Winter is the natural time for inner reflection – for renewing and strengthening our inner connections. The longer hours of darkness are conducive for meditation and study. It has been a pleasant winter at Ananda Gaorii. We are usually around 12 people – a mix of residents, guests and volunteers from different corners of the world (Brazil, Taiwan, Japan, the USA, Estonia) spending most of our time in the warm new building busy with our own studies but sharing cooking, cleaning, eating together, a little maintenance work, chanting, yoga and meditation. On Fridays we have been learning about different aspects of yoga philosophy – the eight limbs of yoga, chakras, cosmology, stages of spiritual progress, etc.. Although not a lot is happening and the flow is pretty laid back, nevertheless, there is a special atmosphere as we share thoughts and experiences about our own spiritual journeys and the various questions and challenges that they bring up. And all of this mixed in with the bittersweet rhythm of hellos and goodbyes as visitors come and go
– some permanently and some with promises to return again soon.