Rishikesh, India

Feb 25 - March 6, 2023
Welcome to your Himālayan home! Join us for a deep dive into sound-based yoga and revel in vibrant, mystical India.

I SAY YES !

Welcome to your Himālayan Home!

This retreat training is being hosted at a very special community on the banks of the holy Ganges river in Rishikesh, where prayers resound in a vibrant flow of auspiciousness.

Our India retreat training schedule allows for deep practice, as well as delicious shared meals and community connection. There's plenty of time for rest, self-care and play in this very safe, foreigner-friendly holy city.

Anandra hopes to be joined by her revered music Guru Pandit Baldev Raj Verma and his senior student Sudhanshu Sharma. Heart of Sound teacher training graduates and local musicians will also share their talents with us. With abundant blessings from HH Chidanand Saraswati, who we'll also have satsang with, this retreat is sure to be a profoundly musical adventure!

"The depth of the Heart of Sound practices really blew my mind. To have such a supportive course structure and community creates a phenomenally safe space. I have the tools I need to develop a practice to exist more mindfully in the world."

Jason Stotz
Dancer, USA

Content & Schedule

Featuring sound-based communion practices and teacher training quality skill learning material.

Communion

Find your heart's voice and sing in our daily devotional mantra and music sessions!

You'll experience sound as a vibrant connection to Self, and understand how it transforms all aspects of your being.

Empowerment

Learn sound-based yoga skills to begin, refine, or enrich your home chanting practice!

Teacher trainees will be encouraged to offer chant experiences to hone their leadership skills.

Rejuvenation

Listen to what's deeply alive in you as you tune your precious body instrument.

You'll practice tools for self-regulating your nervous system for physical, emotional, and mental health.

The Perfect Intro to India

This is Anandra's 12th retreat at her Himālayan home in Rishikesh, and we've curated the perfect mix of deep practice, fun, and encounters with holy people and private places.

Dive into full aliveness with all 5 senses!

  • Taste prayerfully prepared Indian vegetarian food in the āśram, or sample a mix of foreign-inspired dishes at local restaurants
  • Touch the flowers, seeds, and offerings to the holy fire when we cozy up to a global family of pilgrims during the evening prayer ceremony
  • See the Ganges river flowing by, amidst pilgrims from all over India and the world
  • Smell the joyous Himālayan forest bloom and the earth after a spring thunderstorm
  • Hear prayers and temple bells, jungle birds, and the sound of your own heart’s voice singing in concert with nature and like-minded souls!

Join us for a (3 part) India extravaganza of sacred sound!

11-Day Retreat Training February 25 - March 6, followed by Sacred Sound Stage at International Yoga Festival March 8 - 14 (optional, see FAQ), and Upper Himālayas Retreat for 2 weeks following (application only, see FAQ).

Morning

6:30 - 7:00
Sunrise jāpa on the banks of Mother Gaṅgā

9:00 – 11:30
Deep morning Heart of Sound practice with nāda yoga and mantra meditation.

1-2 morning outings to secret Himālayan locations for meditation & prayer may be arranged, weather permitting.

 

Mid-Day

1:00 - 3:00
Room open for teacher trainees to do buddy practices, chant experiments, etc.

3:00 – 4:00 (Alternating Days)
A - Relaxing yogāsana and guided self-massage to tune your body instrument especially for our penetrating practices

B - Q&A with Anandra on sound-based yoga and chant leadership topics

C - 200-300-500 hour trainee practicum workshops

Evening

6:00
Sunset ārti fire, chanting, and prayer ceremony at Gaṅgā

7:00 - 8:30
Opportunity for 200-300-500 hour trainees to offer chant experiments and practicum either privately in our room or publicly on the banks of Gaṅgā

Led by Anandra George

Anandra (Heart of Sound Founder) leads our morning chant experiences and offers the primary course content.

We hope her beloved music Guruji and guru brother Sudhanshu will be able to join us for at least part of the retreat as well.

Our team of Heart of Sound 500hr training graduates may also lead practices, yogāsana sessions, and be available to support teacher trainees with skills and chant leadership.

