Monthly Archives: September 2015

Your Bliss Place – by Rudrani (Rosemary) Nogue, Board Member

Rudrani_GaneshpuriAt the Ashram with Swamiji, I have deep experiences of inner bliss, because the sacred “location” where Guru’s Grace and shakti are grounded is a catalyst to my opening inward to Self. Location is such an important support for connecting with our inner bliss!

I first learned this lesson years ago practicing yoga in another style. My husband and I had three growing sons living at home and space was limited.  My morning asana practice took place on our bedroom floor, and my husband had to step over me as he got ready for work, which didn’t work well for either of us.

When our sons left home and I discovered Svaroopa® yoga and meditation, I knew I needed to claim a dedicated yoga space. Thus, a spare bedroom has become sacred space, a true “yoga room.” Through daily meditation, chanting, asana practice and arati to pictures of Swamiji and our lineage, it supports me in looking inward.

After years of being hosted in commercial locations, our Svaroopa® yoga and meditation community needs our very own sacred space for teacher training, programs and retreats.  It is time for us to claim our own “sacred space” in the world. Lokananda, the building that we purchased in Downingtown last year, is nearly ready to provide this environment.

Our completely renovated first floor is already housing public programs in Downingtown including chanting Sri Guru Gita and holding satsangs and local yoga and meditation classes. The shakti is accumulating and concentrating in the building. The renewal of Lokananda on the first floor has been funded through revenue from meditation programs and donors.

Now we are working to improve the upper apartments (two are already vacated) so you can be immersed in an ashram environment during teacher training, yoga and meditation programs and retreats.  In turn, having a building dedicated to yoga and meditation supports our Guru and our Teacher Trainers. This historic building needs care, both inside and outside including a new roof, and preparing the upper floors to house you.  Now your financial support in our capital campaign is needed to complete this renovating/remodelling project.

Our capital campaign goal of a $150,000 is a big one — requiring support from each and everyone. The funds that you give will have a direct impact on what can be renewed and how long it will take.  Please join me in donating. Together we can claim our own sacred space and ground the Guru’s Grace in it to support our journey, individually and as a community, into the Bliss of Beingness. Choose the method that works best for your budget, either a lump sum or a pledge over a period of time. Now is the time to step up and lay claim to your own Bliss Place.

Click to donate or for more info, or call us at 610.644.7555

OM svaroopa svasvabhava.h namo nama.h

Keep the Current of Grace Flowing – by Kevin Maloney, Ashram Business Manager

Kevin wwwBy Kevin Maloney, Ashram Business Manager

We had our Grand Opening at Lokananda, our renovated 130-year-old building, on September 12th. The event went very well, with a steady flow of traffic through the day. Some people who had a lot of yoga experience came in, and some came in with no yoga experience. People who were what I would call “seekers” came in, and people who said they had no idea why they stopped in just decided to open the door and enter. It was certainly an event of community and diversity.

DYMC front 1509During the event, one woman said she suffered from PTSD.  Swamiji sat with her and told her what a great accomplishment it is that she simply survived the first 35 years of her life. And then Swamiji indicated that perhaps there is a better way moving forward.  As I observed all this, tears came to my eyes. These were not tears of sadness. While I could see the pain this woman was feeling, what touched me was the beauty of what was happening. Pain walked in the door and it found some relief and sanctuary at Downingtown Yoga. She became the first person to enroll in our new monthly membership.

As I drove home after the event, I thought about all you yoga and meditation teachers we train spread out over a large geographic area. I could see people in pain, or people who just know something is missing in their lives, walking in to find true relief from suffering. The experience I witnessed is a microcosm of a much larger effect that Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram has worldwide. There are many organizations that offer much needed relief including food, shelter, clothing, medicine, etc. That help is so important, yet it is temporary. What SVA provides is an opening for true transformation. By deeply looking within one can alter everything about their existence.

Being on the administrative staff at SVA is a challenge. Each staff member gets stretched to their limits. I have been in operational management for a couple decades, yet being the SVA Business Manager is certainly the most challenging position I have held. However, through the day-to-day flurry of activity, deadlines, staff issues, technical issues and the like, a gentle light keeps peeking through the chaos exposing the underlying current of Grace that flows through all we do. Many times it is hard to see that gentle light amidst the activity. Nevertheless, it is always there.

I personally feel very fortunate to spend my working hours at SVA. I came on board almost a half year ago. At that time I could have easily followed the money trail but I chose instead to jump on board here. Or it may be more appropriate to say that I was guided here and I simply allowed it to happen. If you are still and really look, usually you can see that what has brought you to the current moment has had meaning, no matter how it looked when it was actually happening!

