Ashram

Traditionally, an ashram-Hindi (Sanskrit ashrama or ashramam) is a spiritual hermitage or a monastery in Indian religions.[1][2]

Ashrams on the banks of Ganges, Rishikesh
Sivananda Ashram, Rishikesh, the headquarters of Divine Life Society, founded by Sivananda Saraswati in 1936.

Etymology

The term ashram (Sanskrit: आश्रम, Sanskrit pronunciation: [aːɕɽɐmɐ]) comes from the Sanskrit root śram- (श्रम्) ('to toil').[3] According to S. S. Chandra, the term means "a step in the journey of life".[4] In contrast, according to George Weckman, the term ashram connotes a place where one strives towards a goal in a disciplined manner. Such a goal could be ascetic, spiritual, yogic or any other.[5]

Overview

Kailash Ashram, Muni Ki Reti, Rishikesh
Kailash Ashram, Muni Ki Reti, Rishikesh, established by Dhanraj Giri

An ashram would traditionally, but not necessarily in contemporary times, be located far from human habitation, in forests or mountainous regions, amidst refreshing natural surroundings conducive to spiritual instruction and meditation. The residents of an ashram regularly performed spiritual and physical exercises, such as the various forms of yoga. Other sacrifices and penances, such as yajnas were also performed.[6] Many ashrams also served as gurukulas, residential schools for children under the guru-shishya tradition.

Sometimes, the goal of a pilgrimage to the ashram was not tranquility, but instruction in some art, especially warfare. In the Ramayana, the princes of ancient Ayodhya, Rama and Lakshmana, go to Vishvamitra's ashram to protect his yajnas from being defiled by emissary-demons of Ravana. After they prove their mettle, the princes receive martial instruction from the sage, especially in the use of divine weapons. In the Mahabharata, Krishna, in his youth, goes to the ashram of Sandipani to gain knowledge of both intellectual and spiritual matters.

Schools in Maharashtra

Residential schools, especially in the tribal areas of Maharashtra and elsewhere in India, are called ashram shala or ashram schools. One such school is the Lok Biradari Prakalp Ashram Shala.[7][8]

Vedic Ashram
Vedic Institute of Canada in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada
Adichunchanagiri Hills
Adichunchanagiri Ashram

In the West

A number of ashrams have been established outside India. Typically, these ashrams are connected to Indian lineages,[9] focus on imparting Yoga-related teachings, and are headed by spiritual teachers (Indians or Western).

References

  1. ^ Swami Swahananda (1 January 1990). Monasteries in South Asia. Vedanta Press. pp. 92–. ISBN 978-0-87481-047-9.
  2. ^ Mayeul de Dreuille (1999). "1 Hindu mansticism". From East to West: A History of Monasticism. Gracewing Publishing. pp. 3–27. ISBN 978-0-85244-464-1.
  3. ^ Harper, Douglas. "ashram". Online Etymology Dictionary.
  4. ^ S.S. Chandra; S.S. Chandra & Rajendra Kumar Sharma (1996). Philosophy of Education. Atlantic Publishers & Dist. pp. 173–. ISBN 978-81-7156-637-2.
  5. ^ George Weckman (2000). William M. Johnston, ed. Encyclopedia of Monasticism: A-L. Routledge. p. 94. ISBN 978-1-57958-090-2.
  6. ^ Gopal, Madan (1990). K.S. Gautam, ed. India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. p. 70.
  7. ^ Hetal Vyas (31 January 2009). "Shocked HC files suo-motu PIL over ashram rape and deaths". PuneMirror. Archived from the original on 2011-07-18. Retrieved 2009-03-17.
  8. ^ "Lok Biradari Prakalp". Lok Biradari Prakalp. 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-17.
  9. ^ "200 hours Yoga teacher training course in Rishikesh India". yogadaindia.com. Retrieved 2018-04-23.
Alice Coltrane

Alice Coltrane (née McLeod, August 27, 1937 – January 12, 2007), also known by her adopted Sanskrit name Turiyasangitananda or Turiya Alice Coltrane, was an American jazz musician and composer, and in her later years a swamini. One of the few harpists in the history of jazz, she recorded many albums as a bandleader, beginning in the late 1960s and early 1970s for Impulse! and other major record labels. She was the second wife and the widow of jazz saxophonist and composer John Coltrane.

