Categorie: English

10-day Hridaya Retreat with Sahajananda, December 2017

Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre organizes:

10-day Hridaya Retreat – A Silent Meditation Retreat for the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart, with Sahajananda

26th December 2017 – 6th January 2018, Sanpetru (near Brasov), Romania

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.

In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

We recommend you to read the guidelines and the specific rules of the Silent Hridaya Retreat here and  here

All meditations and techniques are specifically intended to activate the Spiritual Heart and to awaken the consciousness at this level. We will integrate advice for guided meditation, lectures and practical techniques and methodologies in our retreat sessions, including:

– Ramana Maharshi’s atma vichara method of introspection (Who Am I?)

– Techniques to still the mind using breath control

– Study of the symbolism of the Spiritual Heart

– Methods of passing from individual consciousness to Cosmic Consciousness

– Methods of Self-centering in daily life

– A proper understanding of Advaita Vedanta’s fundamental tenets

– Hatha Yoga sessions in a special spiritual style

– Other Yogic methods that approach the issue of the Spiritual Heart

– Sacred poetry

– The four fundamental stages in the process of the revelation of the Spiritual Heart

– Advice for maintaining awareness in the Spiritual Heart in the tradition of the Fathers of the Desert (from Christianity)

– Daily special meditations on themes connected with Self-revelation

– The Christian method of the Prayer of the Heart.

The leader of the retreat

The Revelation of the Spiritual Heart Retreat is led by Claudiu Trandafir (Sahajananda), whose meditation, for years now, has been dedicated to the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart through Divine Love and the opening of the soul. Claudiu, an engineer in electronics by education, was formerly a professor at the University of Parapsychology in Bucharest, Romania. He has been a Yoga teacher for 25 years, specializing in solitary cave retreats, following the example of Ramana Maharshi and other Jnana Yoga masters. In 2001, after many solitary retreats, Claudiu began to guide groups of people using this method. He has led this special retreat for thousands of participants across Europe over the last seven years, and has also started to lead Retreat programs in Mexico and Thailand. By popular request, the Retreat program is now available in Canada, Great Britain, Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Thailand, India, etc

Administrative details:

The schedule of 26th December:

14:00 – registration and orientation

16.00 – hatha yoga session and practical recommendations for the retreat (asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, meditation). We strongly reccomend all to participate to this yoga and meditation session, even if you have participated in other Hridaya retreat, so you can be proper prepared for the beginning of the retreat.

18.00 – dinner

19.00 – In the meditation hall, there will be explained guidelines for participants, some general principles of the retreat and it will be the first lecture and meditation with Sahaja.

All administrative details will be resolved in that evening (26th December), so that when the retreat will begin on 27th December, the following 10 days will be devoted exclusively for meditation and interiorization.

The end of the retreat will be on 5th of January 2018,  after the meditation of the afternoon, when they will share experiences lived in this period. Next morning, on 6th January 2018, it will be the last meeting for meditation, questions and answers, lunch and the depart of participants. The tour of Brasov and/ or trips around Brasov will be offered to those who choose to stay one or more days after retreat.

The program will be about 10 hours per day (approx. 6.5 hours for meditations, 2 hours for lectures and presenting inspiring texts, 1,5 hours Hatha Yoga practice), with breaks for meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and rest. First meal is the dinner on 26 December 2017, the last meal is the lunch on 6 January 2018. The diet is vegetarian (vegan on request).

The retreat is held in Sanpentru, a town about 2 km from Brasov. The trip from the airport in Bucharest to Brasov takes about three hours, either by train or bus. We can offer you all the necessary information for a fast and safe transport to Sanpetru.

The retreat is held in English.

For retreat fee info, please contact us:

– by e-mail: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

– by phone +40731324241.

There is a discount for early registration (till 31th October).

Payment must be made in advance. A deposit of 150 euro is due with reservation.

Refunds Policy

If you want to cancel the participation to this retreat:

-till 31th October 2017 the fee will be refunded (less bank transfer fee)

-till 1st December 2017 will be refunded 50 %

-after 1st December 2017  the fee is non refundable.

If a person makes the decision to leave the retreat, he or she does so with the foreknowledge that the fees are forfeited.

The only exception to this scenario is for cases of medical emergency, in which case – following substantiation of a refund request – Kamala Center will return fees for the unattended portion of the retreat (on a per diem basis, according to the rate of fees paid).

Registration is being coordinated by Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre.

Contact:

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

phone: + 40 731 324 241 or + 40 268 360 424

Registration is made in order of request.

More info: www.kamala.ro or www.hridaya-yoga.com.

May the Sacred Tremor of the Heart enlighten our lives!

10-day Silent Hridaya Retreat with Sahajananda, Romania, August 2017

Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre organizes:

10-day Hridaya Retreat – A Silent Meditation Retreat for the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart, with Sahajananda

4-15 August 2017, Sanpetru (near Brasov), Romania

(For beginners there is the option to participate for the first 5 days of the Retreat. After the retreat, on 16th August, we organize a spiritual trip around Brasov, in mountain areas, for meditation and yoga in nature. If you are interested, please ask the specific info.)

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.
 
In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

We recommend you to read the guidelines and the rules of the Silent Hridaya Retreat here and  here

The leader of the retreat

The Revelation of the Spiritual Heart Retreat is led by Claudiu Trandafir (Sahajananda), whose meditation, for years now, has been dedicated to the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart through Divine Love and the opening of the soul. Claudiu, an engineer in electronics by education, was formerly a professor at the University of Parapsychology in Bucharest, Romania. He has been a Yoga teacher for 25 years, specializing in solitary cave retreats, following the example of Ramana Maharshi and other Jnana Yoga masters. In 2001, after many solitary retreats, Claudiu began to guide groups of people using this method. He has led this special retreat for thousands of participants across Europe over the last seven years, and has also started to lead Retreat programs in Mexico and Thailand. By popular request, the Retreat program is now available in Canada, Great Britain, Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Thailand and India.

Administrative details:

The schedule of 4th August:

14:00 – registration and orientation

16.00 – hatha yoga session and practical recommendations for the retreat (asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, meditation). We strongly reccommend that you participate to this yoga and meditation session, even if you have participated in other Hridaya retreat, so you can be proper prepared for the beginning of the retreat.

18.00 – dinner

19.00 – In the meditation hall, there will be explained guidelines for participants, some general principles of the retreat and it will be the first lecture and meditation with Sahaja.

All administrative details will be resolved in that evening (4th August), so that when the retreat will begin on 5th August, the following 5 or 10 days will be devoted exclusively for meditation and interiorization.

Those who want to participate only the first 5 days will leave on 10th August. For the others, the end of the retreat will be on 14th August, after the meditation of the afternoon, when they will share experiences lived in this period. Next morning, on 15th August 2017, it will be the last meeting for meditation, questions and answers, lunch and the depart of participants.

The retreat is held in Sanpentru, a town about 2 km from Brasov. The trip from the airport in Bucharest to Brasov takes about three hours, either by train or bus. We can offer you all the necessary information for a fast and safe transport to Sanpetru.

The retreat is held in English.

For retreat fee info, please contact us:

– by e-mail: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

– by phone +40731324241.

There is a discount for early registration (till 1st June).

Payment must be made in advance. A deposit of 150 euro is due with reservation.

Refunds Policy

If you want to cancel the participation in retreat:

-till 1st June 2017 the deposit fee will be refunded (less bank transfer fee)

-till 15th July 2017 will be refunded 50 % from the deposit fee

-after 15th July 2017 the deposit fee is non refundable.

If a person makes the decision to leave the retreat, he or she does so with the foreknowledge that the fees are forfeited.

