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Ingredients

1 1/2 c of graham cracker crumbs

3 packages of Philadelphia Cream Cheese

3 cups of turbinado sugar

1 lb frozen raspberries

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 Tbsp cornstarch

¼ c maple syrup

Parchment paper

6 inch round pan

Instructions

Cut out a piece of parchment paper and place on bottom of pan

Spread the crumbs on the bottom of the pan

Sprinkle water so it adheres (approximately 3 tbs.)

Cream the cheese in a Cuisinart or by hand (the cheese should be very creamy)

Add sugar and vanilla and cream again

Spread mixture on top of the crumbs

Bake for 35 minutes at 375 degrees

While the cheesecake is baking place the raspberries in a bowl and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp of cornstarch and pour in ¼ cup of maple syrup. Mix this together gently, and pour over the cake.  Cook another 7-10 minutes until the berries settle. The water will evaporate and the berries will spread nicely over the pie.

Let the pie cool for about an hour or place in the refrigerator for a quick cool.

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Sri Ratnam hall captivates with its distinctive Asian influences – from the intricately hand-carved doors from Bali and its strikingly golden roof, changing hues depending on the reflected light. Large windows capture the surrounding forest, lake and sky. But before it took on its true form we used to call it the Rona box because of its rectangular ordinary shape.

In 2010, Fred Buchet had lived at the Centre for 11 years when he was given an unexpected responsibility – supervising the Hall’s construction, from scratch.

When you volunteer at the Centre, you grow out of your small self, begin to expand your skills or even may discover you had skills you didn’t know you possessed. Through meditation and knowledge you grow and your capacity to work through and deal with situations grows. Fred said that what he learned from building the hall was how to deal with stress. It was by “being put in situations, which, to be honest, were not pleasant, that I learned a lot.”

It was a massive project, Fred said. You have a way to deal with your stress, but you have to deal with the stress of everyone else who does not have the tools you have. “People are pressing you for information, and if you don’t turn inside yourself, and breath, and let go, it would be very difficult. What I noticed is the information is there but you can’t reach it at the moment, but you know it is going to come. You know it is there.”

“Working here, you often see grace in action, but still, you have to do your homework.” Fred recalls one situation where, “We had only two contractors able to do the steel. We couldn’t start the work before October. But because of winter coming, at this time of the year, it wasn’t likely we would find anyone.”

I remember calling this guy.  “We have only one issue,” I told him,  “We want this structure to be complete within four weeks.” He surprised me by replying, “Ok, we will have it built in three. So that was a miracle.”

Many stories are connected with the building of this hall, which is a place of beauty and solace. But you will find – whether you are transforming Rona boxes into imposing structures or planting seedlings – is that the work transforms you!

 

 

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Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s New Year Message

Wow, what a nice celebration. Often people who are celebrating they cannot appreciate silence and those who enjoy silence they don’t celebrate they don’t look joyful and celebrate. People who are in silence are very morose and melancholic, but our specialty is we are in silence and we are celebrating. You can’t say yes, say yes (holds up thumb to indicate yes).  This is so beautiful a great way to welcome the New Year. Now let’s thank the year 2013. 2013 with all its events has brought us together. Such resolve to keep moving ahead. It has posed with its many challenges, made as strong in some ways and with many of its gifts has made us happy in so many ways. No year passes without some wisdom. So like every year this year also it is just going to pass has given us some wisdom has made us more wiser. Isn’t it? How many of you agree on this? The last year has made us more wiser?

So we need to move on. Time is like a flowing river. At least with river you can put a bank or a dam, but you can’t stop it totally.  When the river is gushing, it will overflow the dam. You have to leave it. You can only store a certain amount of water, but with time even that is not possible.  Time is like a fast flowing river. Time is like the wind, which nobody can stop. Time is like the sun around which the earth revolves. Time is like our mind – ancient, yet very fresh and very new.  Our mind is very, very, very ancient, yet it is fresh and new. So then, celebration of New Year is really honoring the time. Honoring the time is honoring the mind.  Honoring the mind means honoring our self.  And the way to honor yourself is to know that you are neither a culprit nor a victim. What stops you from honoring yourself?  When you think you are a culprit. You did something wrong, the guilt in you. I am a sinner. If you are a sinner you can never celebrate yourself, you can never be peace with yourself. It will always eat you deep inside. When you get out of the culprit consciousness, guilt consciousness, there is peace and there is spiritual light within. You should know that there is light inside of me. I am part of the light. I am part of universal love. Yeah? You are a spark of universal love. Every individual wants to experience this universal love, be part of it, be a spark of it.  And that can only happen when we are out of culprit consciousness.

