Yoga & Meditation Silent Retreat with Shivani

M.P

Date: 19-30 May 2015

The course:
I found the course very insightful on the spiritual side and on the level of body posture. I learned a lot about “to let go”. The energy flow or let say where the attention goes is something I fully realized during the yoga practice and meditation. I would recommend it to everyone who is looking for relief.

The teacher:
A true teacher; showing you the basics, corrective when needed, but with enough room for self discovery and development. I learned more about my body, my mind and therefore my life than I could have hoped for.

The teachings:
I very liked the attention for every detail with the explanation why they should be done in a certain way. I really enjoyed the classes even though they were not always easy. The connection of body and mind couldn’t have been made clearer.

The ashram:
I just love this place! What an amazing surrounding; monkeys, birds, beautiful trees and plants, the Mountain View etc. the yoga hall was well equipped with a gouges view at the garden.
The food and

Facilities:
The food was so tasty ; I really enjoyed every bite, wonderful vegetables, nice chapatti and delicious desserts. The room was good, so was the toilet and bathroom.

The people / Support staff:
The assistant was calm and understanding and very alert on the exactness of the asana. She always encouraged going deeper in the position, especially on a mental level. All the people were friendly and helpful and also respectful regarding the silent part of the retreat. They always made sure that everything is okay. Really good!

The atmosphere:
The atmosphere was calm and friendly in the shanty ashram!

The group:
We were just 5 people to begin with, but one person left after 3 days. It was a small group calm and respectful people. I not really got the chance to get to know each other very well, because we weren’t allowed to speak.

Other:
“If it’s bitter at the start, then it’s sweeter in the end” would be my conclusion for this retreat; “bitter” because my body and mind were so tense, that the first days weren’t easy for me. “Sweeter” because I learned that by letting go and observing the mind and body can really become more quiet and more peaceful and calmer. I will never forget this experience and I would like to thank you from all my heart. I wish you all the very best with the ashram, the yoga practice and foremost with your life.

Katerina Kankova

Date: 19-30 May 2015

The course:
The course overall was according my expectations. I liked the focus on the physical body alignments.

The teacher:
She has very good knowledge of the anatomy and the asana alignments. She teaches with enthusiasm and she likes what she is doing. That is inspiring during the retreat.

The teaching:    
Coming from tantric yoga, I was expecting to learn better alignment and focus on the physical body, and I am happy with what I learned here. I improved my knowledge and feel it works. I am missing the energy flow focus and sublimation of the energy, but I understand that it is not part of this style of yoga. Overall very good and I will use some parts in my daily practice.

The ashram:    
It is a beautiful space, the garden is fantastic and I would immediately start farming here! A great place for a retreat. I loved the river and the birds and the silence!

Support staff:    
Sushil is sweet and helpful; I felt I have been taken care of. I haven’t had much contact to anybody else, because the others were doing their best not to disturb us. Polina is very sweet and inspiring. I loved her relaxation classes. She is very kind and lovely, she will become a great teacher.

The atmosphere:    
It kind of felt like a family atmosphere in the ashram. It was really nice.

The group:    
We were such a small group that it felt like family. We couldn’t speak of course, so it was difficult to evaluate.

Others:    
Thank you for this retreat. I now have a very different view of yoga than before and it was definitely beneficial for me and improved my knowledge.

Sylvia Drimoussis

Date: 19-30 May 2015

The course:     
It was the perfect course for my stage of development in yoga as I have been practice for many years and I enjoyed the meditative aspect. Also it was my first time with Iyengar style and I loved the alignment and opening.

The teacher:    
Shivani is a great teacher, because she is knowledgeable, compassionate and clear. I found the learning very effective.

The teaching:    
I enjoyed the different approach to yoga, then I was used to and I appreciate the detailed explanations and therapeutic benefits of the style.

The ashram:    
I just loved it. Thank you! It was so amazing, beautiful and peaceful. It is clearly much love going into it, to make this a reality for others. I had a very comfortable stay with all I could wanted, plus more.

The food and Facilities:    
Generally everything was well taken care of it is convenient and well functioning. The food was also very good.

