Monday, September 20, 2010

Clouds above us....

This is the day I realized that I have becoame a part of something that set a number of events in motion; my visit to Yoga Vedanta Kutir in Allahabad has done so.

Yoga Vedanta Kutir is located on the banks of Ganga (Ganges) in Allahabad (An ancient city of historic importance for both India and world and fortunately my birth place. I came to know about ‘Yoga Vedanta Kutir’ through a number of beautiful souls, (Dustin Shultz and Trevor Hall) who has done a lot for this place and constantly doing it.

I had the address of this place in my hand and I was wondering how difficult it should be to search it in a city that is also my hometown but as it was located on the banks of Ganga, I had doubts in my mind because my upbringing had restricted me to go to riverside on occasions only, also as I was visiting the riverside after 7 years since I moved out of my hometown, I had my share of uneasiness in my own hometown, perhaps I was missing a company, therefore I asked Vineet (A friend, who is like a younger brother to me and still lives in Allahabad) to accompany me.

We have visited this place on a day during Monsoon in India, My home town was covered with dark clouds and giving us signs to reach there before it starts raining but my parents told me that this season the clouds are not pouring water in Allahabad however I always like the idea of dark clouds above my head J

We have reached there by an ‘Indian Tempo’, a wonderful ‘public transport system’ of my hometown. I have taken a photograph of the conductor convincing pilgrims of ‘Triveni Sangam’ to board his taxi.

The entrance of Yoga Vedanta Kutir has a staircase going downwards connecting to a small room, this small room leads to various sections of the Ashram including a number of small rooms which Swami ji uses for teaching ancient yoga to the people of the city and children (disciples) of the Ashram. Also there are a number of trees inside the Ashram  and one of them provides shelter to a small stone platform. The cold touch of stone platform, sheltered under a tree on a cloudy day, gave me a chill.

I met Swami Atmanand Saraswati, who was teaching Sanskrit to the children of the Ashram at that time and was so welcoming to us that I am meeting a brother after so long. The children were surprised to see us for another 10 minutes since we have reached there. Swami ji asked one of them to prepare tea for us, which I refused as I do not take tea and thanked him for it.

I gave sweets to swami ji to distribute it to children who were a bit hesitant but full of energy that you can feel when you are around them. They went inside their small rooms to wear their yellow shirts, which was as beautiful as they were, perhaps they were feeling shy in front of the camera.

We had a long conversation with swami ji ranging from ‘how can we make this world a better place for us and people around us’ to ‘how important it is for us to take care of these children who are here from different parts of this country’ including a fact that they do not have anyone else other than this Ashram to call their own. The reason behind sharing this visit to the Ashram, is that there is a lot that can be done for these children and the place and if you are a person who believes the same, you are welcome to contact me to help make it possible.


  1. Wonderful. I have donated money to this Ashram via Trevor Hall and will be visiting Allahabad (very briefly) this coming March. I would love to stop by the Ashram to meet the children - would you be willing to let me know how I might arrange this? I will be traveling with one friend - it will be both of our first times in India. Thank you!

  2. Hi,

    It is great to know that you are visiting India in March and wish to go to Allahabad...well let me know your schedule and the dates you have reserved for Allahabad during your journey so that I could suggest you accordingly.

    you can send these details directly on

    bless you :)