And the other thing is victim consciousness. If you feel you are a victim you can never express truth, you can never express the divinity. The purpose of our life is to express light, love, and life fully and fully express life is celebration. So, the purpose of us being here – express your life, express all facets of your life, that is love, joy, wisdom. These are different facets of life. We are here to express that. But if you feel you are victim of situation of time of other people, you can never do that. So how to get over the victim conscious? Know that every unpleasant experience in life has given some depth to me and thank them.  And the pleasant experiences have given an opportunity for you to do more service to people.  Thank them. So life is always a mixture. The unpleasant days, we must just thank them because it has centered us.  Nobody gets more centered than in unpleasant days. Unpleasant things takes you out of the external, puts you with yourself, so that gives you depth, and it adds to your personality. So instead of “oh, I am 20 years of my life I wasted or 15 years somebody else created problem for me. Drop all that and say I thank all those bitter days for i.t gave me strength and I thank all those pleasant days that gave me width, made me realize my true potential, made me express myself, that is joy. We thank that.  By thankingthe  the pleasant and unpleasant we get over victim consciousness. Got it?

And this year for us to welcome the coming year we welcome the coming New Year with resolution.  We resolve to do something excellent something very good.  We resolve to be of use to be happy and spread happiness.  It’s important. You cannot be happy without a reason, but you can be happy without any reason. You cannot be unhappy without a reason. But you can be happy without any reason.  This is what we bear in mind, this wisdom. I can be happy without any reason. If I am unhappy I search for the reason why am I unhappy. We have to do it no one else can do it for us. Then you will find your unhappiness is due to physical dependency, emotional dependency, or physical want or emotional want. Physical want makes you unhappy, emotional wants make you unhappy.

First we need to understand how to handle the emotional wants. Emotional wants are what – appreciation from people – oh let others appreciate me, let others praise me, adoration, appreciation, inability to handle others altercation. These are the emotional lids – appreciate, adulation, altercation, inability to stand up towards it. These are emotional things, oh, and self-pity I am so good I always think good about everybody but everyone thinks bad about me. This sort of emotional mess that we create for our self, we only create nobody else creates for us. Right? They say, knowledge is the way to get out of this. Knowledge and meditation helps you to overcome the emotional dependency.

When you have overcome that then physical dependency has its own parameters.  You work hard then you have confidence in your talents and ability, and then reduce your wants and desires. If our wants and desires are high up there and our physical ability is here (with one hand shows wants and desires high up and with the other physical ability lower), we’ll be unhappy. See that our wants and desires match our physical ability. You don’t have hard teeth and you want to crack walnut by your mouth, I tell you, the nut will not crack, your teeth will go, that’s it.  So you should see how strong is your teeth accordingly you should chew. So our physical ability – if my physical ability is there only to lift 15 kgs I should not venture to lift 50 kgs. I should limit myself to lift 15 and slowly rise up to lift more. Work towards it. We should look into our physical ability then our desire should match to it. If there is a mismatch between our desire and our capability we’ll be unhappy. Right? How many of you agree on this? Suppose you are a heart patient and you want venture to scale Mount Everest, what can I tell you? I would say, “Write Mount Everest on the top of your staircase; just climbing the second floor feels like climbing Mount Everest.” We need to match our desires to our ability. Somewhere we need to let go; somewhere we need to hold on. Hold on to the faith and let go of cravings. If we let go of cravings we’ll be happy, and we hold on to the faith that only good will happen to me. What? Only good thing can ever happen to me. Something is happening to me it’s because they want to make me strong. Only good thing can happen to me. This faith in you. Sometimes a bad thing if it happens, you should think it’s just an accident. It’s not it happened because I deserve it – no. Bad things if it happens to me it’s only out of accident, but good things are bound to happen to me. This gives you confidence, right? This wisdom of taking a few pearls of knowledge or taking these few pearls of wisdom and treasuring; it is essential to make life a celebration. Right? These are the decorations of celebration – decoration for celebrating life.

