Yoga Healing Intensive Retreat at Ananda Dhiira, Nov. 2023


Avtk. Ananda Acira Ac. organized a meditation retreat and yoga healing intensive at Ananda Dhiira MU in the beautiful Sierra foothills of Northern California from November 8 through 12, 2023.
We were joined by Dada Diiptimanananda and Brother Mukunda (Michael Owen, DC), a chiropractic physician from Oregon. Dada provided instruction on meditation, inspiring talks, and enchanting music. As the host, Didi ensured all were comfortable, well cared for, and well fed; all special dietary requirements were attended to. Brother Mukunda provided classes on natural health care, including healing in the Five Level Model used today by many in the natural health care area.

Dada instructed on meditation and the meaning of Kiirtan for spiritual progress; Didi provided inspiring yoga classes in the mornings and afternoons. Dada and Didi offered private and individualized meditation (initiation/Diik’sa) and yoga instruction for those interested in furthering their spiritual journey. Mukunda offered individualized healing sessions during the retreat and demonstrated Family Constellation Therapy on the last day, a healing method rooted in indigenous cultures and adopted in the natural healing space. This method is used to address health affected by current or past family issues and for ancestral trauma.

Numerous natural healing methods were introduced, including but not limited to individual infrared saunas, castor oil liver packs and the many uses of castor oil, juice fasting, coffee enemas, sunbathing, mud packs, mindfulness walks in nature, meridian therapy for self-regulation, earthing, dipping in the running waters of the South Yuba river, and shielding from Electro Magnetic Fields (EMF’s). Twice-daily yoga classes and daily group meditations were provided consistently throughout the retreat.
Brother Mukunda taught a beginner shiatsu course; everyone got a chance to experience the healing benefits of the method while also being able to give the gift to others. Sister Harmony was an attendee and has extensive training in Chi Quong and was kind enough to provide a course on the method. Sister Kalika has extensive training in Vinyasa and Ashtanga styles of yoga and agreed to lead a perfect and well-received class on this active yoga style.

Delicious vegetarian meals were provided according to ancient yogic dietary guidelines; a one-day tasty juice fast was also offered to deeply clear the intestinal tract. Juices were selected for their ability to gently clear and heal the intestines while opening up detoxification pathways. Juicing fasting is a specialty practice with far-reaching benefits.

Accommodations are spartan but comfortable at the ashram, with most beds being dormitory-style. Sisters were lodged in the big house up the hill where most of the program occurred; Brothers stayed in the smaller house down the hill. Every effort was taken to ensure everyone was comfortable and well cared for, and all special dietary requirements were respectfully accommodated.


Mukunda (second left) and the participants on a morning walk by Ananda Dhiira

Everyone was refreshed after mud-packs, noon meditation, and a cold dip in the South Yuba River.

After noon meditation by the South Yuba River

Sister Harmony led the chi-gong class and added a lot of joy and laughter to the retreat.

Chi-gong class on the deck

Noon meditation on the deck

Infrared sauna in nature!

Group photo on the deck