Yoga-Pilgrimage to Nepal
14th – 27th October 2019
With visiting yoga teacher Sybil Foster
This yoga pilgrimage to Nepal will begin at the Neydo Monastery in the area called Pharping, in the South Western corner of the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. In this beautiful monastery, surrounded by rice fields and pine tree forest and with big views overlooking the Kathmandu Valley, is where our sessions of mediation and yoga will take place. After having settled in for the first few days, we continue our journey to Namo Buddha, another sacred site in the Kathmandu Valley. We stay at the lovely Namo Buddha Resort where we can enjoy fresh vegetables from their organic farm. After spending a few days here, the yoga pilgrimage continues to Phablu in the foothills of the Himalayas. We spend the first few days in Phablu, doing a one day hike up to the beautiful Chiwang Monastery, tugged into the cliffside outside of Phablu.
After this, we begin our hike through the upper valleys of Chiwang and Ringmo until we reach the nunnery of Thubten Choling on a hill nestled into pine tree forests and prayer flags. Here we spend three days, taking part in the lives of the nuns, before making a loop back to Phablu during our 6-day hike. If weather permits, we will get a glimpse of the majestic Himalayas from Phablu. The following day, we travel back toward Kathmandu Valley by flight if the weather permits. We spend the last days of the yoga pilgrimage in Boudha where we have a free day to do the last shopping and watch the people around the Boudha Stupa.
The yoga and meditation theme will be weaved into our days, both in Kathmandu and in the mountains, as we embark on an inner and outer journey through Nepal.
Introducing the Facilitators
A practitioner for over 15 years Sybil joined the Yoga Alliance Teacher Training affiliated to various yoga studios and has accomplished more than 200 hrs of yoga practice. She is now following her dream of sharing her experience with others through teaching yoga in Geneve, Switzerland where she is based, while still active in the corporate world. Sybil is an avid world traveler and adventurer, humbled by the forces of nature and always curious to discover new cultures. Sybil joined a Yoga Pilgrimage to Nepal in the Spring 2018 with Himalayan Hermitage and was after this eager to return with her students to share with them the sacred places of Nepal. The values close to her heart are humanity, love, nature and healing. Her life goal and purpose are to help people reach their highest potential by sharing her knowledge and passion of yoga, meditation, nutrition and wellbeing including the great significance of self-love.
– We are very excited to be facilitating this yoga pilgrimage together for the first time!
The Buddhist culture of the Himalayas, with the countless blessings of the many yogis and yoginis who have practiced the path of awakening here for centuries, seep out of every temple and shrine in the Kathmandu Valley. In the daily meditation sessions, we will explore the inner capacity for the mind to fully rest, and familiarise ourselves with the experience of being free from the constant, and very subtle dichotomy of hope and fear.
We start the day by exploring the inner experience of awakening in ourselves, as well as grounding our awareness into the body through yoga, and in the afternoon sessions we enhance the experience by becoming pilgrims and yogis. We explore the outer element of sacredness and the culture of awakening by visiting, and paying homage to the many sacred temples and shrines in the Kathmandu Valley. In the evenings after returning home, we salute the day through unwinding evening yoga.
Sample Daily Schedule (note. schedule will vary day-to-day during travel into the mountains and we cannot always guarantee a set schedule for yoga and meditation)
- 8:00 – 9:00 Yoga
- 9:15 – 10:00 Breakfast
- 10:00 – 12:00 Morning session
- 12:00 – 1:00 Lunch
- 1:00 – 4:30 Visiting sacred places
- 5:00 – 6:00 Yoga
- 7:00 – 8:00 Dinner
Info on Meditation
There is no prerequisite for joining the yoga pilgrimage, or to have in-depth knowledge or experience with the practice of meditation. Simply, to have the wish to go deeper with one’s mind, and to have curiosity regarding its functions is enough. There is nothing religious about the practice of meditation, or to visit sacred places and shrines. In fact, there is nothing even Buddhist about it. The practice of meditation is simply a tool to bring your mind back to a place of naked awareness, to a place of basic space with yourself. In fact, it is simply put a technique with which to uncover all the layers of hope and fear, grasping and expectations that are all such strong habits of the mind. With the practice of meditation we can learn to come back to ourselves, and to become familiar with the groundless and raw quality of reality.
Info on Yoga
The yoga sessions will combine carefully sequenced including a different theme each day. Classes will range from a vigorous morning practice including pranayama and meditation and a more gentle restorative practice in the afternoon. Detailed alignment, exploration of anatomy, sensory awareness and mindfulness is emphasized to encourage deep listening and a compassionate understanding of one’s own mind-body with the overall intent of cultivating prajna (insight and wisdom) within the yoga experience and beyond. The sessions are suitable for all levels including those those new to yoga, and modifications of poses and props will be used as needed.