MY PERSONAL MAINTENANCE - 4 day in AOL Bangalore Ashram
Last week, I have chosen to spend four days in a residential course at Art of Living ashram in Bangalore. It was a different and refreshing experience; I have learnt some new things and also it made me to experience the past. Let me narrate my experience.
COURSE: The course were a combination of Yoga, breathing exercise, stretching and meditation. The class starts at 6am in the morning and ends at about 830pm in the night, with two long breaks (breakfast and lunch) and couple of small bio breaks. This 14-15 hours day was long, but not tiring. If similar meeting was to happen in office for four days, there will be numerous breaks for refresh, may this course itself is meant for refresh, so why refresh breaks?. “If we do our work with love and energy, we can work long with less breaks”
Most of the courses were done with eyes closed, it means we don’t have to worry about how others are performing and no inhibition on how others perceive our performance. The learning I take here is “ have less of distractions for effective performance”
The toughest part (at least for me) of the program is “SILENCE” – yes, we were not expected to speak for 3 full days. When my children ask, what I do at work, my response used to be “I keep speaking and get paid for it” , from there to “no talk” for 3 days was difficult and I could managed with some exceptions (one call made). “Dare to do something different”
Among many types of programs, we were also asked to do some creative drawing in about 10 minutes. It was amazing to see many creative work, this is mine ! “I think everyone can be creative, age no bar.”
ACCOMMODATION: The room was not equipped with 9” mattress, foam pillows, shower with luxury toiletries, climate control, flat screen with WIFI, etc. The room is small non AC, 4 people shareable, hard single beds with thin mattresses with shower facilities. I used to stay in similar type rooms when I started my career, it was nice to go back to that experience. The rooms are clean and fit for purpose. “Luxury does not guarantee satisfaction, but fit for purpose and basic expectations will”
FOOD: The food served were not 45 items, 5 course meals; it was good, hygienic, single course meal (like rice, sambar, vegetable), thrice a day. There were no coffee, snacks in between. I was bit surprised on how I managed without caffeine for four days. “Light on stomach is heavy on energy” .
SEVA (SERVICE): The course also included doing Seva for about an hour a day. I did spend time in kitchen (vegetable cutting), garden and model village. It is very different experience to do work in mass kitchen (believe they do 10,000 meals a day). “It is good to do some work on the ground once in a while as a service (I am not talking about as a service in IT)”
I really felt it was a good maintenance (like car) for me, both mind and body. I think it will help for individuals and corporate go for maintenance once in a while.