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This course is designed to help you practice more effectively, understand pranayama techniques to a deeper degree based on the information given and the depth of practice being done in a purpose-built, dedicated environment. Based on this you can improve as a practitioner and teacher. This course does not claim to develop pranayama teachers but rather to stimulate and increase the base and understanding of practice.
Samahita Retreat was established in 2003 on Koh Samui, and is known as the island’s hidden gem. Formerly known as ”Yoga Thailand”, the full service retreat center features 40 rooms, a detox and wellness center, and the celebrated health-food restaurant, Sattva Dining.
It is located in the south of Koh Samui, right on the beach. It is in a quiet area off the beaten track, with plenty of privacy and comforts, yet still close to markets and amenities. The beach is virtually ours alone, many rooms in our yoga retreat have a direct sea view, while the surroundings are lush and green.
Many of Koh Samui’s special attractions are down the south near the center, waterfalls to temples, and more. A walk down the beach brings you to the golden Laem Sor Pagoda of a realized Buddhist monk, whose force has drawn you to be established in this special spot.
The guest rooms are set back just over 50 meters from the water to provide you with a private community and greater security. A selection of our rooms enjoy this spectacular sea view, while others enjoy the tropical gardens scene.
Suitable for singles or couples. Approximately 35 square meters of personal space, which includes a private balcony. The room has a queen-size bed with individual reading lamps and personal built-in shelf space at the headboard.
Also included is a large writing desk, bookshelves, storage cabinet that can be locked and can accommodate even large laptops, hot-water kettle, medium-size fridge, built-in wardrobe with sufficient space for luggage, ceiling fans, and air conditioning. Fully equipped bathroom with large shower area and room for clothes hanging and drying.
Suitable for family of four or two people sharing. Opening in July 2013, guests can enjoy approximately 25 square meters of personal space, including a private balcony.
Room features include a queen-size bed with individual reading lamps, writing desk, bookshelves, lockable storage cabinet, hot-water kettle, medium-size fridge, built-in wardrobe, ceiling fans and air conditioning. The bedroom section of these rooms is private and includes a dedicated entrance as well as direct access to a fully furnished bathroom, which is shared between two rooms.
Suitable for two people sharing or family of four. Approximately 50 square meters of personal space, which includes a private balcony. The room is split-level, with a loft. Each bedroom has its own private space. There is a fully equipped bathroom shared by both bedrooms. Some of these rooms are equipped with an outdoor rain shower.
Each bedroom has a queen-size bed with individual reading lamps and a personal built-in shelf space at the headboard. Also included is a large writing desk, bookshelves, storage cabinet that can be locked and can accommodate even large laptops, hot-water kettle, medium-size refrigerator, two wardrobes with sufficient space for luggage, two ceiling fans, and air conditioning.
Samahita Retreat only has two deluxe one bedroom suites located in the most private building closest to the sea. They have a private bedroom, living room, fully equipped kitchen, generous bathroom and an extra large balcony. Both suites offer a modern open living room with sofa bed, television, working desk and DVD/ iPod Stereo. They are perfect for a family or couple.
This course is inspired and blessed by Tiwariji, Paul’s direct teacher and one of the few living knowledgeable authorities on pranayama and its place in the field of yoga today. It is a living tradition. Paul has learned the full practice in a special one-to-one capacity over the past 17 plus years with Tiwariji. Tiwariji learned directly from his teacher, Swami Kuvalayananda, who was an adept and highly accomplished in pranayama and the science of yoga.
He was also a devotee and spent his years in practice and training with his teacher, Madhavadas, on the banks of the Narmada river, also being taught this exact practice of pranayama. In this way, it has been passed on very personally and effectively. Such a tradition survives all books as it is the only experience that ultimately counts.
Over the years of study and introspection with Tiwariji and in this practice Paul has had the opportunity to better understand it from direct experience and how to help pass it on and help others to practice and teach it better.
The past three years have covered elements of both practice and physiology and this course will continue in that vein, to cover a synthesis of practice, techniques, physiology and philosophy, as below. Further topics will be covered in 2017, to wrap up a full five sections to this curriculum. It aims to combine traditional practice and wisdom with scientific and psychological understanding.
This year Paul will introduce numerous findings on the breath and physiology based on his research on the scientific side, along with continuing to offer insight on the nature of pranayama practice and what happens in the process. It is a program that is part practice, part lecture, part discussion based on your enquiring questions.
The key focus is on your practice and gaining experience. The morning session will be devoted to a 90-minute Kriya and pranayama practice preceded by 45-minutes sitting meditation covering contemplation, mantra japa, pranava japa, and annapannasati (silent awareness on the breath). This will be followed by asana practice.
Asana will be a mix of guided sessions and self-practice. For the first time this year, Paul will take small groups for self-practice on the outdoor shala on different days. If your asana practice is other than Ashtanga you are of course welcome. If you do not have a dedicated asana practice then Samahita Retreat will teach you the basics of the ashtanga method.
