SERVICE IS JOY - Ananda

SERVICE IS JOY

Service is Joy Level 1 and Level 2
How to spiritualize daily life

This two-level program was created specifically for those who want to experience "living" Ananda. No matter your age, where you come from or what your religion is, what matters is that you want to genuinely experience a simple way of life combined with lofty ideals!

The lifestyle at Ananda is based on meditation and service. This combination makes the community experience a true path to spiritual growth, giving you the chance to work on your strengths and limitations, and find joy and harmony every day of your life. What is Karma Yoga? We can define it as "dedicating your daily work, including thoughts and activities, as a spiritual offering to the Divine."

One of the basic principles for success in the practice of karma yoga is to realize that it is not so important what you do, but how you do it. In fact, any work can be of spiritual benefit, bringing us personal growth and joy, if it's done with the right attitude.


Namasya and Durgadas, the teachers of this course, will help you to develop, in a practical way, the right approach towards work, colleagues, family and all aspects of spiritual life. In addition to Karma Yoga, living in this spiritually uplifting environment, you can learn and put into practice the other main paths of yoga:

Raja Yoga—the path of Self-realization —through the daily practice of meditation, Ananda Yoga, and the Energization Exercises created by Paramhansa Yogananda;

Gyana Yoga—the path of wisdom, achieved through the practice of discrimination and self-awareness, taught during lessons and moments of group sharing;

Bhakti Yoga —the path of devotion —through chanting and practicing the presence of God in daily actions.

There will also be lessons and group sharing on subjects of mutual interest. In addition, four days a week you will begin your day with a satsang, (a joyful and inspiring informal meeting) with your coordinators. Additional meetings may be scheduled according to the needs of the group.

The lessons will be fun and practical! This combination of practices, lessons, and satsangs will help you joyfully to experience the principle behind these inspiring words by Yogananda: "Life should be understood primarily as service." This year we will concentrate on the practice of Paramhansa Yogananda's Energization Exercises. 


Service is Joy - Level 1

Useful information

Requirements for participating in the program:
 
Everyone is welcome to participate in this course, but it is fair to inform you that “Service is Joy” is a very involved and challenging program! Please include your phone number on the registration form, and you will be contacted by Durgadas or Namasya, coordinators of the program. They will explain the guidelines of the program, and will answer your questions. They can help you to determine if this course, which focuses deeply on the practice of the presence of God through service, is right for you. Otherwise, they can suggest other courses that could be more useful to your personal and spiritual growth.

Where will you serve?
Your practice will be centered mostly in the kitchen, helping with meal preparation and / or in cleaning the kitchen. You could also help prepare the guest rooms or serve in the garden. If you have special skills as a translator, using computers (graphics), or in the field of maintenance, you may carry out a part of your service specifically that area (you can include these skills in your application form).

How will you serve?
This program includes 4 hours per day of karma yoga, distributed over 5 and a half days, for a total of 22 hours of service per week.
 

The first time you sign up for “Service is Joy Level 1”, the minimum period is 2 weeks and the maximum is 3 months, depending on a monthly evaluation of the program coordinators. After that, you can book for shorter periods, of 5 days or more.

The lessons and meditations are an essential part of the program, and participation in these activities is obligatory. During holidays or special events, your daily or weekly schedule may vary.

Schedule of activities

Wednesday's schedule is special, because it is dedicated to a group work day:

7:00-8:45 Meditation in the Temple of Light
8:50-9:30 Breakfast with your coordinators
9:30-13:00 Special karma yoga project with coordinators
13:00-13:30 Meditation
13:30-14:30 Lunch with the coordinators
16:30-19: 00 Energization Exercises, Ananda Yoga and meditation together
19.00-19:30 Sharing the day's experiences

Every other Saturday there will be a pilgrimage to the shrines of St. Francis.

The following is your approximate routine during the other days of the week; remember you will have a day and a half free of service.

 

Time

Activity

Notes

6:00 – 7:00 (optional)

Energization and Ananda Yoga

Certain mornings (see weekly guest program)

7:00 – 8:45

Long meditation, or lesson for beginners in the temple.

Every day

8:45 – 9:15

Breakfast

Every day

9:20 – 10:00

Group meeting and sharing

Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday

10:00 – 13:00

Period of karma yoga

 

13:00 – 13:30

Meditation

Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday

13:30 – 14:30

Lunch

Every day

14:30 – 17:30

Period of karma yoga

 

16:15 – 17:30 (optional)

Ananda Yoga

Every day except Friday and Sunday

17:30 – 19:30

Energization, yoga, and guided brief meditation

Friday and Sunday

 

17:45 – 19:30

Long meditation or lessons for beginners in the practices, in the temple

All other days of the week

19:30 – 20:00

Dinner

Every day

20:00 – 21:30

Period of karma yoga

 

20:30 – 21:30

Film or kirtan

Every other Saturday



Where you will stay

Since we ask all participants in this program to stay at Ananda, we recently inaugurated a new home for “Service is Joy”: Seva Loka! It is located just a few steps from the Centre of Ananda and has a beautiful view! Even in the off season, space in Seva Loka is limited, so you might be lodged in the dormitory of Villa Gioia, instead. In the summer there is also the alternative of staying in a tent (you'll need to bring your own), and the dormitory is always an option.

