Satsang means ‘“association with the wise.” Meditating together in a group creates a strong spiritual atmosphere which allows a deeper experience of meditation. In satsang, people of different levels practise together – from newcomers to experienced Yoga teachers.
Satsang is the heart of the Yoga practice. On Wednesdays we will practice 20 minutes of silent meditation before chanting of mantras and kirtan.
Our chant book reflects the inclusiveness of the Sivananda lineage, with a section of chants for each of the main Hindu deities, as well as chants in English and Hebrew. Many of the Sanskrit chants are followed by translations. There is a mysterious power in every word. Our Daily Chants (Jaya Ganesha) and a few bhajans are accompanied by harmonium and simple percussion. At Sunday satsangs, we tend to chant the very beautiful Sunday Prayers.
It is not your voice, but the inner feeling that matters. Let your heart melt. As Yoga of sound, "mantra is the easiest of all modes of approach to God.” —Swami Sivananda
We recite Swami Sivananda's Universal Prayer and conclude satsang with arati, waving and receiving the Divine Light. We also share prasad, a sweet offering.
Swami Sitaramananda is a senior disciple of Swami Vishnudevananda and Acharya of the US West Coast centers and Ashram. She is also the Acharya of the Sivananda mission in Asia: Vietnam, Japan and China. She met Swami Vishnudevananda at the Val Morin Yoga Camp in 1981 and had served in the headquarters ashram in Canada for 6 years before Swamiji sent her to many different centers and ashrams, notably San Francisco center in 1989 and from 1995 as full-time director of Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm in Grass Valley, CA. Swami Sitaramananda has taught many international Teachers' Training Courses in California, Vietnam, Taiwan and India and is also teaching regularly at Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat, Nassau, Bahamas.
She is the author of Positive Thinking Manual, a compiler of Essentials of Yoga Practice and Philosophy translated in Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese and Swamiji Said: A Collection of Teachings by Swami Vishnudevananda in His Own Words. She is responsible for the Vietnamese translation of The Completed Illustrated Book of Yoga by Swami Vishnudevananda.