The Second Vatican Council, in its Declaration on Non-Christian Religions, declared that “the Church rejects nothing that is true and holy in these religions,” and encouraged Catholics to “recognize, preserve and promote the spiritual and moral values as well as the social and cultural values to be found among them”. Following this direction the All-Indian Seminar in 1969, which was attended by the whole of the hierarchy and representatives of the whole Catholic Church in India, spoke of the “Wealth of truth, goodness and beauty in India’s religious tradition” as “God’s gift to our nation from ancient times”. The Seminar showed the need of a liturgy “closely related to the Indian cultural tradition,” and a theology “lived and pondered in the vital context of the Indian spiritual tradition”. In particular, the need was expressed “to establish authentic forms of monastic life in keeping with the best traditions of the Church and the spiritual heritage of India”.
Among the gifts given by God to India, the greatest was seen to be that of interiority the awareness of the presence of God dwelling in the heart of every human person and of every creature, which is fostered by prayer and meditation, by contemplative silence and the practice of yoga and Sannyasa. “These values” it was said, “belong to Christ and are a positive help to an authentic Christian life”. Consequently it was said: “Ashrams where authentic incarnational Christian spirituality is lived, should be established, which should be open to non-Christian so that they may experience genuine Christian fellowship”. The aim of our ashram, therefore, following these directions of the All India Seminar, is to bring into our Christian life the riches of Indian spirituality, to share in that profound experience of God which originated in the Vedas, was developed in the Upanishads and the Bhagavad-Gita, and has come down to us today through a continual succession of sages and holy men and women. From this experience of God lived in the context of an authentic Christian life, it is hoped that we may be able to assist in the growth of a genuine Indian, Christian liturgy and theology.
05.00 a.m – Angelus
05.30 a.m – Namajapa , Meditation
06.30 a.m – Bharatiya Pooja followed by breakfast
10.00 a.m – coffee
12.00 p.m – Angelus
12.15 p.m – Midday prayer, lunch
03.30 p.m – Tea
06.00 p.m – Angelus, meditation, silence
07.00 p.m – Evening Prayer, Supper
09.00 p.m – Namajapa, Silence