The only exception to this scenario is for cases of medical emergency, in which case – following substantiation of a refund request – Kamala Center will return fees for the unattended portion of the retreat (on a per diem basis, according to the rate of fees paid).

Registration is being coordinated by Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre.

Contact:

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

phone: + 40 731 324 241 or + 40 268 360 424

to make your reservation; registration is made in order of request.

More info: www.kamala.ro or www.hridaya-yoga.com.

May the Sacred Tremor of the Heart enlighten our lives!

10-day Hridaya Retreat with Sahajananda, Romania, December 2016

Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre organizes:

10-day Hridaya Retreat – A Silent Meditation Retreat for the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart, with Sahajananda

26th December 2016 – 6th January 2017, Sanpetru (near Brasov), Romania

(For beginners there is the option to participate for the first 4 days of the Retreat.)

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.

In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

We recommend you to read the guidelines and the specific rules of the Silent Hridaya Retreat here and  here

All meditations and techniques are specifically intended to activate the Spiritual Heart and to awaken the consciousness at this level. We will integrate advice for guided meditation, lectures and practical techniques and methodologies in our retreat sessions, including:

– Ramana Maharshi’s atma vichara method of introspection (Who Am I?)

– Techniques to still the mind using breath control

– Study of the symbolism of the Spiritual Heart

– Methods of passing from individual consciousness to Cosmic Consciousness

– Methods of Self-centering in daily life

– A proper understanding of Advaita Vedanta’s fundamental tenets

– Hatha Yoga sessions in a special spiritual style

– Other Yogic methods that approach the issue of the Spiritual Heart

– Sacred poetry

– The four fundamental stages in the process of the revelation of the Spiritual Heart

– Advice for maintaining awareness in the Spiritual Heart in the tradition of the Fathers of the Desert (from Christianity)

– Daily special meditations on themes connected with Self-revelation

– The Christian method of the Prayer of the Heart.

The leader of the retreat

The Revelation of the Spiritual Heart Retreat is led by Claudiu Trandafir (Sahajananda), whose meditation, for years now, has been dedicated to the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart through Divine Love and the opening of the soul. Claudiu, an engineer in electronics by education, was formerly a professor at the University of Parapsychology in Bucharest, Romania. He has been a Yoga teacher for 25 years, specializing in solitary cave retreats, following the example of Ramana Maharshi and other Jnana Yoga masters. In 2001, after many solitary retreats, Claudiu began to guide groups of people using this method. He has led this special retreat for thousands of participants across Europe over the last seven years, and has also started to lead Retreat programs in Mexico and Thailand. By popular request, the Retreat program is now available in Canada, Great Britain, Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Thailand, India, etc

Administrative details:

The schedule of 26th December:

14:00 – registration and orientation

16.00 – hatha yoga session and practical recommendations for the retreat (asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, meditation). We strongly reccomend all to participate to this yoga and meditation session, even if you have participated in other Hridaya retreat, so you can be proper prepared for the beginning of the retreat.

18.00 – dinner

19.00 – In the meditation hall, there will be explained guidelines for participants, some general principles of the retreat and it will be the first lecture and meditation with Sahaja.

All administrative details will be resolved in that evening (26th December), so that when the retreat will begin on 27th December, the following 4 or 10 days will be devoted exclusively for meditation and interiorization.

Those who want to participate only the first 4 days will leave on 31th December 2016, in morning. For the others, the end of the retreat will be on 5th of January 2017, after the meditation of the afternoon, when they will share experiences lived in this period. Next morning, on 6th January 2017, it will be the last meeting for meditation, questions and answers, lunch and the depart of participants. The tour of Brasov and/ or trips around Brasov will be offered to those who choose to stay one or more days after retreat.

The program will be about 10 hours per day (approx. 6.5 hours for meditations, 2 hours for lectures and presenting inspiring texts, 1,5 hours Hatha Yoga practice), with breaks for meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and rest. First meal is the dinner on 26 December 2016, the last meal is the lunch on 6 January 2017. The diet is vegetarian (vegan on request).

The retreat is held in Sanpentru, a town about 2 km from Brasov. The trip from the airport in Bucharest to Brasov takes about three hours, either by train or bus. We can offer you all the necessary information for a fast and safe transport to Sanpetru.

The retreat is held in English.

For retreat fee info, please contact us:

– by e-mail: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

– by phone +40731324241.

There is a discount for early registration (till 31th October).

Payment must be made in advance. A deposit of 150 euro is due with reservation.

Refunds Policy

If you want to cancel the participation in retreat:

-till 31th October 2016 the fee will be refunded (less bank transfer fee)

-till 1st December 2016 will be refunded 50 %

-after 1st December 2016 the fee is non refundable.

If a person makes the decision to leave the retreat, he or she does so with the foreknowledge that the fees are forfeited.

The only exception to this scenario is for cases of medical emergency, in which case – following substantiation of a refund request – Kamala Center will return fees for the unattended portion of the retreat (on a per diem basis, according to the rate of fees paid).

Registration is being coordinated by Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre.

Contact:

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

phone: + 40 731 324 241 or + 40 268 360 424

Registration is made in order of request.

More info: www.kamala.ro or www.hridaya-yoga.com.

May the Sacred Tremor of the Heart enlighten our lives!

HRIDAYA YOGA TEACHER TRAINING COURSE TTC200 (Basic Yoga Instructor, Yoga Alliance acreditation)

1. OVERVIEW

2. VISION

3. CRITERIA FOR CERTIFICATION

4. TERMS OF AGREEMENT

5. IMPORTANT DATES

1. OVERVIEW

The Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Course, HTTC, is a systematic and comprehensive approach to meditation and Hatha Yoga. Our yoga school is registered Yoga Alliance (the largest association of yoga in the world) and is authenticated by this international forum. Graduation certificates are given under Yoga Alliance and enables you to teach yoga and meditation in any country in the world, respecting the laws of that country.

Some of the HTTC graduates will be integrated as yoga teachers in Kamala Center.

Through this course of meditation and yoga teachers, you will have the same graduation certificate (TTC200) equivalent of all yoga schools recognized by Yoga Alliance.

This Hridaya Yoga and Meditation Teacher Training Course was organised for the first time in Mexic, Mazunte, by Sahajananda (Claudiu Trandafir) for the large version of 500 hours. Hridaya teachers spread the message of the Spiritual Heart in many countries: România, Mexic, Canada, Guatemala, Elveția, Olanda, Marea Britanie, SUA, Austria, Germania, Israel etc.

The HTTC provides:

– over 200 hours of meditation and hatha yoga

– the yoga manual with all taught lessons

– an HTTC kit at the end of course containing an additional booklet with advice and recommendations for Hridaya teachers, some inspiring books of Ramana Maharshi, audio files of the HTTC lectures.

The training includes the following subjects:

– A survey of the main meditation traditions throughout history – Theravada Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism, Zen, Christianity – Isihast tradition, Sufism, Hasidism, etc.

– Extensive explanations on Ramana Maharshi’s teachings, including Self-enquiry (Atma-vichara), The Spiritual Heart, Bringing the I-feeling back into its source, Sphurana, etc.

– Hridaya Yoga – metaphysical principles and basic concepts, including Hridaya Hatha Yoga,, the Spiritual Heart’s significance, mastering the 4 fundamental attitudes of Hridaya meditation, Surrender – a fundamental key on Self-revelation path, Spanda, The Sacred Tremor of the Heart” (a Kashmir Shaivism concept used in Hridaya meditation), the gaps between thoughts, Open Concepts, Open Attention, etc.

– Description of Self-realization according Shankaracharya

– The ineffable of Sat-chit-ananda, etc.