The afternoon will focus on pranayama practice along with pranava (Om) recitation to help still the mental activity and trigger a shift in the autonomic nervous system thereby enabling one to get more internally connected, really touch something inside that leads to real transformation. Within this time will be the lecture focus for the day coupled with your questions and answers to the best of the teacher’s ability.
In the evening will be a mixture of personal time, related videos, further practice, and chanting. Typically Paul is not present for the evening programs but one of the team leads them.
Pranayama is a true gift and holds a power to really transform one’s state and behavior if practiced with faith and dedication over time. This program is dedicated to encouraging that in you. Through repeated practice and greater understanding, it can grow within.
The program begins at 17:00 on the first day of the retreat with a group welcome and departure is at 12:00 on the last day. The schedule is subject to change at the discretion of the teacher. Please arrive by 16:00 for a program welcome on the first day. Saturday is free from formal group pranayama practice. Enjoy the morning to rest.
One of Paul's main gifts is to be able to relate the teachings in a very down-to-earth way for the modern seeker. He does not take life or yoga too seriously and as a result, the discussions and philosophical sessions are lively and humorous, helping to explain the meaning behind the practices and philosophy.
Koh Samui is a tropical island located in the Gulf of Thailand. It is a beautiful place possessing lush jungles and white sand beaches, surrounded by sapphire-blue sea. Situated in a high energy zone, Samui and its surroundings has a direct effect on yoga and meditation, an ideal environment in which to focus, practice, and grow.
The training takes place at Samahita Retreat, a facility developed specifically by Paul Dallaghan of Centered Yoga for the teachings in the classical lineages of yoga and meditative practice. Opened in 2003, it is dedicated to the practice and teaching of yoga, health, and well-being.
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Full brunch and dinner buffets are included in the price of the training. Get your taste buds tingling with Samahita Retreat’s fresh and healthy dining. Drawing upon Ayurvedic principals, Samahita uses organic and local produce to create food prepared with love and delicious Thai flavours.
Great emphasis is placed on the importance of food at Samahita Retreat. It serves a dual purpose of healthily nourishing the body and mind while also delighting the senses through great taste and variation.
The food philosophy is based on the principle of “Sattva”, a Sanskrit term that means pure and light with a basis of easy to digest. The emphasis is on natural ingredients including yoghurt, kefir, soy milk, coconut milk, pieces of bread, jams, muesli and breakfast juices all homemade daily.
Samahita Retreat has a full-service juice bar serving up all types of juices, including home grown organic wheatgrass, in addition to a variety of blended shakes. Guests can radically boost their well-being and change mental and emotional states by consuming good water, fresh juices and homemade, healthy treats.
Fresh juices, especially wheatgrass, can aid in detoxifying the body by restoring alkaline balance and reducing or curing many common ailments that people suffer from today. For those with a sweet tooth freshly made cookies, energy balls, muesli bars, and ice-cream are all created using pure, unprocessed ingredients.
Samahita Retreat has taken all the elements of the programs and tailored them to fit and support your fixed date teacher training. You can choose from the detox, de-stress, weight loss or wellness spa programs; giving you the chance to enjoy massages, coaching sessions, and various detoxifying treatments.
The use of a herbal steam room is included in the price of the retreat. You can also relax and enjoy the range of wellness spa add-on programs, designed to nourish body and soul. Choose from a range of massage, beauty treatments, and detoxifying therapies to compliment your time.
Please book your flight to arrive at Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK).
From Samui to Bangkok, take the 2:00 p.m. boat from Nathon to the mainland, and a connecting bus will take you from the pier to the train station in Surathani.
Tickets purchased from agents in Samui normally include the boat, bus, and train fares. The ticket is cheaper if you go to the station yourself, but there is a good chance the train will be fully booked as much as a week in advance.
From Bangkok to Samui, trains for Surathani (which actually stop in Phun Phin, 14 kilometers west of Surathani) leave from Bangkok’s Hualamphong station. The 6:20 p.m. (rapid) and the 7:15 p.m. (express) trains are most convenient, as they arrive at 5:28 a.m. and 7:00 a.m., allowing you plenty of time to catch an 8:00 a.m. boat to Koh Samui.
The bus/ferry journey will be an additional three hours once you’ve arrived in Surathani. Songserm offers a joint ticket (train plus bus plus boat) for around 1,300 THB, which lands you in Koh Samui by 11:00 a.m.
The ferry journey from Donsak pier is 1 1/2 hours. Donsak is 30 minutes from Surathani.
Tickets for the train can be booked at Bangkok Airport, Bangkok Railway Station, and many travel agencies in Bangkok.
To purchase your train tickets in advance, Asia Discover Thailand can arrange for the tickets to be mailed or to be picked up at your Bangkok hotel. Allow at least one month before your departure date to arrange for train tickets.