Learning to Accept and Adapt

Swami Shashwatananda Saraswati

When I interview the students before their BYB course starts, I ask, “Why do you want to learn yoga?” Most students answer ‘to become a yoga teacher, a yoga guru or to go abroad to teach yoga’, some reply that they were told by friends or teachers to go to a yogashram and learn yoga the proper way, the real yoga vidya, the authentic yoga. Very few answer that they came to learn yogic lifestyle or ashram life.

After admission to the course, for a few weeks it is very tough due to the timetable and hard work. Their lifestyle at home is totally different to the simple ashram lifestyle. The students have to try hard to adjust to the ashram. Some ask why there are no servants in such a big institution, or why sannyasins work so hard, or why there is so much karma yoga, but slowly when they realize the importance and the purpose of ashram lifestyle, they enjoy it and start to learn.

Their most important query is about Swamiji. Will we meet him? Will he teach us? Will we have his blessings? After the first satsang with Swamiji, we can see the impact it has on their behaviour and attitude to karma yoga. It is totally different and very positive.

Some students come back for further yoga vidya training and to maintain their connection with the ashram.