– Traditional yoga asanas

– The ABC of meditation: proper postures for meditation, mudras for meditation, favorable moments for meditation, the importance of stretching and relaxation for meditation, benefits of meditation, etc.

– Basic pranayama techniques

– Pranayama for calming the mind: rhythmic breathing theory in pranayama, nadhi shodhana for meditation, etc.

– Extensive presentation and practical guidance in some forms of meditation: Atma-vichara (Self-enquiry Method of Ramana Maharshi), Mahamudra, Walking meditation according to Theravada Buddhism

– Practical guidelines for meditators: how to overcome the hindrances during meditation, advice for meditators according to their dominant dosha (one of three bodily humors that make up one’s constitution according to Ayurvedic Medicine), what are the phases during a meditation retreat, etc.

– The stages of deep meditation (the 8 jhanas) according to the Buddhist tradition

– The spiritual benefits of the dark retreat – kaya kalpa, from the advaita vedanta perspective

– A series of lectures on Advaita Vedanta; Metaphors and stories in Vedanta

– The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali

– About Samadhi (states of Cosmic Consciousness). Criteria for identifying different states of samadhi and proper attitudes for experiencing them

– The study of the effects of the physical and subtle light (phosphenes) upon the mind. The study of Advaya Taraka Upanishad. The relationship between Light and Consciousness

– The connection between Brainwaves and States of Consciousness (The lecture is followed by experiments with Brain Machine)

– The 4 states of consciousness according to Yoga

– Cultivating the proper attitudes for a sahridaya life (a life full of enthusiasm and joy) – transforming the life into a proper tool for Self-revelation

– Methods for developing concentration

– Methods for developing awareness: capturing the uncaught mind, micro-practices, the technique of ultra-slowing of physical and mental activities, etc.

– Methods for awakening the Heart: Blowing upon the ember of the heart, Tonglen, etc.

The Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Course also includes:

– Anatomy and physiology classes,

– Hridaya teacher methodology: how to teach Hridaya concepts, how to teach Hridaya Hatha Yoga etc.

– Practicum training – 2 sessions of practicum for each HTTC attendee,

– Hridaya retreats training – participation in a 3-Days Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat.

– Individual evaluation and coaching

– Group coaching from other experienced Hridaya teachers,

– The experience of 24 hours of Kaya Kalpa, meditation in complete darkness.

Successful completion of this 200-hour course grants a participant permission to teach Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga Workshops anywhere, with support materials and guidance provided.

2. VISION

The Hridaya Teacher Training Course is not just a course for acquiring some specific knowledge, improving ourselves and obtaining a certification accordingly. It opens us toward a life-time journey. Practically speaking, the communion in ideals, principles and actions, the friendship, the teachings and the support will continue also after this formal period.

The Hridaya community is open and welcoming to any of his teachers, and is actively supporting them in the transmission of the Hridaya ideals, perspectives and methods.

The Hridaya Teacher Training Course aims to go beyond the formal style. We learn together, continuously, as students and teachers, to be beyond roles. Here we are not learning how to assume a new role – that of a teacher – but we are constantly learning to be beyond roles.

In the Hridaya community the education starts from another paradigm. We respect each other beyond roles, appreciating the gifts each person can bring, supporting the beauty and the inherently creative power that lies in every soul. Thus, real love can grow.

Emphasizing creativity is a way of learning in freedom and love, of cultivating our best, sattvic (harmonious) qualities. This doesn’t contradict, but includes the need of being systematic and the understanding of the order. When a spiritual school is based on quality and sattvic standards it grows naturally in love and beauty, art, harmony, and respect for Love.

Being focused only on quantity and a franchise-like style, in which the specificities are ignored, a spiritual group can risk rapid degeneration. When we put enthusiasm into it, our work is approached not through quantity but quality and therefore awareness, intelligence, love and creativity are present.

Even though there will be formal examinations which are based upon a solid theoretical preparation, much more emphasis is put on keeping the spirit of Hridaya – the naturalness, love, awareness.

We are not encouraging that so-called “competitive spirit.” By living in awareness, self-inquiry, freedom and beauty we become the best teachers. Then we don’t feel the need anymore to prove something to others, based on competition and a pushing attitude.

The real competence of a Hridaya meditation and yoga teacher is not based on competition and self-image but on love and intimate knowledge of who we are. And in this way people will naturally come for the teachings that we are offering – both teachers and students understanding that the radiance of the Heart is the only authority.

In spite of the fact that the teachings of non-duality are essentially beyond mind, in order to be transmitted properly we definitely should use our intelligence and inspiration. That’s why the course is trying to bring maximum clarity in its main concepts: The Sacred Tremor of the Heart, Hridaya Meditation, the Heart Center, Self Inquiry, Hridaya Hatha Yoga, Samarasa, Open Attention, the Witness Consciousness, etc.

The HTTC promotes the Non-dual Vision. This means that essentially there is only one inseparable domain of the Heart. When we really understand this principle, we are able to apply it to teaching yoga and meditation and to all our activities.

As Chuang Tzu said:

Great knowledge sees all in one.

Small knowledge breaks down into the many.”

What is spiritual, uplifting, beautiful, noble, good comes from this global perception.

The HTTC flows in 3 main directions:

– Cultivating the background of Stillness of our being – which is the Real Knowledge, the Jnana, which is also the radiance of Love, the Bhakti;

– Practical technical (methodological) knowledge – which consists in methods of meditation, transformation;

– Theoretical knowledge (including teaching methodology) – which are considered necessary for a meditation and hatha yoga teacher.

We wish you an inspiring journey into the Real!

3. CRITERIA FOR CERTIFICATION

The following Criteria for Certification must be met by all students wishing to become Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga teachers.

We reserve the right to deny certification to any student who does not fulfill course obligations or who does not meet Hridaya Yoga standards, detailed below.

Attendance

With the exception of emergencies, the Hridaya TTC expects full attendance of all HTTC sessions in order to earn the certificate issued at the end of the course.

Attendance is defined as participation in all facets of each scheduled session: theoretical presentation, asana practice, meditation, interviews, teaching workshops, retreats, etc.

It will be the student’s responsibility to make up any missed course material for excused absences.

Special circumstances will be discussed in particular with the teachers of Kamala Center.

Exams

Two exams mark a student’s progress throughout the course. Questions are taken from lecture presentations and supplemental course materials. Participants must complete the course with a cumulative passing exam average, in addition to attendance verification, in order to receive their teaching certification.

Practicum Workshop Training

Successful completion of all practicum teaching assignments is a requirement for certification. Presentations must demonstrate a student’s ability to teach using the Hridaya Yoga methodology, including a good command of the scripted mnemonics that participants will receive in the course, as well as theoretical absorption of the material itself demonstrated by a proper understanding of the course material, correct answers to questions etc.

Professional and Ethical Behavior

After certification, a Hridaya meditation and Yoga teacher is expected to adhere to certain standards, which will be described fully in the Spiritual Code that you will be required to sign at the end of the course.

If there is found to be a professional or ethical complaint against a Hridaya teacher, an inquiry will be made. If a legitimate basis for the complaint is found, it could result in suspension of the teacher or other limitations placed on the teacher’s use of the name “Hridaya.”

Use of the Name “Hridaya”

We encourage Hridaya Teacher Training Course participants, upon graduation, to go out and teach Hridaya Yoga. The name “Hridaya” should be honored by the behavior and competence of the Meditation and Hatha Yoga teacher.

4. TERMS OF AGREEMENT

Please do not underestimate the mental and physical demands which will be placed on participants. We ask that you seriously evaluate your levels of physical, psychological, and spiritual maturity before enrolling in this course. The peoples with serious mental illness can not attend the course.

