June 07, 2014

Shoes off and feet freezing, I fidget cross-legged in front of the first swami I've ever met.

He's draped in saffron robes, serene and still. His eyes are shut, his mind taking him to places I can't know. Vines climb the thatch wall of bamboo behind him.

Around me, as the courtyard fills, women weep. The swami's eyes open and are as gentle as his smile. I feel the warmth, but I don't understand the tears.

I'm in Rishikesh, a spiritual hot spot nestled in the foothills of the Indian Himalayas, where ashrams dot the landscape and the sacred river Ganges flows toward the plains. Hindus have long made pilgrimages to this holy place, where saints and sages are said to have meditated for thousands of years. But ever since the Beatles came here in 1968, Westerners have made it their spiritual Disneyland. They roam the streets, dotted with shops, seers and more yoga classes than any yogi can possibly take, looking for enlightenment.

 



Also in The Community Hub

Balancing Your Pitta Dosha

October 19, 2021

Have you ever had the feeling of “burning the candle at both ends”? This idiom does well to explain the sensation of being “burnt out.” In Ayurvedic medicine, this feeling of being overworked and overheated can be understood as an excess of Pitta dosha.
Read More
Yoga Medicine for PMS & Cramps

October 13, 2021

Females often experience light to debilitating episodes with PMS, cramping, and bleeding patterns. Here are a few suggestions to implement yoga medicine for PMS and cramps.
Read More
5 Yoga Poses for Good Posture

October 08, 2021

No matter what your job or day-to-day routine looks like, we can all stand to benefit from better posture. Through practicing certain asanas, your yoga practice can help you correct pain caused by imbalances and form better postural habits.
Read More

Subscribe