Asaram

Asumal Sirumalani Harpalani, known as Asaram Bapu by his followers, is a religious leader (Godman) in India. Starting to come in the limelight in the early 1970s, he gradually established over 400 ashrams in India and abroad and was popular among politicians and common people for his religious discourses (pravachan). In April 2018, Asaram was found guilty of rape of a minor girl and is currently serving life imprisonment for the sexual assault in Jodhpur.He was mentioned in a list of fake sadhus released by Akhil Bharatiya Akhara Parishad, the apex organisation of Hindu Sants (saints) and Sadhus (ascetics) in India.

Ashram Chowk

Ashram Chowk is a crossways located on the southeastern corner of the Delhi Ring Road. It is at the intersection of the Ring Road and Mathura Road from the ITO crossing, the Supreme Court, Pragati Maidan, Purana Quila, Nizamuddin Dargah and the Haryana border at Faridabad.

Ashram metro station

The Ashram Metro Station is located on the Pink Line of the Delhi Metro and situated between Vinobapuri and Hazrat Nizamuddin metro station.

Ashrama (stage)

An Ashrama in Hinduism is one of four age-based life stages discussed in Indian texts of the ancient and medieval eras. The four ashramas are: Brahmacharya (student), Grihastha (householder), Vanaprastha (retired) and Sannyasa (renunciate).The Ashrama system is one facet of the Dharma concept in Hinduism. It is also a component of the ethical theories in Indian philosophy, where it is combined with four proper goals of human life (Purusartha), for fulfilment, happiness and spiritual liberation.

Asramam Sree Krishna Swamy Temple

Asramam Sree Krishna Swamy Temple is a Sreekrishna temple in the district of Kollam, Kerala, South India located on the shores of Ashtamudi Lake. Lord Krishna in the form of Navaneet Krishnan or Krishna with Butter is worshiped here. The temple sits on the top of a mount created by digging earth from a nearby place, which now forms the temple pond.

Sub-deities include Swamy Ayyappan ( a separate temple building with the 18 holy steps of Sabarimala present), Naga Devatas and Navagrahas.

Kollam pooram is the culmination of a ten-day festival, normally in mid April, of Ashramam sreekrishna swamy temple<

Beatles Ashram

Beatles Ashram, also known as Chaurasi Kutia, is an ashram close to the north Indian city of Rishikesh in the state of Uttarakhand. It is located on the eastern bank of the Ganges river, opposite the Muni Ki Reti area of Rishikesh, in the foothills of the Himalayas. During the 1960s and 1970s, as the International Academy of Meditation, it was the training centre for students of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who devised the Transcendental Meditation technique. The ashram gained international attention between February and April 1968 when the English rock band the Beatles studied meditation there, along with celebrities such as Donovan, Mia Farrow and Mike Love. It was the setting for the band's most productive period as songwriters, where they composed most of the songs for their self-titled double album, also known as the "White Album".

The site was abandoned in the 1990s and reverted to the local forestry department in 2003, after which it became a popular visiting place for fans of the Beatles. Although derelict and overrun by jungle, the site was officially opened to the public in December 2015. It has since become known as Beatles Ashram and held an exhibition in February 2018 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' arrival in Rishikesh.

Divine Life Society

The Divine Life Society (DLS) is a Hindu spiritual organisation and an ashram, founded by Swami Sivananda Saraswati in 1936, at Muni Ki Reti, Rishikesh, India. Today it has branches across the world, the headquarters being situated in Rishikesh. Also, many disciples of Swami Sivananda have started independent organisations in Mauritius, the US, Australia, Canada, Malaysia, South Africa, South America, and Europe.

Kochrab Ashram

The Kochrab Ashram was the first ashram in India organized by Mohandas Gandhi, the leader of the Indian independence movement, and was gifted to him by his friend Barrister Jivanlal Desai. Founded on 25 May 1915, Gandhi's Kochrab Ashram was located near the city of Ahmedabad in the state of Gujarat.

This ashram was a major centre for students of Gandhian ideas to practise satyagraha, self-sufficiency, Swadeshi, work for the upliftment of the poor, women and untouchables, and to promote better public education and sanitation. The ashram was organised on a basis of human equality, self-help and simplicity. However, as Kochrab became infested with plague after two years, Gandhi had to relocate his ashram, this time to the bank of the Sabarmati River. During his time at the Sabarmati Ashram Gandhi's reputation as the voice of the masses and as the leader of the nation would further increase.

Mirra Alfassa

Mirra Alfassa (21 February 1878 – 17 November 1973), known to her followers as The Mother, was a spiritual guru, an occultist and a collaborator of Sri Aurobindo, who considered her to be of equal yogic stature to him and called her by the name "The Mother". She founded the Sri Aurobindo Ashram and established Auroville as a universal town; she was an influence and inspiration to many writers and spiritual personalities on the subject of Integral Yoga.