The Hridaya TTC is structured with the best intentions toward helping students to dedicate themselves to a meditative life and to becoming mature meditation and Hatha Yoga teachers. Therefore, extensive consideration has been put into the schedule and methodology presented.

Please read the following statements. By checking the signature box on the application form, an applicant signifies that he or she has read, understood, and agreed to accept the terms set forth.

Determination and Communication

I commit to do my best to participate according to the course structure. If I have specific personal needs, Yogic or otherwise, I will discuss them with an HTTC Administrator.

Responsibility

By virtue of being an intensive program, the HTTC may raise personal issues or shortcomings. The program is meant to encourage personal growth and, therefore, may impel considerable changes in attitude. For these reasons, the HTTC can be challenging and demanding. I accept responsibility for all aspects of my behavior during this program.

Punctuality

Adherence to punctuality is one of the primary factors in the success of the HTTC. I accept responsibility for being on time to all program sessions. I understand that repeated delays are reasons that may lead to the failure to receive a certificate of completion.

Time Management

I accept responsibility for managing my time, diet, and personal relationships in ways which support my full participation and attendance in the HTTC.

Purity

According to the Hridaya system, it is necessary to maintain a level of cleanliness and purity in combination with meditation and Hatha Yoga practice in order to ensure the safety and effectiveness of spiritual practices.

I agree to accept that, for the duration of the HTTC, any and all use of tobacco and other illicit substances is expressly forbidden and can prove to be grounds for immediate expulsion from the course.

Respect for colleagues and teachers

Hridaya Yoga students come from a variety of countries and backgrounds. In order to create a supportive environment, I assume responsibility for maintaining an attitude of respect toward my teachers and my colleagues in the course. If any interpersonal difficulties or conflicts arise, I pledge to seek the advice of the HTTC teachers and administrators.

Openness and Discernment

Hridaya Yoga offers spiritual teachings, outside the parameters of any one specific religion. The HTTC raises issues that are metaphysical in nature, concepts and theories that may challenge my personal belief system. I agree to keep an open mind, and to exercise common sense, discernment, and a balanced attitude in order to fully appreciate the teachings offered.

I understand all these requirements and I will honor it.

I declare on my responsibility that I do not have psychological or mental problems (schizophrenia, paranoia, etc.).

I understand that the recommendations of this course does not replace medical advice or treatment. Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre is not liable for any incorrect practicing yoga techniques taught or for the disregard of the recommendations of yoga teachers.

5. ADMINISTRATIVE INFORMATIONS

The Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Course (HTTC) takes place at the Kamala Meditation and Yoga Center in Sanpetru, Brașov county, Romania.

The participation in the course includes a 3-days silent retreat for meditation at Kamala Centre and also the written and audio teaching materials.

Registration requirements:

Minimum age 22 years

General knowledge of yoga and meditation

– Completing and signing the application form and assuming the required conditions

– The payment of the reservation fee (or the total course fee).

Kamala Center reserves the right to select who will attend the course. The acceptance in the course will be announced within one month from the time of registration. Those who are not accepted will receive back the reservation fee, less bank transfer fees.

Accommodation and meals

Those who opt for accommodation and / or meals through the Center Kamala must request this upon registration and will receive the necessary information. Breakfast is offered free to all participants.

6. IMPORTANT DATES

Hridaya Meditation and Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Course (HTTC) period:

A. September 23, 2016 – May 21, 2017 (details below)

B. June 5 – July 1, 2017 (details below)

A. September 23, 2016 – May 21, 2017

Application deadline + Reservation payment €200: July 1, 2016

The course is conducted in nine weekens sessions (modules) as follows:

The first phase:

1. 2325 September 2016

2. 2123 October 2016

3. 18-20 November 2016

4. 9-11 December 2016. First exam.

The second phase

5. 2022 January 2017

6. 2426 February 2017

7. 2426 March 2017

8. 21-23 April 2017

9. 1921 May 2017. The second exam.

21 May 2017The ceremony of granting teachers certificates.

The module schedule:

Friday 18.30 – 22.00; Saturday 8.00-13.00, 15.00-19.00, 19.30 – 21.00; Sunday 8.00-13.00, 15.00-18.00

B. June 5 – July 1, 2017

Application deadline + Reservation payment €200: March 1, 2017

The course schedule: Monday – Saturday 8,5 – 9 hours, Sunday – free time.

For information regarding registration fee please contact us.

Informations and registering:

phone +40 731.32.42.41, +40 731.32.42.39

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com

10-days Silent Hridaya Retreat – August 2016

Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre organizes:

10 days Hridaya Retreat – A Silent Meditation Retreat for the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart, with Sahajananda

5-16 August 2016, Sanpetru (near Brasov), Romania

(For beginners there is the option to participate for the first 5 days of the Retreat. After the retreat, between 17-19 August, we organize a spiritual trip around Brasov, in mountain areas, for meditation and yoga in nature. If you are interested, please read the specific info below.)

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.
 
In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

We recommend you to read the guidelines and the rules of the Silent Hridaya Retreat here and  here

The leader of the retreat

The Revelation of the Spiritual Heart Retreat is led by Claudiu Trandafir (Sahajananda), whose meditation, for years now, has been dedicated to the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart through Divine Love and the opening of the soul. Claudiu, an engineer in electronics by education, was formerly a professor at the University of Parapsychology in Bucharest, Romania. He has been a Yoga teacher for 25 years, specializing in solitary cave retreats, following the example of Ramana Maharshi and other Jnana Yoga masters. In 2001, after many solitary retreats, Claudiu began to guide groups of people using this method. He has led this special retreat for thousands of participants across Europe over the last seven years, and has also started to lead Retreat programs in Mexico and Thailand. By popular request, the Retreat program is now available in Canada, Great Britain, Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Thailand and India.

Administrative details:

The opening meeting of the retreat will be held on 5th August 2016 at 19:00. During this meeting will be explained guidelines for participants, some general principles of the retreat and it will be the first meditation. All administrative details will be resolved in the evening, so that when the retreat itself will begin on 6th August the following 5 or 10 days will be devoted exclusively for meditation and interiorization. Those who want to participate only the first 5 days will leave on 11th August, in morning. For the others, the end of the retreat will be on 15th August, after the meditation of the afternoon, when they will share experiences lived in this period. Next morning, on 16th August 2016, it will be the last meeting for meditation, questions and answers, lunch and the depart of participants.

The retreat is held in Sanpentru, a town about 2 km from Brasov. The trip from the airport in Bucharest to Brasov takes about three hours, either by train or bus. We can offer you all the necessary information for a fast and safe transport to Sanpetru.

The retreat is held in English (with Romanian translation, if necessary).

For retreat fee info, please contact us:

– by e-mail: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

– by phone +40731324241.

There is a discount for early registration (till 1st June).

Payment must be made in advance. A deposit of 150 euro is due with reservation.

Refunds Policy

If you want to cancel the participation in retreat:

-till 1st June 2016 the deposit fee will be refunded (less bank transfer fee)

-till 15th July 2016will be refunded 50 % from the deposit fee

-after 15th July 2016 the deposit fee is non refundable.

If a person makes the decision to leave the retreat, he or she does so with the foreknowledge that the fees are forfeited.

The only exception to this scenario is for cases of medical emergency, in which case – following substantiation of a refund request – Kamala Center will return fees for the unattended portion of the retreat (on a per diem basis, according to the rate of fees paid).

Registration is being coordinated by Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre.

Also, please read below the info about the spiritual trip after the silent retreat (17-19 August).

