A Mountain Sadhana | 14-23 Oct | Ellen Johannesen
"Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes. – Carl Jung
This transformative Yoga journey brings together the traditional daily practice of Ashtanga Yoga with Buddhist and Hindu teachings and visits to spectacular cultural sites, in the land and culture that helped to write the biography of the Yoga we know and practice today.
You will be able to deepen your Yoga practice with Ellen Johannesen, who has over 20 years of experience teaching and practicing Ashtanga Yoga. Ellen holds a Masters Degree in Buddhist studies and has become a local in Kathmandu after many years of living and working here.
The Kathmandu Valley natives have practiced Yoga and Tantra for hundreds of years, integrating these practices into their daily lives. The valley itself is a mandala of sacred sites: monasteries, meditation caves, temples and stupas. Several of these are on UNESCO's world heritage list and being present in these spaces is transformative and deeply moving.
If you feel called, then join us for what will be a life changing journey. We will practice Yoga in a Tibetan monastery, and visit the medieval city of Patan. We will trek through otherworldly landscapes at the foot of the Himalayas, and visit the holiest Buddhist and Hindu sites including Bouddhanath and Pashupatinath.
Journey with Ellen into Nepal's Kathmandu Valley, and discover the holy landscapes that cradle the origins of the practice of Yoga!
- 8 Ashtanga Yoga classes with Level 2 Authorized KPJAYI teacher Ellen Johanessen
- Daily meditation and philosophy classes and Ashtanga technique classes (alternating)
- Introduction into the study and practice of Buddhism
- Daily meals: full board at Neydo and Namo buddha Resort, otherwise as described in the programme
- Visits to Kathmandu’s most spectacular spiritual sites including Bouddhanath and Pashupatinath
- Stay in a Tibetan Buddhist Monastery
Ellen Johannesen started practicing Ashtanga Yoga in 1994 and holds a Level II Authorization from the KPJAYI Ashtanga Research Insitute in Mysore.
Ellen was one of the very first Ashtanga Teachers in Norway and founded the Ashtanga Yoga Oslo in 2002. Ellen is now an advanced series practitioner and a dedicated student of John Scott with whom she completed a 2-year YTT.
Ellen is deeply interested in Buddhism, and has lived for nearly 3 years in a Tibetan monastery in Bylakuppe, India. She later moved to Kathmandu, where she studied to become a Tibetan translator and interpreter, and completed a Masters Degree in Buddhist studies and translation.
Currently, Ellen teaches at the Pranayama Yoga in Kathmandhu and is a highly appreciated and popular teacher for both workshops and retreats in Nepal and in Norway.
We are thrilled to be offering a gorgeous Ashtanga Yoga Retreat 'A Mountain Sadhana' in Nepal's Kathmandu Valley with Ellen this October 2018!
Personal Links: Ashtanga Nepal
Imagine living in a stunning Tibetan Buddhist monastery or an ancient Newari farm house, set in the magical foothills of himalayan Nepal. Imagine waking up in the medieval city of Patan, or the lively Tibetan section of Kathmandu, Boudhanath. All the while, enjoying daily yoga classes, meditation sessions and philosophical talks with Ellen Johannesen, KPJAYI level 2 authorized Yoga teacher with a Masters in Buddhist studies. This transformative journey is your opportunity to deepen your understanding of Yoga at it's root, and to enhance your Ashtanga practice!
Daily morning Ashtanga Yoga self-practice assisted by Ellen, for practitioners working on the Primary, Intermediate and Advanced Series. Beginners will be individually assisted and lovingly introduced to Ashtanga Yoga.
The afternoon classes will be inspired by the day trips and excursions, and include meditation, a restorative practice, talks on various philosophical and technical aspects of Yoga, as well as pranayama (breathing). The philosophy lectures will introduce Buddhist teachings.
Day 1. Arrival. Transfer to hotel in Kathmandu, tour of Boudha stupa and welcome dinner
Arrival in Kathmandu. We'll pick you up from the airport and take you to your hotel in Boudhanath, the "Tibetan" part of Kathmandu. Here you'll have time to acclimatize and relax, take a stroll around the largest stupa in Nepal and soak up the lively atmosphere of neightbourhood. In the late afternoon we´ll meet up for a welcome dinner overlooking the lively Boudhanath Stupa.
Overnight Hotel: Shambaling, Boudha. Meals included: dinner.
Day 2. Exploring the spirituals hubs Boudhanath and Pashupatinath
After our morning Yoga class and breakfast, we will walk the back streets and visit some of the many monasteries in Boudhanath. If possible, we will meet a Rinpoche and receive a blessing for our journey! In the afternoon we´ll meet up for a tour to the sacred cremation Ghats and Hindu temples of Pashupatinath. This powerful place is also home of the local sadhus and Nath-yogis.
