We have just returned from Agra, where we saw two amazing pieces of architecture - the Red Fort of Agra and the Taj Mahal. These two edifices are linked through history but also by the fact that they are testaments to the material ingenuity of humankind. The Taj took 22 years and 20,000 people to build, according to our guide, but the more impressive fact is that it all of the precise joining, carving and inlay was done without the help of any modern technologies. The designers even took the time to include clever optical illusions - the script at the top of the Taj's arches looks to be the same size as the script near the bottom, although it is such a distance away from the viewer at the base that it should look much smaller as one gazes upward. What intelligence and foresight it took to include this trick!
Now the journey continues to a place of equal intelligence and foresight - the yoga ashram. Here the emphasis is not on developing impressive material structures without, but unmatched spiritual growth within. The techniques we will be experiencing have been passed down for centuries because they create beautiful, durable human beings. What insight the ancient yogis had to develop techniques that produce calmness, joy and wisdom, no matter the age, culture or educational level of the student.
When we return, we look forward to sharing with you not only our photographs of outer perfection but the results of our inner work, as well. Until then, may you all enjoy both the material and the inner wealth of the holiday season.
Best & oms,
<Previously on India 2014...>