Ahymsin Newsletter Banner: Left is Swami Rama, Center is Yoga Is Samadhi logo, Right is Swami Veda

Bhakti and Loving Meditation Retreat

by Amrita McKinney

This fall’s initiates retreat entitled “Bhakti and Loving Meditation” was held at Swami Rama Sadhaka Grama (SRSG) during the sacred celebration of Navaratri, offering an auspicious backdrop to the theme of the retreat.

The nine-day retreat, led by Raghavendra Adiga, offered initiates an opportunity to learn new practices and delve deeper into their meditation. The group met daily for morning, afternoon and evening sessions. On most days (with variations), the morning session involved a guided meditation, a teaching, and instruction in various practices. During the afternoon, Raghavendra guided us in yoga nidra practices (such as 61 points), providing additional detail on the sweeping breath and the tensing of specific areas of the body. While questions were encouraged throughout the day, the evening sessions were primarily set aside as a question and answer session. Some questions were of a philosophical nature while others addressed practical aspects of the tradition and its practices.

In addition to yoga nidra, Raghavendra taught and led initiates through daily guided meditations. He taught and led the group through the Gayatri Mahā Vyāŗhi practice. He also explained and demonstrated various breathing and pranayama practices, agnisara, and other techniques.

Throughout the nine days, initiates shared their experiences and expressed concerns regarding their practices. Questions such as how do I overcome obstacles in my meditation; how do I find the time to do the practices;  is my  mantra right for me; is it possible to outgrow a mantra; why do I no longer feel connected to my mantra; am I doing my mantra correctly were asked. As the days passed, Raghavendra, in his quiet and unassuming manner, addressed our concerns and questions, always emphasizing the importance of discipline and a commitment to the practices. Throughout the nine ays, he continually brought us back to the practices, guiding us more deeply into them. Through the space and stillness created, one could feel a shift as we experienced a level of centeredness. Previous doubts and concerns assuaged, we emerged with a new level of understanding and a renewed commitment.

Swami Ritavan treated the participants to two sittings. He also guided us in the practice of Mahā Vyāŗhi, with some variation. Sri Yoong joined the group on several occasions. He shared his experiences with Swami Rama and Swami Veda and offered personal insights gained over his many years of practice.

On the last morning of Navaratri, a small group enjoyed a walk to Sadhana Mandir to sit for meditation. It was a meaningful way to end a revivifying retreat experience.

In light and love, amrita

Editor’s Note:

Raghavendra Adiga and Yoong are both mantra initiators and members of the AHYMSIN Adhyatma Samiti (Spiritual Committee). Raghavendra is the centre leader of Himalayan Centre for Yoga Meditation, Tumkur, Karnataka (India), and Yoong is the centre leader of Himalayan Yoga Meditation Centre of Singapore (HYMCS).



The Himalayan Tradition of Yoga Meditation

Purification of Thoughts     Dhyana    Mindfulness
Japa     Dharana     Shavasana
Breath Awareness     Qualified Preceptor
Guru Disciple Relationship     Unbroken Lineage
Yoga Nidra     Silence Retreats     Full Moon Meditation

Copyright © by AHYMSIN ®