Overnight Hotel Hotel Shambaling, Boudha. Meals included: breakfast.
Day 3. Yoga retreat at Neydo Monastery
Morning Meditation, breakfast and departure to our Yoga retreat at the beautiful Neydo Monastery, a Tibetan Buddhist monastery perched on a hillside near the village Pharping. We'll have lunch and meet up in the temple for an introduction to Buddhist thought and a tour of the spectacular shrine room. At 4.30 PM we meet for our daily Ashtanga class. Dinner and evening meditation.
Overnight: Neydo Monastery. Meals included: breakfast/lunch/dinner.
Day 4. Yoga retreat at Neydo Monastery
After Yoga and brunch, we'll take a walk through the rice fields to one of the most sacred Buddhist sites in the valley. The meditation cave of Guru Rinpoche, the Asura cave. We'll climb further up to hang colourful prayer flags to ensure the success of our journey! Tea, late afternoon workshop and dinner follow.
Overnight: Neydo Monastery. Meals included: brunch/dinner.
Day 5. Yoga retreat at Neydo Monastery
After morning Yoga and brunch we continue with an Introduction to Buddhist philosophy and practice. Tea and transfer to the medival city of Patan. Here time is at your own disposal: You may choose to see an astrologer, have a massage, take a singing bowl workshop, or just chill in the colourful Patan Square. Patan has lots of great restaurants and there's much to explore!
Overnight The Inn. Meals included: brunch.
Day 6. Patan museum and Golden Temple
This morning, we'll visit some of the great sites of traditional Newari culture. The Newars are the original inhabitants of Nepal, famous for their skills in the arts, handicraft and architecture. Patan was one of three royal cities in the Kathmandu valley, each one with their own city square, temples and palaces. We'll visit the Golden Temple and Patan museum, which stores some of the finest sculptures of the valley. After lunch, we'll depart for Namo Buddha Resort. We arrive at dinner time to enjoy the fresh and locally grown food.
Overnight: Namo Buddha Resort. Meals included: breakfast/lunch/dinner.
Day 7. Yoga retreat at Namo Buddha Resort
After morning Yoga and breakfast, we'll walk to the nearby sacred site where the Buddha in his previous life offered his body to a hungry tigress and her cubs! Afternoon Yoga workshop. Dinner and evening meditation.
Overnight: Namo Buddha Resort. Meals included: breakfast/lunch/dinner.
Day 8. Yoga retreat at Namo Buddha Resort
Morning Yoga and breakfast. After breakfast you have some free time to go for a walk or simply relax in the beautiful surroundings. Afternoon Yoga philosophy workshop, dinner and evening meditation.
Overnight: Namo Buddha Resort. Meals included: breakfast/lunch/dinner.
Day 9. Kathmandu
Yoga and breakfast. After lunch, we transfer to Kathmandu. Settle-in at Tibet Hotel, Lazimpat, a quiet spot in the more touristic part of Kathmandu. Free time to relax or visit the busy hub of tourist shops and restaurants nearby.
Overnight: Tibet Hotel. Meals included: breakfast, lunch.
Day 10. Last day for shopping and sightseeing, departure
Morning Yoga and closing circle. After Breakfast, you'll have some free time for sightseeing, shopping etc. You may take a bicycle rickshaw around the center of Thamel or go visit the "Monkey Temple" at Swayambunath. We'll drop you at the airport for evening departure.
Meals included: breakfast.
Ashtanga Yoga is a transformative practice. It is a life-long journey in which we confront deeply rooted mental and physical patterns and work directly with our own limitations.
Ashtanga is an immeasureably rewarding practice as long as we committ to it: the truth isthat that we can all change! - and Nepal is a place that takes yogic practitioners very seriously.
The valley which for centuries has been the home of great spiritual adepts, is scattered with meditation caves and shrines dedicated to great yogis of the past. This is the place where many practitioners still spend months and years in solitary retreats and the perfect place to engage in deep transformative practice. Here we have the support of limitless sky, the vastness of the mountains and a huge and diverse spiritual community.
Example of daily program:
7.00 am - 9.30am: Morning meditation and Ashtanga Yoga assisted self practice (Mysore)*
11.30am - 12.30pm: Lecture: Introduction to Buddhist based Yoga philosophy, Buddhist art, religious myths and history of Nepal
4.00pm - 6.00 pm: Practice and Theory workshop alternating between:
a) Ashtanga methode and technique, the counted system, functional anatomy of asana practice.
b) Buddhist base yoga philosophy and practice: The foundation of Buddhist thought and its application to practice, meditation and contemplative practice sessions.
