What is an Ashram – Concept of Sharing – 29 Sep 08


We had a wonderful ceremony in the late afternoon. We had representatives for people who requested a ceremony for their beloved ones. Many people were here today anyway because it is a special holiday. Children were also not in school because there were celebrations and ceremonies going on everywhere.

In the evening I had a lecture in which I officially welcomed the yoga students. The topic of my lecture in the evening was the Ashram, the life and the concept here and of course also the school and the kindergarten. There is actually a very interesting philosophy behind the concept of an Ashram. When you understand it you will enjoy it and appreciate it. We all live somewhere. We have a house and live there. Maybe you have been at many places and lived there. But how is it different to live in an Ashram?

I tried to explain it in short to give a picture of it. Ashram is, where you can share everything. Where you are open to share everything. Where you love to share everything. If you have a look in the western world you can see that it is really a big problem that people have the ego to own something. This is me and this is mine, my house, my room, my bed, my space, my car, my place. People like to put their label on something to clearly say: this is mine. Ashram life is open for everybody, for anybody.

But do not think it is a hotel. Hotels are also open for everybody and people pay and stay. Anybody can come to the Ashram, it is not a question of money. Nobody however can rent a room or get food by paying. Nobody can have the ego to say he is renting a room. Whatever we can share, we share with everybody. The students and workers here feel like home and also talk like this when they are out. When they talk about the Ashram they say ‘my Ashram’ just like you would say about your home. The Ashram is a big family.

Unfortunately the family concept in the west is getting lost. Everybody goes a separate way if it is brothers, sisters or parents. The culture or tradition is like this that the children leave home at a certain age and if they don’t, the parents even start worrying. Here the concept is very different and I am so blessed to have my grandmother here! I think the western world can and has to learn something from this concept: sharing. I have the same concept for the children of the kindergarten, too. I want to share my place, want to share my food and want to share my money with them. This is the concept of the Ashram. I want to invite everybody who comes to the Ashram to feel this and to share with us.

Click here to see pictures of the ceremony

3 Replies to “What is an Ashram – Concept of Sharing – 29 Sep 08”

  1. When you walk through the streets of India there are many places that call themselves ashrams,I think most of the are guesthouses. It is very much a place for sharing here at the ashram, you can feel it the moment you arrive.For everyone who lives here and then visitors you welcome.

  2. It is true that Westerners are not used to the kinds of sharing that are typical at an ashram. One thing that I was surprised and intrigued by when I arrived is the way in which food is shared. Ramona and the 3 brothers share their food off of one big platter. I had my own small platter, as do other visitors when they are here. I just thought it was so cute and lovely that a family would share off of the same platter. It makes eating a meal so much more close and intimate, and makes you want to share and not take for yourself. I love this aspect!