November 2020 (Dates coming soon!) ~ Tamil Nadu, South India
Join us for this rare immersion in several sacred sites of South India, illuminated by teachers grounded in the practices of Ayurveda, Jyotisha and Yoga, as we explore the human capacity to heal.
From the comfort of our lively retreat center, we will make daily sojourns to local temples and other cultural locations by chartered coach. Every day will feature educational discussions relevant to that day’s itinerary, with optional yoga and meditation sessions to support our experiential understanding of healing.
Without the stress of relocating to multiple hotels, we will be able to focus on exploring, learning, enjoying ourselves, and deepening our understanding of healing.
Dive Into the Wisdom and Mystery of Mother India
During this inspiring retreat, you will…
Explore ancient temples and learn about traditions that honor prominent deities including the 9 planets of the ancient Indian astrology system
Expand your understanding of the healing process and how to support your own vibrant health through daily educational satsangs and discussions
Relax and rejuvenate in beautiful natural surroundings with delicious organic meals in an eco-conscious retreat center with grand turn-of-the-century villas and an on-site museum
Deepen your personal practices through optional yoga, meditation and pranayama sessions designed to support your health and happiness
Make true connections with other like-minded students of life drawn to the ancient teachings and spiritual practices of India
Support the charity activities of vaidyagrama Healing Village through your participation in this retreat of a lifetime
Our Retreat is an Exploration of a Living Culture
Our days will be focused around visits to the Navagraha temples that honor the Indian culture’s foundational worship of the cosmic forces that are understood to define reality. We will also visit traditional bronze-work artisans, sculptors and painters, and experience traditional music and dance.
In addition to cultural and spiritual excursions, we will enjoy daily discussions on topics from Ayurveda, the traditional healing art of India, as well as Jyotisha, the ancient system of Indian astrology. You will also have the option to participate in daily yoga and meditation sessions.
Discover the Navagraha of Southern India
Our retreat center is located centrally between 9 temples dedicated to each of the 9 planets (nava= nine, graha=planet) of ancient astrology or Jyotisha.
Each day of our retreat will be dedicated to a different planet, featuring a visit to that planet’s temple and in-depth explorations of the themes of healing and right-living that the featured planet-deity personifies. You will even have the opportunity to receive traditional palm-leaf astrology readings with local astrologers, or jyotishis.
Support India’s Villages while Immersing in Her Sacred Sites
All profits from this retreat will go to support the charity activities of vaidyagrama Healing Village of Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. Some of our ongoing projects include free medical camps in nearby villages, meal provision for the elderly, a children’s home on the vaidyagrama campus, and women’s empowerment programs.
Be Moved by our Inspiring Faculty…
Our faculty includes Vedic Astrologer Emily Glaser, Ayurveda Practitioner and Yoga Instructor Ivy Ingram, and formally trained Ayurveda Physician Ramkumar, co-founder of vaidyagrama Healing Village.
Ramkumar hails from a family steeped in the traditional practices of Ayurveda through generations. After completing his formal Ayurveda education in 1991, he was involved in a program for strengthening the health traditions that exist in India. From 1994 to 2003, he was the Director of the Ayurvedic Trust in Coimbatore, India, which runs a 100–bed hospital, giving purely Ayurveda treatment. During this period, the hospital was recognized by the Government of India as one of the five best Ayurveda institutions in India. He also headed the Ayushman Ayurvedic Trust team, which established the Ayurveda centers in the different Taj Hotels. He was also the executive director of Arya Vaidya Pharmacy (Cbe) one of the premier Ayurveda institutions in India. Over recent years, Dr. Ramkumar has presented lectures in America, Europe, Africa and South-East Asia on the many different aspects of Ayurveda.
Emily Glaser, RN, LMT
Emily has a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing with a specialization in Neuroscience and Hospice. Interested in world medicine she worked internationally in China and Nepal with Global Volunteer Network, Cambodia with Angkor Hospital for Children and Tanzania with St. Lucia Nursing Home. After Emily quenched her thirst for world travel she returned home to New Mexico, graduated with a degree in Culinary Arts and started her journey into the deep and profound science of Ayurveda. In 2009, Emily had the great honor to study under Dr. Vasant Lad at The Ayurvedic Institute. Shortly after, she spent 6 months at vaidyagrama in southern India where she furthered her study of Ayurveda and Panchakarma therapy with chief physician, Dr. Ramadas. Emily is a graduate from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and a member of the American Association of Drugless Practitioners AADP. Her practice is inspired by the depth and profound healing that the ancient teachings of Ayurveda have brought to her life and the lives of the people she loves. For more information, visit www.agniayurveda.com.
