Letter to Supporters!

 Yoga’s Ark sending out a plea for assistance! Don’t let our ashram be swept away this rainy season!
In the rainy season, we receive up to 5 months of rain. Last November, our creek rose 20 feet in a few days. This is a lot of rain and we truly need your help to stay afloat! 10 000 leaves get’s us a new roof.
Please help us continue to develop Chaya Garden Yoga Ashram as a unique and affordable international destination for yogis of all ages, levels, and incomes.

We are the directors of Chaya Garden Ashram, a place to heal and restore, a place to explore, the inner cosmos and the heart of Ancient Mayan civilization. At Chaya Garden Ashram we are a self initiated, non-affiliated, independent yoga ashram with a mandate to share our practice with as many people as possible at the most affordable price we can offer. This is an intimate experience of self-knowledge in an incredible natural environment brimming with biodiversity in all seasons.

My name is Laine Hoogstraten. Evan Anderson and I have built this concept from the heart for the last two and a half years, from an abused and abandoned property to a thriving yoga community! We have accomplished all this entirely from our own resources and resourcefulness, inventing this amazing place by the grace of the Primordial Master and our Divine Wisdom, that which is inherent within every human being on the planet.

Jungle, waterfall, yoga, veg cuisine, mudra, mantra and meditation… everyone of any age from anywhere can join us here in breathtaking Belize, Central America, for only $35 US per day. We are proud to offer a karma yoga program at only half our regular amazingly cheap rate so that no one who is genuinely interested in the spiritual technology of yoga need be turned away.

But! We’ve had our fill of buckets, bowls and pots catching downpours, streams and drops! We need a new roof! We have been blessed with a gorgeous but badly leaking thatch roof over our second floor open air yoga deck.

All about the thatch…Our thatch roof is over 40 feet in diameter and has about 10 000 leaves. The thatch is at the end of it’s life, and the entire roof structure needs to be assessed and addressed. We are committed to maintaining the natural vibe of the ashram enhanced by the thatch, or palapa, as it is called here. A well done thatch roof lasts up to 15 years, and is the perfect way to live in Belize. It provides a breathing yet insulated layer against both sun and rain, built entirely of local organic materials. Everyone in Belize knows that nothing is cooler and nicer than thatch.

Local Belizean contractors skilled in the ancient art of traditional thatch roofing estimate $20 000 US for the job which involves harvesting leaves from deep in the jungle and transporting these leaves in bundles of 50 at a time by foot and on back, to where they can be picked up by truck and delivered to the site. This also applies to the bushsticks which will become the umbrella-like support structure, and the specific vine needed as lathe for the leaves to be woven through. It is a big job and can only be undertaken according to the season and the phase of the moon which is most optimal for cutting the leaves and poles. Traditional builders know that it is only for a week around the full moon that the sap rises to the tops of the trees and the tips of the leaves. When the materials are cut full of sap, they will last for many years as the resin preserves the leaves and poles from the invasion of insects and damp. This ancient technology is preserved today by only a few highly skilled craftsmen in our neighbouring village. Every palapa built in Belize helps to preserve the knowledge of this organic traditional way of living.

Help us sustain and grow the dream of unlimited sharing by making a contribution to our Indiegogo campaign, and equally important, by sharing this letter of introduction with everyone you know. We have fantastic perks lined up for all levels of contributor.
Donate to our cause in a spirit of partnership, confident that your support will see the successful blossoming of a lifetime commitment come to fruition.

With heartfelt thanks,
Laine Hoogstraten and Evan Anderson
Directors of Chaya Garden Ashram

http://igg.me/at/10-000-leaves
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/10-000-leaves-indie-ashram-needs-new-thatch

Secret Passages!

Secret Passages, an art show opening at the Soul Project
May 30, 2014
Our art project hitting the walls in Belize!

Our art project hitting the walls in Belize!

This new exhibit features works of collage by people from all over the world visiting Belize. Collage is a very interesting medium. In collage, the artist assembles existing print material into a new format, a new picture. The artist creates a new context for the text or images selected, as they appear in the collage in relationship to one another. The seeming randomness of the selection and reassembly leaves a lot of room for subconscious free association by the artist, but also by the viewer. Collage invites us to link images together in an instantaneous impression, the first look. Our minds scan for patterns and similarities and differences, in an instant we form an idea about what we see. See Secret Passages for yourself, and let your mind expand…showing until etc date at Soul Project in San Ignacio.
“collage is a visual remix”
This type of composite image is commonly seen in popular media, but these slick images that we are used to seeing are computer designed. By contrast, there is a wonderful tactility to this collection. The reality of textures, cutting, tearing and glueing is all present. We can believe the work in the art. Some of the pieces even use the hardcover as a starting medium on which to work. The discarded and torn up books that we found had been sentenced to the dump, but by chance and creativity, they have been given a new life, as art.
The show is courtesy of San Ignacio Library, which is where it all began.
One evening last December as we drove by the closed San Ignacio Library, something caught my husband’s eye. We pulled into the library parking and went to have a closer look. Evan began to pull material out of the bin by the corner of the building with a look of incredulity on his face. He picked up the whole sack from the bin and threw it in the back of the truck.
When we arrived back at the yoga ashram, we were amazed to realize what we had. Torn up books on the most interesting but weird subjects, from Mushrooms of North America to The Psychic Power of Pyramids, to books on blacksmithing techniques and a color plate book of Persian rugs. Not to mention Japanese Wooden Joinery and an antique book of pre-tech games and entertainment for children and families.
We immediately threw a collage party, our first of many over the next several months. We now have over thirty works by many students and friends of Chaya Garden Ashram. These works can also be viewed online www.chayagardenashram.com/secret-passages
Please come and join us at the Soul Project for interesting art, great music and more at the opening of Secret Passages, the evening of Friday, May 30, 7pm, with dj Check My Move at 8pm, sponsored by Soul Project, Chaya Garden Ashram, and San Ignacio Library. Bring your dancing shoes.
Chaya Garden Ashram on the Cristo Rey road is a place for yoga, healing, art, music and dance. All are welcome.By Laine Hoogstraten
Director, Chaya Garden Ashram

Secret Passages – Art Show Mix by Chayagarden on Mixcloud