As the ranks of America's idle funemployed swell, many are asking themselves, "Dude, what am I gonna do with myself?" Their answer, increasingly: "I am gonna have a yoga party all day every day, in exchange for room and board."
They're joining ashrams! Take this funemployed dude's unbelievably sweet deal, for example:
Now he spends his days on the Himalayan Institute's 400-acre wooded campus, practicing hatha yoga and meditation, studying spiritual texts, biking, walking and preparing meals in the institute's kitchen. In exchange for his cooking duties and an annual fee of $3,000, he gets a private room, three vegetarian meals a day and unlimited access to the institute's classes, seminars and other events.
And you know you can totally smuggle weed in there, and smoke it. Just by saying you want to "find yourself," or whatever, you can get a hookup that will productively waste an entire year.
Yehnemsah Oneha, work-study coordinator at Ananda Ashram, says that while cost-cutting and ice-breaking are nice benefits, the true purpose of these work exchanges, sometimes known as karma yoga, is to foster selflessness and good will. "It helps circulate the energy," she said. "You're doing it for someone else's comfort and welfare."