Indian Meditation Tours - Rejuvenating Through Alternative Therapies
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India is known for its ancient arts of healing and alternative therapies. At a time, when the world is turning to India for traditional solutions for their problems, it is time that we realise our own worth. Meditation and Yoga have been the country’s USP and attracts a lot of tourists from all over the world into the country. From Ayurveda to Naturopathy to Yoga and Meditation, India has followed its own indigenous methods for healing and medicinal practices.
Yoga and Meditation are two sides of the same coin and both are incomplete without each other. Together they generate a harmony between the mind, body and soul. However, while millions have found yoga and meditation to be highly effective in providing relief from stress, there are others who are still sceptical about the efficacy of this ancient healing practice.
Given the list of advantages of Yoga and Meditation, you may want to change your opinion, if you weren’t convinced earlier. There are several centres throughout the country for Yoga and Indian meditation. Here are some of the most popular spots where you can enjoy Indian meditation techniques.
Popular Resorts and Centres for Meditation Tours of India
1. Osho Meditation Resort, Pune
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The Osho Meditation Centre in Pune is one among the renowned organisation forMeditation tours of India. The campus is extremely beautiful and is spread over 28 acres. Lush greenery, black buildings and marble pathways are characteristic of the Osho Meditation Centre. Hundreds and thousands of people from different countries gather at the Osho Meditation Resort to find their inner self and rewind and relax.
The programmes at the Osho Meditation Resort are specifically designed to the hectic and stress-laden lifestyles that people lead these days and are highly effective in relaxing the mind and body and relieving it of all tensions.
The Indian meditation programmes offered at the Osho Meditation Centre include Osho Multiversity Programme, The Daily Meditation Programme and Work as Meditation Programme.
Under the Osho Multiversity programme, different types of meditation techniques which utilise the best of therapies from the East and West are used to relax the mind and body. Furthermore, meditative therapies, Sufism, Zen, Tantra, martial arts, creative arts and esoteric sciences are combined together to help the mind and body heal naturally.
The programme is available in a time duration ranging from 1 hour to 3 weeks. All courses at the Osho Meditation Resort are held in English. However, translators are arranged for non-English speaking individuals. Usually the courses are from 9.30 am to 4 pm but special extra night sessions are also held occasionally. The Osho Dynamic Meditation is an integral part of all courses and is regularly held at 6 am. The Osho Kundalini Meditation and Evening Meeting Meditations are held at 16: 15 and 18:45, respectively.
Under the daily meditation programme, a number of different Indian meditation programmes are conducted in the world’s largest meditation hall. The programme includes the Osho Dynamic Meditation which is a five stage meditation programme that includes deep breathing, catharsis etc.
A different meditation is conducted every day. Meditation techniques such as the Osho Nataraj Meditation, Osho Mandala Meditation, Osho Whirling Meditation, Osho No Dimensions Meditation, Osho Chakra Breathing Meditation, Laughter Meditation etc are the different technique employed under this programme. Other techniques that are used to provide relaxation to individuals include the Osho Vipassana Meditation, Osho Nadabrahma Meditation and Osho Kundalini Meditation.
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Osho also conducts residential and nonresidential Work as Meditation programmes. The Living In Work as Meditation programmes are highly popular and under this programme, participants become a part of the daily working of the resort and are able to enjoy the benefits of Yoga and Indian meditation by staying at the Osho resort.
The programme is usually available for a period of 2 to 3 months. Under the non-residential programme, an individual works eight hours a day on the campus. This programme is available for a minimum of 2 weeks.
2. Tushita Meditation Centre, Dharamshala
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Nestled in the picturesque Himalayas, the Tushita Meditation Centre aims at providing a friendly and conducive atmosphere for rejuvenation and healing through meditation. A large number of people interested in Indian meditation tours from all over the country and the world visit Tushita to learn more about meditation, the teachings of Buddha, Buddhist philosophies etc.
