Hari Om, welcome to seekers, yogis and volunteers
You are most welcome to SHANKAR PRASAD FOUNDATION near Gokarna, to experience and learn yoga meditation (Satyananda Bihar style), to do your personal practice, or to participate in community projects.
We are an Ashram, spiritual retreat center, and yoga-meditation school located on 2½ acres of beautiful garden, coconut grove and organic farm. The ashram is housed in a century-old heritage home in the village of Bankikodla, 5 km from Gokarna, an ancient temple and Shiva pilgrimage town with beautiful beaches, forested hills, and coastal farming.
We ask that residents be involved in Ashram life and be an active part of our community. Our Ashram holds an open, loving atmosphere of diverse individuals who function much like a spiritual family. We eat, chant, meditate, sing, work, and play together. We seek to preserve these vibrations, and humbly ask that you be open and willing to share in the daily life of the ashram. If you are not at all interested in spiritual life or spiritual practices, then this may not be the right place for you. However, previous yoga and meditation experiences are not necessary, as long as you come with an open mind and heart.
You are encouraging to join the free sessions of mantra chanting every morning at 5:45 am, along with Satsang (spiritual discourse), chanting, and short meditations every evening at 8 pm. We hold a Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra Havan (fire ceremony) every Saturday at 5.30 pm.
We offer various yoga and meditation classes online and at the ashram (to residents and non- residents) ranging from Shatkarmas (cleansing practices) to asanas and pranayama, Yoga Nidra, (beginners/ advanced and teachers training), meditation from the tantras, and advanced practices such as chakra sadhana. For more details on courses offered please contact us.
We often go to the beach for swims, sunrise and sunset meditations, a weekly market visit, beach cleanups, town and temple visits.
During your stay, you have a wonderful opportunity to take some courses with Swamiji either in person (If scheduled course is going on) or online at any point. Yoga Nidra is a specialty of Swamiji’s and a very helpful practice to have, especially those suffering from worry, anxiety, and sleeplessness, work stress, or illness. Whether in person or online, Swamiji is present to answer questions and give guidance to the students. You can also access Swamiji’s soothing meditations and many other helpful resources through the EKA Meditation App. In addition to the online courses, Swamiji offers one-on-one sessions both online (30 min) and in person(1H) in the ashram for a donation that you feel reflects the benefit. If you are interested in registering for courses please enquire or get set up with us upon arrival.
Those needing to get away from the city or a stressful life can come to the ashram (as a volunteer or guest) to live close to nature, connect with the elements, replenish their energies, and gain peace of mind. Here one can learn how to balance external pressures with inner practices through ashram routines.
Staying as a volunteer, partial volunteer or guest
People who would like to come and stay in the ashram to experience ashram life or attend a course are welcome to stay in the ashram as guests. They’ll have more time for sadhana and will be required to do only 1 hour of karma yoga (service to the ashram as mindful action) per day.
There’s also the opportunity to come as a working stay: you continue working online and pursuing your own career while contributing to the ashram as a guest or as a partial volunteer.
The ashram welcomes sincere, hard-working, and committed volunteers who love ashram life or would like to try it out. As a volunteer, you are asked to stay a minimum of 1 month preferable 3 month. There are opportunities for all kinds of volunteer work- skilled and unskilled on the farm, with animals, maintaining the ashram, online and office work, marketing, and fund-raising. As a volunteer you would be asked to commit to 6 hours of karma yoga a day.
We also have an option for partial volunteers who will be required to do 4 hours of karma yoga. We kindly ask you for the corresponding contribution towards the Ashram for your stay.