IMG_8210The last thing I would like to mention is potential. The staff and DYMC now operate out of the beautiful first floor of the Lokanada building. I am amazed at how the efforts and generosity of so many have made this a reality, from nothing to reality in such a short time. As I look at the rest of this structure, the other levels of this building, all I see is potential. We do so much at SVA with the local community and with the Svaroopa® community at large. This building has the potential to serve the needs of students and teachers in so many ways. The rallying cry has gone out to realize the full potential of this building. I look forward to guiding the logistics and mechanics of the process. I look forward to helping realize the potential here.

So I join my voice to that of the SVA Board.  Please give generously to our Capital Campaign to support the costs of refurbishing the building and to complete the renovations of the upper floors. You will be an instrument of Grace in creating comprehensive sacred space for so many others as well as for yourself as you participate in trainings, programs and retreats going forward. Donate as guided by your heartfelt desire to spread the transformative teachings and practices of Svaroopa® Sciences and the Grace they carry worldwide.

Click for more information or to offer your donation now.

Stepping into Teaching Meditation – by Louise Davis CSYT

louiseWhen I first encountered Svaroopa® yoga and attended yogimmersions as well as yoga teacher training, Swami Nirmalananda (then known as Rama) would say, “Get a guru, get a mantra.”  So I found a meditation group with a guru in the same lineage as our Svaroopa® Sciences. Since then I have meditated. Now, as a Certified Svaroopa® Yoga Teacher as well as a Svaroopa® Vidya Meditation Teacher in the Florida Panhandle, I love teaching meditation to my asana students.

Over the years, my asana students have had deep internal experiences in Shavasana as well as seated poses. They know through experience that when you get the junk out of the way, meditation is natural. By the time they take meditation with me, they’ve already heard the quotes — much of the “knowing” is already there for them. My students know that meditation is NOT lying on the floor. They know that sitting in meditation is the next step forward on their path.  It totally deepens their experience. So I give them a special deal on asana classes during their series of meditation classes: they can come to asana classes as often as they like, and that gives me a chance to talk with them about meditation when I see them in between the Learn to Meditation classes.

I teach that series quarterly, with one already planned for the fall. So the next step on my path is the Meditation Group Leader (MGL) course in February, since I have been wanting to lead a group for years. Having a weekly group meditation — satsang — is the next step for my students as well as. But they can’t go forward until I go forward.

If you are interested in Meditation Teacher Training, you need the preparation of a weekend Shaktipat Retreat with Swamiji within 18 months prior to January 25, 2016. The next one is next week, September 18-20, at The Desmond in Malvern PA, and there is one more – in Boston MA October 23-25.

My experiences of receiving Shaktipat from Swamiji in her retreats have been life changing. The magnitude of receiving the Grace of the Guru is beyond the capacity of words to express. Going so deep inward to Self is profoundly healing and illuminating. Receiving Swamiji’s clearly conveyed teachings lets you know the dimensions of inner transformation that you are experiencing.

If any of your “stuff” arises, you find that being in a group meditation gets you through it more quickly and easier. And then you experience meditation at an even deeper level. You are supported in going through the cycle, peeling the onion. And that makes you ready to help your students and share with them in a supportive way. You know, and you can tell them, that “this too shall pass.” Everyone has their own individual path, but the stations on the path are very much the same for everyone. Your personal experiences can be a source of support for your students and keep them moving forward.

Your immersion in the a Shaktipat Retreat as well as one or more MTT programs will give you a deep dive within yourself, to access your Self. These programs make it so easy to get into your own body and mind, and then go beyond them into the deeper dimensions of Self. Swamiji is such a great teacher at so many levels — deeply inspiring and at the same time completely practical. She’s is genius. She’s totally human, too. Our teacher training, including MTT, is far superior to any mind-body techniques training today, in my experience. We receive immense support including comprehensive handouts, experiential learning and wonderful supervised practicum pieces, all integrated.

I fondly remember my “empowered mantra”  MTT training in 2010, the first Swamiji taught upon returning from India where she took sannyasa (swami) vows. All of us MTT students experienced profound changes from the beginning. it was challenging but I really enjoyed it. In our classes, I wore out three pens as I filled two notebooks with Swamiji’s “download” of teachings about the Self. At night in our rooms, we digested and condensed these teachings while they were still percolating. It felt like a college dorm experience. Practicing the talks with colleagues in class the following day was wonderful. I was so ready to teach at home.

If you are a Certified Svaroopa® Yoga Teacher, or if you are a Meditation Teacher trained to teach the syllabus course before 2010, taking the whole MTT package is a unique opportunity not to be missed. You will dive deep. Svaroopa® Vidya Meditation Teacher Training will build on all you have already learned and experienced in the Svaroopa®  Sciences. And it serves as the foundation for Leading Short Meditations as well as Meditation Group Leader Training. You will be prepared to enable your students to expand exponentially in their experience of Self. And you will empower yourself at the deepest levels in the knowing of your own Self.