The centre conducts intermediate level course and group retreats for those having some experience of meditation. The centre also has regular drop-in sessions and other facilities to help travellers who are in town only for a very short time. These drop-in guided meditations are held every day of the week, except Sundays. The session is conducted by an experienced practitioner.
The Intermediate Courses offered at the Tushita Meditation Centre offer a rare opportunity to study Buddhist philosophies, specific texts and books with experience teachers. These courses are meant for those who have a fair understanding of the concepts of Tibetan Buddhism.
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At Tushita, a certain form of teaching called Lam Rim is practiced. For beginners, Tushita organises Introduction to Buddhism courses, to help bring you up to speed. The intermediate meditation programme includes discourses by experienced teachers and sessions of guided meditation.
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The Tushita Meditation Centre offers four to five group retreats for Buddhist practitioners every year. These retreats are specifically designed for dedicated practitioners and there are certain prerequisites for joining the programme. The practices under the group retreat programme include Kriya Tantra, study of the Eight Mahayana precepts, followed by sessions of Lama Chopa. Short courses aren’t very regular at the Tushita Meditation Centre but whenever a programme is decided, the information is put up on the website.
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Drop in sessions are conducted for visitors throughout the week. No registration is required for such courses. All you need to visit the Meditation centre and express your interest. All drop-in sessions are conducted on the basis of Dana. Tushita has three large meditation halls which you can use to practice some self meditation, if they are not being used by anyone else at that point in time.
The Tushita Meditation Centre was founded in 1972 by Lama Thubten Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. The centre was built in response to the growing demand for a retreat centre by the Lamas students.
3. Ashiyana Yoga Retreat
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The Ashiyana Yoga and Spa Village is situated in the Mandrem beach in the northern side of Goa. Surrounded by picturesque beauty, the centre is a great place for a peaceful and rejuvenating break from the chaos and cacophony of the cities. The Ashiyana Yoga and Spa Village offers a number of programmes such as retreats, Yoga Holidays, Yoga Teacher Trainings and Modules in their premises.
The latest season is from October 1, 2013 to April 30, 2014. Ashiyana offers special retreats and trainings under the name Ashiyana Detox Rejuvenation Retreats, Ashiyana Trainings and Modules and Ashiyana Yoga Retreats.
Under the Ashiyana Detox and Rejuvenation Retreats, an individual is made to sit and consult an ‘Elemental Yoga Therapist’ who diagnoses the problem of the individual and offers a solution. Since all people are different, their bodies too react in different ways to stress and tensions and hence each and everyone requires a specific treatment for healing.
The techniques used for this course is completely focussed on helping an individual heal naturally in body and mind with the help of expert advice and meditation techniques. The experts at the Ashiyana Yoga and Spa Centre will help you to understand your body’s language so that you can understand your body’s needs clearly and take care of it accordingly.
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The Ashiyana Yoga and Spa Centre also offers other Indian meditation courses namely the Sublime Well Being Detox and Rejuvenation Retreat with Dr. Shikha; Yoga and Ayurveda Detox with Dr. Yamuna and Urban Antidote Rejuvenation Retreat with Ashiyana’s Yoga Therapists. These courses are available for time duration of 7, 14 and 21 days. Ideally, the longest programmes are the most beneficial for the body and mind as it helps them recover completely.
The Ashiyana Yoga Centre and Spa Centre also offers Yoga Holidays with lots of counselling from experienced doctors, meditation experiences and massage and holistic treatments. The resort also has Goa’s only natural swimming pool. The usual activities conducted at the Ashiyana include meditation, chanting, karma yoga, barefoot boogie, walks, Suryanamaskars, get-togethers and workshops and you can drop in anytime to join in the activities at the resort.
4. Shreyas Yoga Retreat, Bangalore
The Shreyas Yoga Retreat in Bangalore is a picturesque resort surrounded by lush greenery and a tranquil atmosphere. It is the ideal destination for a quick retreat from the madness of the cities. For those seeking Yoga and Meditation retreats, the Shreyas Yoga Retreat is the best place to spend a quiet and peaceful vacation.
