Art of Living Bangalore Ashram- What comes to our minds when we hear the word “Ashram”, is a place that offers a religious retreat, a place where the routine requirements like food and stay are being taken care of, giving you an opportunity to immerse yourself in meditational and spiritual practices.
When in an Ashram, you need not worry about “Shram” or work to sustain your basic life, rather transcend beyond the basics and achieve satisfaction, happiness and a joyous way of living.
Curious about relevant Ashrams in India? read out our most popular blog on Ashrams in India.
The Art of Living Ashram Bangalore
When in Bangalore, what could have been better than visiting an Ashram, which has become a synonym to seeking the way of living, meditation, spiritualism, humanity and world peace.
This time we visited the Art of Living Ashram, the brain child of Padma Vibhushan Sri Sri Ravishankar Ji, a renowned spiritual leader, humanitarian and an ambassador of peace and human values.
Along with the meditation and breathing techniques like Sudarshan Kriya, which was devised by Sri Sri Ravishankar Ji, fondly addressed as Gurudev, the Ashram is also famous for being associated with multiple welfare programs for children, women and artisans from rural areas.
Guru Paduka Vanam, AOL Bangalore
Guru Paduka Vanam is an amphitheater which has the capacity to accommodate thousands of devotees at a time.
This beautiful Paduka shaped structure represents the importance of a Guru in everyone’s life and has been built to respect one’s Guru.
There is an artificial pond within Guru Paduka where one can see some ducks enjoying in the water. The ariel view helps one to clearly identify the Paduka or the sandal-shape.
The Art of Shopping
After spending some time appreciating the concept of Guru Paduka Vanam, you may wish to pamper yourself with a bit of shopping at Madhurya, a store which has a range of products to offer.
You can enjoy a guilt-free shopping spree, as many of these products are being procured by the artisans from remote villages, thus impacting their lives directly.
Apart from Madhurya, there are few other stores as well where you can be indulged if you are a shopaholic.
You can look for some ethenic wear for the entire family at BYogi, or even fill in the monthly grocery, personal care products and Ayurveda products from Sri Sri Tattva Shop.
Vishalakshi Mantap, Art Of Living
Named after Sri Sri Ravishanker Ji’s mother, Vishalakshi Mantap, with its architectural magnificence and loads of positivity, clearly stands out as the centerpiece of The Art of Living.
Speaking of the architecture, this beautiful structure is a 108 feet high, five-tiered hall, which has 81 pillars holding it strong.
The design also resembles a blooming lotus, laced with petals, if one could get an ariel view.
Inside the Mantap, the pillars hold the symbols of different religions from across the world and one cannot ignore the intricate designing on the ceiling which represents the Navgrahas and the signs of zodiac.
There are plenty of cushions that can be used to sit comfortably while meditating or during the daily evening Satsang.
Annapurna Dining Hall
After meditating for some time, one can head to the community kitchen, Annapurna Dining Hall, named after Goddess Annapurna, a manifestation of Parvati, Goddess of food and nourishment.
One of the famous mega kitchens of India, the kitchen prepares meals for approximately 23,000 people in a day. Apart from the visitors and volunteers of Ashram, the food is also sent as mid-day meal to nearby schools supported by the Art of Living.
Although Annapurna Dining Hall has the capacity to feed 60,000 people normally, the kitchen serves up to 1 Lakh people during Navratri festival, when foot-fall is extremely high.
We had our lunch, called Prasad, which included rice, sambhar, potatoes’ gravy, and dry beetroot vegetable. The kitchen provides different Satvik menus for different days of the week.
This environment friendly mega kitchen is fueled by bio-gas and briquettes made of sawdust, groundnut and coffee shells and some other dried agricultural waste.
Sri Sri Gaushala
If you believe that the only important thing that you get from a cow is milk, then you can know few more uses of the byproducts that we get in this Gaushala (Cow-Shelter).
Sri Sri Gaushala takes care of 15 native breeds of cows and had been conceptualized keeping in mind the declining numbers of Indian breeds.
Apart from milk and milk-based products, the cow-dung is used as fertilizers for organic farming and bio-gas fuel is used in the kitchen.
Distilled urine (Gomutra) is used in curing chronic ailments at Sri Sri Ayurveda Hospital and Sri Sri Panchkarma Center.
Sri Sri Gaushala has approximately 2000 cows. Apart from that, there are few horses and two elephants. If you are lucky, you might spot some deer and peacocks.
Sri Sri Gurukul
We nearly had an experience of time-travel while witnessing Sri Sri Gurukul, the institution preserving and reviving the Vedic traditions and education system.
One can hear the chanting of the students coming from all directions and the experience is a pure bliss.
Sri Sri Gurukul is one of the leading institutions providing expertise in Vedas, Agama, Sanskrit and many other specializations like Astrology, Music, Yoga and more. The list is quite long.
Students across India come over to be a part of Gurukul. The day starts at 5:00 am at Gurukul and ends at 9:30 pm, with multiple breaks within the schedule.
