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Seminar – Yoga & Meditation

I offered the fifth seminar at Venture Inward  on March 24, 2016 from 6.30 to 8.30 pm (1). Attended by 12 people – 9 female and 2 male and one girl. A folder containing my key handouts  and sample testimonials was given to each participant (2), (3). 

Scanned images of the feedback forms (w/o indetities) – PDF

Summary of the Feedback

I will use this technique for my (concern) 

  • Falling asleep
  • Mental relaxation
  • Sleep and relaxing
  • Stress and sleeping
  • Asthma
  • Sleep and relaxation
  • Energy (mental), Focus, Calmness, Sleep
  • Stress reduction
  • Stress, sleep
  • Spiritual health
  • Relaxation, when stress increases
  • Family stress

My ‘Take home’ points

  • To calm ‘Monkey mind’; I like the idea of a back door to meditation. I am going to try this! Thank you!
  • This helped me understand meditation better. Breakthrough!
  • Breathing using fingers, stretching on Yoga mat.
  • Relaxing.
  • Practice breathing.
  • Easy to do.
  • Several of the breathing methods, yoga stretches.
  • Stretches, Great breathing techniques.
  • Practice, enjoy, let it happen.
  • Don’t worry about your breaths. Some are short and some are long.

Seminar evaluation

  • Very satisfied – 12


  • I live in Cambridge, so it is too far to come for a meditation group.
  • Awesome.
  • I will most likely contact ‘C S’ to further the practice.
  • Very enjoyable, do-able, for all ages/ body types.
  • I thought it was great.
  • Can’t wait to teach the grandkids and use it for myself.
  • Would love to continue more workshops to add to what we have learned and make sure I am doing it correctly, to remember the techniques.

I recommend this seminar to (groups)

  • Yes – 2
  • Friends.
  • As always I do – to Venture Inward folks. (Margaret Kaufman the owner of this business, a clinical hypnotist).
  • Anyone -Seniors – Healthcare providers – Caregivers of ill family or friends – kids.

I wish to

  • Receive annual updates on ‘focusing on breathing’ – 8
  • Enrol for follow up classes on today’s techniques – 7
  • Join a support group for Meditation – 5

(1) ‘Venture Inward’ at 568 Columbia Turnpike East Greenbush NY 12061
(2) Documents for download – All handouts
(3) Sample testimonials – 16

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Related pages
Public Seminars

@ Seminar at a Healthcare facility

I offered a lunch time seminar of one hour, for the employees of a healthcare facility recently. This was on the request of the Employee assistance program coordinator. There were 19 participants. I distributed a set of my hand outs (1) to each participants. The scanned images of their feedback forms and a summary of them is presented below.

Scanned images of the feedback forms

Titles of the participants 

  • Nursing student – 7
  • LPN – 2
  • Director/ Asst Director – 2
  • Unspecified – 2
  • Recruiter – 1
  • Faculty – 1
  • Mechanical Engineer (Boiler house operator) – 1
  • RN – 1
  • Housekeeper – 1
  • COTA – 1

The seminar was 

  • Very useful – 19

I will use this technique for my (concern) \

  • Sleep problems – 7
  • Reduce stress – 6
  • Anxiety – 4
  • Insomnia – 4
  • Relaxation – 2
  • Patients to quit smoking
  • Kids
  • Patients
  • Students, Patients, Self
  • Destress before and after my 12 hour midnight shifts
  • Long waits at the doctor’s office and air ports

 This technique can be taught to patients to help with their …..

  • Anxiety – 10
  • Anxiety on why they are in the hospital – 1
  • Anxiety with death  (Hospice Nurse)
  • Sleep / Insomnia – 7
  • Stress – 6
  • Pains – 4
  • Breathing
  • Not use drugs
  • Recovery

Comments about the seminar 

  • Very well presented
  • Very relaxing
  • Helps relax the brain
  • Excellent, simple
  • Interesting and informative
  • Very helpful – 2
  • Welldone
  • I like that there is nothing to buy and can be used anywhere
  • As we were focusing on breathing, instant calm
  • Wonderful, should be taught in nursing school 1st semester
  • Thank you for the new tease on stress relief
  • Thank you for your teaching
  • Thought it was great, he seems like such a nice man!

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(1) Documents for download

* I am managing stress very well and enjoying sound sleep

Feedback from a Software Engineer who attended three of my classes.

“I am a software Engineer from India, working In USA with my wife and two young boys. I noticed some negative changes in my thinking in early Feb 2012 due to lot of  stress about my residence status in this country and other personal issues. I was spending restless nights for 5 to 6 weeks without proper sleep. The lack of sleep caused depression. All my activities got disturbed – not interested in  work, not enough money etc., affecting my family and my kids’ studies. Although I used medication for depression, I did not see noticeable change. I went back to India, slowly regained my health and returned to USA.