The Shreyas Yoga Retreat is fully equipped with an open and spacious Yoga and Meditation Hall, beautiful machans and meditation huts, an open air amphitheatre, a library well stocked with books on Yoga and Meditation, an infinity pool, Jacuzzi and steam room, an Indoor Yoga Hall and Conference Room, a gym, a jogging trail etc. The landscape is beautifully adorned with lush green trees and plantations to ensure that every person gets the peace and quiet that he is seeking.
The Shreyas Yoga Retreat offers Yoga Retreat Packages and Silent Retreat Packages to those who are seeking a quiet and peaceful break to rejuvenate their body and mind with the goodness of meditation and Yoga. The Yoga Retreat is held between April to September and October to March. The package has been designed for those who seek to delve deeper to understand the ancient tradition of Indian meditation and Yoga.
The package has been carefully structured by combining the asanas of Yoga such as Pranayama, Yogic Kriyas, Yoga Nidra etc with sound meditation and chakra shuddhi, to enable you to derive holistic benefits. Along with these, you can also enjoy refreshing massages and the opportunity to practice Karma Yoga. The package is available for a period of 3 to 14 nights.
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The Silent Retreat Packages are also conducted from April to September and October to March. This is a 7-day Mouna Retreat, which aims at allowing you to introspect and establish a balance in your life. Before the beginning of the retreat, every participant will be given a detailed wellness consultation regarding health, food, specific daily requirements, meal timings etc. The retreat will be structured to suit your comfort levels and the staff at the centre will be at your side if you need support of any kind. Even the food served during the retreat period is prepared with ingredients that will keep the mind and body calm.
5. Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Resort, Coonoor
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The Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Resort is situated in Coonoor in Tamil Nadu. The resort is recognised for its exemplary services in the field of Ayurveda, Yoga and Meditation since 1950. It is located in the Nilgiri mountains and hence is surrounded by splendid natural beauty. Lush green covered slopes of the Nilgiri mountains and the perfect weather make the Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Resort an ideal location for a peaceful retreat.
The resort provides personalised medicines, yoga and rejuvenating Ayurvedic treatments, herbal baths, nature walks and meditation sessions to help a person heal completely. The resort provides treatments for diseases and conditions such as alcohol and smoking addiction, anaemia, asthma, fungal infections, Parkinson’s disease, kidney stones, Hepatitis, gout etc.
The Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Centre offers various packages to suit the needs and requirements of every visitor. Some of the packages that the centre offers include Ayurveda and Yoga Rejuvenation Programme, Weight Loss, Rejuvenation, Yoga and Meditation Programme, Panchakarma Detoxification Programme, Yoga Kaya Kalpa Programme and Advanced Therapy.
The Ayurveda and Yoga Rejuvenation Programme includes a daily rejuvenating Ayurvedic massage and Yoga to help in mental and physical healing. The Weight Loss, Rejuvenation, Yoga and Meditation Programme includes natural weight loss massage therapy, weight loss yoga, diet, meditation and nature walks. The Panchakarma Detoxification Programme includes complete detoxification, purification, cleansing and rejuvenation therapy, Yoga and meditation.
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The Yoga Kaya Kalpa programme includes anti-aging, age reversal and re-energising Ayurvedic therapies. Advanced therapy includes advanced techniques such as Pizhichil, Shirodhara, Navarakizhi, Shirovasti, Marma treatments for various diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, back pain, paralysis etc.
The centre also offers certification courses under Yoga Teacher Training, Ayurveda Therapist Training, Ayurveda Therapist Training and Nutrition Course. The Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Centre also offers opportunities for free consultation with its experts. The experts at the centre include highly qualified doctors, therapists, efficient pharmacists etc.
The centre has an in-house Yoga guru and also a visiting Yoga guru. Apart from the treatments mentioned above, the Ayurveda Yoga Meditation Centre offers specialised beauty treatments, Panchakarma detoxification programmes, Yoga Kaya Kalpa, Ayurveda speciality for haemorrhoids, eye therapy, advanced therapies for depression etc which makes it one of the best Indian meditation tours in India.
