I just came back from The Life-Force Formula Immersion in beautiful Nevada City ( California). It was a life changing experience! Imagine practicing Kundalini Yoga & Ayurveda with 200 other dedicated yogis, lead by our inspiring teachers Jai Dev and Simrit Kaur Khalsa. We chanted, we meditated, we danced, we created space and shared energy… magical moments that I will cherish forever.
It would take me months to write a fair review of this immersion so I will leave you with a few highlights and a gallery of pictures.
The Life-Force Formula Immersion took place in the Shady Creek Outdoor School and Conference Center. It is a 132 acre property located in the Sierra Nevada Foothills just outside of Nevada City in California’s Gold Country. It’s usually an environmental science camp designed for 5th and 6th grade students. Last week, Shade Creek hosted our kundalini & ayurveda immersion. Next week, they’ll be home to the Sierra Fiddle (Summer) Camp.
The Life-force Formula provides two lodging options: Cabins and Tents. I stayed in a cabin with five wonderful yoginis.
3:50 – 4:00 am COLD shower ( yes, you read it right!)
4:30 am Jap Ji Recitation
4:30 am-6:45am: Sunrise Sadhana – Early Morning Yoga & Meditation
7am-8am Kundalini Yoga
9:00am-1pm: Morning Session
2:30pm-6pm: Afternoon Session
7:30pm: Special Evening Program
This was 10 hours of Kundalini Yoga + Ayurveda every day followed by a fantastic evening program. On Thursday night, we watched an insightful movie documentary ( soon to be released) based on Dr. Vasant Lad’s life. He has written 11 books on Ayurveda as well as hundreds of articles. My favorites are “Ayurveda: The Science of Self-Healing: A practical Guide” and “Ayurveda Cooking for Self Healing” which I have been using for many years now.
On Friday night, we attended Simrit’s concert. She is such a beautiful soul, teacher and performer! I have been listening to her Sat Narayan for the last fews months on my way to work. Listening to her LIVE was a treat. The energy in the large yoga tent was incredible.
FOOD – Of course, this vegan chef needs to talk about food.
There were many vegan and gluten-free options at the Kundalini & Ayurveda retreat.
For breakfast, they offered tofu scramble, oatmeal, fruit, country potatoes and steamed kale. For lunch and dinner, they served red lentil rice soup, butternut squash cream, quinoa salad, mixed beans salad, quinoa burgers, roasted sweet potatoes, roasted cauliflower, galette mushroom with leeks, pesto pizza. They had a different menu each day.
A few suggestions for The Life Force Formula and future retreats:
1) Offer tridoshic Ayurvedic food ( since we are in a Kundalini & Ayurveda Immersion)
2) Offer Yogi Bhajan’s famous dishes too ( at least one – i.e Yogi Bhajan’s Parsley Pilau 🌿)
Are you hungry yet? I had the chance to meet the chef d’ cuisine, Lorenzo. He shared with me his delicious Galette Mushroom Leek recipe. I’ll be making it within the next few weeks and sharing it with you all.
They have two tea stations, offering a great variety of Numi Tea and Art Of Tea .
They also sold PAAVANI Ayurveda products onsite. This is an artisan line of small-batch, pure, organic health & skincare products formulated in Nevada City.
OBSERVATIONS / LESSONS
– First things first: COLD SHOWERS at 3:50 am. After the first 2 days, the cold showers were tolerable. This is BIG progress for me ( my vikruti is vata). You can learn more about this practice called ISHNAAN by clicking here
– Listening to dozens of yogis around me reciting and whispering the Japji at the early hours was candy to my ears. This was a first time experience for me. I have participated in a few morning group sadhanas before where we played a recording and everyone sits still listening. I learned that I am drawn to words that contain K and T. Don’t ask me why ( for example kath kath kathee kotee kot kot)
– I am a WARRIOR. We all were!! We were able to chant Long Ek Ong Kar for 61 minutes each day and hold reeeeally long kriyas, pushing limits and discovering the power hidden in our thresholds. I had a couple of breakthroughs during this immersion.
-These three quotes from Jai Dev spoked to me: 1) CONSISTENCY is key 2) The law of prosperity is SPECIALIZATION 3) When you follow the path of love, you find your purpose.
– “Don’t pick them up, don’t lay them down”~ Maya Angelou
– If you have a mind you have a mission ~ Jai Dev
BIG thanks to my spiritual teachers Jai Dev, Simrit, the wonderful staff at The Life Force Formula and Shady Creek’s crew.
Empty-handed I entered the world
Barefoot I leave it.
My coming, my going –
Two simple happenings
That got entangled.
Japanese Death Poems. Kozan Ichikyo