During these 3 days, we will stay în Kamala center and each day we will travel to different locations around Brașov (the description of the activities can be read below). Accommodation and meals will be in Kamala center (cold food for lunch, breakfast and dinner in the center). The fee is 40 euro/day, including accommodation, meals and transport (the fee does not include the cable transport (7 euro), or the fee for other objectives, Bran Castle for example – 7,8 euro).

The schedule is as follows:

Day 1 – we go in the Bucegi mountains, to visit and meditate in the Ialomita cave and, if it is possible (weather, timing), we will go up by cable installation to the Sphinx of Bucegi (very powerful energetic area) to meditate also there.

Day 2 – we go in a beautiful area between the Bucegi and Piatra Craiului mountains, to visit Bran Castle, then meditation in another cave and yoga in nature.

Day 3 – another day în paradise 🙂 we go in Piatra Craiului mountains, for a beautiful trekking day.

The participants have to be prepared with proper shoes and clothes for trekking and also for meditation în a cave (for colder and maybe humid environment).

Contact:

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

phone: + 40 731 324 241 or + 40 268 360 424

to make your reservation; registration is made in order of request.

More info: www.kamala.ro or www.hridaya-yoga.com.

May the Sacred Tremor of the Heart enlighten our lives!

10-days Silent Hridaya Retreat – December 2015

Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre organizes:

10 days Hridaya Retreat – A Silent Meditation Retreat for the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart, with Sahajananda

26th December 2015 – 6th January 2016, Sanpetru (near Brasov), Romania

(For beginners there is the option to participate for the first 4 days of the Retreat.)

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.
 
In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

We recommend you to read the guidelines and the rules of the Silent Hridaya Retreat here and  here

The leader of the retreat

The Revelation of the Spiritual Heart Retreat is led by Claudiu Trandafir (Sahajananda), whose meditation, for years now, has been dedicated to the Revelation of the Spiritual Heart through Divine Love and the opening of the soul. Claudiu, an engineer in electronics by education, was formerly a professor at the University of Parapsychology in Bucharest, Romania. He has been a Yoga teacher for 25 years, specializing in solitary cave retreats, following the example of Ramana Maharshi and other Jnana Yoga masters. In 2001, after many solitary retreats, Claudiu began to guide groups of people using this method. He has led this special retreat for thousands of participants across Europe over the last seven years, and has also started to lead Retreat programs in Mexico and Thailand. By popular request, the Retreat program is now available in Canada, Great Britain, Romania, Israel, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Thailand and India.

Administrative details:

The opening meeting of the retreat will be held on 26th December 2015 at 19:00. During this meeting will be explained guidelines for participants, some general principles of the retreat and it will be the first meditation. All administrative details will be resolved in the evening, so that when the retreat itself will begin on 27th December the following 4 or 10 days will be devoted exclusively for meditation and interiorization. Those who want to participate only the first 4 days will leave on 31th December, in morning. For the others, the end of the retreat will be on 5th of January 2015, after the meditation of the afternoon, when they will share experiences lived in this period. Next morning, on 6th January 2016, it will be the last meeting for meditation, questions and answers, lunch and the depart of participants. The tour of Brasov and/ or trips around Brasov will be offered to those who choose to stay one or more days after retreat.

The retreat is held in Sanpentru, a town about 2 km from Brasov. The trip from the airport in Bucharest to Brasov takes about three hours, either by train or bus. We can offer you all the necessary information for a fast and safe transport to Sanpetru.

The retreat is held in English (with Romanian translation, if necessary).

For retreat fee info, please contact us:

– by e-mail: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

– by phone +40731324241.

There is a discount for early registration (till 31th October).

Payment must be made in advance. A deposit of 150 euro is due with reservation.

Refunds Policy

If you want to cancel the participation in retreat:

-till 31th October 2015 the deposit fee will be refunded (less bank transfer fee)

-till 1st December 2015 will be refunded 50 % from the deposit fee

-after 1st December 2015 the deposit fee is non refundable.

If a person makes the decision to leave the retreat, he or she does so with the foreknowledge that the fees are forfeited.

The only exception to this scenario is for cases of medical emergency, in which case – following substantiation of a refund request – Kamala Center will return fees for the unattended portion of the retreat (on a per diem basis, according to the rate of fees paid).

Registration is being coordinated by Kamala Yoga and Meditation Centre.

Contact:

email: centrulkamala@gmail.com or contact@kamala.ro

phone: + 40 731 324 241 or + 40 268 360 424

to make your reservation; registration is made in order of request.

More info: www.kamala.ro or www.hridaya-yoga.com.

May the Sacred Tremor of the Heart enlighten our lives!

49-Day Prathyabhijna Retreat

A 49-day Individual Silent Meditation Retreat, with the Personal Guidance of Sahajananda

Description

The “Prathyabhijna Retreat” is an invitation to all those who have the calling to take their existing meditation practice to a deeper level. It is an invitation for those with a profound aspiration to deepen their spiritual understanding and to stabilize in the consciousness of oneness.

The classical 49-day period begins with participation in a 10-day Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat led by Sahajananda, followed by 39 days devoted to intensive meditation practice in an individualized setting. During the weeks of solitary meditation Sahajananda will continue to provide personal supervision, guiding each practitioner through the retreat via written communication. In Romania, the retreat will start directly, without the 10 days Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, but Sahajananda will provide guidance.

This Individual Silent Meditation Retreat will suit seasoned Hridaya practitioners and adepts of other practices alike, and requires strong determination and an attitude of surrender to the Spiritual Heart, the Divine Consciousness.

The Stages of Unfolding

The program require attendance at a 10-Day Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat in order to be initiated into and to recall the main elements of Hridaya Meditation. After this initial period of intense guidance, the practitioner moves into a solitary setting, supported by Sahajananda with personalized practical advice.

Hridaya Meditation is the main, essential practice of the Pratyabhijna Retreat and is supplemented by other important techniques recommended in the Shaivist Tradition, Mahamudra, and Dzogchen. The purpose of all of these practices is to create the best conditions in order to recognize the Universal, unique nature of Consciousness.

Personal guidance from Sahajananda helps participants deal with obstacles that arise during meditation and to break through subconscious limitations and self-created boundaries, therefore taking their meditations and spiritual understanding to a deeper level and ultimately recognizing the consciousness of oneness.

The General Structure of the Schedule

During the period of solitary retreat, the suggested daily schedule includes a minimum of 8 hours of Hridaya Meditation, 1-2 hours of relaxed Hatha Yoga, and 1 hour of Pranayama.

The meditation practice mainly consists of:

The Classic Hridaya Meditation method

  • Awareness of the Heart Center
  • Awareness of the pauses at the end of inhalation and exhalation, revealing the background of Stillness
  • Self-inquiry using the question “Who am I?” (thus constantly transcending any identification with the body, sensations, emotions, thoughts, and mind), the Wonder of Pure Existence

The Four Main Attitudes of Hridaya Meditation

  • The gradual cessation of ordinary thinking – inducing mental void and finally revealing Stillness
  • The interiorization of sense energies into the Heart Center – Pratyahara
  • Sublimation of the energies into spiritual aspiration, love, longing, the Sacred Tremor of the Heart, and, ultimately – Ishvara pranidhana
  • Surrender – abandoning personal limitations and opening to the Supreme

(For those interested, a more detailed schedule can be sent in advance.)

Location 

The retreat will be in Kamala Meditation and Yoga Centre, Sanpetru, Brașov, România.

Participants will each be provided with their own rooms and private bathrooms, with meals delivered three times per day.

Price

Please contact centrulkamala@gmail.com for complete pricing information.

Information and Registration

If you are interested in joining us on this amazing spiritual adventure, contact centrulkamala@gmail.com.

