Most of the practices might have been known but being taught in an ashram environment and as part of a collective sadhana gave new input and information on myself (and consequently their effect). Thank you for that.
The most important lesson for me was the unexpected focus on happiness, emotion, pratipaksha bhavana, heart . . .
It made me realize a misconception I had, which might have been the reason my years in yoga classes had not really affected my lifestyle. I wrongly expected things to change by themselves just by sitting on a yoga mat for 4-6-10 hours a week. Happiness was never part of my ‘yogic dictionary’.
Self-observation and courage for acceptance were my main ‘goals’, but no attempt was made to reverse negativity or focus on positivity. Now I realize happiness is a choice and needs my active participation and mental reprogramming. This ‘power’ I realized I have is the greatest gift.
I found the satsangs and the meditations on the review of the day and the pratipaksha bhavana especially helpful in creating a positive mental environment which I try to hold on to.
Lastly, distinguishing pleasure and happiness has not always been clear, as at first, reverting from pleasure brings a small degree of sadness. Swami Niranjan's definition made me realize a lot about my life and free time. I found seva and especially the evening programs very good examples on how one can direct all the awakened energy in a healthy way and most importantly, find ways to fill up one's time that bring joy and sharing without attachment and introversion. Thank you from my heart for this amazing experience.
Swami Atmaratna, Australia
The biggest learning for me has been a precisely defined method to take ownership of my own happiness. The biggest mental unease has been my habit of planting entities outside of my control, including God, and blaming them for all my problems. That happiness is a choice and that I can choose intelligently every moment with awareness to be happy has been not just a learning, but also the biggest gift that I shall carry forward with me from this course.
For this a heartfelt thank you to Bihar School of Yoga and especially Swamiji for making me experience this simple wisdom: my most cherished treasure can be with me through an intelligent application of my discriminating powers. I have made the sankalpa to be aware of what thoughts I feed into my mind, what I can eliminate and what I can retain through a daily practice of observing my mind to be responsible for my own happiness. With gratitude.
Devjyoti, New Delhi
I decided to attend the Yoga Chakra course to deepen my understanding of yoga and to achieve inner peace despite all the stress, anxiety and tensions that surround me in daily life. I got all the answers I sought:
— to be aware of the thoughts that come up in my mind;
— to cultivate the witness attitude and not be involved with the thoughts;
— to guide my thoughts towards positive behaviour;
— to observe and study myself which is important and involves effort not just intellectual analysis;
— to keep correcting myself if I want to improve my lifestyle.
I learnt that change can be achieved by fine-tuning prana and mind and increasing positive thinking. Thank you very much for organizing the course.
Jignasu Ananda, Slovenia