Journey of Joy Retreat 2013

We began this Journey in Delhi, all arriving at the Airport.

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We all received our handcrafted gifts before starting our Journey towards Agra to see the majestic beauty of the Taj Mahal.
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In Agra, we took in the wonder of the architectural masterpiece of the Taj Mahal.

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After some unforeseen delays with flights and later elephants crossing the highway, we continued the journey to the "Birthplace" of Yoga at the foothills of the Himalayas and the banks of the Holy Ganges River at Rishikesh.

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After a few relaxing days on the banks of the Ganges, we headed east to Gangtok. High up in the mountains of the Himalayas, a mere 50 miles from China, we soaked in the serenity of this Sikkim region that is heavily influenced by Buddhism. We meditated in a monastery, chanted with monks, and practiced Yoga in the crisp mountain air. We ended the final day with a very special Trataka meditation in front of a candle.

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Later on the Journey, a few hours from Gangtok, we headed to the famous town of Darjeeling. This classic English town was the epicenter of the Tea cultivation by the British in India. We enjoyed a relaxing ride on a steam engine Toy Train through the city and enjoyed cups of authentic Darjeeling Tea in the city.

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Our final dinner was enjoyed in a beautiful resort which was previously a palace of a Maharaja. We all reflected on the experiences and revelations within ourselves on this Retreat. The highs and lows and the moments we will all hold in our hearts for years to come.

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The next morning, the last full day of the Retreat, we all gathered together for our last Yoga session of the trip which turned into one of the most highly energetic and powerful sessions for all our attendees. We enjoyed live music courtesy of Jacki Torres, connected deeply with our last cards, and flowed with our breaths... rooting intentions close to our hearts.

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Our Inaugural Journey of Joy Retreat was a resounding success! We want to thank all those involved who made this Retreat possible!

Mahesh from Mondial Trails(link to http://www.mondialtrails.com/) kept all our transportation and lodging logistics organized for us throughout our Journey. Including an exciting adventure of running at 5am to catch a train to see the Taj Mahal!

Nithan Chandraskar was incredibly helpful keeping all our attendees informed on details each day. He kept everyone comfortable and also helped immensely with photography and videos during our events.

Vani was instrumental in organizing all the items we handpicked and curated for our attendees for this trip. From the handwoven Yoga bags to the printed itinerary on handmade paper, she found the highest quality artisan crafted materials that were all made with love.

Mithra Amaran was a savior in the weeks leading up to the Retreat; finalizing logistical details closely with Mahesh and making sure everyone had everything prepared and packed before leaving for India. Throughout the Retreat she worked with Mahesh to make sure all logistics stayed on track and that everyone was comfortable with accommodations while the Retreat was going on.

There were many others that were helpful in making this Retreat possible and we're so grateful for their contributions!

Stay tuned the next couple of weeks as we post personal reflections from the attendees of our inaugural Journey of Joy Retreat!

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Ashok Amaran

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calendar November 9, 2013

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