Please note that we strongly recommend scheduling a minimum of one additional week preceding and following the retreat to allow for settling in and re-integration.

Testimonials

This intensive 49-day retreat has proven to be the most profound and highly transformative spiritual journey that I have consciously partaken in, in this lifetime. The preparatory teachings in the holistic Hridaya approach to spiritual development built a solid stage for countless revelations to dance in bliss and stillness. I believe anyone who feels a yearning to deepen their practice, should afford themselves the gift of this retreat. A continuity of practice over this seven-week duration has blossomed a depth and clarity unparalleled, its echoes seamlessly woven and integrated into fresh attitudes for experiencing life.” – Weston

During the 49-day retreat I had time to find myself…Disconnected from technology and major distractions, there was nothing to stop me from delving into the question, Who am I? I now have a clear understanding of myself and my connection with the universe. I am approaching life with a sense of tranquillity that has eluded me in the past. Thank you. I want to do it again!” – Janet

The 49-day retreat was an absolutely indispensable, fundamental experience for an adept of meditation who wished to go deeper into the revelation of the Self.

The retreat was pure grace. After taking more than 20 10-day retreats, I felt that it was my first real retreat, as though I had tasted an appetizer 20 times and finally received the main course.

To meditate alone in room was a completely different experience than being in a yoga hall with others. It gave me the opportunity to meditate long, uninterrupted hours without the subconscious worry of time restraints. I loved meditating throughout the night when all was quiet, creating the schedule that best suited my personal rhythm.  The sheer amount of time spent alone allowed a much more profound purification of the depths of my being. Every memory, life experience, contraction or pain seemed to surface, there was no hiding or pushing it away when left alone for that amount of time.

The meditations themselves were, of course, deeper than I ever experienced before. Without stimulation from the external world or any intellectual input, the right brain was allowed to dominate over the left brain, and the transcendence of the mind was more complete. I experienced deeper stillness and expansion than I could have ever imagined.

In terms of worldly applicability, I feel that something shifted permanently in this being, a more stable, higher perspective on reality. There were various insights that helped this personality in terms of patience and compassion for the world. I feel healed in many aspects, including psychologically and physically. The heart feels more open, with a naturally applicable desire to give love in the form of service to the world.

I can’t express in language how transformative and profound this experience was. I look forward to the next ones this coming year, and know this was only the beginning of a new phase on my spiritual journey. As someone who is prioritizing the revelation of the Self, these retreats are fundamental and indispensable. I highly recommend it to all who share an interest in the evolution of consciousness, healing the being and opening the heart through meditation.” – Tonya

I feel I am still integrating this forty nine day retreat, still trying to fins words for what happened. Never before have I gone so deep into the “nothing,” experiencing that there is nothing to achieve. Nothing special happened but this was so special! Thank you so much for giving this opportunity.” – Severin

There are no words to describe the forty nine days, though gratitude comes close. Overwhelming gratitude for this opportunity to be silent, alone and in perfect peace…in perfect availability to the Heart. This retreat has had profound effects on all aspects of my life, and I sincerely wish that many more people will have this beautiful and rare opportunity to go deeply into the Self in such a supported and harmonious way.” – Emma

Dark Room Retreats

“Is Kali, my Mother, really black?

The Naked One, of blackest hue,

Lights the Lotus of the Heart…” ~Ramakrishna

For centuries, meditation retreats in rooms completely devoid of light have been known to induce profound shifts in consciousness. Hridaya Yoga invites you to deepen your meditation practice by experiencing a private retreat in one of our Dark Rooms (Kaya Kalpa), suites especially prepared to admit no light. You may choose the length of the retreat, and we can provide meals and other support for your practice. Please email us for more information and to make a booking.

The Hridaya Yoga Perspective

Hridaya Yoga considers that darkness and the abyss are nothing to be afraid of, because who we really are is the very essence of Darkness and Light as well. There are not animalistic tendencies at the bottom of our being. Even if it might appear like this for many people, nirvana is there and the Supreme Self, consciousness, is the background of it. Sometimes the darkness of anguish or desperation or fear or death can instantaneously reveal pure awareness, nonconceptual bliss. And this is because there is a quantum leap between what seems to be the bottom and the top. The abyss is as much topless as bottomless.

This Pure Darkness will absorb many of our obscure trends, of our psychological “darkness,” and of our fears arising from the lack of awareness. As black holes absorb enormous quantities of matter, in a similar way, in the psychological domain, the darkness of transcendence can absorb our limited personal emotions and psychic residues.

In a Dark Retreat, as in deep sleep, the whole objective world disappears. But, it remains the Witness “surrounded” by nothingness. We are aware of this nothingness and eventually in this Nothingness, the Witness is revealed as the very nature of it. Then, it is still Nothing, but the Nothingness is not meaningless anymore, or just a lapse in memory, but is full awareness, the Witness.

The Hridaya Yoga Center’s Dark Room

Our center in Sanpetru, Brasov, Romania, features a well-appointed  Dark Room ideal for solitary retreats. It has a private bathroom, single bed, and an entrance hall where which we can deliver meals without allowing light to enter. We provide linens, towels, and can offer such yoga props as a chair, cushions, and a mat.

Rates

1-3 Nights: 30 euro per night

4-7 Nights:  26 euro per night

8-21 Nights:  24 euro per night

21-29 Nights:  22 euro per night

30+ Nights: 20 euro per night

Nightly rates include one consistent meal daily, and other can be established individually. Check-in is at 6:00 pm, and check-out is at 10:00 am unless other arrangements have been made.

Please email centrulkamala@gmail.com for more information or to make a booking.

Hridaya Retreat – Introduction

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat is a unique immersion experience which focuses on accessing our real and essential nature, the supreme and divine Self, atman, through an artful integration of meditation and yoga techniques. During the retreat, we address broad aspects of the Spiritual Heart, from a variety of traditions including esoteric Christian, Sufi, and Kashmir Shaivism. The atmosphere will be one of agape and strong spiritual support.

The Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat was created specifically to comprehensively and intimately understand what meditation is and to feel the amazing inner transformations which it brings.

The program aims to create an experience resembling a solitary retreat (such as in a cave) in order to provide an opportunity to reach deep states of consciousness, intense aspiration for the Divine, and highly focused interiorization for the awakening and blossoming of the soul, jivatman. This method is a unique integration of Advaita Vedanta, Sufism, Tantra, and Dzogchen.
 
In the advanced stages of practice, all paths of authentic spiritual traditions meet harmoniously and merge into the same ineffable Reality. During the Hridaya Silent Meditation Retreat, practitioners will be skillfully guided to this penetrating understanding where the search for meaning ends in surrender to the domain of revelation. No previous meditation or yoga experience is necessary as this retreat is designed for beginner and advanced meditators alike.

Cultivated Attitudes

This method is crafted to cultivate the following attitudes: 

1. An inner awareness of all sensory perceptions and emotions which will gradually become, through sublimation, an awareness of the Spiritual Heart;

2. The calming down of the mind (a state of peace of mind);

3. The polarization between the individual soul, jivatman, and the divine Self, atman, that is experienced as a state of very strong and profound aspiration and longing for God;

4. The evocation of death of the physical body as a way of transcending desires and egotistical tendencies;

5.The act of powerfully evoking and experiencing the mystery of God’s presence inside our Spiritual Heart.