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Crust:

  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons coconut butter
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup
  1. Place walnuts in food processor (or blender) and process until a coarse meal is achieved.
  2. Add coconut butter and maple syrup. Mix until well combined.
  3. Press into 9″ pie plate.
  4. If you are using a dehydrator, dehydrate for 3 hours at 116.

Filling:

  • 4 apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup raw oat flour
  1. Place apple slices in bowl.
  2. Sprinkle with lemon juice and toss.
  3. Mix together maple syrup and cinnamon.
  4. Stir into apple mixture
  5. Add oat flour and toss to coat.
  6. If you are using a dehydrator, dehydrate at 115 for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Add water if mixture starts to dry out.

Maple Cinnamon Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon coconut butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  1. Whisk all ingredients together to combine.

Assembly

  1. Place filling in a 9″ pie plate that you have already prepared with the crust.
  2. If you are using a dehydrator, place back into dehydrator for 2 hours. If you are using the oven, place in the oven for 30-40 minutes at 200 degrees F. The third option is to use neither and serve it fresh and cool.
  3. Top with Maple Cinnamon Glaze and serve!

This recipe was adapted from Rawmazing: http://www.rawmazing.com/raw-apple-pie/

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We are the Christmas tree that points upwards with branches on all sides.
At this time of the year when other trees are barren, you are green with many gifts to offer.
You bear gifits and lights – not for yourself, but for others
Remember that all the gifts you are carrying in your life are for others.         
Everyone who comes to you, offer them your gifts.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

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Every December, at the beginning of the month, the Centre has a Holiday Open House – invitation cards are sent out, posters go up, and this year we even placed an ad in the local paper. It is free event and an opportunity to give back to the community and to come together in celebration before the old year transitions to the new.

We scurry decorating, cooking, cleaning, preparing, inviting.

There are tables with gift items for sale, and this year we added three twenty-minutes presentations. Jacques Corriveau, our garden expert, spoke on the benefits of eating organic, Hélène Tremblay talked about eating raw and tantalized us with a delicious mousse, and Martine Champagne  from Maison La Tradition talked about ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­the mission of Maison La Tradition and the craft products that they create.

La Maison Tradition also provided a table full of wonderful crafts for sale made from recycled and recovered materials. There were scarves and socks and king’s bride’s dolls, to mention a few. You can visit them at 1210 Chemin Principal, Saint-Mathieu-du-Parc, QC G0X 1N0 or call (819) 532-2641 to learn more about their crafts and service projects.

Mari Elin Chemeny, who comes weekly to cook a meal at the Centre came with jams and cookies and a table full of wonderful items for children (handmade dolls, animals, and puzzles) to support Family Matters, a fundraising participatory project to support family programs at the Centre. To learn more or to become involved, you can contact her at artdevivre@artoflving.org.

Of course, Shankara was present to answer skin care questions and the Art of Living store displayed books, tapes, and decorative items.

After some simple yoga and a meditation it was time for lunch.

Food is always in abundance and especially at this holiday event.  Everyone is welcomed with a warm cup of punch. There is a festive holiday meal and lots of desert!  Then, before leaving, there is chai and cookies!

We were so happy to have Mathieu Lippé with us once again. He always captivates us. He is a gifted and wonderful storyteller and singer beguiling and enthralling his audience.

It was an amazing day!

Come join us our upcoming activities in the new year.

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Unless you have a dream, you cannot realise it. Every invention has come out of a dream. Dream the impossible. Obviously, dreaming employs something which is beyond your perceived capacity. Consider the faculty which is the preceptor of the dream. Some dreams have impacted your daily living and others have not. Some dreams you remember, and others you have forgotten.
We are all born in this world to do something wonderful and unique; don’t let this opportunity pass by. Give yourself the freedom to dream and think big. Have the courage and determination to achieve those dreams that are dear to you. Many a time people who dreamt big were ridiculed, but they remained strong to achieve their goals.
Do something creative. Not a year should pass without doing something creative.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

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Sri Sri Yoga is a celebration of the diversity in Yoga in a simple and joyful manner. We combine yoga essentials – breathing techniques, stretching and postures, meditation and relaxation, and yogic knowledge. By incorporating all these beautiful facets of yoga we are able to look deep beyond the level of the physical body and really sharpen our sensitivity and awareness of subtler levels of existence. Practice of Sri Sri Yoga cultivates a more healthy and happy lifestyle.