Radha Kunj Garden
The gardens of Nidhivan and Seva Kunj in Vrindavan, famous for Raslila of Lord Krishna and Radha Ji, being the inspiration, Radha Kunj Garden is the most apt name that could have been thought of.
With a beautiful lake on one side, Radha Kunj is like a bouquet studded with exotic flora, complementing the lush greens in and around the garden.
A small waterfall, the lily ponds and the silvery fountains brings in a free flow of energy throughout the surroundings.
The sight becomes more enchanting at night with the multi-colored lights adding more life to the water bodies and the fountains.
Lord Shiva’s Temple – Sri Samba Parmeshwara Temple
After spending some time at Radha Kunj Garden, one can head to Lord Shiva’s Temple called as Sri Samba Parameshwara Temple which has a resemblance to one of the holiest Shiva’s temples – Amarnath Cave.
The main Shivling further has 1008 Lingas carved and you can also do a Jal-Abhishek of the Shivling.
Lord Shiva, believed to be Adi-Yogi, is present in most of the ashrams/places associated with Yoga and meditation.
Your “Ojas” meaning “Body Strength” is taken care of at this reenergizing point where you can get some milk-shakes which are made from Ojasvita, a health drink from Sri Sri Tattva.
Treat for the Taste Buds
If you are tired after a long visit and are craving for something tasty and high on energy, there are few options available.
You can relish some healthy eggless bakery products made using whole wheat and also have a fine dine experience at Café Vishala.
Panchamruth is another restaurant offering multi-cuisine options along with Satvik food.
Alternately, for some sweet and spicy flavors, along with some strong tea, you can definitely rely on Swadishta Café.
Bus Tour For Day Visitors to Art of Living Bangalore Ashram
Ashram provides a free bus tour of the facility to all the day visitors. For now, we were informed that the tour is organized on Fridays and Sundays.
The schedules, however, are flexible as per the real time situation and the number of visitors. You can book your seat for the bus at the Information Center, near Vishalakshi Mantap.
Programs and Courses at Art of Living Bangalore
The Art of Living offers multiple Yoga and Meditation programs and courses for beginners and advanced practitioners.
The basic program to start with is called Happiness Program which includes the practice of Sudarshan Kriya, the world’s most powerful breathing technique developed by Sri Sri Ravishankar Ji.
To know more details of the different programs, you may contact at the below numbers: 8618787089 & 8310240886
The Art of Living has developed multiple residential options suiting different budgets and convenience.
The accommodation is available for the program participants only. For the details regarding the accommodation, you may contact at the numbers mentioned below:
Volunteering at Art of Living Bangalore Ashram
To be eligible as a Volunteer, one should be above 18 years of age and should have done one or more of the below courses:
Happiness Program or Yes!+
Youth Leadership Training Program
Online Meditation and Breath Workshop
Volunteers get three meals a day which is free of cost at Annapurna Dining Hall. Accommodations are provided only to the ones who opt to volunteer for at least a month. If a volunteer wishes to stay for less, the option of paid accommodations is available.
How to reach the Art of Living Ashram
By Bus –
From KSR Railway station, you can go to Majestic Bus Stand which is a walking distance (Approx. 300 meters). From Majestic Bus Stand, you can board any bus which is going towards Kanakpura. The ticket should cost between Rs. 20.00 to Rs. 30.00
By Metro –
The nearest Metro Station to the Art of Living Ashram is Yelachenahalli, which is approximately 10 KMs apart.
- From KSR Railway Station, one can reach using the below route:
- 1st Train Towards -> Baiyappanahalli -> Platform 1 -> Purple Line
- City Railway Station
- Nadarprabhu Kempegowda (Change Metro from Purple Line to Green Line here)
- 2nd Train Towards -> Silk Institute -> Platform 2 -> Green Line
- From Yelachenahalli, you can board an auto or any bus going towards Kanakpura.
Contact Details for The Art of Living International Center
For more details, please contact the numbers mentioned below:
Ashram Information Center: 8067262626/27/28
Programs Helpline Number: 8067612345 (Monday-Friday, 9:00 am to 6:00 pm)
You can also refer the below mentioned websites for specific information:
Alternately, you can also mail for more information on the below mentioned email:
You can reach this beautiful place by following the below map:
Let me summarize few important details about this blissful campus:
- Distance – 21 KMs from Bangalore
- Timings – 9:00 am to 7:00 pm
- Parking Space – Ample usually, but overcrowded during Navratri
- Parking Charges – INR 20/-
- Free Lunch – Annapurna Dining Hall, free lunch for visitors
- Lunch Timing – 12:30 pm to 2:30 pm
- Multi-cuisine meals/snacks – Swadishta, Café Vishala, Panchamruth
- Café Timing – 9:00 am to 7:00 pm
- Drinking Water – RO Water Coolers Available to refill your bottles. Mineral water bottles available at Café.
- Toilets – Hygienic Toilets available
- Activities – Meditation, Shopping
Interested to know about Isha Ashram? check out our popular and most relevant blog on Isha Yoga Center, Coimbatore.