Most of the books are from the private family collection of the late Mr. I Gusti and Mrs. Gedong Bagoes Oka plus contributions from friends and guests of the Ashram over the years. Mainly they are about Bali, Gandhian and Eastern philosophies (but also carries other categories such as Literature, Novels and, of course,yoga) and in a number of languages (apart from Indonesian and English, such as Dutch, German, French and Sanskrit)
Guests and Volunteers are welcome to use and read them at the Ashram but are strongly reminded to return them when finished or when checking out. Some of these books are quite old and rare but we are confident of the trustworthiness and ‘good karma’ of our special and discerning Ashram guests to take good care and return them. We simply do not have the resources nor the inclination to police them closely, and we certainly do not wish to deny its access to the guests therefore denying them of its potential benefits.
Library Item List
If you are browsing, it’s a good idea to scan through all the categories first (and you may be interested in Literature, or Novel, for light readings) and of course you can also use the Acrobat Reader’s Search facility to search through names or full or part of the titles etc.
Donate your old books
If you do not wish to cart around your own personal book/s that you have finished reading, or if you think the Ashram and others will benefit from the book, why not donate the book for others to read and enjoy? You may wish to put your name and dates of your stay for posterity – we have guests who stayed at the Ashram on the recommendations of their parents and grandparents so, you never know, such ‘trail’ could also be a surprise to someone connected to you, however remotely, one day. Life is full of such synchronicity.
Serious efforts to catalog the library were started by our yoga teacher Kawidana which by around 2001 – 2002 caught the eye of our tireless and tenacious Ashram friend Terry Cox from NZ who then embraced it and continued the work during his regular visits. Around the same time a UK volunteer Marcus Beasley with library and IT background became the ‘technology adviser’ and between the three of them did the hard yakka of designing, cataloging and data entering the spreadsheet. It is a testament to their foresight, intuition and team work (with no reference to the Dewey Decimal System which they were only made aware much later after the event) that the catalog classifications stand the test of time and are still used very effectively today.
The energy on this voluntary task ebbs and flows with differing volunteers toiled and sweated their valued labours on the project, some with Librarian skills, others purely for the love of books and the Ashram (the procurement of shelving etc was organised by Terry with funding raised through the efforts of Ms. Charlotte Borggreve from the Netherlands – so a truly international effort). In 2012 and in another good chemistry, Terry and our April to July(?) young Dutch volunteer/yoga teacher Edme Zalinski finally nailed the finishing touches to the spreadsheet.
On Edme’s suggestion it was then uploaded in pdf format to this Ashram blog for easy browsing from any internet devices, or in hard copies! It suddenly opened our eyes to the possibilities of uses and benefits to casual or serious academic visitors to the Ashram. Yet another proof of how the ‘mini miracles’ evolve at the Ashram (at times painfully slow to the impatient western eyes as many of us know) but with the good synergy of good karma from many individuals it is ultimately delivering what we believe is quite an outstanding product.
In Terry’s words: “..the library story has gone better than I could have dreamed it would!”. Very true but that is just typical of the many aspects of our Ashram story – often, while overcoming many challenges, yet with outcomes superior that exceeded our dreams. Sincere thanks, or in Bali we say matur suksma, to all of you for your much valued seva.
Happy reading and we hope that you have or you are enjoying your stay at our Ashram! And if you are reading this online but you are elsewhere, may this whet your appetite to one day visit the place.
Om Shantih Shantih Shantih Om.