What does it mean that Yoga Center Amherst is “aligned with the vision for Auroville”? It means we believe that humanity’s current ecological, economic, social, and spiritual crises call for a new consciousness rooted in an experience of true unity, and that Auroville is and has been a laboratory for the emergence of this new consciousness.
Image Source: auroville.org
Auroville is a spiritual city in South India inspired by Mirra Alfassa (the Mother) and Sri Aurobindo, an Indian national hero and revolutionary-turned-yogi. Their Integral Yoga seeks to harmonize the essential aspirations of all yogic schools and approaches, while acknowledging that what we understand today as evolution is an embodiment of Nature’s aspiration to grow from separation and alienation toward wholeness. They described a spiritual evolution that underlies, inspires, and contextualizes the collective evolution of life and mind on Earth. And they insisted that the Divine is in everything and is everything, hiding sometimes but always seeking its own self-discovery. We as humans are fully part of Nature’s movement, fully immersed in the flow of self-seeking and re-union which is yoga.
Auroville today is the site of many different lines of experimentation into technologies, material and spiritual, that aim to form the bridge between our present world and the world of the future. Yoga Center Amherst seeks to bring this spirit of curiosity, experimentation, and hope to our community of practitioners in Amherst, MA.
We are the home of Embodyoga, which is in itself an experimental and innovative approach to the ancient study of yoga. We use yoga asanas and practices from the yogic traditions as templates for inquiry into the nature of self: material form, body systems and innate intelligence, life force, and mind. We also approach the outer form of the business with the same spirit of deep inquiry. Our operations, structures, and strategies embody our commitment to serving the divine Breath that moves through life, and we hold this commitment to be an important aspect of our yoga practice.
We aim to actualize the inherent connection between Embodyoga and Auroville by weaving the wisdom of Integral Yoga into our study and teaching of Embodyoga, and by leading immersions, retreats, and spiritual adventures based in Auroville. The first such retreat just finished, and we are in the process of planning for 2017.
We welcome students from all spiritual and cultural traditions who aspire to an integral approach to yoga, spirituality, and life: an approach in which all life is yoga and nothing is left out or compartmentalized. We see yoga as a practical science of the mind and body, a devotional approach centered in the heart, and a unifying of the eternal with the time-bound and the infinite with the material. And so we believe that not just our asana practice, but our inner work, our outer work, and every aspect of our lives is yogic practice. If you are inspired by our intentions and aspirations, please contact us to find out more about how to support this collective effort.
Image Source: auroville.org
More About Auroville:
Auroville wants to be a universal town where men and women of all countries are able to live in peace and progressive harmony, above all creeds, all politics and all nationalities. The purpose of Auroville is to realize human unity. Its charter decrees that:
- Auroville belongs to nobody in particular. Auroville belongs to humanity as a whole. But, to live in Auroville, one must be a willing servitor of the divine consciousness.
- Auroville will be the place of an unending education, of constant progress, and a youth that never ages.
- Auroville wants to be the bridge between the past and the future. Taking advantage of all discoveries from without and from within, Auroville will boldly spring towards future realizations.
- Auroville will be a site of material and spiritual researches for a living embodiment of an actual human unity.
The Mother envisioned “a place which no nation could claim as its own, where all human beings of goodwill who have a sincere aspiration could live freely as citizens of the world and obey one single authority, that of the supreme Truth; a place of peace, concord and harmony where all the fighting instincts of man would be used exclusively to conquer the causes of his sufferings and miseries, to surmount his weaknesses and ignorance, to triumph over his limitations and incapacities; a place where the needs of the spirit and the concern for progress would take precedence over the satisfaction of desires and passions, the search for pleasure and material enjoyment.”