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A humble tale of my Rishikish Retreat with two exceptional teachers, Jim Harrington and Aditi M. Gaur. By Juanita Caprari.

December 11, 2013

I had the privilege to meet, be taught by and share a profoundly special retreat and course with Jim Harrington and Aditi M. Gaur  in Rishikesh, India in September 2013. Together with 16 fellow teachers and avid yoga practitioners we embarked on an unforgettable journey of all that is truly and authentically Yoga. In the process we learnt more about each other and we connected to a deeper level of ourselves. A union, (how fitting the word which translates from “Yoga”), that binds us together on all levels and will remain with us eternally.

Phool ChattiI feel I could write a book on my incredible experience in Rishikesh, I want to shout it out to the world, I want people to know how such an experience can change your life and you would never look back. You would raise your arms and extend your gratitude to the heavens and ask to be blessed with being able to return to do it all over again! It is a personal story and one day I will write more of my beautiful experience of this retreat and course, but for now I would like to introduce you to Aditi M. Gaur who lives in Mumbai, (Bombay), India.

Aditi at Vasishta's Cave Rishikesh

I would like my fellow yogis in the community to know about her because Aditi will be in Cape Town in March 2014 and will teach at Spirit Fest 2014 as well as facilitate a retreat in the same month with Jim Harrington.
I believe Jim needs no formal introduction as he is a revered teacher and much loved in the yoga community. By no means do I make light of his contribution to our journey in Rishikesh or his reputation. If it were not for Jim, our India epic would not have happened. If it were not for Jim, we would not have met Aditi who touched every single one of our lives. So forgive me for not “introducing” Jim to you all but I do believe you either know him well or know of him. I have utmost respect and deepest gratitude to Jim for his gentle soul, his friendship, his teaching and for taking us on his first India retreat with him! Needless to say, we hope to return with him next year!

Jim Harrington at Kujna Puri Temple Rishikesh (To receive regular updates from Jim please visit and sign up to his newsletter on the site.)

So please do take the time to read a short profile on Aditi and her beautiful blog, “Yogalaya”
born out of the idea to share and provide traditional and ancient yoga teachings in modern times.

Teacher Profile Aditi M. Gaur:
“Having been a successful entrepreneur and a national level athlete, Aditi found external success at an early age, but soon learnt that it came without inner peace. It was the quest for peace and fulfilment that lead her from the Corporate world to the Himalayas where she served as a volunteer, studying yoga and the scriptures from saints and traditional yogis. Her spiritual practices and interactions with these learned Masters convinced her that external success was easy to achieve but internal success was hard to come by and it was on their urging that she took to teaching yoga as a way to serve and share.Aditi M. Gaur Teacher Profile“For me my practice is about worshipping the divine within and this is what I offer to my students as well — the ability to switch off and discover who they really are. I was taught that this process requires a quiet mind hence my class focuses on bringing stillness in the body and mind through asana, pranayama and relaxation.”
Aditi teaches a traditional Hatha Yoga practice. She has earned her RYT 200 certification from the Sivananda Yoga & Vedanta Centre and is currently studying for her RYT 500 certification with the Himalayan Yoga Tradition.”

About the Yogalaya Blog:
“YOGALAYA a name derived from “Laya Yoga”, meaning inward absorption, was born from an idea that I had about building a platform that could provide traditional teachings in a modern format. I often find teachings being presented as ‘traditional’ but in truth these teachings have been watered down considerably and it would often make me cringe. As I travelled through the Himalayas and met unknown yogis and little-known masters, I realized that their wisdom and teachings were much needed in the world today, even though it seems as though they may not be suited for the 21st century. The truth is that they are just as relevant today as they were thousands of years ago. Having been a part of the corporate world for twelve years and then one day realizing that the external success had brought me no fulfilment at all I moved to the Himalayas for a couple of months to work as a volunteer and study Yoga. My interactions with various spiritual teachers and leaders made me realize that what I needed to do first was start to understand who I was and why I had come into this world. From these answers, it seems, everything else would come. In the ten years that I have been studying and practising yoga, I have tried to understand what ‘sadhakas’ or aspirants on the path are looking for when they turn to the practice of Yoga. While some want a lean body through asanas only, there are others who are looking for something deeper – how to find peace, how to be happy and how to find fulfilment in life.
Whether it is playing the role of a parent, a sibling, a spouse, a friend, or a companion, all of us are looking for answers on how to play each of these roles effectively so that we may find happiness. We all, it seems, are looking for the same thing. My aim with Yogalaya is to enable and assist on finding some, if not all of these answers. Also because I too, as a sadhaka, am a part of this pursuit and have been blessed with the opportunity to learn from those who have found some of these answers and are willing to share with others unconditionally and selflessly. Yogalaya is only a small way to enable this sharing. “- Aditi. M. Gaur –

Please do yourself a blessed favour if you are able to join the yoga family at Spirit Fest to take the time to meet Aditi and read and spread the love of her articles on Yogalaya. Your mind and soul will be richly rewarded if you do.

With love & gratitude,

Juanita in RishikeshJuanita Caprari is a certified Yoga teacher and Public Relations Practitioner. She started her Yoga practice in 2002. She has completed two Yoga Teacher Training Courses, the last one through Ananda Kutir Ashram and has been teaching Yoga since 2007. or visit the website or

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