Back in 2005, after graduating from college and working multiple jobs to save up money, I embarked on a 10-month trip abroad. This journey took me to New Zealand, Australia, Southeast Asia, and India. And it was on this trip, while traveling in India, that I first immersed myself in the practice of Yoga.
I went to an ashram in northern India, and spent two weeks living an ashram lifestyle. Waking up before the sun, beginning each day with meditation, chanting, breathing practices, and yoga. In the afternoons we attended teachings to learn the yoga philosophy behind the practices, followed by a second yoga practice. And in the evenings we sang, chanted, and celebrated together. This experience transformed my life. It was there, at this ashram, that I discovered the healing power of yoga, and became committed to sharing this wisdom with others.
While I was in India, I fell in love with the diverse culture and the people. I spent a month in Dharamsala, home of the Dalai Lama, teaching English to a Tibetan monk and learning about Buddhism and Tibetan culture.
Since my time in India, I’ve dreamed of taking people back there with me, offering them an unforgettable, life-transforming experience. I’ve wanted to integrate my love of yoga with my love of travel, and share both with others.
And now it seems that this dream is coming closer to being a reality…
Earlier this year, I was connected with Lauren and BJ of Insight Travels with the opportunity to host some retreats with them. There are many options, but the one that stood out to me the most is an opportunity to bring a group of people to Ladakh, in Northern India.
Ladakh is one of the places I spent time when I was in India. As part of the Tibetan plateau, it’s culture is more Tibetan than Indian. The people are genuine, kind, and peaceful. High up in the Himalayas, the land is some of the most amazing scenery in the world. I’ve never seen stars like I saw in Ladakh. And the monasteries in this region are breathtakingly grandiose and ancient. Lauren and BJ even have connections that would allow us to stay at a monastery on the Indus River, learning meditation from Tibetan monks and practicing yoga in an ancient prayer hall.
Nothing is set in stone yet, but I’d love to know…are you interested in exploring this place with me, possibly as soon as next summer (2015)? If you are, please leave a comment below, or send me a message!
And check out some more amazing photos of Ladakh here, courtesy of BJ.
Pictured: Likkir Monastary in Ladakh, 2005 (top left). Attending teachings with the Dalai Lama in Ladakh, 2005 (middle right).