 Methods, Techniques and Teachings

This retreat includes advice for guided meditation, lectures, and practical methods such as:

  • Ramana Maharshi’s method of introspection (Self-enquiry, atma vicara,using the question “Who Am I?”)
  • Techniques of stilling the mind using breath awareness
  • Study of the symbolism of the Spiritual Heart
  • Methods of Self-centering in everyday life
  • Advice for maintaining awareness of the Spiritual Heart, in the tradition of the Fathers of the Desert (from Christianity )
  • The Christian method of the Prayer of the Heart
  • A proper understanding of Advaita Vedanta’s fundamental principles
  • Methods of passing from individual consciousness to Cosmic Consciousness
  • The four fundamental aspects of the ineffable process of Revealing the Spiritual Heart
  • Daily special meditations on themes connected with Self-Revelation
  • Yogic methods that approach the issue of the Spiritual Heart
  • Poetry
  • Hatha Yoga sessions

 What are the purposes of this Retreat?

During the retreat, our aim is to inform you about methods for meditation encompassing, but not limited to, the unity of consciousness and Advaita Vedanta, thus leading to self-discovery of the Spiritual Heart. The system of meditation will focus on the methods developed by Ramana Maharshi, that of atma vicara, or more popularly known as the inquiry “Who Am I?”, as well as other complementary meditations and prayers.

 We aim to inform you about the practical and theoretical aspects of this methodology, allowing ample opportunities to directly put it into practice. In doing so, we hope that you will understand the underlying principles and value the purpose of meditation, thus reaping immediate benefits, and coming to love meditation as an essential part of your life.

You will learn some direct methods to pacify your mind and even to transcend it. When your mind is truly still and without any thoughts, and you transcend your ego, and you arrive at a place where you have no name, no social status, no relationships, no past, no future, no country, no spiritual attainment, and no lack of spiritual attainment. It is simply a presence of being. If a movement or a thought appears in this stillness, it is enveloped into the stillness, thus becoming stillness itself. It is as if your life becomes full and saturated with this peace and sacredness.

  1. You will also learn a way which comprises a vision, a spiritual understanding and a method of transforming yourselves. We hope most of you will learn to love meditation as a means for discovering Divine Reality, otherwise referred to as God, although these methods are beyond any specific ideas of religion or any theoretical concepts about God.
  2. We hope most of you will have some peak experiences about Supreme Reality, some special states of consciousness about cosmic love, eternity or the unity of everything, which can be evoked afterwards in daily life. This will help you in your quest to understand the reason for your existence.
  3. Our aim is for you to realize the importance of fully incorporating the Spiritual Heart in your life, beyond concepts, theory and philosophy. The path to the Spiritual Heart journeys through your soul, and therefore, an opening and intimacy of the soul will naturally occur from this. During this retreat, we will have the chance to venture deeper than the emotional psychic level of the Heart, into the Divine Reality which represents the most profound aspect of the Spiritual Heart. Ultimately, you will be compelled to love at a level which your ego usually prevents you from accessing through blockages such as attachments, ignorance, and other negative emotions, thoughts, and beliefs. To access this level of universal love, the obstacles challenging your personality and your ego must be transcended through accessing the Spiritual Heart.
  4. Our ultimate goal is for you to gain a profound understanding about the real nature of your existence and the nature of manifestation of Life and the Universe. More specifically, you will eventually achieve a coherent vision of Divine Unity, Advaita, and nonduality, which is the main revolutionary power, the main transforming idea of Jnana Yoga, and Advaita Vedanta, Taoism, Dzogchen, and Zen.

 Purification Effects from the Retreat

When we venture deeper than the surface of our egos into the realm of the Spiritual Heart, it is common that some purification on the physical, mental, or emotional level can occur. This is merely our bodies’ way of releasing old blockages, traumas, and negative emotions in order to access the deeper levels of the soul. Do not be afraid. Do not avoid the purification. However, don’t dramatize; don’t accord them too much importance. When those transformations eventually synthesize, meditation ceases to be boring, painful, or just a passing experience, and truly becomes a deep, joyful, and blissful experience. Depending on the individual’s level of practice and awareness, these transformations can be immediate or can take a longer time to process. However, change is inevitable and this transformation can be very stable and profound and can transform your life dramatically.

 Expectations

So, what expectations do we need to have from the Retreat? None! Because of the ineffability of what we really are, of what Divine Reality is, this change is a natural progression that comes from stillness, surrender, and, ultimately, from within our true selves.

The aim is to create the best conditions in which the Divine Reality will be revealed in our Heart. From doing this, we will experience some profound effects from these meditations. Many make the mistake of becoming attached to these effects and realizations.

However, do not cling to them. In the openness of our being, much more than this is happening, and we will learn to accept, surrender and be open to the ebb and flow of these realizations.

The Spiritual Heart, Our Real Home

Ultimately, the most important outcome of this retreat is for us to start becoming accustomed to centering in the Spiritual Heart. This means to get used and be aware of that quiet, peaceful, infinite, and eternal foundation of our being which cannot be perceived by the rational mind, but is the source of all inspiration, love, beauty, and spiritual life. Many sages have said that Spiritual Heart is our real home. So abandon yourselves, trust and enjoy this centering. The Spiritual Heart is your axis, your hub.

During this retreat, be at home, be present and integrate this practice fully for an intimate, meaningful experience.

The Spiritual Heart is the “meeting place” for those who wish to relate to life in a sacred manner.

To support the retreat, complete mauna (silence) must be maintained by all attendees. An atmosphere full of love and aspiration will be created in which participants can surrender to their real and essential nature.

We wish to advise you to be patient and open. If you decide to join this retreat we strongly advise you to make a commitment to yourself that you will stay for the entire 10 days and not leave until the retreat is over (with exception for genuine emergencies). With such a commitment and patience, even beginners will find the strength to overcome minor difficulties and obtain great benefits from the retreat. A retreat can help you understand the mind and life. This is a very valuable and rare opportunity for you, a special gift to yourself….

For some participants, the first several days can be full of restlessness, muscular fever and aches, physical and mental purification, or various spiritual tests. We invite you to commit yourself fully to this retreat, to stay fi rm and double your resolve in the face of such challenges. Try to make this event a very special opportunity for your spiritual transformation.

We are delighted that you can join us and we welcome you to this exceptional retreat!

Read also: The Retreat guidelines

Hridaya Retreat Guidelines

In order to create the preliminary conditions that facilitate our access to deep inner states, mental peace, and aspiration toward the Divine, it is necessary that certain rules be strictly followed for the duration of the retreat. These rules aim to create certain conditions that would resemble those a yogi experiences in solitude, for instance in a cave retreat. The retreat atmosphere has been evaluated carefully as to how it can best support the attendees’ spiritual efforts. The rules are part of this support. All hopeful participants must agree to abide by these guidelines and the consequences of noncompliance.

1. Voluntary Restraint

A meditation retreat is an extraordinary situation (although meditation is actually perfectly normal). A large group of people must live together in very simple conditions, while relating to each other in a completely new way. Here, we relate through the common experience of meditation, with all its pains and joys, discoveries and frustrations. For 10  days, our lifestyle is built around a common purpose rather than more selfish purposes promoted by the world today.
To accomplish this in harmony, we must agree on certain conventions. The most important are mindful silence, giving way to others, sticking to the schedule, and following instructions. This retreat is arranged as a serious opportunity for serious aspirants who wish for a very special and exclusive retreat experience. Please approach these guidelines with this frame of mind, with an openness toward protecting and supporting this atmosphere through your own agreement and cooperation. If you at first glance feel that the guidelines are too strict or too difficult for you, first consider your own state of readiness to participate. If you do indeed feel ready, then inspire yourself with the understanding that this retreat lasts just a few days in the big picture of life!

2. Mauna (silence)

Mauna is compulsory. The period of mauna will begin on the first morning, with the consecration of the retreat, and will end after the last meditation on the last day of the retreat. Absolutely no talking by participants will be allowed. For any real necessities, please inform the Retreat Coordinator in writing of administrative problems.

