So delighted to see Ananda Ashram listed here. It is a magical & marvelous place with authentic Yoga (all eight limbs ;-) being taught by incredible teachers. It's serene lake, beautiful hiking trails and renowned teacher training program make this ashram an incredible place to visit time and time again.
Nightly fees for most (all?) ashrams include all meals and multiple yoga and meditation classes, so yes, $75-$85/night seems pretty reasonable when you consider that. If you can't afford it, many have Karma yoga programs that enable you to stay for much less in return for a few hours per day of labor (kitchen/housekeeping/gardening/office work etc.). Also, at least in my multiple experiences at Yogaville in Virginia, participation is encouraged, but certainly not required. If you are determined to sleep in or sneak an evening cocktail from your suitcase, nobody is stopping you, but you are perhaps missing the point of an ashram. It is not a resort vacation--it is a chance to reconnect your mind/heart/soul through introspection and a bit of healthy physical and mental self-discipline. The atmosphere encourages mindful awareness that makes space for true joy and contentment. Priceless in my opinion. :)
I am interested in an authentic ashram experience. I want the serious focus on the prayer and to experience God's presence. No way do I want to go to a place that doesn't have noble intentions!
As a first timer I am more interested on more information in ashrams in India.
what do you mean "only" $85/night???
Not all ashram experiences are the same. They range from the more disciplined to the free wheelin'. I spent a summer at an ashram and it was the free wheelin type...very unstructured...on the down side, they absolutely didn't care that tons of alcohol/marijuana were brought in and used daily. They also didn't care that one of their main workers was a pedophile (incest), and was always very abusive towards guests. I live in a public housing project, and I'm less afraid of the people where I live than I was at this particular ashram...i would be afraid of poisoning if I ate at a couple of these people's houses. I recommend a serious disciplined place for serious minded searchers.
Can't believe they left out the Yoga Tree Farm (Sivananda Ashram) up in Grass Valley! It's a fantastic place on 40 acres, two daily yoga classes, two meditation and two chanting (satsang), two veg. meals, all included in your stay--two person cabin is only $85/night pp. They have an ayurvedic hut there where you can have treatments, too!
Hi, it will be great if you could also point out good ashrams in India :)
Are there any in the midwest- I live in Iowa. I'm looking for one that is on the less strict side (no pre dawn rising).
Just want to say that I have been to the Salt Spring Centre and it is fantastic. It is peaceful, clean, spacious, well run, great teachers and classes, the food is amazing. I had the most amazing experience of feeling the city leaving my body and mind. I recommend it whole heartedly. As a note, the womens weekends have been replaced by mixed Yoga Getaways.