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The Hindu Roots of Yoga

The Hindu Roots of Yoga 

Within Hinduism there are six major schools of thought: Samkhya, Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Mimamsa, Vendanta, and Yoga. Each one is inspired by the holy Vedas and other Hindu concepts.

Yoga, from the Sanskrit word 'yuj' means to unite. It is usually described in Hindu texts as a way to control the senses and the mind. The most famous Hindu text describing yoga is the Bhavad Ghita, which dates all the way back to the 6th - 3rd centuries BCE. In it, Krishna describes 4 types of yoga:

  • Bakti, or devotion
  • Jnana, or knowledge
  • Karma, or action,
  • Dhyana, or concentration.

Achieving Moksha 

The ultimate goal of each is to achieve Moksha, or unity with God and escape from the cycle of birth and death. No single person is born saved, though the Divine resides within all people. All people, regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, have the ability to achieve Moksha. Moksha can be attainted through a person's actions, words, and thoughts, as they...

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7 fantastic health benefits of a vegan diet

Uncategorized | Posted Jun 23, 2021

Eating meat or other animal products not only harms animals and the environment: it can also have a negative impact on health. Eating processed meat increases our risk of developing cancer, and research suggests that eating animal meat, milk and eggs could be as bad for our health as smoking.

  1. Vegan foods are rich in the nutrients your body needs
    With a healthy and balanced vegan diet rich in whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, pulses, grains, nuts and seeds, and supplemented with vitamin B12, you can get all the nutrients you need. Several studies have reported that people who eat vegan tend to consume more fiber, antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, folate, and vitamins A, C and E.
  2. Eating vegan helps reduce our risk of cancer and other illnesses

    A recent study suggests that eating vegan may help reduce our risk of disease because plant-based foods are high in phytochemicals - including the powerful antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables. Researchers found that vegans...
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5 Benefits of Ama Ser's Co-Working Space

Ama Ser offers many unique benefits to the local community. One of its most beneficial uses is a space for co-working. Co-working is an arrangement that invites individuals from any organization to share a common working space. This may include independent contractors, work-from-home professionals, digital nomads, or anyone looking for a relaxing space to get their work done.   

The Ama Ser Cafe co-working space has a lot to offer. Here are just 5 of the many benefits of joining us in our space:

1. FREE fiber optic high speed internet

2. Elevated view of the rainforest and Caribbean Sea

3. Fresh vegan food and drinks directly from the Costa Rican land

4. Individual and group tables, rocking chairs, and a comfy lounge with a plethora of pillows

5. A community-centric atmosphere

The world has spent the past year in lockdown. The lack of socialization and human contact has taken a toll on many of us. Come reconnect with your community at the...

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The Chakras : Definition, localisation and function

"Open your chakras", you have surely heard this somewhat esoteric phrase, often taken up with irony and amusement by those who do not know their history. We will try a first approach with this article and discover the 7 main chakras. Indeed, it is not easy to feel their presence on the mat, especially if it is during a first class or if they are illustrious strangers to you.

So what are chakras?

Definition

A little point of terminology in Sanskrit: chakra means "wheel" or "disc", to designate circular objects and in a way the circle of life.

According to Hindu traditions, the body is made up of 72,000 energy channels, the nadis. They carry the vital energy of the body. These nadis intersect at the level of imperceptible centers which are about one hundred and in particular at the level of the chakras, subtle energy bodies. They are numerous but the main ones in yoga are 7 and correspond to precise zones of the body.

Location and function 

The chakras are not placed by chance...

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7 tips for hosting your own yoga retreat

 Hosting and planning your own yoga retreat can be daunting. Here at AmaSer we are happy to share our insights. Here are our 7 tips on how to begin the process. 

1. Secure that money

A boring way to begin things, yes, but securing funding is crucial. Especially during these difficult times. A lot of retreat venues require a deposit to book your retreat. This is a personal financial risk for you. In case you have to cancel for any reason, you are likely to lose your deposit. Take into account that many venues ask for minimum numbers of students to sign up in order for you to host a retreat. So try to secure this before if you can.