Current & Aspiring Teachers

Continuing Education: If you're a Yoga Alliance registered teacher, the Feb 25 - March 6 retreat training fulfils your annual requirement of 40+ hours of continuing education.

HOS Teacher Training: If you're enrolled in the Heart of Sound 200-300-500 teacher training online, this retreat training fulfils many group practice contact hours. It also offers the opportunity for you to fulfil many other requirements if you're motivated to do so.

MORE ABOUT TEACHER TRAINING

RETREAT TRAINING INVESTMENT

Registration now open! Submitting payment indicates you agree to our liability waiver, cancellation, and COVID policies (in FAQ below).

GRADUATES

$1995

ONE-TIME PAYMENT

Retreat training tuition

1 welcome dinner

Outings and prayer ceremonies

Yoga Alliance teachers are eligible for 40 continuing education credits.

Contact us for package deals to do your 300hr online + in India!

BUY NOW

NEW STUDENTS - RETREAT ONLY

$2695

ONE-TIME PAYMENT

Retreat training tuition

1 welcome dinner

Outings and prayer ceremonies

Immediate access to extensive online course materials (print, web, audio & video) for your preparation and ongoing home practice! Including:
- Our Sacred Sanskrit Sounds online course ($697 value)
-One 40 day Mantra Meditation course of your choosing ($147 value)

Yoga Alliance teachers are eligible for 40 continuing education credits.

Contact us for package deals on our full 200/500hr online training + retreat in India!

BUY NOW

TEACHER TRAINEES

$1995

ONE-TIME PAYMENT

Retreat training tuition

1 welcome dinner

Outings and prayer ceremonies

Supervision of practicum requirements (optional)

Online trainees may count hours towards certification.

Contact us for package deals to do your 300hr online + in India!

BUY NOW

Want a package deal for a full teacher training (200/300/500hr) + India Retreat?

Payment Plans

Once we have enough people signed up to confirm the event can go ahead, payment plans will then also be available.

Sacred Sound Stage

Extend your retreat (and your teacher training hours!) at this all day, every day platform for musicians and sound healers at the world-renowned International Yoga Festival!

March 8 - 14, 2023

LEARN MORE

Frequently Asked Questions

2023 Retreat Training Special Policy (in effect prior to October 15, 2022)
We're willing to make the commitment and investment if you are!

  • As of our extended anchor pricing deadline date of July 17, 2022, we don't have enough people signed up to confirm the event can go ahead.
  • We are happy to extend that deadline to October 15, 2022 (at regular pricing), and reassess then.
  • If we have our minimum 25 people registered by October 15, 2022, the event is confirmed and our India cancellation policy (below) applies.
  • If we don't have our minimum 25 people by October 15 2022, we'll cancel the event and refund everyone their full payment minus the $350 admin fee.
  • Instead of the refund, we may propose postponement of the same retreat plan for 2024, and you can choose to put 100% of payments going towards whatever the price will be in 2024. (It may change.)
  • For NEW students (not teacher trainees or graduates), the cost of any online courses included with the amount you paid will also be deducted from the refund amount.

It takes a village!

We're really feeling the yuck factor of social media these days and are relying on word of mouth and real-life connections to fill this retreat training. 

India Cancellation Policy:
There is a non-refundable $350 administrative fee.  Students will receive a 75% refund of remaining tuition if requested 120 days or more before the course, and a 50% refund if requested after 120 days. No refunds will be issued less than 60 days in advance.

Venue Change for Unforeseen, Last-minute Events:
In 2020 we had to move our India retreat teacher training online because a global pandemic was declared. Obviously we'd all hate for that to happen again! But if some major unforeseen event were to happen again that put everyone's safety at risk (i.e. a new major COVID variant of concern (as defined by the WHO); a heatwave, earthquake or other climate-related danger; or political unrest with Pakistan or China, etc.) we will refrain from meeting in-person and instead meet online. By sending your registration payment, you agree to this aspect of the cancellation policy as well.

Health Consideration Agreement:
We hope that COVID numbers will be low at the time of the retreat and we can enjoy singing freely without covering our mouths and noses.

We will consistently err on the side of caution, meeting or exceeding current official government guidelines and recommendations from leading epidemiologists to protect the vulnerable among us.

