My Story

I was born in 1964 growing up in Amsterdam with two artistic hippie parents.

It was a time when Eastern philosophy, spirituality & living an eco-friendly lifestyle were embraced.

My parents were part of a group of young people ready to change the old ways by organizing provocative and playful ‘happenings’ with the aim to wake up people.

Then one day (I must have been about 6 years old) my mother decided to leave Amsterdam and go on a spiritual journey to India with me.

I remember that it was a big change for me but at the same time it felt like a new adventure.

It was not always easy but I can now say that this experience changed the course of my life forever in a deep and profound way.

Auroville

We traveled overland to India, visited many spiritual places, lived in different communities and ashrams, and met (so-called) enlightened people.

We traveled with very little money and I remember my mother healing us with herbs that the locals offered us when we got very sick one time.

Most of the people in India live a very simple and pure life and so did we.

Then one day my mother heard about a place in South India called “Auroville”.

This is, by the way, a spiritual community that is still functioning today.

Auroville was founded in1968 by Shri Aurobindo and The Mother.

When we came there in 1971 there were around 3000 people from all different countries. The vision was to live in a more peaceful and harmonious way, above all political and religious views and nationalities. Building a new ideal world together.

Sri Aurobindo said, “Auroville had been created as a center and a field for higher spiritual consciousness and to realize human unity”.

It felt like we had found a new home.

There were lots of children to play with and I went to school and learned about yoga and meditation, I have happy memories of that time.

But then when I was 8 years old again something happened that changed my life forever. It took me from feeling happy and safe into a roller coaster of fear and insecurity. My mother suddenly got very weak and sick and a few days later she died… This was so quick and unexpected, there was no goodbye, I was in total shock…
josephine & esther
When my father heard about the tragedy he got me back to the Netherlands and I went to live with him in Amsterdam again.

My father told me later that as a child I would sit on my bed with a white sheet over me meditating. I would also do some simple yoga postures that I remembered from the time in “Auroville” with my mother.

I think it was my way to stay connected to my mother and to a source deep within me.

Later when I was a teenager my father invited a wonderful yoga teacher (Clive Sheridan) to our house and he sparked the seed of yoga within me again. I started to do many yoga retreats with him and later I went to study in India for years on end with many great yoga teachers and masters.

My Spiritual Teachers:

Meeting Clive Sheridan brought back a deep recognition and spiritual longing and led me to travel and study with many great yogis and enlightened masters like ‘Poonjaji’ and ‘Amritananda Mayi’ for the next 20 years or so…

I have spent half my life in the east, always furthering my yoga and meditation studies as well as different healing modalities. For me, immersing myself in my practice and traveling to diverse and spiritually rich cultures is my passion.

Amma
Sheridan, Shiri Aurobindo

I started to travel back to India and years on end to learn more about yoga and meditation where ever I could, I stayed in ashrams and tried to be with enlightened masters where ever I could… I found inner peace and contentment that I had never quite experienced in life.

Since then yoga and meditation have been my guiding light.

Yoga and meditation helped me find back a sense of inner peace, stability, and balance within myself.

How yoga & meditation saved my life…

Yoga and meditation became a way of life rather than simply a practice, it helped me find back a sense of inner peace, stability, and balance within myself.

As a result of my Indian background, my focus is both on the physical ánd the spiritual side of yoga practice.

I naturally came to dedicate my life to yoga as I feel that yoga and meditation saved my life.

It’s such a blessing that now I can pass on this deep inner spiritual wisdom to others in the work I do.

Starting my own retreats…

Now, all these years later, I’m drawing on all my experiences and sharing these wisdom teachings with others through my retreats and online workshops and classes. 

My partner Inti does all the behind-the-scenes work to make our retreats possible and my son Sky has been enriching our retreats with his beautiful devotional songs and music, He is now at Amma’s ashram for nearly a year furthering his spiritual studies.

My youngest son Surya, now also nearly 18 years already has designed and made this website for me and helps with all the technical stuff.

So I can say that I am truly blessed with such a supportive and beautiful family around me!

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