Help develop an eco-ashram in sacred Tamil Nadu, south India



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 Min stay requested: at least a week

  • Description


    We are an eco-friendly, conscious community space at the foot of the sacred mountain Arunachala that serves the awakening of humanity. We play host to pilgrims doing pradakshina (circumnavigation of the mountain), guests on retreat, international work camps serving the local community, meditation/ yoga retreats, sadhus and spiritual seekers alike. It is especially in service to women, as a refuge for those who are dedicated to their spiritual path.

    We are established on the idealism of living sustainably in harmony with nature, which is proving to be a learning work in progress. For building, so far we have experimented with mud, bamboo, coconut leaf, wild lemon grass, stone and iron and have three accommodation houses available for shared accommodation.

    The sustainability vision is to take this completely off the grid with solar power, water harvesting, organic farming and so on. Other practices like minimizing the use of plastics come from sustained awareness by all who come here.

    We have a deep bore well for drinking water and a well for washing water, electricity and no wifi but internet access is available via phone line. Smoking is only outside and working is up to five hours a day.

    The power of impersonal relations supports community living and inward focus so it is more suited for individual spiritual seekers rather than couples.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Farmstay help
    Help with Eco Projects
    Help around the house
    Animal Care

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We live in a rural Indian village in an agricultural area where you will meet and interact with farmers, children, villagers, pilgrims and sadhus alike. We are also in close proximity to orphanages and schools and two kms away from the sacred fire mountain Arunachala, seven kms away from Ramana Ashram plus there are many temples and ashrams around Arunachala to visit. If you are a spiritual seeker the high season for visiting gurus holding satsang (spiritual discourse) is at the end of the year.

    FYI, Every full moon is the festival here when many pilgrims do the circumnavigation of the mountain to burn their karma. It is said that Arunachala is the heart of Shiva, who burns karma and grants liberation.

    Also for those interested, I am a meditation and self awareness teacher and I'm more than happy to share my insights and lead morning meditation and yoga practice sessions. Hari Om Tat Sat :-)

  • Help


    We have been blessed with hosting twenty workawayers todate and the land has been transforming beautifully. We have been particularly focused on building the mud walls of the outdoor kitchen and our next project is to build an octagonal shaped meditation hut with a pyramid roof. We especially like to welcome workawayers with construction/ handy person skills and are willing to work with stone and mud.

    We welcome any eco system advice or contributions as we are always open on how to improve our set up. And skilled crafts people especially in materials like bamboo, wood, mud and stone are also very welcome to add shelves, build cupboards and other useful constructions for our new kitchen, bike shed and dish washing area. It's also a good time to get active in the garden with planting and cleaning. It's such a joy and blessing to receive enthusiastic people who apply their energy and creativity to the benefit of others. If you feel the calling we welcome you. 😊🙏

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation


    Basic shared accommodation of mats on the floor with mosquito nets in the mud house with shared bathroom is provided. We will provide bed sheets, pillows, blankets and mosquito net for your comfort ❤️

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    All food is vegetarian and alcohol is not permitted. Two vegetarian meals of lunch and dinner are provided at the ashram with tea and coffee throughout plus fresh fruit from the trees in season. Those taking regular breakfast are encouraged to bring their own supplies.

    Living with Indian values, among sadhus, and with renunciated types it is important to restrict body exposure and especially to respect the Indian tradition of women covering their shoulders and legs. Liberation doesn’t come from being free with the body but free from body mind focus, and to support this it is important to not bring attention to the body. Women are encouraged to cover their body with light, loose clothing so things like shorts, tank tops, and leggings are not deemed appropriate here.

    To get to Tiruvannamalai you can fly into Chennai and take a bus from the airport which will take around four hours or from other locations if they are already in India. If they arrive at the bus stand they can take an auto rickshaw to here which will cost around Rs. 200.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 337187294566