There is a path of yoga called Karma Yoga. This practice is not one of attuning the physically body through asana or strengthening the pranic body through breath-work. This path is one of devotional service. This is the practice I explore every time I visit Ishtadev Niwas Ashram near Kimberly, BC.

What many people don’t realize is that an ashram is not the property of its guru but of all those who choose to let it be a part of their world. An ashram is a yogi’s opportunity to practice all aspects of a yogic life including Karma Yoga: selfless service. Each person who’s experienced the teachings and trainings of an ashram is forever a part of the livelihood of the space.

To me this sounds like the innate relationship we have to our world. We are the shepherds of the spaces we have been gifted to experience. There is no one to ask for help, no one to tell us what needs to be done. We are to care for the various environments that have held space for us in our lives.

This is the reciprocal nature of all life.

Karma Yoga is the essence of all relationships and brings us to our enlightened state faster than any other route. To be of service is to be enlightened.