Concluded 4-day long weekend retreat at AOL ashram in Bangalore, which included 2 days of silence (which I just about made it). I used my silence and seva time to explore the ashram, shot few HDR pics of landmarks, and also captured video footage of AOL devotees around the world, in ecstasy during evening satsangs. Radhika gave me the retreat as a gift (and paid for my travel, stay, yoga & meditation sessions) on the eve of upcoming 25-year wedding anniversary (on June 2nd). Smart girl, and she knew I couldn’t refuse a wedding anniversary gift 🙂 
I was almost cancelling the trip, due to client related obligation. When asked Radhika what to do about the conflict, she said, “Easy. You choose, Wife vs. Work”. I did a quick SWOT analysis and figured, it’s lot easier to get another work (if needed) than finding another spouse like Radhika.
It’s my 4th or 5th visit to Ashram, and this visit is after a gap of 3 years, and I found the expierence to be more relaxing and comfortable.   Some of the highlights that I experienced and observed include:
  • 3-bed A/C room furnished with all basic conveniences
  • Well paved internal roads (with lots of greenery) which connected to various nerve centres of the ashram
  • Cafe Vishala powered with WiFi (not that one needs it) and continental cuisine (if one is bored of Ashram food, which was pretty good)
  • Large amphitheatres and seating areas for mega satsangs
  • Huge meditation halls with good sound system
  • Panchamrut – Sattivik restaurant serving soulful food in serene settings
  • Panchakarma centre with plethora of Ayurvedic treatments for various ailments
  • Gurukul with vedic school, which appeared, as if  it’s several centuries old, and you would feel you have time travelled to the past.  School is in lush greenery, surrounded by lakes, lots of birds and fauna, and I spotted a deer too.  Radhika and kids attended homa in the midst of this setting
  • There was also a food court powered by Kailas Parbat which served chat, southern cuisines, and lots of fruit drinks
  • Official kitchen is now lot more organised seating and easily serving 1000s of devotes hot and sattvik food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • more to be documented later…
Check out the pics and the video in this weekend blog
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Panchamrut -Sattvik Restaurant @ Ashram

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Panchamrut -Sattvik Restaurant in a perfect setting

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Conference Room in the Park

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Meditation  Hall in the Park

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Panchakarma Reception Desk

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Radhika Checking my pics @ Cafe Vishala

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Evening Satsang in Progress

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Panchakarma Ayurvedic Clinic

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Date with Radhika @ Vishala Cafe in the Ashram

 

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Walk to my room

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View from my Room

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Gurupaduka Amphitheatre

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Guided Meditation From Guruji

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Guided Meditation From Guruji

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View from Room

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Amphitheatre View from Room

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My Ashram Room Mate (18 year old Tanish from Bombay)

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Wisdom Session

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The place where I could find Dosa, Pasta, Pizza, Chai, and WiFi in the Ashram

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Meditation Class

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Ashram Nights

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In Full Bliss of ahead of Guruji’s 60th Birthday Satsang

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With Anusha Chintala and Manikanta Chintala

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Walk in the Ashram

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Ashram Help Desk

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Vishalakshi Mantap – Meditation & Satsang Hall

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CS View of Viashalakshi Mantap (VM)

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HDR Pic of VM

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Another HDR Pic of VM

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Ashram Shuttle Service

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Early Morning view of VM

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A Day in Ashram

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Divine Store

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My Time

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One Comment on “Art of Living Ashram Retreat

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