Much energy and ego goes into our speech. We say things that don’t need to be said, are silly, gossipy, or even harmful. This not only makes the world noisy, it makes our own mind noisy. If there is nobody to talk to we just chatter away to ourselves. In meditation, this can be an annoying hindrance. So we keep silent by not speaking or passing notes to each other during the retreat, in order to quiet our mind and maintain a quiet, peaceful environment for everyone. This can be difficult at times, but most people find it a powerful and wonderful experience. Many people travel from far away to Kamala Center because they cherish this silence, so we respect each other by maintaining the silence with mindfulness and wisdom. Even training ourselves to walk, move, and do things quietly leads to a calm and graceful experience.
It is also important not to judge or project opinions onto others. Developing self-discipline and a compassionate understanding for all things is part of the training.

3. No Use of Any Electronics or Media

Retreat participants are asked not to use CD players, MP3 players, radios, TVs, DVD players, the Internet, or computers for the duration of the retreat. Thus, there is to be no listening to the news or music, doing email, watching movies, etc.

4. Mobile Phones

No use of mobile phones is allowed during the retreat. They should ideally be left at home and off for the retreat’s duration. Participants should make a firm commitment not to use the phone for conversations, SMS messages, etc., for the duration of the retreat.

5. Reading

Reading is not allowed, not even of books of a spiritual nature. Please agree not to read during this retreat. Through the retreat practice, we aim to focus inward as much as possible, and reading can lead us away from strong interiorization, diffusing our efforts and experience in the process.

Keeping silent includes putting away books you’ve brought along or keeping them closed throughout the retreat. You will get plenty of information while you are on the retreat. Reading will be a distraction, possibly confusing you, possibly taking you away from the purpose of this retreat. You will have all the time you want to read when you leave. We also request that you stop writing, except for notes taken during talks and impressions of meditative experiences that you may record in your retreat journal. Letter writing and creative writing will take the mind away from our purpose here.

6. Sexual Abstinence

Sexual abstinence is mandatory. This really means celibacy and not Tantric continence! This point is obviously non-enforceable (we cannot check you, of course), but is insisted upon to reinforce the atmosphere resembling solitude that we are attempting to create for participants.

If you wish to join the retreat, please agree to abide by this requirement for the duration of the retreat.

7. Fasting

Fasting is not recommended for the entire duration of the retreat (although your own tapas of a weekly fasting day is OK), in order to maintain a high level of vitality and energy for meditation.

8. An Attitude of Solitude

It is recommended that you aim to cultivate a state of experience resembling solitude by agreeing not to: look at others, touch, hug, kiss, say hello (even nonverbally), smile at each other, etc. This can at times feel alienating and lonely for people who are very sociable and miss such simple human contact, but it will drastically help your experience of interiorization. In addition, the opening of the soul will offer you the opportunity to communicate in a much subtler way, through the language of Love. Your friends will still love you at the end of the retreat, maybe even more ….

9. Gender Segregation

Gender segregation – by which the men and women have different designated areas in the hall – is meant to keep sensory distraction to a minimum for participants during the retreat. The men’s side is the right side of the hall, the women’s side is the left side of the hall.

Kamala Center facilitates this point with separate retreat areas and segregated dining areas during any arranged mealtimes.

10. Dress

Participants should try to avoid attention to their own vanity and the desire to attract the opposite sex. We ask that women not wear makeup or perfume and dress discreetly and simply, and that men not display too much nudity. Please wear modest attire that is not too revealing.

The dress recommendation is not meant to stifle your creativity, free expression, etc. It is meant to form part of the atmosphere of consideration and mutual support we aim to cultivate during retreats. People could take the view that it is someone’s own personal problem if he or she is distracted from meditation by glances at members of the opposite sex, etc. However, this does not include an opportunity for a contribution of personal responsibility to this atmosphere through innocuous and simple behaviors we can all follow to help our fellow retreat attendees.

By illustration, when a Buddhist monk ordains, he takes a resolve not to have physical contact with women, including hugs with his own mother. He does not forsake his mother; he in fact loves his mother very much, but gives up hugging her in order to support the lay people’s faith in the monastic life. A lay person who saw a monk hugging a woman (even his mother) may lose some faith in his path. This is behavior undertaken for appearances to support the strength of the tradition. In another metaphor, visitors to monasteries are also asked to dress modestly to support the monks’ practice. Surely, there is no one who would knowingly like to mentally tempt a monk away from his vows and practice. In the same way, let us consider our retreat colleagues as serious aspiring meditators who can use our help and support to focus well during the retreat.

11. Photographs

Please limit your looking at photographs to those of spiritual masters and gurus only. Do not gaze upon photos of your friends, family, etc. in order to help yourself concentrate on transcendental states rather than worldly thoughts.

12. Cigarettes

It is not allowed to smoke during this retreat. Please commit to not smoking for the duration of these 10 days if you intend to join.

13. Meditation Notebook

It is recommended that participants record their meditative and daily experiences in a notebook. This retreat journal can help you not only to push through any challenging moments, but can serve to inspire you and provide a point of reference for your growth during the retreat period. A meditation notebook helps us to objectify our experiences and what we understand during meditation. It can bring inspiration to us even after the retreat. Reading it afterward can be a powerful support in daily life.

14. Following the Schedule

The schedule we follow is very moderate compared to some meditation retreats which start the day before dawn. The day includes approximately 6-6.5 hours of meditation, 1.5-2 hours of Hatha Yoga practice, and 2-2.5 hours of inspiring spiritual talks or Q&A.

Please agree to join all sessions and activities of the retreat if you will sign up for it.

15. Being Late

Everyone must be on time for all spiritual activities, as lateness is very disruptive and latecomers will not be allowed to join until the next session. Please plan accordingly. If you find yourself late for a meditation session, please do not sneak into the hall in the hopes that you will not be noticed or will not disturb others. Instead, please be considerate and wait without any undue noise, meditating outside the hall during the session and entering only during the next break.

16. Retreat Monitors

The Hridaya Retreat includes retreat monitors just like Zen monasteries do in order to discourage violations of the rules, motivate diligence and attention during the meditation sessions, and to help retreat participants feel supported.
Participants who are nodding/sleeping, positioned improperly, talking, entering late, using mobile phones, disregarding segregated areas, moving about, or being generally disruptive will be noted by the monitors on the session report and the retreat leader will be alerted. Monitors may make suggestions to participants for better practice or may remind attendees of various rules and guidelines. However, it is the retreat leader who will give warnings if they are or become necessary.

17. Warnings and Expulsion from the Retreat

Please be advised that certain actions constitute grounds for expulsion from the retreat. The following actions will constitute grounds for a warning:
– Absence from a retreat session
– Being late to a retreat session
– Falling asleep during meditations
– Disregarding segregated areas for men and women
– Talking, making other sounds, or being generally disruptive
– Listening to music, news, sending SMS messages, or talking on the phone
– Disregard for any other of the above mentioned rules.

We would like to re-emphasize that the retreat guidelines must be followed, for the benefit of all participants. Consider carefully before joining whether you truly accept the parameters of the retreat and its rules. If a person has already received two warnings, he or she will be asked to leave without hesitation or negotiation after the third infraction of the rules. No refunds will be given for those who choose to leave or are asked to leave.

In exceptional cases, a very disruptive participant failing to abide by the rules and requirements may be told to leave without the benefit of several warnings. In such cases, when the participant is willing to follow the rules, he or she may be welcome to return. Such decisions will be made solely at the discretion of the Retreat Leader and are non-negotiable.

Read also: Hridaya Retreat – Introduction

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