Mirra Alfassa was born in Paris on 1878 to a bourgeois family. In her youth, she travelled to Algeria to practise occultism under Max Théon. After returning, she travelled around the world and finally settled in Pondicherry, India with Sri Aurobindo and his followers. With growing numbers of followers, the settlement was turned into an ashram over the years, where she worked with Sri Aurobindo in establishing Integral Yoga and guiding its pupils. In 1943, she started a school in the ashram and in 1968 established Auroville, an experimental township free from discrimination of nationality, language, creed and politics. She died on 17 November 1973 in Pondicherry.

The experiences of the last thirty years of Mirra Alfassa’s life were captured in the 13-volume work Mother's Agenda by Satprem who was one of her followers.

Neem Karoli Baba

Neem Karoli Baba (Hindi: नीम करौली बाबा) or Neeb Karori Baba (Hindi: नीब करौरी बाबा) (c. 1900 - 11 September 1973) - known to his followers as Maharaj-ji - was a Hindu guru, mystic and devotee of the Hindu deity Hanuman. He is known outside India for being the guru of a number of Americans who travelled to India in the 1960s and 1970s, the most well-known being the spiritual teachers Ram Dass and Bhagavan Das, and the musicians Krishna Das and Jai Uttal. His ashrams are in Kainchi, Vrindavan, Rishikesh, Shimla, Neem Karoli village near Khimasepur in Farrukhabad, Bhumiadhar, Hanuman Gadi, Lucknow, Delhi in India and in Taos, New Mexico, USA.

Potta Ashram

Potta Ashram is a Catholic charismatic renewal centre in Potta, Thrissur District of Kerala. The centre is managed by the Vincentian Congregation. The centre comes under Syro-Malabar Catholic Diocese of Irinjalakuda.The Potta Ashram was founded in 1977 as the centre to direct and to co-ordinate popular mission retreats. It functioned as the headquarters and residences of the directors of the Center, Frs. George Panackal V.C. and Romulus Nedumchalil, etc., who used to conduct mission retreats and visitations from here.

Rajneesh

Rajneesh (born Chandra Mohan Jain, 11 December 1931 – 19 January 1990), also known as Acharya Rajneesh, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, and latterly as Osho (), was an Indian spiritual guru, philosopher and the leader of the Rajneesh movement. During his lifetime he was viewed as a controversial new religious movement leader and mystic. In the 1960s he traveled throughout India as a public speaker and was a vocal critic of socialism, arguing that India was not ready for socialism and that socialism, communism and anarchism could evolve only when capitalism had reached its maturity. Rajneesh also criticised Mahatma Gandhi, and Hindu religious orthodoxy. Rajneesh emphasized the importance of meditation, mindfulness, love, celebration, courage, creativity and humour—qualities that he viewed as being suppressed by adherence to static belief systems, religious tradition and socialisation. In advocating a more open attitude to human sexuality he caused controversy in India during the late 1960s and became known as "the sex guru".In 1970, Rajneesh spent time in Mumbai initiating followers known as "neo-sannyasins". During this period he expanded his spiritual teachings and commented extensively in discourses on the writings of religious traditions, mystics, and philosophers from around the world. In 1974, Rajneesh relocated to Pune, where an ashram was established and a variety of therapies, incorporating methods first developed by the Human Potential Movement, were offered to a growing Western following. By the late 1970s, the tension between the ruling Janata Party government of Morarji Desai and the movement led to a curbing of the ashram's development and a back taxes claim estimated at $5 million.In 1981, the Rajneesh movement's efforts refocused on activities in the United States and Rajneesh relocated to a facility known as Rajneeshpuram in Wasco County, Oregon. Almost immediately the movement ran into conflict with county residents and the state government, and a succession of legal battles concerning the ashram's construction and continued development curtailed its success. In 1985, in the wake of a series of serious crimes by his followers, including a mass food poisoning attack with Salmonella bacteria and an aborted assassination plot to murder U.S. Attorney Charles H. Turner, Rajneesh alleged that his personal secretary Ma Anand Sheela and her close supporters had been responsible. He was later deported from the United States in accordance with an Alford plea bargain.After his deportation, 21 countries denied him entry. He ultimately returned to India and a revived Pune ashram, where he died in 1990. Rajneesh's ashram, now known as OSHO International Meditation Resort, and all associated intellectual property, is managed by the registered Osho International Foundation (formerly Rajneesh International Foundation). Rajneesh's teachings have had a notable impact on Western New Age thought, and their popularity has increased markedly since his death. A notable example is the influence that his thought has had on the German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk.