There are 3 levels of Covid consideration we have to mention:

  1. NATIONAL: Each nation's (and each airline's) travel policies are your sole responsibility to navigate. (Vaccination, masking, immigration, visas, etc.)
  2. LODGING: Any lodging place (hotel, āśram, etc.) may have different requirements and it's your responsibility to navigate.

    (In other words, whether or not you're allowed to travel, admitted into the country, or able to check in to your lodging is your responsibility.)
  3. RETREAT TRAINING: Our Heart of Sound teaching space + any outings requires another set of group agreements (below) because we're in an intimate sound space together, singing!

    There will be some ventilation in most settings but not enough to consider ourselves protected if a participant has an active infection and sings their aerosol droplets into the room.

    It's a risk we're willing to take IF everyone abides by the precautions as needed.

In order to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone, we'll consistently err on the side of caution. The retreat training can only meet its potential if everyone remains healthy! If serious illness is spreading, it puts a huge damper on our time together.

HOS Community Health Agreements

  1. We have no interest in debating the efficacy of standard public health measures such as vaccinations or masks.
  2. We also have no wish to police your personal health choices.
  3. Please respect others’ choices to wear a mask at any time they wish.
  4. We request that everyone be fully vaccinated for Covid-19 according to the latest definition by the WHO or American Centers for Disease Control (or your own government's equivalent agency) at the time of the retreat.
  5. Whether or not you're vaccinated, by registering for the India Retreat Training you confirm you are willing to employ any and all of the safety measures we deem necessary at the time, including:

    -Take a rapid test daily each morning before practice
    -Wear a mask in the classroom if community spread is high
    -Wear a mask around other students, in your room with your roommate, and in the classroom at all times, if you feel the slightest bit sick.
    -Stay in our student bubble and mask up when in close contact with people outside our bubble
    -Take meals “to go” and eat outdoors or in your room if risk is high
    -Remove yourself from the class or practices altogether if you are feeling ill or have virus symptoms (fever, cough, sneezing, etc.)

  6. Please bring your own supply of the latest, most accurate rapid tests available at your time of travel (1 for each day of classes) and remedies for covid/flu as recommended by your doctors and wellness practitioners.

NOTE: There are medical clinics and a large AIMS teaching hospital nearby Rishikesh, but quality of care may not match your expectations and getting to/from can be inconvenient. (Services are much more limited in the remote Himālayas.) Best to be prepared yourself!

-------

Parmarth Niketan Covid Policy as of May 2022:
(SUBJECT TO CHANGE - Please see parmarth.org for any updates.)
Despite the fact that India has reopened and many of the steps taken by the State and Union governments have been suspended, we at Parmarth still remain vigilant about Covid-19 and continue to do our part to ensure the health and safety of our Parmarth Parivar – our saints, sevaks, residents and guests. The protocol that we follow is not complicated, and we greatly appreciate your assistance in helping us to practice it.

  1. In order to ensure the health and safety of all of the guests and residents of Parmarth Niketan, we require proof of double vaccination, with the second dose having been taken at least 15 days prior to check-in.
  2. If you are not vaccinated, have only the first vaccination or have taken the second vaccination within 15 days of check-in, we require a negative Covid RT-PCR test, dated within 72 hours of check-in. We greatly appreciate your helping us to ensure the health and safety of all of our guests and residents.
  3. If you develop symptoms before your arrival, please do not come for your planned visit. Traveling while ill - whether Covid-19 or a common cold - can be damaging to your health and to the health of anyone that you come in contact with. So, we humbly request that you stay home if you’re not well.
  4. Please ensure that you bring several masks, as well as hand sanitiser, with you. You will need both while visiting with us.
  5. Please use hand sanitiser and properly wash your hands frequently.
  6. The Ashram is the home to many older immuno-compromised Sadhus, Saints and Matajis, some of whom have made Parmarth Niketan their home for decades. We anticipate that you will honour them and their long and beautiful lives - as well as the lives of the entire Ashram family and community - by exercising the utmost caution when you’re around them, and by making choices that will ensure their health and well-being - choices such as wearing masks, washing/sanitising hands, refraining from risky behaviours, etc.

