Namaste Team India Shiva, Family, and Friends!

By Overseas Educators Kate & Doug Greetings from staff training in Portland! We have been working hard to prepare for our adventure ahead and are sure that you all have been preparing in your own way for this trip that is right around the corner. The journey we are heading towards is sure to be filled with endless exploration as we wind our way through mountains, crowded cities, villages, street… Read More

What joys we all had.

By Overseas Educators Paff and Cari The other night we said farewell to nine misty eyed students (and let’s be honest here, two similarly fogged up OE’s) at the Delhi airport. And though it’s difficult to believe or feel that our three month journey has come to an end, as we all now know, everything is impermanent (see: Truth, Noble #2). Change is abounding indeed, and for us it was… Read More

Student-Directed Travel in Bikaner

By Charloe Koloma Namaste to those at home. This past week was our group’s time for student-directed travel, naturally creating a hectic but exciting time for all of us. We started off our week in the city of Bikaner to celebrate Thanksgiving with each other and go on a two-day camel trek in the desert. The day before our trek was Thanksgiving so we decided to split off into groups… Read More

McLeod Ganj

Once upon a time, 9 students and 2 educators went to India. They did many fun and exciting new things, but eventually they ended up in the cool little town of McLeod Ganj. McLeod Ganj is home to a large population of Tibetian refugees, and the mixture of Indian and Tibetian culture is prominent and interesting. On nearly every street, there are stands selling scarfs, jewelry, momos, or sweets. Unfortunately,… Read More

Dharmalaya: Natural Building & Karma Yoga

Blog from Atticus Flannigan-Burt. Photos from Cari Our time at Dharmalaya was a good one. All the staff, architecture students, and workers were kind, patient and knowledgeable. We learned a lot across a myriad of subjects – from brick-making to vegan cooking and meditation. Meditation was an important part of our time at Dharmalaya. We spent thirty minutes meditating every morning and on some days another half hour before bed.… Read More

Amritsar!

By Sea Arriving at the Golden Temple in Amritsar immediately felt different from the rest of India. A few of the main focuses of the Sikh religion are equality among all humans, generosity, selfless service, cleanliness, facial hair, devotion, and connection to God. This was immediately apparent with the marble tiles that made up the streets surrounding the temple and the lack of garbage littering them. The people were all… Read More

Ashram Life!

By Daisy Shepherd Namaste! To begin with a disclaimer: we spent much of this week at Phool Chatti Ashram in silence, so you’ll have to forgive the heavy use of the first person. Let’s just get the most important fact of the week out of the way by noting that the food here is AMAZING. It’s thali plates for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with something new every day. If anyone… Read More

Trekking!

By Sabrina Brewer In all honesty, I’ve been dreading having to write this blog post. No matter how many adjectives I use, I won’t be able to accurately describe what we’ve seen and experienced in the past few days of trekking. Imagine turning slowly in a circle, and in every part of the 360-degree spin, staring up at blue skies and mountains in every direction. Mountains covered in light shades… Read More

SECMOL!

By Charlie Koloms Namaste to friends and family back home. This week for the Shiva group has been drastically different than our previous weeks in India. Instead of staying in a busy city like before, we have moved on campus to a school called SECMOL, just 30 minutes from the city of Leh in Ladakh. SECMOL is a school for 10th and 12th graders located at the foothills of the… Read More

Kolkata!

By Max Morrish The past week of volunteering at the Mother Teresa homes in Kolkata has been an incredibly humanizing experience for every member of the Shiva Crew. The crew members were spread among several different homes, each of which specialized in housing and caring for patients with different needs ranging from mental illness to physical disabilities. Although each of the homes was tailored to a select type of patient,… Read More

“Enough,” “Traveler,” and “Privilege”: A Reflection

By Shira “Varanasi is ancient, by human civilization standards. It is commonly thought to have lived through 5,000 years of continuous habitation. Through the passage of time, the city accumulated layers, preserving countless generations of culture within its fabric. The Ganga herself is the thread that winds through the ages and binds the city into one living entity.” During our time in Varanasi, we saw a few of the many… Read More

Fascinating Conversations in Delhi

By Charlie, Sabrina, and Atticus Hello from Delhi, This is the Rainbow Hippy Surprise group typing from Wahid’s office. We have spent the last week traveling around Delhi, visiting the Baha’i Temple, Akshardham Temple, India Gate Hamuyum Tomb, the Red Fort, Jama Mosque, Raj Ghat, Qutab Minar, and Toilet Museum. (Please note: everything typed after “Akshardham Temple” was Amir—we’ve only been to Raj Ghat, Baha’i Temple, and Akshardam Temple so… Read More

The Group Formerly Known as “Centaurs”

By Sea, Ben, Shira Kuyat, Lenzi, and Yeskel-Mednick Today marked our first real foray into India without the constant guiding help of our group leaders. Armed with only a scavenger hunt list, daypacks, bright eyes, and bushy tails, we set off to seek our fortunes. We were immediately given a practical lesson in bartering (paid just a liiiiiittle too much for our rickshaw). Properly humbled, we started making our way… Read More

Celeste, Max, and Daisy’s Excellent Adventure!

By Daisy Shepherd This is the Excellent Adventure’s very important blog post! Some things in our first few days abroad: 1. We’ve heavily overpaid a rickshaw driver 2. Ate the spiciest food we’ve ever eaten in a side alley in Pahar Ganj (where this is being typed now!) 3. Visited Gandhi’s grave in Raj Ghat 4. Found the cutest puppies (and yes, parents, we washed our hands after petting them!)… Read More

Shiva Heads to India

We’ve received word that the entire Shiva crew has gathered safe and sound in the San Francisco airport. Spirits are high and everyone is excited to begin the journey! Thanks to everyone back home for all of your support in getting our students to this first courageous step. We can’t wait to follow along on their adventure and will be wishing the crew the best of luck. Next stop… Hong… Read More

The time is nigh.

Hey Shiva Team! We hope everyone has their excited pants on and you all are ready and rearing to go on an incredible adventure! We are so excited to embark on this enlightening journey together with all of you amazing people. We’ve both spent the past two weeks in Portland, including a camping trip out at McIver campground, surrounded by the love and community of Carpe Diem. We have filled… Read More