The Benefits of Seva
Seva is a yoga practice that literally means selfless service. Through the various seva programs, we offer training in the authentic spiritual teachings of yoga through the Integrative Amrit Methods developed by Gurudev Shri Amritji. This is a rare opportunity to study directly from a world-renowned yoga master who is known as a pioneer in bringing the spiritual teachings of yoga from India to the West.
The Integrative Amrit Method incorporates Patanjali’s 8 limbs of yoga in all aspects of life. You will learn how to practically apply the formal practice of asana, pranayama and meditation in your work life and personal life thereby transforming unconscious ego reactions into skillful conscious responses.
You will learn to return to the present moment where you are integrated and undivided, and what you say, do and feel are in alignment. Washing pots, answering phones, making videos, chopping vegetables and vacuuming rugs will take on new form. In the spirit of selfless service, every sheet folded can be a vehicle of transformation; every pot washed provides an opportunity to move closer to the Source of love by letting go of habituated conditions and judgments.
In addition to your studies with Gurudev, his students, and senior teachers, you will live among a community of thirty to forty staff and volunteers. Through the practice of seva, or selfless service, you will have the opportunity to apply your training and practice to work and interpersonal relationships.
You learn to apply a spiritual lifestyle based on the teachings and content of our lineage, and the classic foundations of yoga philosophy. You will learn a variety of practical skill sets, including; conscious communication skills, spiritual problem solving, personal energy management (self-regulation). You will also rotate through our various operation departments depending on organizational needs. This gives you opportunities and relationships to apply your developing personal skill sets.
Serving in this area involves weeding, mowing, planting, and a variety of special projects such as painting, moving furniture and assisting with general labor. May include light carpentry work, plumbing and general repairs.
Hospitality & Housekeeping
The housekeeping team serves an integral role in keeping our facilities a clean home for our guests. This includes cleaning bathrooms, bedrooms, the dining room and all common areas in addition to laundering sheets and towels. Interacting with our guests and addressing their reasonable needs ensuring their stay is comfortable.
Kitchen & Garden
The kitchen is a fast paced environment that serves two vegetarian meals a day. Service in this area includes food prep, dish and pot washing, general cleaning, inventory and kitchen management in addition to learning how to cook yummy vegetarian meals under the direction of our chef. Next to the kitchen we have several vegetable gardens on the property. These involve maintaining and turning compost piles, shoveling and spreading dirt and compost, weeding, planting and harvesting.
Administrative Office & Registrations
Serving in this area includes greeting visitors, giving tours, answering the phone, and assisting with compiling our program packets.
In our Volunteer Seva program you are invited to come for 1-3 months. Returning seva may participate for shorter periods (after completing a successful 1-3 month commitment.
During your Volunteer Seva program you will:
- Stay in dormitory-style shared accommodations
- Enjoy 3 delicious vegetarian meals a day
- Practice Amrit Yoga and Yoga Nidra daily
- Receive darshan with Gurudev when he is in residence
- Have the opportunity to attend selected programs, as your seva schedule permits
- Offer 6 hrs of daily seva, with 1 day off per week
- Participate in self-study, study groups, and mentoring
- Plenty of free time to practice, rest, connect in community, and more!
Areas of service will depend on the Institute’s needs and your skill sets. There are no additional financial compensations with this program.
Transformational Lifestyle Program
This option is available to those volunteers who wish to have more unstructured time for inward focus and rejuvenation than Volunteer Seva allows. The cost of this program is $600/month and the seva commitment is reduced to 3 hours daily. Areas of service will depend on the Institute’s needs and your skill sets.
Spiritual Lifestyle Program
The Spiritual Lifestyle Program is for those volunteers who wish to make a long-term commitment to their spiritual study and service at the ashram of over 3 months. A minimum of one year is required. The additional benefits for interns include:
- An assigned mentor for your advancing practice
- Enrollment in one Welcome Weekend program
- Receive a free core program after completing the 1-year commitment.
- Opportunities to assist in training programs
- A variety of new skill sets through our departments of operation
For those who wish to serve our community but are unable to be in residence at the ashram, we offer a number of ways to contribute based on your specific skills and interests. Please call the office to arrange an interview for this program.
- 6 am Yoga practice
- 7 am Darshan with Gurudev, on select days, when in residence
- 8:30 am Breakfast
- 9 am Seva Shift A begins
- 12:15 pm Yoga Nidra
- 12:30 pm Lunch
- 2:00 pm Seva Shift B begins
- 5:30 pm Dinner
- 9:00 pm Quiet time
- 10:00 pm Lights out, computers off, and sacred silence