If you have been following Swami Atma’s blog you know he is planning on starting a small ashram in Slovakia. Today I shipped his Austin boxes via steamship to Europe. It should take several weeks to get everything to Levoca, probably through the port at Hamburg, Germany, and then by truck or train to Bratislava.
Here is the pile before I loaded it up:
That’s my cat Raja, and as much as he was fascinated by all the boxes, he doesn’t get to go. He jumped inside many of them as I was packing to make sure I did a good job though.
It all fit in my van:
And now it’s on it’s way.
Om tryambakam for the stuff and a safe and complete journey.
I am in Germany now and at the Yoga Vidya center in Bad Meinberg.
Today I walked down into the little town of Bad Meinberg and thoroughly enjoyed going in some of the shops, stopping at the cafe for an Eiskaffee (iced coffee – not with ice cubes but with ice cream and whipped cream), and practicing my German with all the shopkeepers.
Hopefully one of these days I will post some photos of the area around here, which is very beautiful and healthy.
Right now I am being kept very busy with my Hatha Yoga Pradipika course. Today is our half-day off, but on an average day we are in class or satsang about 11 hours a day plus karma yoga. I am learning quite a bit and am enjoying the course as well, which is being led by both Swami Atma and Sukadev, the main teacher here at Yoga Vidya.
In about 3 weeks I will be heading to the Yoga Vidya center in Bad Meinberg, Germany. I will be there for a couple weeks taking some yoga courses. Here is a picture of the retreat center from the air:
The first course I’ll be taking is the Hatha Yoga Pradipika. This is the classic text for the advanced practice of hatha yoga and is part of their advanced teacher training course program. It will be all english and taught by my yoga teacher Swami Atma; I’m very blessed to be able to say he is my main yoga teacher. Here’s his picture:
Following the HYP course will be a week or so of asana intensive. I hope to learn a lot of new asanas (yoga postures) to bring back for my students. After that will be a weekend workshop on Mysteries of the Mind. These last two courses will be led by Swami Atma as well, and while his part will be english, I’m not even sure how much of the rest of it will be.
No problem though – I’ll practice my German and absorb all the rest by osmosis while I practice the yoga tenets of adapt, adjust and accomodate.
Besides the courses I’ll also be doing some daily karma yoga to help out the ashram, and attending some pranayama sessions (yogic breathing techniques) and, best of all, the satsangs (chanting and lectures about yoga followed by arati).
Looking forward to this immensely – it’s been awhile since i spent more than a week on an ashram. It will be a great boost to my yoga practice or sadhana. Definitely it will feel like a home away from home.
More on this in the coming weeks…