The people / Support staff:     
I found the staff very thoughtful, friendly and considerate. They were attended to our needs as much as possible. Polina is a great assistant teacher, we had excellent teacher in general! They were always helping with a smile and also knowledgeable and thoughtful. I appreciate their long hours of attention to our needs.

The atmosphere:    
The atmosphere is peaceful and very conductive to personal growth. It is a wonderful natural environment; the birds and the sound of the river etc.  and the friendly people made it the perfect place!

The group:    
I really enjoyed the smallness of the group. It was intimate and perfect for the process.

Polina Mischenko

Date: 19-30 May 2015

(Assistant Teacher from the March-April 2015 Teachers Training Course)

The course:    
The schedule was very comfortable, not too early to rise, not too late to have dinner. The practices were not hurried, which gave a relaxed and laid back atmosphere. There were a perfect combination and timings of asana, meditation, relaxation and silence.

The teacher:    
Shivani is super! Her manner of teaching; calm and taking her time, being present and herself highly aware, made me want to become more present, aware and calm. And I feel like I did! Even after so many weeks here with HIYC I learned great new techniques for improving my practice. Thank you Shivani!

The teachings:    
The teachings were exceptional and well balanced!

The ashram:    
The ashram gets more beautiful and magical every time I come here.

The food and Facilities:    
The food is delicious with the addition of papaya and curd for lunch my constipation went away.

The people / Support staff:    
Everyone is supportive as usual! Sushil is especially kind and helpful and just a wonderful person to know!

The atmosphere:    
The atmosphere is just serene!

The group:    
I felt the group was very lucky to be so small. In a larger group their needs may not have been met; they could have easily gotten lost in a larger group. Each one was highly unique and by the end I loved all loved them, especially their quirks / idiosyncrasies.

Misc:    
My sincere thanks to Sharat and Shivani for allowing me to assist in this course. Not only could I experience the teaching under a highly knowledgeable, interesting, talented and magical teacher (Shivani), but I was able to learn new techniques, tricks and strategies for teaching myself. I absolutely loved leading the relaxation sessions because it allowed me truly experience what it would like to teach this method and because I miss teaching and having students. Thank you Shivani for being open to my ideas and preferences, for answering my questions, for being an honest, straight forward and happy person. And I hope that I was truly of assistance to you.

Julia Brenner

Date: 30 May 2014

The course:    
I was looking exactly for a course with a combination of meditation, yoga and silence and that’s what I found. Just great and in a really lovely peaceful area in the mountains with a clearly daily structure and some free time to explore the nature in the ashram area.

The teacher:    
I liked the teaching style of Beata (Shivani). She has a huge wisdom about the topic and connects it with other interesting things. She speaks and explains very clear. The structure of the classes was great organized.  She brings a wonderful aura with her. If she explains something you are focused an while relaxation parts she has a calm voice, what guides you perfectly.

The teaching:     
As I explained the topics of the course were well structured and I could learn a lot new things what I will integrate in my daily life at home.

The ashram:    
I stayed in a single room, so nice designed and it seems to be very authentic. The area around and the buildings are wonderful, nice walking path, different flowers, plants and trees around with nice places for a rest, to meditate and to sit and read a book.

The food and facilities:    
The food was great; I have to say that I just eat the food, which they cooked during these 12 days. I didn’t eat any food from outside. The food was healthy and came in very different variations and types of ingredients. I think there wasn’t any meal we had twice. The facilities of the yoga hall are perfect to experience the work of Iyengar Yoga with the props and everything one needs to practice. I loved the space and the big hall.

The people / Support staff:    
The support staff was wonderful and lovely, they always helped to organize things. It felt like a second family, even though we couldn’t speak much, because of the silence rule. Thanks a lot to everyone!

The atmosphere:    
The atmosphere was really calm and peaceful in the ashram and also the people, who were there. It is a place and surrounding, where I could stay much longer.

The group:    
Even we didn’t talk you could feel, that there is a group feeling coming up. It was interesting to see that a lot of things were going on hand in hand without speaking. We cleaned up together, organized the props for everyone etc. we were a good mix of interesting people and characters from all over the world.

