaining practical tools and insight that subtly transform.
These are live-in opportunities for people who are sincere and dedicated to a path of expansion and liberation. Also included are three delicious vegetarian meals a day, shared accommodation and the most spectacular views in the bay. Extensive yoga experience is not necessary, but please come with a clear mind, open heart and a willingness to adapt, adjust and accommodate. Personal circumstances considered, please apply.
An application, interview process and integration/trial period are required.
For more info please contact us.