We will have you sign the liability waiver before the retreat training.

WAIVER OF LIABILITY, RELEASE OF LIABILITY, AND ASSUMPTION OF RISK AGREEMENT

Anandra George PO Box 922 Kilauea, HI 96754

Read this Agreement carefully.
Assumption of Risk: I have voluntarily applied to participate in the retreat, training, class or workshop to include yoga, mantra, physical training activities and counseling/mentoring in which I have registered. I am voluntarily participating in this activity with the knowledge of the numerous risks and dangers involved, which include but are not limited to: dangers and risks inherent in doing yoga, a physical activity and traveling to India; negligence in any manner on the part of Anandra George; emotional trauma; disfigurement; temporary or permanent disability, including paralysis; death; acts of God; the hazards of traveling in remote, unsafe or politically unstable areas or under unsafe conditions; the dangers of civil disturbances and war; forces of nature; transportation failures; equipment failures; accident or illness in remote places without access to medical facilities, transportation, or means of evacuation and assistance; unexpected events; terrorist activities, social or labor unrest; mechanical or construction failures or difficulties; diseases; local laws; climatic conditions; abnormal conditions or developments; or any other actions, omissions, or conditions outside of Anandra Georgescontrol.

I understand that all travel arrangements to and from India are my responsibility and at my own cost. Anandra George and agents shall not be held liable for any consequences arising from delays or cancellations in any of the companies I have made arrangements with, or for any irregularities in my documentation required for travel. Transfers to/from the retreat are at my own cost, unless otherwise specified.

I acknowledge that yoga, mantra, physical training, activities and counseling/mentoring in high altitudes entails known and unanticipated risks which could result in physical or emotional injury, paralysis, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties. I understand that such risks simply cannot be eliminated without jeopardizing the essential qualities of the activity. The risks include, among other things: Acute Mountain Sickness(AMS) which can further escalate to High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE) or High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE); exposure to the natural elements can be uncomfortable and/or harmful; exposure to potentially dangerous wildlife, insects, plants, falling rocks, landslides, accidental slips and falls on snow, ice and mountainous sections is also a possibility.

Furthermore, I understand Anandra George agents are qualified, but have difficult jobs to perform. They seek safety, but they are not infallible. No one can predict the weather, the elements, the terrain or altitude sickness with 100% accuracy. I am cognizant of the basic safety rules and instructions concerning these yoga, mantra, physical training activities and counseling/mentoring activities. I also understand that I am responsible for the safety and good operating condition of any equipment while I use such equipment.

Preparation: I assume full and complete responsibility for physically preparing for the yoga, mantra, physical training activities and counseling/mentoring as prescribed in the eligibility criteria of the activity. Representation of good health: I certify that I am in good health, have no medical, mental, physical conditions that affect my ability to travel and/or participate in the retreat, training, class or workshop has not been advised otherwise by a medical practitioner. I acknowledge that Anandra George is in no way responsible for any costs related to my medical care during or after the retreat. Training, class or workshop.

Release of Liability: As lawful consideration of, and as part of the payment for, the right to participate in the retreat, training, class or workshop, and as part of the payment for the services arranged for me by Anandra George or her agent, I HEREBY EXPRESSLY AGREE TO BE RESPONSIBLE FOR MY OWN WELFARE AND ASSUME ALL OF THE ABOVE RISKS, INCLUDING BOTH THOSE KNOWN AND UNKNOWN TO ME.

As lawful consideration of, and as part of the payment for, the right to participate in the retreat, training, class or workshop, and as part of the payment for the services arranged for me by Anandra George or her agent, I HEREBY EXPRESSLY AGREE TO RELEASE, DISCHARGE AND HOLD HARMLESS FOREVER Anandra George, affiliated entities, employees, agents, representatives, officers, directors, associates, volunteers, successors and assigns from and against any liability, actions, causes of actions, debts, suits, claims and demands of any and every kind and nature whatsoever which I now have or which may hereafter arise out of or in connection with the retreat, training, class or workshop with Anandra George.

I AGREE THAT THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT SHALL SERVE AS A COMPLETE RELEASE AND EXPRESS ASSUMPTION OF RISK for myself. It is my intention to fully assume all risks associated with this retreat, training, class or workshop and to release Anandra George from any and all liability to the maximum extent permitted by law.

