Ahymsin Newsletter: Yoga is Samadhi

AHYMSIN South India Sangha

by Rabindra Sahu and Namita Sinha

Veda Youth (youth wing of AHYMSIN) organized the very first South India Sangha Gathering in Bangalore. The retreat was conceptualized by the Veda Youth members, led by Namita Sinha. Older initiates and disciples – Jyothi Pattabhiram, Raghavendra Adiga, Dr. Krishnaveni, Dr. Mani, and Ashok Shanbhag – were instrumental in guiding and supporting the event.

Initiates and students in the Himalayan Tradition came from different parts of South India at The School of Ancient Wisdom, a spiritual retreat centre on the outskirts of Bangalore from April 7th - 8th, 2018.
Swami Ritavan Bharati, Ashram Pramukha and Spiritual Guide of Swami Rama Sadhaka Grama (SRSG) and AHYMSIN, and Rabindra Sahu travelled from SRSG for the event. Swami Ji opened the event by invoking the presence of the Guru by lamp lighting and Guru Prayers.

The intent for this gathering was to strengthen the Guru’s mission in South India by bringing together the community of initiates and forming a small sangha of Kalyana Mitras. A group of nearly forty members joined in, most meeting each other for the very first time.

Everyone shared their journeys and experiences within the Tradition. It was a nice opportunity for all of us to hear about the inspiring stories and experiences of the long-time sadhakas and senior members with Gurudeva Swami Rama and Swami Veda Bharati. We all felt the all-encompassing love and greatness of this living parampara, which reminded us of the ever-continuing guidance, even in the absence of the physical body of the Masters. We also realized that the Masters have unique ways of guiding each and every disciple. Swami Ritavan also shared his personal experiences and expounded more on the Guru-Disciple relationship, after which he guided the evening meditation. There was a sense of closeness to the Guru that was felt in our meditation that evening.

At night, a group of young Bharatanatyam dancers from Jyothi-ji’s dance academy gave a mesmerizing classical dance performance saluting the Guru. We felt a subtle presence of the Guru Force through the invocation of their dance. We went to bed with a renewed connection.

After the morning joints and glands class and guided meditation, we were all excited to participate in a yajna within the rich South Indian Tradition beautifully led by Priestess Jyothi Pattabhiram. With Swami Ritavan, all of us sought the blessings and guidance of the Lineage with the Akhanda-Mandalakaram and Gayatri mantras.

In the afternoon, we had 5 groups discussing on ideas for spreading the teachings and strengthening the sangha in South India. We felt the need to meet more regularly among ourselves. We recommitted to keep Full Moon Meditations. The highlights of the discussions were:

  • Organizing regular retreats and workshops. Dr. Krishnaveni and Jyothi-ji kindly offered their places for holding the future events.
  • Making the teachings available in local languages.
  • Organizing outreach programs in schools.

Swami Ji also met with Ram Menon, trustee of The School of Ancient Wisdom, who shared an interesting fact that the founder of the retreat center, Ms. Manize Sait, knew Swami Rama and that she was the one to design the iconic logo of two swans for Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust (which now includes Swami Rama Himalayan University).

Swami Ritavan initiated a family of four—both parents and their two children aged 15 and 10 years old during the retreat.  Meena Sreekanteshwar , the mother of the children said, “We have been blessed. This retreat has turned out to be really special for our family.” All the participants were very happy for getting an incredible opportunity to interact informally with Swami Ritavan over meals and other free times. Ashok Shanbhag Ji shared that since Swami Veda’s Mahasamadhi he had felt a great emptiness in his life and that this retreat with Swami Ritavan has filled his heart.



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