A few years ago, I made a very wise decision to travel to Southern India for an Ayurvedic Retreat in Kerala with Gyandev and Diksha McCord. Adjusting to the empty nest phase of life at that time, I felt it was an opportunity to do something nurturing for myself. During this same period, my digestion was bothering me and had started to interfere with my ability to meditate deeply. I knew that traveling to India held the potential for great spiritual inspiration and blessings but that water and foods had to approached with a good measure of caution, especially for someone like me with an already sensitive gut.
To my delight, I discovered the Somatheeram Resort where we stayed catered to Westerners by providing comfortable accommodations, safe water, and excellent hygiene practices in preparing the amazingly delicious food arranged by appropriateness for your specific body type.
Looking back on that experience even now, I continue to feel deeply grateful for the many benefits I derived from the retreat experience. Diksha and Gyandev’s classes on Ayurvedic principles applied to Yoga practices and lifestyle, set me on a joyful journey of learning about this ancient sister science of yoga. I continue to read and understand more about how Ayurveda can be helpful physically, mentally, and spiritually.
The meetings with the Ayurvedic doctor and massage therapists resulted in a renewed ability to work with my innate tendencies to achieve balance, as well as advice that has resolved my digestive issues. I was not given the “quick fix” method of taking a pill and expecting immediate relief, but given guidance in how to change habits and transform my lifestyle.
Having spent years as a nurse in the Western medicine system, I have a special appreciation for the expanded perspective that Ayurveda provides. Ayurveda looks at health challenges in context of the individual client. Rather than a one-size-fits-all remedy for disease, Ayurveda seeks to understand who the person is on all levels–physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. It then offers an intervention that addresses individual imbalances, to get to the root cause of the disorder.
After I returned home from the retreat I began studying with Mangala, who leads Ayurvedic classes here at The Expanding Light and also teaches the Ayurveda portion of our Yoga Therapy Training. Mangala has helped me take my understanding of Ayurveda to the next level.
I have great respect and gratitude to these wonderful teachers who have created environments for my continued growth and enhanced ability to help others.
Thank you Diksha, Gyandev, and Mangala!