Indemnification: I further agree to “indemnify” (meaning to defend and to pay or reimburse) Anandra George against any claim by any person, including minors, arising in whole or in part from an injury or other loss suffered or caused by me in connection with the expedition or my participation in the retreat, training, class or workshop. Agreement with the safety protocols on the retreat, training, class or workshop I understand that there are chances that I may feel the effects of altitude sickness and oxygen deprivation while on this retreat. I am aware that the trainer may deem it unsafe for me to continue doing yoga, mantra, physical training activity or counseling at any time, and arrange for me to descend to a lower attitude.

I understand that I have been advised that travel insurance is highly recommended, but not required. If I choose to buy insurance I will make sure that the travel insurance covers the activity of this retreat as well as unexpected cancellation, sickness, losses and all the usual risks. I will bring the policy with me in case of an emergency.

Knowing and Voluntary Execution: I have carefully read and understand the provisions and legal consequences of this agreement, and I hereby agree to all of its conditions. I agree that if any portion of this agreement is found to be void or unenforceable, the remaining portions shall remain in full force and effect.

I understand that in calculating the cost of the retreat, training, or workshop, Anandra George has relied on my consent to these terms and their enforceability. Without this agreement, Anandra George would not be able to offer these services. I agree that execution of an electronic transmission of this agreement shall be deemed execution of the original agreement.

I agree that electronic transmission of an executed copy of this agreement shall constitute acceptance of this agreement.

Signed____________________________Date___________

Further, I release Anandra George (and agents) to utilize images and/or video of me for use in promotional or teaching materials.

______I require Anandra George to check with me before using my image/video.

______Anandra George may use images/video of me per her discretion.

Signed____________________________Date___________

Yes and no.

Our primary purpose of gathering is to enjoy our practices together.

There is a training element, as multiple levels of teacher trainees will be present and growing their skills.

However, no foundational lectures or basic skills classes will be offered during this retreat. The core curriculum for the Heart of Sound training is much more effectively offered online, where trainees can absorb at their own pace. 

If you review the schedule above, you'll find several opportunities to nerd out with fellow trainees and get support from Anandra and the teaching team.

If you're currently enrolled in the (online) teacher training, this will be an extraordinary delight!

If you wish to get teacher training level content, please enroll for the Online Teacher Training now and get a head start before arriving to Rishikesh. (Email us for a package deal for the online TT + India Retreat Training)

We'd recommend getting to at least Phase 8 of the Self-Study Map for the 200hr program before arriving to Rishikesh.

Note that internet may be unreliable and slow in India, so don't plan to be able to access streaming video content or download large files.

Yes! We would love to have you attend the retreat only. You will have lots of free time in the schedule to enjoy āśram life on the banks of Mother Gaṅgā.

To make the most out of the practices during the retreat training, we request that you complete the following prior to attending:

Lodging is not included in the retreat price. We'll let you know by email exactly how to book your own room. We have an *EXTENSIVE* logistics FAQ you'll get after you register (and the event is confirmed).

Basically, you'll contact Parmarth Niketan Āśram by emailing their reservations and make sure to tell them you are a part of Anandra George's Heart of Sound Retreat. Their process may be a bit wonky, but if you're with us you will have a room. You can pay them directly when you are there. Rates for rooms are very affordable.

  • The nearest airport is Dehra Dun, and it's about a 45 min-1 hour taxi ride to where the retreat is held at Parmarth Niketan Āśram.
  • Please plan to arrive to Rishikesh by February 24th so you can acclimate and settle in.
  • February 25th, we'll meet in the afternoon at 3:30 pm for an orientation and our first practice together, followed by Ārti at the banks of the Gaṅgā and a group welcome dinner.
  • The daily schedule for February 26th - March 5th is above, starting at 9 AM each day.
  • We will finish at 11:30 am on March 6th.  

Please refer to the Self-Study Map for the certification requirements for your level of training.

This retreat offers an opportunity to attend group practices and count those towards your hours.