On a physical level, Yogic exercises strengthen, lengthen and replenish muscle tissues, which helps hold bones and align the whole body. Holding postures burns fat and reduces cholesterol. Yogic breathing brings more oxygen to the heart and nourishes the whole system. The breath work also aids in reducing toxin levels in the body by expelling unwanted stresses.

If the mind is well, all else feels well. That is why, in Sri Sri Yoga, a great importance is given to the wellness of the mind. With regular practice of yoga, the mind becomes more calm, peaceful and alert, helping us to make better decisions and more efficient. Through Yoga, we can effectively deal with and release the stresses that we accumulate and experience while gaining greater energy and enthusiasm for life.

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Join Krishan and Bharti Verma Saturday November 22 at 11:00. Experience the Joy of Yoga and Learn How the Practice of Sri Sri Yoga Can Transform You. Program includes yoga, information, meditation and time for questions. Lunch at 1:00.

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 Ayurveda explains how we can stay balanced in an environment that is constantly changing, especially the weather! Did you comfortably get through the hot days of the past summer, or did your life get overheated? What changes are you making to your clothing, lifestyle and diet now that fall is here?We may feel that we do not know how to offset the influences of the many factors that affect our disposition; dealing with these may be confusing or overwhelming. Yet, it is important to attend to how we interact with other people and changes in our environment, and to be aware of what we are taking from every interaction.

Ayurveda offers a simple way to understand these things and achieve balance. There are three levels of approach:

1)    Staying healthy – Understanding your individual constitution (doshas) and making appropriate lifestyle choices that will keep you in balance and give you steady energy. This includes proper hygiene, exercise, sleep and nutrition.

2)    Recognizing imbalance and taking steps to correct it – This starts with reducing the lifestyle and dietary habits that are contributing to the imbalance, and supplementing with treatments to cleanse the senses and centre the mind.

3)    Retreating from the “too-much-ness” of life – for a few minutes (yoga and meditation), a few hours (a spa or nature day), or a few days (a short fast or a health retreat), however long it will take for you to feel rejuvenated.

Sri Sri Ayurvedic offers education, lifestyle consultations and treatments to support individuals on each of these levels. Our health retreats combine rest, a cleansing diet, treatments, and herbal therapies to help you adjust to a change of season, support your body in cleansing the excesses of the past, and rejuvenate in order to enter the next season with positive energy.

A calm, meditative mind can give you much energy and will power. As we rise above the mundane to see the bigger picture, it becomes easier to drop our small desires, resist food cravings, and stick to health goals. However, many of us find it difficult to come back to well-being once we get unbalanced. We are not recuperating our physical and mental energy, and consequently our health takes a downward slide. We are not attending to the container – our mind and body – we are simply dumping things into it, such as information and junk food. We are not expanding the capacity of the container or attending to its cleanliness. Recognizing that behavioral and thought patterns must be attended to is the first step to achieving good health.

Movement is a self-inflicted constant in our society but often, we do not understand what effect movement, such as travel and communication, is having on us or how to deal with the stress it creates.

For some, fall’s chilly winds are adding to the excess of movement in their lives right now. If you have more Space and Air in your constitution (Vata dosha), you may easily feel chilled, lightheaded or nervous, especially when you have to travel on a windy day. You will benefit from wearing a head cover, to stay warm and to keep the wind out of your ears.

Pitta people, however, have a fiery constitution and may be very happy to have this cooler weather, after an initial period of adjustment.

Those who are heavy in body (Kapha Dosha) have more Earth and Waterin their constitution. The hearty bean dishes and the leafy greens of fall (think kale) will give them fortitude without adding weight. Plenty of exercise in the fresh air will help them gain balance.

All doshas will now enjoy warmer, heavier foods with more Water, Earth and Fire in them: sweet root vegetables, savoury dishes with warming spices that aid digestion, hot ginger tea, casseroles and pies fresh from the oven. Consuming the elements that are low in your constitution will quickly bring you back to balance.

The beauty of Art of Living and Sri Sri Ayurveda is that they offer daily routines, lifestyle and diet recommendations that help us stay balanced and centered.

Ask about an Ayurvedic weekend retreat, or join us for an Art of Silence Course December 2tth to January 1st and sign up for some Ayurvedic treatments to deepen your experience while you are here.