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The Dharmalaya Blog

While our News page reports on the biggest stories in Dharmalaya, our blog gives you a wider window into life and work at Dharmalaya, from a more personal perspective.

We hope you enjoy our blog, and we invite you to share your thoughts in the comments section of each story.


Autumn 2018 Season Begins with Reflections on Compassion

After the invigorating monsoon season, autumn is a natural time for reflective engagement as we return outdoors to work with the earth. Dharmalaya Institute’s autumn 2018 programme season began with a five-day silent meditation retreat, led by mindfulness trainer Ellen van Iersel, which set a contemplative tone. We then welcomed a lovely new group to embark on a nine-day Compassionate Living Intensive workshop-retreat, in which we explored a diverse range of possibilities for reducing our harm footprint and expanding our help footprint.

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Indian Express Article on Didi Contractor

Journalist Shiny Varghese has written a lovely and insightful article for the Indian Express about celebrated earthen architect Didi Contractor, who is Professor Emeritus of Dharmalaya Institute’s Internship in Vernacular Eco-Architecture, having cofounded the internship programme with Mark Moore in 2013. The story follows Didi from her roots in the US through her move to India in 1951, her work restoring the Udaipur Lake Palace (which brought the limelight to her), and finally her move to Himachal Pradesh, where her interest in earthen architecture flourished.

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Didi Contractor Honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award

Didi Contractor, a celebrated earthen architect and co-founding Professor Emeritus of the Internship in Vernacular Eco-Architecture at Dharmalaya Institute, was honoured with WADe Asia’s Lifetime Achievement Award for her work in natural building in the Himalayas, which has inspired countless architects in India and beyond.

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Himalayan Pilgrimage: An Architect's Reflections on Her Internship at Dharmalaya 

Editor’s Note: Anujna, an architect from Pune, recently spent some time at Dharmalaya Institute for the Internship in Vernacular Eco-Architecture. She wrote about the experience on her blog and kindly allowed us to republish her eloquent story here.

Himalayan Pilgrimage, Part I: Dharmalaya

When I look back on my summer study travels, often it is the flavor and tenor of those places, light and coziness of spaces, people, their pasts and so many interlinked stories, that fill my heart with some unknown affection, as though I have spread my roots into those places and people, as though they are very much part of my being…

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Putting Meditation into Action with SanghaSeva

Friends new and old from all corners of the globe (five continents!) came to Dharmalaya to participate in our fourth annual SanghaSeva retreats. As usual, we were feeling like family by the end, and mountains were moved — both outside and in.

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