If you wish to self-motivate to do so, you may also do buddy practices, chant experiments, and present your practicum in small groups with other students. We envision a rich environment of learning as trainees try out their leadership skills on each other!

We'll provide OFNR feedback forms if leaders wish to get feedback (required for final practicums).

Organization
We'll provide signup sheets for the time slots on the schedule, and you'll be responsible to self-organize with other motivated students.

Supervision
200hr trainees at the stage of final 30-minute practicums, or 300hr trainees at the stage of 2nd 45-minute or final 90-minute practicum should sign up in plenty of time for someone on the teaching team to be present to observe and give feedback.

Cost
There is no additional training cost for currently enrolled online TT students to utilize the in-person retreat for their group practice attendance + practicum requirements.

IYF is happening as far as we've been told, and the dates are March 8-14.

If you have the bandwidth for the glorious madness that is the International Yoga Festival, it'd be lovely to attend following our retreat training.

Several of the HOS team will be leading practices and workshops (including magical daily sunrise Morning Rāga and Mantra on the Ganges with Anandra!), which may also count towards your TT attendance hours.

Nightly "Family Kīrtan Hour" would also be a platform for TT students to share a song for the participants (and count that towards their 300/500hr TT practicum as well)

If you choose to stay for IYF, you'd be registering for IYF separately on Parmarth's website. They haven't opened registration yet, but if you're registered for our retreat we'll let you know and send you a Heart of Sound discount code, as soon as they do. (Don't be surprised if it's not for many months.)

If you'd like to help (and have Parmarth cover your lodging, food, and festival fee), we may also still need Sacred Sound Stage volunteers to help run it, and if not, volunteers are always welcome at the festival! Volunteering is a full-time job for the 7 days of the festival, but it's fun!

Yes, but it's more informal than the Rishikesh retreat training.

It's likely that Anandra and a few companions may drive to a most magical āśram 8 hours North towards the source of the Ganges for rest, relaxation, hiking, and personal sādhanā after the Rishikesh events end.

Morning meditations on the giant quartz crystal rock in the Ganges are worth the drive! :)

Can I count it for my TT hours?
No formal classes or group practices will be offered, though spontaneous devotional music is likely to occur.

We'll bring a pared-down sound system in case anyone is inspired to offer a chant session. Teacher trainees are welcome to work on their requirements together and offer practicums, workshops, etc. Anandra will be available by request for Office Hours / Q&A, and to observe final practicums as her schedule permits. (However, she will not be delivering primary content lectures for the training; all of that is online.)

People may choose to take day trips to lakes, hot springs, or an overnight to Gangotri (close to the source of the Ganges).

We have no fixed dates (and don't plan on making any until much closer to the event), but we'll leave 4-5 days after the Rishikesh events end and be up there for at least 2 weeks.

If you're a teacher trainee or personal friend, as well as a seasoned traveller who is comfortable rolling with uncertainties in remote places, and would like to request permission to join us, please email us.

It is not a hosted retreat or travel tour, and you'd be expected to be entirely self-sufficient for your travel arrangements and personal daily schedule.

If your dates coincide with Anandra & team, we'll be happy to share a ride with you on our mini-bus / van.

A typical day might be:

Sunrise mantra on "the rock" alone, or silently with other āśramites

Breakfast and tea served by the staff

Hike around the villages and forest
and/or self-study TT material, practice your musical skills, do TT enrichment activities with a buddy, etc.

Lunch served by staff

Nap, reading, relaxation, stretching
or more study/practice
or hike

Afternoon tea served by staff

Evening ārti for sunset
or Kīrtan open mic

Dinner served by staff

Kīrtan open mic

Quiet time, to bed by 9

Yes, we offer monthly free Yoga of Sound chant experiences and always hang out afterwards to chat. That's probably the easiest way to connect.

Register for the next event here!

Be sure to take the Prep Course as many of your questions (and lots you never thought of) are answered there.

Or email [email protected] and we'll try to help you.

Once registered and confirmed, we will email you a highly detailed FAQ that will explain in more detail how to get to Rishikesh, options for housing, what to pay, etc.

Please make [email protected] a safe sender to be sure you see the email!

QUESTIONS?

Let us know if you need any other assistance.

Close

50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.