Pilgrimage to India
Every January, Devaji and the sangha travel to India to sit at the feet of Beloved Arunachala & The Holy River Ganga. The reverberations of this annual pilgrimage are felt continuously and invite the potential of a deeply rich and sacred transformation. You are lovingly invited to join this inner and outer journey into the One Heart.
"Thou dost root out the ego of those who meditate on Thee in the heart, O Arunachala!"
-Sri Ramana Maharshi
Our journey begins at the foot of Ramana's Master, the holy hill Arunachala. More than just a small mountain, Arunachala is the living manifestation of the Hindu god Shiva. Its stirring presence pulls at the hearts of all those who long to be free. For many, it evokes the purest of devotion not felt in the life prior.
Arunachala is at the epicenter of the town of Tiruvannamalai in the state of Tamil Nadu in Southern India. The sangha will travel together from San Franscisco airport on December 27th, 2017 to Chennai where a bus will be waiting to take us to Tiru. You are most welcome to join the traveling group or travel alone and meet us there if you prefer. We will land at Suddhananda Ashram, a quiet sanctuary which is located approximately 6 km from Ramanashramam. The ashram provides lodging to suit all budgets. All rooms include three daily vegetarian meals as well as coffee/chai in the early morning. Our time at Arunachala will begin with two public satsangs which will be offered at Ramana Towers in Tiru. A two-week retreat at Suddhananda ashram will then begin on January 2nd, 2018. This retreat will consist of twice daily sessions each beginning with a silent meditation followed by satsang with Devaji. The ashram is conveniently located on the quiet side of the mountain with its own direct access to the inner path. Often, sangha members will set out in the early morning for walking meditation and silent prayer on the mountain before formal satsang begins.
"The waves belong to the Ganges, not the Ganges to the waves. A man cannot realize God unless he gets rid of all such egotistic ideas as "I am such an important man" or "I am so and so". Level the mound of "I" to the ground by dissolving it with tears of devotion."
Following our time at Arunachala, the group will travel to the embodiment of the Divine Mother, the Holy River Ganga. As She pulls us into her wild embrace, we will continue our journey into the Heart with ten days of retreat. Because of the way the silence and space deepens over the course of retreat, you must have attended the retreat at Arunachala in order to join us at the Ganga.
Our pilgrimage will take us to the foothills of the Himalayas, just outside of Rishikesh, in the state of Uttarakhand in Northern India. We will safely land in what many sangha members call paradise: our retreat home, Anand Lok. Nestled in the jungle just north of the city, on the banks of the river, this exquisite center offers breathtaking views of the Ganga and sits directly across from the sacred cave of Vashistha. Three daily vegetarian meals are provided by a world-class chef who makes Anand Lok his home. A short path takes you to the shores of the river. Many choose to wade and bathe in its healing waters. Some prefer to sit on the banks and feel its powerful presence in the heart. As in Tiruvannamalai, our ten-day retreat will consist of twice daily sessions beginning with silent meditation and followed by satsang.
The group will travel back together to San Francisco on January 27th, 2018. Some often choose to stay on in India and visit the area. Whichever way the wind takes you from there, you are forever held in the loving arms of Arunachala and the Ganga.