Ivy Ingram, MA, AP
Ivy is a certified Ayurveda Practitioner and yoga teacher with a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, based in Durham, North Carolina, USA. She is a former yoga faculty member of the Ayurvedic Institute in New Mexico under the direction of Dr. Vasant Lad. She has been practicing Ayurveda since 2012, and received her Ayurveda Practitioner certification from Dr. Lad after a 2-year clinical training program. She also studied Ayurveda at vaidyagrama Healing Village for 5 months in 2011, and returns every other year. A certified 500-hour advanced yoga teacher, Ivy integrates the principles of Ayurveda and yoga as healing practices in her work with individual clients and group courses. A dedicated student of chanting and Sanskrit, Ivy is fascinated by the power of sound, poetry and the spoken word in healing. For more information, visit www.ivyingram.com.
Feel Nourished by our Dynamic Retreat Center…
Our home base for the retreat will be the INDeco Hotel in the town of Swamimalai, Tamil Nadu, on the outskirts of Kumbakonam. From here we will take day trips by chartered air conditioned coach to local sites.
INDeco Swamimalai is a destination in itself. On forested grounds, this stately heritage hotel is composed of a variety of buildings reflecting different styles of architecture, including a restored 1896 villa and an ancient palace brought to the site in pieces to be painstakingly restored.
With countless activities on site, there is much to see, including the wild deer, geese, and the resident peacocks. Other activities include bullock cart rides, cow milking, bicycle rides to the nearby village, and kolam drawing (using colored powder to draw patterns on the ground, also known as rangoli). On a quiet afternoon, you may choose to have an Ayurvedic oil massage or other treatment.
The on-site Indian Heritage Museum represents traditional Tamil lifestyle, artifacts and practices with pieces preserved from many different sites and brought to the museum, which has garnered many awards and commendations.
We will be staying in the Heritage Village block, which offers old world charm in a traditional rural village atmosphere. Some of the buildings here are over 100 years old.
The tile roofs and abundant greenery make you feel like you are in a picture book. The simple, clean rooms come in double or single occupancy with bathrooms featuring modern western toilets.
Delicious Fresh Organic Meals
Our meals will be held at our retreat center and will feature organic fruits and vegetables grown in the in-house garden and milk from the in-house dairy. The fresh and local produce prepared for a diverse clientele assures that the food is of the highest quality.
Magnificent buffet meals feature traditional South Indian delicacies and dishes unique to the region including long lost recipes that have been rediscovered.
Make Plans to Join Us…
Heart of Healing Retreat Dates
(Stay tuned for 2020 dates!)
Arrive Friday at Tiruchirappelli (Trichy) International Airport in Tamil Nadu. We will arrange your ground transport for the 2 hour ride from the airport to our retreat center.
Depart ten days later on Monday by included ground transport back to the Trichy Airport.
A sample retreat day will include…
Morning or afternoon visit to a navagraha temple honoring the featured planet of the day or other deity
Other excursions to view bronze artisans or sculptors at work, or watch the creation of traditional sand drawings called rangoli
Daily satsang, or group discussion, with Dr. Ramkumar exploring the ancient roots of the healing science of Ayurveda and how it remains relevant today
Optional daily yoga, pranayama and meditation sessions designed for all levels of practitioners, to support our personal health and vitality
Mouth-watering traditional south Indian meals with fresh fruits and vegetables from the in-house garden raised with eco-friendly techniques
Non-citizens of India must have a visa to enter India from most countries. You are responsible for obtaining the necessary visas to enter India.
Supporting our Global Village
100% of the profits generated from this retreat will go to fund the life-changing charity activities supporting the rural communities near vaidyagrama Healing Village in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. Since the founding of vaidyagrama in 2008, innumerable outreach projects have been conducted to uplift the lives of our village neighbors. Thank you for helping us make an impact.
(Stay tuned for 2020 prices!)
These prices do not include your flights to Tiruchirapelli (Trichy), India from your home. They do include your ground travel from Trichy Airport, all ground travel during the retreat to our cultural sites, 10 nights accommodation, all meals, all educational sessions, all tours, and all yoga sessions.
Optional Add-On Tours
For those who are inspired to extend your time in India after the Heart of Healing Retreat, we invite you to come with us to vaidyagrama Healing Village to experience its peaceful ambiance and traditional Ayurveda treatments – the perfect culmination of our time together. After our exciting explorations, you will be ready to relax and receive some deep nourishment, surrounded by nature.
We will travel directly to vaidyagrama after our retreat ends, via a brief flight to Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. There are two Add-On Tour options, either a full 21-Day Panchakarma detoxification and rejuvenation visit, or a 5-Day Relax and Renew visit. Contact us for more information.
To Register for the Heart of Healing Retreat
The number of participants in our Heart of Healing Retreat is limited to maintain an intimate group and provide ample opportunity for personal interaction with our faculty. We expect to sell out, so contact us soon to register!
To start the registration process, please click the button below to notify us of your interest. One of our coordinators will contact you to answer any questions and to complete your registration. When you are ready, a USD $500 non-refundable deposit will save your place. We are looking forward to meeting you!
We would love to talk with you to answer any questions you might have. Feel free to click the button above and let us know your question, and we will be in touch right away. You are also welcome to call us at +1 (505) 438-1163.