Thanks to arrangement made by Ragini of VVKI, we bade farewell to Uncle Murthy and Aunt Geetha and returned to the ashram for 11 days, till the very last day of our stay in India.
We started our Seva journey in India at the ashram on 7 Mar. We would leave India from the ashram on 21 Aug. And our Indian tourist visa would expire on 22 Aug.
Our next destination: Nairobi, Kenya.
11 Aug 2011 - 1st Meridian 101 Workshop
On Bawa's request, we conducted a Meridian 101 for EVERYONE Workshop for about 20 YES!+ teachers and volunteers, and ashramites, at the Buddha Hall.
It was a fun workshop with everyone participating 100% from start till end. After the workshop, we were treated to a huge cheese dosa and other delicacies at the Vishala Cafe run by YES!+.
First full scale Meridian 101 workshop in India.
It turned out that this would be the first of 5 Meridian 101 Workshops to happen for the remaining of our stay in the ashram... What an honour!
< Joy of Meridian 101 acupressure.
> An expression of intense joy on Bawa's face.
Mayur expertly videoed this entire workshop.
Jin assisted with the demo.
Alvin doing a guasha demo...
Participants at the first Meridian 101 Workshop held in the Art of Living Ashram in Bangalore
Thanks to the YES!+ multimedia team, we can enjoy a superb video recording of the debut of Meridian 101 Workshop in India. Enjoy!
12 Aug 2011: Teacher Training Course by Muraliji for NOVICE Teachers
I was fortunate to sit in to observe and learn from Muraliji when he was conducting the TTC for the Know Your Child, Know Your Teen, Stress-Free Teaching modules under the NOVICE program for schools.
Schools are a critical institution where all children pass through but the stress from teachers and parents is not helping the students. Muraliji directs the NOVICE program that helps teachers and parents understand the true meaning of education and how to approach it in an enlightened way so as to support their children to truly learn how to learn.
Guruji was at ashram so there was a big crowd at satsang tonight, especially so as there was an Advanced Course in Tamil with over 1200 participants. The satsang was held at the Yagyashala Mantap.
14 Aug 2011 - Satsang on Saturday
The crowd on Saturday was even bigger and the satsang was held at the amphitheatre outside the VM. Despite thousands of people swarmed in from the city and every corner of the ashram, it was always orderly.
It was always so wonderful to hear the words of wisdom offered by Guruji during satsang.
Q: "How to balance work and life?"
A: "You know how to ride a bicycle? That's how."
15 Aug 2011 - India's Independence Day
Today, India celebrated its Independence Day. At the ashram, we began with a Devi Pooja conducted by Guruji at 7am at the Yagyashala Mantap.
After that, a celebration was held at the amphitheatre, attended by thousands of people and students from the various Sri Sri Vidya Mandir schools nearby.
2nd Meridian 101 Workshop
News of our first Meridian 101 workshop apparently travelled and Anish from the Panchakarma invited us to do a Meridian 101 Workshop for the Panchakarma Ayurveda doctors and therapists.
Anish was so kind to invite us to an Ayurvedic lunch and a Marma therapy treatment for Jin and I before the workshop started.
It was such an honour for us to share Meridian 101 acupressure, based on ancient traditional Chinese healing science, with Ayurvedic doctors who are experts in traditional Indian healing science.
< Alvin showing the location of Jian-Jing acupoint on the Gall Bladder meridian of Anish.
> Alvin doing a shoulder guasha demo for the Ayurvedic doctors and therapists.
16 Aug 2011 - Meridian 101 Ambassador Mastery Course (Day 1)
At the request of Bawa, I made the unusual attempt to train the pioneer batch of 8 Ambassador Trainees in India within 6 days. We started with acupressure skill training in the morning for the enthusiastic 'Chosen 8': Rashmin, Abhi, Khush, Gowri, Dr Hema, Spandan, Prasana and KK.
16 Aug 2011 - 3rd Meridian 101 Workshop (OJT for Ambassador Trainees)
At 2pm, we held a workshop for a group who travelled from Hyderabad to experience Meridian 101...
Alvin's coaching is always experiential and On-the-Job Training (OJT): Trainee Gowri led the Energy Test demo, immediately putting what he learnt in the morning into practice.
During practice breakouts, all Ambassador Trainees sprang 'hungrily' into action.
Trainee Rashmin had definitely found the Chi-ze acupoint for Dr Rohit!
17 Aug 2011 - Meridian 101 Ambassador Mastery Course (Day 2)
We met every morning for training and the trainees organized a workshop in the afternoon for OJT.
I was impressed by the dedication of the trainees as some of them had to travel 1-2 hours from their city homes to the ashram.
We had plenty of fun learning how to pronounce the various acupressure points in Chinese!
Everyone experienced and practised how to conduct the Energy Test, and experienced the efficacy of guasha with Avita herbal essential oils.
We had all sorts of fun resulting in all sorts of facial expression!
17 Aug 2011 - 4th Meridian 101 Workshop (OJT for Ambassador Trainees)
OJT: Ambassador Trainees were tasked to speak on different segments and led all the demo, and they did really well.
As this was the 4th workshop, they were well versed with the sequence and were confident with their skills.
They did well in their 1st attempt at presenting the workshop. Alvin just opened and then closed it!
19 Aug 2011 - 5th Meridian 101 Workshop (OJT for Ambassador Trainees)
We met on 18 Aug morning for the final theory session on the effective organization and promotion of the Meridian 101 workshop.
We held the 5th Meridian 101 workshop at the old ashram dinning hall and again, it was well attended. This would be the trainees' 2nd attempt at presenting the workshop.
20 Aug 2011 - Graduation Training (Guasha) for India's Pioneer Batch Meridian 101 Ambassadors
All thanks to Prasana who happened to be in Singapore for work and managed to rush back to Chennai and took an overnight bus to get to Bangalore with the Avita herbal essential oils and guasha boards for the Ambassador Trainees.
Armed with the herbal oils and guasha boards, we started the graduation training on guasha skills.
Everyone sprang into guasha practice...
Jin and Robyn assisting Spandan on Abhi...
Dr Hema practising Gall Bladder meridian guasha on Khush.
Gowri practising Bladder meridian guasha on Abhi.
Robyn demo on Bawa.
Bawa practised on Gowri.
Alvin demo Face Reflexology.
Hooray, the pioneer batch of eight Meridian 101 Ambassadors for India has graduated!
And they were anxious to prove that they know all the acupressure points! Chakde Meridian 101!
BYE BYE INDIA, HERE WE COME, KENYA!
After giving birth to the Meridian 101 Ambassadors by early afternoon, it was time to pack up, attend our last satsang at the ashram and leave at midnight for the airport. Our flight to Nairobi was at 4.25am on 21 Aug.
Nagaraj-ji and the Yongs.
Thanks to Guruji's grace, we'd been so fortunate to make so many good friends over the last 5.5 months in India. We met many of them at the satsang and bade farewell to them all.