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Yasodhara Ashram Newsletter – June

June 10, 2009 by Lightwaves

This month’s newsletter from Yasodhara Ashram contains updates from the Ashram, information on the Radha community and upcoming courses. If you didn’t see it in your mail box this month, and want to stay connected then subscribe now! If you are already subscribed, you can skip over this post and stay tuned for next month’s newsletter.

Click here to view the full newsletter with links to Radha centres and upcoming courses.

photo by Bjarke Oestergaard

June at the Ashram – the elephant ears are filling out along the boardwalks; forget-me-nots and buttercups are sprouting up in the lawns. Blossom petals are drifting around in the breeze, and tiny miraculous green cherries and apples have begun to appear in their place. The temple roof is gleaming even brighter in the sunlight after being thoroughly washed by some intrepid karma yogis in rapelling harnesses.

One of the fundamental teachings in eastern philosophies is that ‘change is the only constant.’ That aphorism is always being revealed to be true at the Ashram.

Things are changing on a deep level, as we try something new – karma yogi and intern managers of the different areas of work are taking on more of the day-to-day operations of the ashram, allowing the resident managers to bring more of a focus to the bigger picture and longer-term projects. Swami Saradananda has been working on pulling together timelines for these projects, some of which include the completion of the Divine Mother Room, work on the new website, Yasodhara Heights, building a new summer kitchen out of the old furnace shed, the carbon neutral project, fundraising & the circle of sustainability, archives, planning for this year’s AGM, Timeless Books’ moving into online publishing and print-on-demand, and planning for a Mandala house annex (whew!). This change has the added benefit of providing greater opportunities for longer-term karma yogis to learn, stretch and grow with the work!

The Ashram’s Carbon Neutral project has reached an important milestone: after about a year of pulling together facts and figures along with other karma yogis (notablyMonica Kvas and Diana Corbeil-Ndambuki), Gord McGee has submitted his report. This brings us to the stage where we can look at where we’re at in relation to our plan to become carbon neutral by 2013 (the Ashram’s 50th birthday), and begin to move forward from there. You can read more of the project details from Gord in his Lightwaves post Carbon Neutral – The Hidden Language.

Speaking of sustainability, Tim Tewsley has also recently written for Lightwaves about the process of designing ‘as sustainable as possible’ cabins for the Yasodhara Heightsproject. See his post, “Where the Intentional and the Practical Meet”

And you may be wondering, what’s been happening with our Zero Garbage Tapas? At last Saturday’s Karma Yoga meeting, Cy Scofield (who is in charge of the management of compost, recycling, and garbage) reported that the garbage produced by the Ashram, while not eliminated, has been ‘significantly reduced’ this month. His observation has been that most of the garbage consists of facial tissues and food wrappers. We’re planning a follow-up to discuss the learnings from the tapas and how to put what we’ve learned into practice.

What else is going on at the Ashram? Something is afoot in Sakti Villa – there is a palpable energy around the work going on there at the moment! Geoffroy Tremblay has returned to the Ashram and is working with a Sakti team on ‘digital development.’ This includes Timeless Books’ movement towards online publishing and print-on-demand, the expansion of Lightwaves, the introduction of ashram podcasts, and all sorts of up-and-coming ways to help the greater Radha community stay connected with the inspiration of the teachings. Stay tuned to Lightwaves for more information on the process and new developments as they come up.

And for those of you who are subscribed to Lightwaves, you have probably noticed that we are posting items a lot more often now! To reduce the amount of email notifications coming to your inbox, the Lightwaves team decided to replace the daily digest with a weekly Lighwaves update. We will still be posting items on a regular basis – If you’d like to continue to receive notification on a per-post basis, you can use our RSS feed. Gef has written a very clear & concise intro to RSS (Real Simple Syndication) to help us all become more familiar with it.

Along with our other excellent June courses, the Teen Program is coming up, June 28 – July 2. This is a special chance for teens aged 13 to 18 to come and experience the Ashram, and delve into the teachings of Yoga in a fun and uplifting way. So if you have a special teenager or two in your life, let them know about it!

And of course, June is the month of the Strawberry Social, an event much beloved and awaited in the local community. If you’re near the Ashram, you’re invited to come by on June 20 between 1pm and 4pm, to enjoy fresh local strawberries, a book sale, lively musical entertainment, and a warm community spirit. Click here for an appetizer – a slide show of last year’s strawberry social with music from Alanda Greene. Click here to download the pdf poster of the events.

Namaste and keep connecting in the Light, Claire

p.s. If you enjoyed this newsletter, share it with a friend (or two, or five) using our ‘send this to a friend’ feature!

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