6. Yoga Vidya Spiritual Retreats, Karnataka
The Yoga Vidya Spiritual Retreats is situated in Karnataka. It is run by a group of young spiritual teachers who are deeply passionate about the ancient arts of healing practiced in India millions of years ago. They employ different techniques such as Yoga asanas, meditations, Ayurveda solutions, detox programmes, kriyas and pranayama to help you balance your life energy better for a peaceful and healthy life. The Yoga Vidya Spiritual Retreat offers Beginners and Advanced courses.
The beginners courses consist of retreat programmes that cover all the basic practices of yoga and meditation. The experts from the Retreat Centre will also introduce you to the basics of Ayurveda and Patanjali. These sessions are usually 7-day residential programmes.
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The advanced programme is currently unavailable, but usually includes intensive Yoga detox programmes. The programme is usually held for 10 days and consists of intensive pranayamas, kriyas, nasal cleansing, Panchakarma and lectures on Yoga.
7. Ananda Kriya Yoga Ashram, Pune
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Among the popular Indian meditation tours is the Anand Yoga centre in Pune. It is run by the Ananda Sangha, which has its presence all over the world. The Ananda Sangha follows the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, who emphasised on self realisation as a direct inner experience of God.
It was found in the United States of America about 40 years ago and has its presence across 16 countries in 6 continents. The meditation exercises offered by the Ananda Sangha have been taught by the direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda, Swami Kriyananda. The practices are non-sectarian and are designed to address the problems that people face in their daily lives.
Ananda offers several meditation and Yoga packages. Some of the packages offered by Ananda include the Kriya Yoga, Learn a simple technique online, Ananda online course on self realisation, Meditation and Kriya Yoga classes at Ananda Sangha and Free Meditation Support. Kriya Yoga is a special meditation technique that accelerates human evolution.
There are certain pre-requisite for receiving this knowledge. You can know more about this form of Yoga through Ananda. Ananda also offers to teach you a simple meditation technique online which will help you reduce stress levels and maintain inner peace at all times. All you need to do is register and start learning. This particular technique is highly effective in case of corporate employees and students. The founder of Ananda, Paramahansa Yogananda, described self realisation as a direct experience with God. You can take an online course on self realisation through Ananda.
The Ananda Kriya Yoga Ashram is situated on the outskirts of the city of Pune. At the Yogashram, devotees stay and work together to propagate Paramahamsa's ideologies and philosophies. The retreat offered by the Ananda Kriya Yoga Ashram serves as a guest house for those who wish to learn more about Paramahamsa's philosophies and the Ananda Sangha.
The Yogashram also offers great opportunities for volunteer work. If interested, you can spend a week, a month or several months amidst the picturesque beauty of the Sahyadri hills and help in setting up the first residential community in Paramahansa Yogananda's native land.
8. Isha Yoga Centre, Tamil Nadu
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Isha Yoga Centre is spread over 150 acres at the foothills of the Velliangiri Mountains. Surrounded by the picturesque beauty of the Nilgiri Biosphere, the Isha Yoga Centre provides a peaceful and serene atmosphere for Yoga and meditation. The centre offers four major paths of Yoga- jnana or knowledge; karma or action; kriya or energy and bhakti or devotion. The Centre has a Spanda Hall, a garden, a 64,000 sq feet meditation hall etc. The Isha Yoga Centre offers Introductory Programmes and Advanced Programmes.
In the Introductory programmes, techniques such as Inner Engineering, Hatha Yoga and Isha Yoga for Children are taught. The Inner Engineering is a 3 to 7 day intensive programme which is available in a traditional class setting and even online. During the session, participants are guided through meditation and also taught the Shambhavi Maha Mudra.
