SAIIER 2013:Arka

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Mitra Youth Hostel
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Auroville Botanical Gardens


Arka is an innovative social project of Auroville which wants to redefine the concept of aging as described by the Mother. (We have published a book on this subject: “Eternal Youth”.)

Arka is a holistic centre creating an environment in which the seniors can dedicate themselves to the inner work pertaining to their particular stage in life, while sustaining a healthy, balanced and harmonious lifestyle.

Arka aims to keep people healthy and active as long as possible. The project has chosen to address a particular facet of the total problem concerning the aging process by providing means for postponing and preventing the need for the kind of care that can only be provided by a hospital, medical centre or hospice.

Goals & Objectives

We believe that keeping people active and healthy is one of the main keys to being well, and staying young. Health is the “art of wellness”. Good health, physical and mental, is essential for happiness. One should be healthy from doing Sadhana. Elders can be young. These are some of the concepts we think need to be emphasized and encouraged when thinking about how to best assist and collaborate with elderly people in Auroville. We also believe that treating people medically is not always the proper or only solution to physical problems. We believe that Integration of ages is an answer also to the problem of loneliness that comes with old age.

Our main objectives are:

  • To find out what people need when they are growing old and based on what the needs are to then try to find responses to meet them. It must be an individual flexible approach within a general framework.
  • To provide the space for programs that will avoid isolation of senior Aurovillians by helping them to remain active.
  • To create activities that assist in the healing process, and to provide an atmosphere for creating a positive attitude towards life.
  • To provide education opportunities for the rural women and young adults employed by Arka.


Regular Classes:

  • Acro yoga / Qi-yo yoga practice
  • Body awareness
  • Silambam and Kutuwarisai (self defence)
  • Psycho-spiritual tarot reading
  • Handwriting analysis
  • Deconditioning self-inquiry
  • Inner personality discovery
  • Photography
  • Calligraphy
  • Seminar on health

Regular treatments:

  • Ayurvedic treatments
  • Lomi Lomi / Aromatherapy / Yogic Healing / Soft & Deep / Body Logic / Thai Yoga Massages
  • Acupuncture
  • Reiki
  • Reflexology
  • Cranio-Sacral therapy
  • Face massage / manicure-pedicure / threading / waxing / mehandi
  • Hair dressing / henna hair coloring

In addition, regular cultural activities provide opportunities for awareness, education, self-expression and performing arts, like music, dance, theatre, paintings, etc.