ash·​ram | \ ˈäsh-rəm How to pronounce ashram (audio) , -ˌräm; ˈash-ˌram How to pronounce ashram (audio) \

Definition of ashram

1 : a secluded dwelling of a Hindu sage also : the group of disciples instructed there
2 : a religious or spiritual retreat

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Ashram first appeared in English in the early 1900s and gained traction after Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi founded his famous ashrams at Sabarmati near Ahmadabad and at Sevagram near Wardha. The word ashram derives from a Sanskrit word, "srama," which means "religious exertion." Later in the 20th century, English speakers broadened the term "ashram" to encompass any sort of religious retreat, regardless of denomination. In addition to practicing yoga and meditation, attendees may also receive instruction from a religious teacher and do some type of manual or mental work during their stay at the ashram.

Examples of ashram in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Or Vana retreat in India, set on the slopes of a lychee and mango plantation, is an international ashram, a wellness retreat and sanctuary. Joanne Shurvell, Forbes, 18 May 2022 The animals are now working as bovine therapists at a nonprofit ashram of sorts called the Gentle Barn, located in the small, rural community of Dittmer, Missouri. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, 13 Mar. 2022 Shukla emphasised that the children were not registered with the Sevadham ashram, but were living there in quarters that their mother had been given. Aarefa Johari, Quartz, 3 Feb. 2022 Satprem is a harsh taskmaster whose edicts result in conflict between the residents of Auroville and its governing body at an ashram in Pondicherry., 16 July 2021 That a Black woman from Depression-era Detroit established a Hindi ashram in the hills of California next to a horse ranch and performed centuries-old Indian hymns there still boggles the mind. Washington Post, 9 July 2021 For Carnivorous Shortboaders: Encinitas The Surf: Nicknamed for the ashram that overlooks this point break, Swami’s is one of the most beloved shortboard spots in the area. Sara Clemence, WSJ, 4 June 2021 Originally released on private-press cassette in 1982 via Coltrane’s ashram, the original Turiya Sings featured the artist’s serene devotional songs, accompanied by her Wurlitzer organ and overdubbed strings and synths. Hank Shteamer, Rolling Stone, 2 June 2021 Embedded into her design are images of the Watts Towers, Noah Purifoy’s desert museum in Joshua Tree and Alice Coltrane’s ashram in Agoura (which was lost to the catastrophic fires of 2018). Los Angeles Times, 22 May 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ashram.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of ashram

1835, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ashram

Sanskrit āśrama, from śrama religious exercise

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Cite this Entry

“Ashram.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2022.

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