The Hatha Yoga is a 21 day programme where different asanas and postures are taught to participants. The postures align the human body with the cosmic and allow the body to receive all goodness from the natural elements. This is essential in maintaining the balance of vata, pitta and kapha. There are five distinct practices offered in Hatha Yoga- Upayoga, Angamardhana, Surya Kriya, Yoga Asanas, Bhuta Shuddhi.
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The advanced programmes offer meditation techniques such as Shoonya Meditation, Bhava Spandana, Samyama. The Meditation programme is a four day intensive residential programme and combines the Shakti Chalana Kriya and Shoonya meditation to stimulate the release of physical, mental and emotional harnesses and lead the soul into a greater state of well-being. The Bhava Spandana programme a 4 day and 3-night residential programme offered to those who have already learnt the Shambhavi Mahamudra. This is an advanced technique of meditation and allows the soul to transgress beyond the shackles of the body.
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The Samiyana is an intensive eight day programme that is conducted at the Centre and has been designed by the Sadhguru. This advanced technique allows the body to free itself from the shackles of karma and reach a heightened state of consciousness. This meditation technique purifies the body and mind and makes it ready to receive higher energy.
9. Kalari Kovilakam, Kerala
The Kalari Kovilakam is the Palace of Ayurveda and is situated in the beautiful state of Kerala. The original palace of the Kalari Kovilakam was built in the 19th century. The building has now been renovated and is one of the most popular Yoga and meditation and Ayurvedic treatment centres in Kerala.
The Kalari Kovilakam offers several Ayurvedic treatments for skin care, body care, illnesses etc. It is also the seat of ancient meditation and Yoga practices. At the Kalari Kovilakam, trained instructors can give you an insight into the ancient healing practices and alternative therapies that existed in the country, years ago. At the Kalari Kovilakam, the Bihar school of Hatha Yoga is practiced. The Bihar school of Hatha Yoga is a gentle yet powerful form of Yoga that can be blended well with other forms of treatment.
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In Hatha Yoga, there are different postures and breathing exercises that are taught to the participants. The afternoons at the Kalari Kovilakam are reserved for Yoga Nidra, which is a special form of meditative technique that gives the body of an individual deep relaxation.
10. Art of Living Ashram, Bangalore
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The Art of Living Foundation is probably the most recognised Yoga and Meditation centre offering various progammes and meditation tours of India. Headed by Shri Shri Ravi Shankar, the Art of Living is known for its satsangs and breathing techniques that have given a new life to many.
It was founded in 1981 by Shri Shri Ravishankar and operates globally in 152 countries. The Foundation offers various courses of Ayurveda and Yoga for people of different age groups. The Ashram in Bangalore is a spectacular monument and is one of the most popular among the Indian meditation tours.
The Art of Living offers Yoga exercises for beginners and experienced people, teaches different Yoga postures, shares knowledge of Patanjali Yoga Sutras etc. The Art of Living organises workshops where breathing techniques, yoga postures and wellness techniques are taught.
In the Yoga exercises for beginners package, a person is given step by step guidance in doing some very basic Yoga exercises such as asanas, pranayama, etc. The instructors and trainers at the Art of Living are extremely compassionate and approachable, which makes the process even easier.
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The Ashram also offers sessions on Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. You can even subscribe a sheet with instructions from the website. The Ashram also offers tailor made meditation programmes to address the concerns of different programmes. At the Art of Living Ashram, there are meditation programmes for better relationships, meditation for women, meditation to help you deal with emotions, meditation programmes for parenting toddlers, meditation for caregivers etc.
These specialised meditation programmes are essential to break free from all stress and tensions and bring the body and mind at peace. For instance, the meditation programme for parenting toddlers is aptly designed for those who are having a hard time not getting frustrated and angry because of sleepless nights and wet diapers.
The meditation programme will help you control your emotions better, learn new ways of parenting, learn to communicate better with your baby, manage things well at home without getting hassled etc. Similarly, the meditation for women programme has been designed keeping in mind the kind of problems women face in their daily lives.