New York Sector USA




Asheville, North Carolina

Prama Institute and Wellness Center

GurukulaNetworkMay2014FINAL2_Page_36_Image_0003We are moving into our second year of combining the conference and retreat activities of the Prama Institute and the Prama Wellness Center. The focus of both programs is experiential learning of a yoga life style that involves proper diet (vegetarian), proper exercise (asanas and aerobic exercise), social support (satsaunga) and meditation practices (mindfulness and mantra). The Prama Wellness Center accomplishes this with three day, five day and ten day detox programs that combine health and yoga therapy consultations, nutritional education, yoga and meditation sessions, support g roup, mud baths, massage, hot tub, sauna and meditative walks. There is ample free time, journaling and hiking on the beautiful trails that access 150 surrounding acres on the French Broad River. There are also individual and small group retreats on a flexible schedule at the wellness center.

GurukulaNetworkMay2014FINAL2_Page_36_Image_0002The Prama Institute has filled its 2014 calendar and much of its 2015 schedule for rentals to groups that include yoga teacher training, yoga therapy, poetry workshops, and a variety of healing arts workshops. The Prama Institute has expanded its own seminars to include five day Yoga of Silence, Yummy Yoga (teaching vegetarian cooking combined with yoga and meditation classes), and Pantanjali Unveiled: Eight Limbed Yoga (beginning of series of Tantra and intuitional sciences).

Ananda Girisuta Master Unit

We are expanding our gardening to produce more organically grown food for the Prama Institute and Wellness Center program participants and those living on the Master Unit. Additionally we are developing cooperation with local farmers to participate in growing kale as a commercial crop.

We have recently completed the development of the third floor of the community residence of the Katuah (Cherokee word meaning “Mother Village”) Ecovillage which is a community next to the Ananda Girisuta Master Unit. The community residence when fully developed will be a 3500 square foot home that can house two families on the first two floors and single people and interns on the third floor. This ecovillage will be developed as a community land trust which will eventually be collectively owned as a cooperative community and have the prospect of rentals in cohousing units and home ownership. Ramesh Bjonnes, the director of our Prama Wellness Center, has recently completed construction of his home on the ecovillage.

Bjonnes has recently completed his second book on Tantra; the first book was Sacred Body, Sacred Spirit: A Personal Guide To The Wisdom Of Yoga and Tantra published in 2012. The second book Tantra: Yoga of Love and Awakening has just been released by Hay House India. The book, written and researched over a period of six years, is based on the Tantric philosophy and practices as taught by Shrii Shrii Anandamurti and the author’s over 35 years of experience as practitioner of Tantric yoga. Copies can be ordered here: