The Pursuit Of Happiness

‘The body always leads us home . . . if we can simply learn to trust the sensation within, and stay with it long enough for it to trigger appropriate action, movement, insight, or feeling…’
Pat Ogden

 
We live our lives – searching for happiness. Taking de-tours, running in circles, finding ourselves over and over again standing clueless on tiny and major crossroads. Hoping for guidance. For somebody to show us the right path, to share with us the universal recipe for a content and fulfilling life.
 
We look for answers: Watching talk-shows, as happiness formulas proven by masses must have some truth to them. Reading biographies of spiritual monks who spend their days in peaceful meditation, because their path is unique. We ask advice from our best friends trusting that they know us, and can therefore relate. And random strangers, because we have no connection, so their suggestions are likely to be so much more objective…
 
WE LOOK FOR ANSWERS… IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES!

Yes – we are here to explore, to widen our horizons, expand our minds. And yes – watching others to reach a state of happiness is inspiring. But the truth is, each of us is far too unique as that copying somebody else’s life concept could ever work.
 
Which does not mean that we are condemned to be groping in the dark for the rest of our days?. All we have to do is shift our focus from the outside inwards, and begin to listen to this little voice deep inside. Dismissed as unreasonable, and ignored for many years, it may be hard to detect at first. And with our lives being ruled by logic, and measurable facts, the even greater obstacle are our thoughts: judgmental, deriding, constantly interfering
 
But if we manage to silence our mind, and learn to listen without censoring our feelings, we get access to the most powerful tool – our intuition. The ‘sixth sense’, the deep-in-the-pit-of-your-stomach sensation that tells you that what you are about to do is just RIGHT. Regardless of the experience others make, despite the long list of ‘cons’ your mind immediately delivers…

Intuition may not follow rational patterns, and pass the test of logical argument. And yet – following this little voice, relying on the wisdom you carry inside yourself, will lead you towards what you truly want in life! Allowing you to experience this effortless flow, and enjoy each step of the journey.
 
You may wonder whether you are too young or too old to bring a baby into this world. It may seem crazy to give up a well-paid corporate job to open your own small business. Your passion for African dance may not be as fashionable as yoga. And none of that matters! Follow your intuition, listen to your heart’s desire, and there is no way you can go wrong!
 
By Kamila Delart.

 
    

In search for love and truth

 
In September 2010, I travelled together with Paul Penders Company to India. With my business partner, Ingmar Waarheid, also from The Netherlands, we are in the setup of an exciting plan called “Pure Wellness Travel” which is still a division under the Paul Penders Company umbrella. As both of us are in search for Ayurvedic wellness centres, during this group travel in India I met a very special person who stole my heart. His name is: Acharya A.J. Snehadas.
 


    A short meditation with Acharya A.J. Snehadas during my stay in Sopanam

 
Acharya means priest, but he prefers to be called “A Teacher of Yoga. Acharya A.J. Snehadas developed “his own” yoga what he calls “Sneha-Yoga” meaning: The Art of Love. According to him, yoga is oil for our body and mind and Sneha-Yoga keeps both in harmony. He wrote several popular books and travelled around the world to promote his works but also to teach his yoga. I was very impressed with him. I really wanted to know why he decided to become a teacher of yoga. He kindly agreed to an interview as below:
 
A.J. Snehadas was raised in one of the rural parts of India and is one of 9 children. His Catholic mother was a very open minded person and loved people of any religion, or, even no religion at all. She simply gave love to all. When he was 17, his mother passed away and this shocking experience in his young life was the direct reason for his search for overall love and truth.
 
Then A.J. Snehadas decided to become a Catholic priest and started his priestly religious formation. He studied about Francis de Assisi in Italy and found out that he loved everyone and everything; people, the sun, animals, nature, etc. It reminded him so much about his mother who loved everybody as well. Later on he decided that he didn’t want to be a priest for the Catholics alone but a priest for everyone in life.
 
One of the various questions he asked himself many times: Why is it so difficult to love each other? The answer he came up with was that because we are not taught to love ourselves first. If you do not love yourself first, how can you love one other? In the search for answers he also discovered yoga. In yoga you are taught first to find love in yourself and only then you can pass yoga on to others. After a great in depth study of yoga he became a teacher of it and felt only now he was able to share and give love to others. “It makes me so very happy myself when I can share Love with another person”.
 
Today Acharya A.J. Snehadas is a well known teacher of Yoga in India. I had the privilege to attend some of his lessons during my stay at Sopanam Ayurvedic Hospital which is actually also an Ayurvedic Wellness Centre in the beautiful Kerala State located in South India.
 


    I & the rest of the team were doing Yoga with Acharya A.J. Snehadas early in the morning

 
I noticed the passion and inner peace from Acharya AJ Snehadas when he explained different kinds of yoga all provided to us while we were staying in the Sopanam Wellness Centre. He taught me how to learn yoga and how to bring the specific principle techniques back home what means one can benefit from his yoga program for the rest of our life.
 


    Sopanam Hospital

 
You too can attend his yoga lessons as part of 1 to 3 weeks wellness cure at Sopanam Hospital. Not only your body, but also your mind gets fresh, vital energy, something we can use in our hectic daily lives. For more information please visit our website www.PureWellnessTravel.com.
 
Practising yoga was a total new experience for me and unfortunately my stay was too short to attend all the lessons. But even in a short period I noticed a feel of peace and love provided through Sneha-Yoga. I made a commitment to myself to return to Sopanam Hospital to experience the entire program in order to benefit my life.
 
I want to thank Acharya A.J. Snehadas for sharing part of his fascinating life with me. I feel proud to know him and spend travelling with him through a most beautiful part of India
 
A.J. Snehadas wrote two fascinating books. “A Secret for Lovers” ( ISBN: 81-7214-749-X) and “A Gospel For The Angry” ( ISBN 81-7495-071-0). Please email me at bastiaan@paulpenders.com and I make sure you get in contact with the publisher.
 

 
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Bastiaan Penders, 41 years old, was a successful loan officer at a bank in The Netherlands. Although he enjoyed working with the various people at the bank, he also felt the desire for a total new and fresh start in life. He actually did what many only dream about… He developed a 2-year plan to change his life radically. He quit his job, sold his car and his house and now lives on basic cost and without worries of the daily western lifestyle. He executed his desire to be free for opportunities to explore new things in life for deeper satisfaction.
 

Managing Sopanam Ayurvedic Hospital & Wellness Centre

 
Managing an Ayurvedic Hospital with physicians, traditional Ayurvedic massage therapists, a full-range Ayurvedic pharmacy… and of course patients visiting from anywhere in the world, who need various treatments, including Ayurvedic dental care may not be the easiest job in the world.
 
I was traveling with the group of Paul Penders Company to India together with my business partner Bastiaan Penders, also from Holland. As part of this special company trip we also stayed for 4 days in this fantastic Sopanam hospital and I thought it would be a good idea to interview the GM of Sopanam Hospital and ask him how it is to run an Ayurvedic Hospital which at the same time is a few stars hotel accommodation with a superb vegetarian kitchen as well.
 
Mr. Lonappan, the General Manager is a graduated accountant, who studied at Christ College in Irinjalakuda, Kerala state, India. After his graduation he started working in Bombay, after which he went abroad. He spent 16 years working in Saudi-Arabia and 6 years in the UAE.
 
While working in the UAE Mr. Lonappan and a friend made the plan to set up a specialty Ayurvedic Hospital in India because they felt there was a real need for quality care and with it spread the word about Ayurvedic Medicines as well. So in 2003 they bought land near Kochi in Kerala State and started to build the famous Sopanam Hospital & Wellness Centre.
 


    Entrance of Sopanam Ayurvedic Hospital

 


    The rooms in Sopanam Ayurvedic Wellness Centre are very comfortable

 
Building the hospital took approximately four years and in 2007 it opened for patients and guests, therefore the hospital is now already three years in operation.
 
Mr. Lonappan tells that roughly there are two groups of people visiting the hospital.
 
The first group is people that come especially for Ayurvedic treatments, in combination with regular tourism. This group is offered a light diet during the first three or four days of their stay, and they can go out of the hospital on various trips. Possibilities are the Athirapilly Waterfalls, an elephant sanctuary or shopping and sightseeing in Kochin. After these first couple of days, the people will be put on a complete and strict diet and will not be able anymore to go out on daytrips as the schedule will be full with treatment sessions, doctor’s monitoring, yoga etc.
 


    Athirapilly Waterfalls                  Our morning yoga sessions

 
The second group is the real patients. They become truly hospitalized. Sopanam Wellness Centre has successfully treated several patients that could not be treated by modern medicine. Among them were a few stroke patients, but also a patient that had had a transection. This particular patient was advised by modern medicine that she would never be able to walk again. After 33 days of treatment in the Sopanam Wellness Centre she could get up out of her wheelchair and has now recovered to a normal life for over 70%.
 
I asked Mr Lonappan what is the secret of Ayurveda that it can achieve results that modern medicine cannot achieve?
 
His answer was that it is a matter of the correct diagnosis, the correct treatment and the correct medicine. “So far not really different from modern medicine, but as Mr. Lonappan says, Ayurveda looks for a cure not for a remedy. As it is also 100% natural, treatments will not negatively affect other parts of the body, such as is possible by modern medicine. Here Mr. Lonappan refers to, for example, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Ayurveda is a lifestyle, not just a medical treatment.
 


    Side view Sopanam Ayurvedic Hospital

 

 
Mr. Lonappan has the ambition to make Sopanam Hospital one of the best centers in the world for Ayurvedic treatment. He strongly believes that the future is promising and the centre already has such a good reputation as well.
 
Besides operating the center, Mr. Lonappan explains they are looking for a small factory to produce Ayurvedic medicines. Mr. Lonappan shows a genuine interest in both visitors, as well as the staff working in the center. He easily remembered several patients, and we saw him busy at several places in the center, helping the staff. He has two sons of 25 and 15 years old.
 
I was extremely impressed with him and with the special care and great vegetarian meals we received each day, with the Ayurvedic treatments and yoga, meditation we got. The kind and professional way the hospital is managed in general. Soon they will start an Ayurvedic dental service as well.
 
We wish Mr. Lonappan and his wonderful staff all the luck in the world to make a long-time dream come true where Sopanam becomes the best specialty Ayurvedic Hospital where all people want to be for the best and affordable health and inner peace as well.
 


    General Manager Mr. Lonappan and interviewer Ingmar Waarheid

 
Sopanam is a Multi-specialty Ayurvedic Hospital that falls into the organic way of living with specialty clinics for gynecology, paediatrics, eye care, general medicine, dermatology; and contains special programs for: spine care, slimming, rheumatoid and rejuvenation. They promote healthcare from Abhyanga, Patra Potali Sweda, Choorna Pinda Sweda till Vasti and many more treatments; as well as traditional Ayurvedic massages, yoga and meditation classes. Rooms are very comfortable and meals all authentic vegatarian; lovingly prepared exclsuive from fresh certifed organic ingredients.
Please visit www.sopanamayurvedic.com.
 

 

Our One-Week Ayurveda Travel Expedition

 
Paul Penders Company is not a “me too” producer of natural organic cosmetics. We not only use exclusive certified organic herbs, certified organic color cosmetic ingredients and many more certified organic ingredients in our products, we also go to the smallest details to check out our raw materials first and to be assured that all is “WHOLE” in what we believe in. Proudly I can state that our small company always has been a pioneer in the field of natural cosmetics in Europe, USA and now also in Asia.
 
Our aim has never been growing the company big; but always growing the company better! Readers of this blog that follow each day a new story about us understand better what we are and who we are. It is not me, the owner of this company… it is all of us that are sincerely committed to the very same. And Paul Penders Company…. For 40 years in business…. we take commitment seriously.
 

 

 
As an integral part of the above statement, in servicing our customers worldwide with the best natural and ethically produced ingredients possible, all of Paul Penders Company at Langkawi UNESCO Geopark went to India. Our friends of Paul Penders India Pvt. Ltd, assisted us in whatever needed during this journey, including visiting certified organic farms, (last time visiting Indocert – the Indian Organic Certification Board – and Vanamoolika – the “375 daughters of the Woods”).
 

 
All of us travelled to Kerala State for more verifications and in-depth studies of raw materials for our products, for authentic Ayurveda healthcare, yoga and meditation, and for the set-up of our new “Pure Wellness Travel, Inc” division . All together we travelled with almost 30 people, including drivers, guides and of course, our friends of Paul Penders India.
 


    All cars used during our stay in India

 

 
The caravan vehicles continued days of hectic driving through mountains, narrow roads and hairpins from Bangalore all the way to Kochi where we stayed for 4 days at Sopanam Ayurveda Hospital for treatments, yoga, wonderful prepared vegetarian meals, meditation and original Ayurveda massages.
 


    GMP facilities at Vanamoolika.    Marcel our webmaster a closer look to one of the herbs!

 
As we were on the way to Sopanam Ayurveda Hospital, we were hosted for 3 days at Vanamoolika, the certified organic farm, and also visited a successful certified organic farmer in Kerala who was appointed by the Indian government as the best organic farmer in the State. We got to spend some time to know his family and they had prepared a wonderful vegetarian lunch & juices using his organic plants, herbs, flowers, coffees and much more! I bought some beautiful painting from his daughter who is a gifted artist.
 


    The selection of organic food & juices was great! We truly enjoyed the variety of wonderful food

 


    Sopanam Multi-Specialty Ayurvedic Hospital – a truly wonderful healing place

 
Besides that we also did a rafting as well in Kuruva Island, situated on the tributaries of the river Kabani, a fabulous picnic spot.
 


    Rafting to get into Kuruva Island

 


    Athiripally waterfall
     

    Our spiritual teacher Acharya A.J. Shehadas

 
In a several articles that follow, each of us will write about their own experiences. You can visit Facebook where Krista wrote about her experiences, while her article will appear on this blog as well.
 


    The flowers and wild nature in Kerala is truly wonderful

 
Paul Penders blog is read daily by thousands of people in over 60 countries. We look forward to your comments. We are always here to serve our customers better and better. Paul Penders Company is ALWAYS on the lookout and search for the best possible ingredients, wherever in the world and prepare these in natural cosmetics made by heart and soul. We thank you for your support.
 


    A tired but happy bunch returning to Langkawi UNESCO Geopark

 

Animal tests.. still a horibble topic! -Part 2

Earlier we discussed the great article about animal testing in The Star, Malaysia’s largest newspaper that is questioning ethical, moral and financial issues involved regarding animal tests.
 

 
Today let’s discuss S.S. Yoga’s excellent follow-up article called “Painless Options”.
 
Yoga takes a close look at the various alternatives to animal testing such as:
– silicon chip technology
– cell cultures
– human tissues
– micro-organisms
– analytical technology
– quantitative structure / activity relationship programmes (QSARs)
– volunteer studies
 
Alternatives to animal-testing.
 
People are often led to believe that the only way to make sure any cosmetic product is safe for human use is to test it on animals first. The pain, suffering and death of these animals are but a price that has to be paid. But there are a number of viable alternatives for testing such as the above mentioned.
 

Choices: There are a number of viable
alternatives to animal-testing, such as using
human tissues, cell cultivation and the usage
of micro-organisms.

 
Volunteer studies
One of the best ways to conduct medical research is by studying the human body. New scanning and imaging techniques are making it increasingly possible to conduct safe and ethical studies of human volunteers, where previously animals had been used.
 
Now, since humans can get involved in testing and trials with no pain, Yoga asks: Do we still need to look at animal-testing? And my question is: When The Netherlands as first country in the world made animal testing for cosmetic products and for its ingredients illegal, why can’t other countries follow? Well the answer may surprise you!
 

Animal rights activists, including Miss
Malaysia/World 2009 Thanuja Anandan,
are against animal-testing.

 
Do not kill innocent animals. Kill the root of the problem….. money, politics and ignorance
See the full article of SS. Yoga. It is well worth reading and I hope you conclude that animal testing doesn’t provide the same accurate results that modern technology can provide where no animal suffers. We can stop these practices by education. And changing the laws. Then the BUSINESS and GREED which today is the root of animal testing can be killed!
 
Volunteers need to be willing to organize themselves. Or join an already existing excellent organizations such as PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) and NAVS (National Anti-Vivisection Society) both located in the US. Please let me know how we can help you starting an organization in your country and make animal testing for cosmetics illegal and a thing of the past.
 
Surf here to www.peta.org where you can watch some videos