Ramakrishna Ashram Marg metro station

The Ramakrishna Ashram Marg Metro Station is located on the Blue Line of the Delhi Metro.

Sabarmati Ashram

Sabarmati Ashram (also known as Gandhi Ashram, Harijan Ashram, or Satyagraha Ashram) is located in the Sabarmati suburb of Ahmedabad, Gujarat, adjoining the Ashram Road, on the banks of the River Sabarmati, four miles from the town hall. This was one of the many residences of Mahatma Gandhi who lived at Sabarmati (Gujarat) and Sevagram (Wardha, Maharashtra) when he was not travelling across India and was not in prison. He stayed in Sabarmati and Wardha for a total of twelve years along with his wife Kasturba Gandhi and followers including Vinoba Bhave. The Bhagavad Gita was recited here daily, as part of the Ashram schedule.

It was from his base here that Gandhi led the Dandi march also known as the Salt Satyagraha

on 12 March 1930. In recognition of the significant influence that this march had on the Indian independence movement the Indian government has established the ashram as a national monument.

Sevagram

Sevagram (meaning "A village for/of service") is the name of a village in the state of Maharashtra, India. It was the place of Mohandas Gandhi's (Gandhiji's) ashram and his residence from 1936 to his death in 1948.

Sri Aurobindo

Sri Aurobindo (born Aurobindo Ghose; 15 August 1872 – 5 December 1950) was an Indian philosopher, yogi, guru, poet, and nationalist. He joined the Indian movement for independence from British rule, for a while was one of its influential leaders and then became a spiritual reformer, introducing his visions on human progress and spiritual evolution.

Aurobindo studied for the Indian Civil Service at King's College, Cambridge, England. After returning to India he took up various civil service works under the maharaja of the princely state of Baroda and became increasingly involved in nationalist politics and the nascent revolutionary movement in Bengal. He was arrested in the aftermath of a number of bomb outrages linked to his organisation, but in a highly public trial where he faced charges of treason, Aurobindo could only be convicted and imprisoned for writing articles against British rule in India. He was released when no evidence could be provided, following the murder of a prosecution witness during the trial. During his stay in the jail, he had mystical and spiritual experiences, after which he moved to Pondicherry, leaving politics for spiritual work.

During his stay in Pondicherry, Sri Aurobindo developed a method of spiritual practice he called Integral Yoga. The central theme of his vision was the evolution of human life into a life divine. He believed in a spiritual realisation that not only liberated man but transformed his nature, enabling a divine life on earth. In 1926, with the help of his spiritual collaborator, Mirra Alfassa (referred to as "The Mother"), he founded the Sri Aurobindo Ashram.

His main literary works are The Life Divine, which deals with theoretical aspects of Integral Yoga; Synthesis of Yoga, which deals with practical guidance to Integral Yoga; and Savitri: A Legend and a Symbol, an epic poem. His works also include philosophy, poetry, translations and commentaries on the Vedas, Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1943 and for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950.

Sri Aurobindo Ashram

The Sri Aurobindo Ashram is a spiritual community (ashram) located in Pondicherry, in the Indian territory of Puducherry. The ashram grew out of a small community of disciples who had gathered around Sri Aurobindo after he retired from politics and settled in Pondicherry in 1910. On 24 November 1926, after a major spiritual realization, Sri Aurobindo withdrew from public view in order to continue his spiritual work. At this time he handed over the full responsibility for the inner and outer lives of the sadhaks (spiritual aspirants) and the ashram to his spiritual collaborator, "the Mother", earlier known as Mirra Alfassa. This date is therefore generally known as the founding-day of the ashram, though, as Sri Aurobindo himself wrote, it had “less been created than grown around him as its centre.”

Tibbetibaba

Tibbetibaba also known as Mahasadhak Tibbetibaba or Paramhamsa Tibbetibaba, alternative spellings Tibbatibaba, Tibbati Baba, Tibbeti Baba,Tibbotibaba or Tibboti Baba ("Tibetan Baba" or the Monk from Tibet, when translated into English.) born Nabin Chattopadhhyaya Bengali: নবীন চট্টোপাধ্যায়;Mahasamadhi or death – 19 November 1930) was a famous Bengali philosopher, saint and yogi. He was one of the few saints in India whose life was an amalgamation of the Advaita Vedanta doctrine of Hinduism and Mahayana Buddhist doctrine. Tibbetibaba was a master of all the eight siddhis and supposedly had remarkable healing powers. Even though he was master of all the siddhis, he was not personally interested in using them.

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