If you have a specific need to stay outside of Ananda, contact Namasya Durgadas, and they will help you explore how to make this work. In any case, this will not affect the price of the program, which will remain unchanged.


Cost of the program
In addition to the weekly cost of the program there is a one-time registration fee of 50 Euros. The weekly fee of 150 Euros 150 includes accommodation, meals, lessons and activities, the book The Art and Science of Raja Yoga by Swami Kriyananda, and photocopies of other educational material.

Program availability
The program is active year round, with a minimum number of 3 participants, and limited to the number of available rooms.

Can you attend other courses during the program?
Participation in other courses offered at Ananda is not part of “Service is Joy level 1”. However, you can participate in classes on your free day, depending on prior consent of the teacher. If you want to attend a specific course, such as Kriya Preparation, you can do it before or after the program, but not during.

Attitudes and responsibilities
We ask that you respect the Ananda guidelines, that is, to be open and to be willing to study the teachings that are offered here, as they will help you to get the most benefit from this program. In addition, you are asked to maintain a responsible attitude and to participate enthusiastically in all activities, including group meditation, or sadhana, and the lessons that are part of the program. The coordinators and the many residents of Ananda will be happy to help you make your stay pleasant and inspiring.

Who are the teachers / coordinators?
The teachers / coordinators of this program are Namasya and Durgadas. Both have lived at Ananda for several years, and as disciples of Paramhansa Yogananda, have many years of practical experience on the spiritual path. They are very enthusiastic about this residential program, based on karma yoga, and it is a real blessing for them to help others experience the harmony, simplicity, beauty, and joy that can be found in everyday life.


Service is Joy - Level 2
Useful information

Requirements for participating in the program: This program is open to all those who have already participated in Service is Joy Level 1 or similar programs in other Ananda communities around the world, but inany case, the approval of Durgadas and Namasya is required. This is the natural continuation of a spiritual journey in the direction of taking discipleship and Kriya initiation. It gives you the opportunity to experience what it means to live, serve and participate in spiritual practices along with the entire community of Ananda.

Where will you serve?
By now you're an expert karma yogi! Therefore, your practice will take place in all areas of the guest retreat and the community, according to your skills and where your help is needed.

How will you serve?
This program includes the practice of karma yoga 6 hours per day, distributed among 5 days, for a total of 30 hours of service per week.

Durgadas and Namasya remain your reference points: If “Service is Joy Level 1” is active, you are joyfully welcome to join in the meetings, and surely there will be time in your schedule to allow you to participate. You'll be like a “big brother” and you can help the newcomers, by supporting them in their sharing and in their service.

When “Service is Joy level 1” is not active, you will have a meeting once a week for sharing, with Durgadas or Namasya; you will always be supported by them and by the whole community!

Where you will stay The "Living Ananda" programs require that you stay here with us, in order to benefit from the high vibrations of Ananda. You may stay in the dormitory in Villa Gioia, in Seva Loka or in other community housing. In the summer there is also the alternative of staying in a tent (you'll need to bring your own), and the dormitory is always an option.

If you have a specific need to stay outside of Ananda, contact Namasya Durgadas, and they will help you explore how to make this work. In any case, this will not affect the price of the program, which will remain unchanged.

Cost of the program
The monthly cost of the program is € 250, including room and board; participation in the “Service is Joy Level 1” meetings, when you are free; yoga and sadhanas in the temple morning and afternoon; and evening activities.

Program availability
The program is active throughout the year, for a maximum duration of 12 months. Check with Namasya Durgadas for availability of accommodation for the period that you want to be here.

Can you attend other courses during the program?
Participation in other courses offered at Ananda is not part of “Service is Joy level 1”. However, you can participate in classes on your free day, depending on prior consent of the teacher. If you want to attend a specific course, such as Kriya Preparation, you can do it before or after the program, but not during.

Attitudes and responsibilities
We ask that you respect the Ananda guidelines, that is, to be open and to be willing to study the teachings that are offered here, as they will help you to get the most benefit from this program. In addition, you are asked to maintain a responsible attitude and to participate enthusiastically in all activities, including group meditation, or sadhana, and the lessons that are part of the program. The coordinators and the many residents of Ananda will be happy to help you make your stay pleasant and inspiring.

Who are the coordinators?
The coordinators of this program are Namasya and Durgadas.



  • FROM 01/11/2018 TO 30/11/2018
    Live in the heart of Ananda! This program was created specifically for those who would like to have an experience of meditation and service at Ananda. It doesn't matter how old you are, where you come from, or what your religion is; the...
    DATE: 01/11/2018
    SUITABLE FOR: FOR ALL
    LANGUAGE: ITALIAN ENGLISH
    PRICE OF THE COURSE: For week 150,00 €
  • FROM 01/12/2018 TO 31/12/2018
    Live in the heart of Ananda! This program was created specifically for those who would like to have an experience of meditation and service at Ananda. It doesn't matter how old you are, where you come from, or what your religion is; the...
    DATE: 01/12/2018
    SUITABLE FOR: FOR ALL
    LANGUAGE: ITALIAN ENGLISH
    PRICE OF THE COURSE: For week 150,00 €