8.00pm -8.45pm: Evening meditation
*If you are completely new to Ashtanga, we recommend that you take a beginners course prior to this retreat and learn the standing asana sequence which will suffice to participate in the retreat where you will be safely guided deeper into the sequence by Ellen.
Neydo Monastery Guesthouse Tucked away in the lower Himalayas, amidst the most scenic landscapes, this guesthouse is a very peaceful and serene location alongside the Neydo Tashi Choeling Monastery.
Namo Buddha Resort, Kathmandu Valley. This is a beautiful, peaceful eco-resort situated in the Nepali countryside, 45 km East of Kathmandu, surrounded by farmland and forest, with a fantastic view of the mountains.
The Hotel Tibet Charming and spacious accommodations in one of Kathmandu’s most popular hotels in the heart of the city and near to shopping areas and restaurants.
Your Package Includes
- Transfer from Kathmandu airport to central Kathmandu (in shared vehicle)
- Transfers to the monastery and other sites and hotels during the retreat
- All vegetarian meals as described in the program
- Daily Yoga programme
The package does not include:
- Transfer to Kathmandu airport after the journey (easily arranged by your hotel)
- Meals not mentioned in the programme
- Speciality drinks and coffees at monastery and resort/hotel
- Flight to Nepal, Visa and Travel insurance (required)
Twin room: EUR 1250
Single room: TBA upon request*
(*single accommodation not available at Namo Buddha)
Here is the fine print for your booking:
- Check-in: October 14, meeting with the group at 4pm
- Check-out: October 23, by 10am
- Food is Nepali and vegetarian
- There is a limited number of Yoga mats available, if you cannot bring your own please let us know.
- Travel insurance is obligatory and your own responsibility
- 500EUR deposits are non-refundable
- Final payment is due August 20, 2018
- No refund or credit will be given for cancellations after August 20
- A 6% package price administration fee applies to all refunds or cancellations.
- It is possible to give your space to a friend, just inform us at least 1 week before the retreat
- Please ensure that your passport is valid.
- Make sure that you are aware of immigration/visa laws in Nepal.
- The organizers are not liable for any illness, delay or cost resulting from your failure to meet these requirements.
CONSENT AND RELEASE
By registering for this programme, you voluntarily understand and accept the following terms and conditions as set out below:
I am aware that participating in the retreat requires a certain level of fitness and general physical health. I acknowledge and voluntarily assume my responsibility to assess my level of fitness and the risks of injury that are associated with physical activity of any kind including any variety of yoga. I confirm that I shall retain all control over my activities at all times. I voluntarily assume full liability and accept the risk of harm, including physical injury and discomfort as a result of my participation in the activities in this programme. I will inform the teachers and/or assistants of any limitations or medical conditions that may affect my practice.
I, or anyone who could claim in my name or on my behalf, my heirs and legal representatives, do hereby voluntarily waive, release and forever discharge the organisers, from any and all liabilities for injuries, damages or death resulting from my participation in the activities during the course of this programme as outlined in the programme schedule or any activities outside of the programme and resort facility, and hold them harmless from all claims which may be brought against them for any such injuries or claims as aforesaid and all costs and expenses incidental thereto.
I agree that organisers reserve the right to accept or kindly decline the application of a participant at any time, to make changes in the itinerary whenever reputed necessary for the comfort, convenience, and safety to all participants. In the case that the event is cancelled or postponed organisers shall have no responsibility beyond the refund of money or expenses paid by the participant if the event cannot be re-scheduled.
I agree that organisers shall not be liable for any cost or expenses for any delay, change in schedule including "“ but not limited to "“ delays, missed flights, failure to comply with visa or health requirements of the city, re-scheduling, and/ or cancellations or overbooking of flights, loss, damage, or injury to property or persons including death, or expenses occasioned by any act of omission by any supplier providing services to any programme participant.
I understand that photos and video may be utilized for communications efforts. To that end, I hereby grant the organizer permission to record the name, likeness, voice, image and/or appearance on the above referenced date or dates of me and to use and publish the pictures, video and digital images and the like without compensation, and I waive any right to inspect or to approve any project that may be created using these materials.
- Step 1. Fill out the Registration Form
- Step 2. Get our email with payment instruction
- Step 3. Submit a 400EUR non-refundable deposit to secure booking
- Step 4. Get our confirmation email before you make any air flight ticket purchase- a minimum of 8 Registered Participants is required to run this retreat. In the very unlikely event of retreat cancellation, your payment or deposit will be refunded.
- A separate booking must be made for each person in a group, please note in the comment box if you wish to share a room with a friend. If not, you will share it with a friend you haven't met :)
- Full Payment is due by August 20, 2018.
- Any questions: please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org