Other:    
I will recommend this place and especially the course to people. It was one of the best things I did so far. I will go back to Switzerland with a lot of energy and much more knowledge about my mind, body and soul!
Thank you!

Fidelma O’Liathain

Date: 30 May 2014

The course:    
Everyone on the planet should have a chance to do this course; the silent and the asanas and the environment with such truly calm and alive teachers.

Teacher and Teachings:    
I feel two times better in my body then I have the last 20 years. I also feel liked the connection between me and my body has been repaired.

The ashram:    
The ashram is completely beautiful, perfect to get back in touch with yourself in the right way, you feel like becoming a part of nature again. The birds and butterflies seemed very happy too.

The food / Facilities:    
Everything was basic but beautiful as well simple and clean. Having the water filter for everyone is a great idea. The Yoga hall is just amazing and very solid. Thank you to the chef! The Chapaties were great!

The people / Support stuff:    
I would like to say thank you to Sushil. The workers and support staff were calm, friendly and open to welcome you.

The atmosphere:    
The atmosphere is just peaceful; the sound of the river, the birdsong and the trees. It is great that there is no radio etc. in a silent retreat.

The group:    
We didn’t speak because of the silent, but everyone somehow co operated with each other in a beautiful way. The ones who already know yoga had the chance and space to go deeper into their practice and the ones who didn’t have experience also got the chance and space to learn it.

Other:    
Yoko’s Shavasana (relaxation), the guided ones were excellent!! Her voice is very good and it is as though she is talking to the muscles and to the whole body and it felt super relaxing.

Akiko Tagami

Date: 30 May 2014

The course:    
I attended the yoga meditation silent retreat.

The teacher:    
The teacher was very helpful and peaceful; he gave good directions and his smile made me feel relaxed. He is really knowledgeable.

The teaching:    
I activated a good balance and the poses were quite relaxing. The teaching was really helpful to learn about Yoga with props and how to take care of the body. The calm environment helped to gain an even deeper relaxation.

The ashram:    
The environment felt very good for practicing meditation.

The people / Support staff:    
The support staff was funny and really helpful. I liked the teacher’s sense of humor. I felt it is necessary for this kind of course.

The atmosphere:    
I liked the rain, its sound helped to calm down. The first 4.5 days I was a little afraid of this incredible nature, but then I felt just free within it.

The group:    
I felt lucky to be with these intimate people. Even if we didn’t talk, I could feel their warm hearts.

Bernadette Brittain

Date: 30 May 2014

The course:    
I liked the schedule of the retreat. The training was really nice and we had time to rest as well. I particularly came because the retreat is in silent and I enjoyed it very much. I found it tiring but also rewarding.

The teacher:    
I enjoyed the teaching very much. Beata (Shivani) has a really calm manner and inspires trust. She is challenging but supportive and very safe. I felt complete confidence in her. Also Yoko was a lovely safe manner. I was sorry she had to reach our awareness when we were tired in the afternoon.

The teaching:    
I found the yoga very relaxing and meditative, even though quite exhausting, it felt healing. The teachings are very holistic and therapeutic and safe. There was no judgment or completion. I liked the work with the feet and the way the teaching progressed.

The ashram:    
The ashram is beautiful and to be in this wonderful environment, the Mountain View was really inspiring. The yoga/ meditation hall had a beautiful view as well.

The food and facilities:    
Sometime I would have loved a bit more variety, but apart from that it was fine. I thought I have been lucky with my room; I had a very comfortable bed. I enjoyed being able to buy fruit and I loved the chai and the ginger and mint teas.

The people / Support staffs:    
The people were very nice. Sushil was like a smiling Buddha overseeing things. I found him very helpful; it was good to have him as a point of contact.

The atmosphere:    
It was a wonderful and peaceful atmosphere: just the roaming of the river and the birdsong. It was relaxing and meditative. The storms and winds added some drama.

The group:    
I liked the size of the group, this added to my enjoyment of the retreat. We had a lot of space physically, that transmitted to mental space. The group seemed to work well as a whole. I felt very good.