Other important costs to consider:

  • Advertising the retreat
  • Lost income from classes you’ll miss out on teaching when you are away
  • Your own travel expenses
  • How to budget for the retreat’s food, any excursions, and activities

2. Create your vision

Your vibe will attract your tribe. When your retreat is an authentic reflection of...

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Breath: the foundation of yoga and life!

Our life begins with an inhale and ends on an exhale. Our breath is our life force. We do it every day, unconsciously and automatically. In yoga, breathing is a crucial subject. In this blog we will tell you why.

Yoga Breath  

Everyone can do yoga, because everyone breathes. Breathing is an important aspect of yoga as it focuses on becoming aware of your body, it helps you to feel more present, and encourages you to tune inwards. By consciously focusing on your breath, you can control it, controlling the length and pace of your inhalations and exhalations.

You might have heard of the term ‘pranayama’ before. It is the Sanskrit word for breathing: prana means life energy and ayama means to extend, draw out. Pranayama is about controlling your life force, by controlling your breath. If you become consciously aware of your breathing, you feel the life force running through your body.

The way you breathe has an impact on your mood. Breathing slowly can help you to...

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Where to donate for India's coronavirus crisis

community tips well-being | Posted May 11, 2021

India needs our help right now. 

Yogis, pull up. Here at AmaSer we are devasted to hear the news about the coronavirus pandemic wreaking destruction in India, and are incredibly concerned by the Vaccine Apartheid depriving the Global South of the resources they so obviously need. 

We hope that you will consider a donation to an organization supporting those desperately in need right now.   

We've attached a list of local charities which could really benefit from any kind of support:

Give India - Covid fund

Goonj - Covid fund

Akshaya Patra - Covid fund

Pratham - Every Child in School and Learning Well

Thankyou. 

 

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5 things I learnt in my first ever yoga class at AmaSer

Hi, my name is Lucy and I have recently moved to beautiful Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. I heard all about Avani’s yoga center AmaSer, so I decided to come along to one of her Yin & Restore classes on a Tuesday afternoon. The class started just before the sun was beginning to set and the afternoon was turning to dusk.  Here are five things I learnt about yoga! 

 

  1. Yoga is accessible, even to a newbie like me

I would not exactly class myself as a Yogi. I was a little nervous before going to class. What if I obviously stuck out as a rookie, what if I could not hold a posture? Avani made me feel welcome as soon as I entered the class. She begun by explaining the purpose of the class and demonstrated every pose by including a number of variations to make sure you were comfortable and could really connect with how you held your body – without hurting yourself! It was easy to follow and made me feel like I was being cared for, rather than judged.

 

  1. Even a...
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From farm-to-fork: the best possible practice for a chef

AmaSer’s chef Mario has been cooking for almost his whole life. After learning from his grandmother and getting a degree in culinary arts, he is now responsible for the dishes on our menu. Here, he can use what is available in the garden to create a gluten free vegan menu. With this, he can show people how a realistic and futureproof perspective on food, from farm-to-fork can be possible.

 

 

Mario learned cooking from his grandmother. He grew up in Mexico City with his grandmother always cooking. After school, he was the one helping her in the kitchen. “Immediately after I dropped my backpack, she asked me to go to the market, or chop vegetables. We have a big family that came to visit us every weekend, so my grandmother and I often had to make a lot of food.” She showed him what food to pick and where along with what herbs to harvest that were growing on the hill where they lived.

 

His life has always been about food. After exploring creative...

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Avani on Dharma, Motherhood & Costa Rica (An Interview by Nicole Hudson of Wanderfreely)

community interview yoga | Posted Nov 09, 2020

How do you define Dharma?

Dharma for me means “sacred duty”.  What’s confusing sometimes is that our sacred duty is not always rainbows and butterflies.  Oftentimes we have to get into the nitty gritty and really be reminded of our direction through tough lessons.  I love how Stephen Cope sums up the lessons from the Bhagavad Gita on Dharma. He asks the question “How do we discern our dharma?  How do we discover the magnificent inner blueprint?” In his writings The Great Work of Your Life the message is to find out who you are and then “do it on purpose.”  I love that. This is reflective of the constant cycle of adventure, discovery and then application.  We are perpetually students of the Self and (hopefully) learning time and time again how to listen more deeply in order to realign in new ways with our unique sacred duty.  In those moments when everything just “clicks” then...

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