After returning, I thought of taking some precautionary measures to manage stress. This made me a student of Suryanarayan Chennapragada (C S). The course I had undergone was “Counting Breaths” (1). It helps me focus better on my work and also improves my attitude. Now I am managing stress in my life very well, enjoying sound sleep and living peacefully. Now my physical and mental strength has improved and I am perfectly balanced in my life. Overall, I can say that these techniques consume less time and are valuable.  I thank C S for guiding me in proper direction to overcome my difficulties.

(1) How can I focus on breathing?

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* “I practiced at my Dentist’s office”

I made a follow up visit on Nov 1,2011, to the kid’s group, at the American Cancer Society’s Hope club at Latham NY. There were 10 kids out of which 5 had attended my first session on Oct 4, 2011 (1) and 5 were new. There were 3 other adults. I asked each the five kids and adults who attended my previous session how they practiced the breathing technique and how they felt about it. Some of them said they practiced at bed time and some said they practiced in the morning. One 9 year old girl said she practiced at her dentist’s office, to calm herself. I asked her if she did it on her own or any one suggested to her, to use the technique. She said she did it on her own. See the amazing implication of this –

  • The 9 year old girl learned the technique and experienced its impact for about 2 minutes in a 15 minute group session. She received my 2 page hand out on the technique (2).
  • She clearly understood the technique and liked that brief experience. She internalized the technique, as her own self calming tool.
  • She was so comfortable with the technique that she remembered about it when she felt anxious at her dentist’s appointment and used it on her own to calm herself!

Does it not make sense to equip every child with this technique, as a simple and readily usable self calming tool, available life long, at no cost? Is it not as useful as the basic skills of reading the alphabets and counting the numbers? What an incredibly effective life long technique at no cost!

Some of the kids in this group lost a parent or family member due to cancer. As previously planned, I briefly shared with the group, my personal experience of losing my younger brother of 10 years in the year 1965, due to drowning in a lake (3).

I shared with the group the ‘Segment mode’ of focusing on breathing (4).

(1) Introductory seminar for kids at the Hope club
(2) ‘Calm yourself, anywhere, anytime’
(3) My brother Ramu died at the age of 10
(4) How can I do it?

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* Seminar for kids at the Hope Club

I offered a short seminar of about 30 minutes to the kids and their coordinators and facilitators on Oct 4, 2011, at the ‘Hope club'(1). It was attended by about 10 children and 5 adults. Three of the kids had lost a parent due to cancer and other kids had a cancer survivor as a parent. The proceeding at the seminar is summarized below.

The participants introduced themselves. I demonstrated the ‘Tip Mode’ (2) to them, using one hand. We all practiced together, on one hand, counting the breaths aloud. They did one hand, counting aloud while I was watching their finger movements. Then they alone practiced the technique, till they completed 4 hands (alternating both hands), counting the breaths silently. They were given the choice of keeping the eyes open or closed. Most of them practiced eyes closed. The practice lasted for about  5 minutes. When they opened their eyes all the faces were smiling! This is a common observation.

I asked each participant to share with the group how he or she felt about the experience. They said that they felt relaxed or calm or good.

I asked each of them to share when they intend to use the technique.  Most of them said they would use the technique at bed time. Other ideas were – on waking up, when angry and when stressed.

I distributed a 2 page hand out of the technique “Calm yourself anywhere, anytime” (3), to every participant and the ‘Relax Anywhere, Anytime’ hand out (4) to the adults.

One adult asked whether the breathing should be deep or normal. I clarified that one should breathe normally. One should watch the in and out breaths like watching the waves in the ocean, sitting on the beach. This breathing is a passive observation of the in and out breaths, unlike Yoga breathing, in which the breathing is to be regulated, to meet given guidelines. The facilitators said they would reinforce the practice on the days the kids meet at the club. They would try it during the transitions from one activity to another.

We agreed to meet again after a month, to review the practice and share individual experiences. The tentative date set is Nov 1, 2011.

(1) The Hope club is located at 1 Penny Lane Latham NY 12110 is a part of the American Cancer Society. It offers free programs to support individuals suffering from cancer and their families, including children. I volunteered to offer my periodic seminars and follow up classes at this place to help its members with support from Tracy Pitcher the Director. The children’s programs are coordinated by Alana Streifert.
(2) How can I do it?
(3) Calm yourself anywhere, anytime
(4) How to be calm Anywhere, Anytime
(5) Report on the follow up visit

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