The Romulo Peace Center is home to a community of awakening hearts and minds. We offer classes in pranayama (breathwork), yoga, and other practices that help people uncover the best parts of themselves. The Center is also available to rent for talks, yoga, and other contemplative practices, with all proceeds going toward building a more climate-resilient Philippines.

The Peace Center will be closed for deep cleaning and minor repairs from April 3 to 12. But we’ll remain open throughout the Holy Week.

 
 

NEWS


 
 
 

THE CENTER


 

The romulo peace center

 
Our world is made up of people of potential good, willing, if the path before them is outlined, to become sharers of the light.
— Carlos P. Romulo
 

The Romulo Peace Center is a gathering place for contemplative practices such as yoga, pranayama, and meditation. General Romulo, for whom it was named, was one of the Philippines’ greatest public servants and international thinkers.

“We offer yoga and meditation and other practices that will hopefully encourage people to ‘wake up,’” says Liana Romulo, its founder, “so that they’ll want to stop thinking of just themselves, just their families, their clan . . . their barangay. We want to cultivate in people a desire, maybe even a need, to think globally—the whole planet—and help others.” The Center opened in January 2015 under the auspices of the Carlos P. Romulo Foundation for Peace and Development.

Liana believes yoga, pranayama, and meditation can help individuals uncover the best parts of themselves. Modeling her grandfather, who won the United Nations Peace Prize, she wishes to do her share in the global shift toward peace.

“We wanted to build a center dedicated to activities that protect peace, promote spiritual growth, and hopefully produce nicer people,” says Liana. “We have to be kind and compassionate individuals first, because to stop killing it’s individuals that have to refuse to kill. To stop cheating and corruption, we have to get people to want to behave with integrity.”

Growing up in her grandfather’s household, Liana grew up thinking of the world as a small place made up of interdependent nations, each one needing to do its share—not just of effort but also of yielding. A longtime practitioner of yoga, she feels the urgent necessity of shifting to more sustainable ways of tenanting the planet, citing climate change and disasters like Yolanda. In general, she promotes a shift toward “world communal living,” a term her grandfather used in 1945, at the founding of the United Nations, in a speech that prompted the only standing ovation at the nine-week conference.

“Yoga cultivates in us a readiness to yield and to tolerate,” she explains, “to not grasp, to not fight.” In her view, these are preconditions to building a global family and a peaceful world. “In Lolo’s words, we have to come together as ‘a human family on a tiny planet circling a minor sun.’ I’m just trying to help make that happen.”

 

 
 

healing, then helping

A few times a year the Center brings together volunteers trained to treat mass trauma resulting from natural calamities like the typhoons Ruby and Yolanda, and the Bohol earthquake. The objective of the gatherings is always two-pronged. First, the volunteers attend to their own needs, their own healing; afterward, they focus on extending help to others.

“You can’t really help others until you take care of yourself,” explains Liana. “That’s what we’re trying to do at the Center. We’re trying to help people heal their hearts so that compassion can take root there and grow.”

In addition to simple yoga and breathing exercises, the volunteers practice a body-based technique called TRE, or tension, stress, and trauma releasing exercise. One of the Peace Center’s objectives for 2017 is to train significantly more volunteers in TRE in order to provide substantial psycho-emotional support to the hardest hit areas of the Philippines (e.g., Tacloban).

 
Photo of Guruji's feet by David Keil

Photo of Guruji's feet by David Keil

support climate resiliency

The Peace Center welcomes other like-minded groups to come and visit. If you’d like to rent the Peace Center, which is bright and clean and perfect for yoga events, please text 0921 315 2644 or email romulocenter@gmail.com.

The Peace Center donates 100% of its rental fees to the Romulo Foundation, which has undertaken a long-term project dedicated to building a more climate-resilient Philippines.

 
 
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Classes


All pranayama sessions (except Guided Open Classes) are limited to a maximum of 10 participants.

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pranayama level 1 (P1,500)

This workshop focuses mainly on watching and savoring the breath, soothing the nervous system, and entering the meditative space with ease. We discuss simple pranayama concepts, but we don’t manipulate the breath in any way. Instead we will concentrate on grounding our energy. Total beginners with minimal (or no) yoga/meditation background feel relaxed and at home in this class. Those with more experience seek its calming, restorative effects.

Next workshop: Wednesday, April 19, 245 to 4pm. Please text 0921 315 2644 to reserve a spot.

 

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pranayama level 2 (P2,500)

A two-part course in exploring the internal breath, we cover the gross anatomy of respiration, pranayama preparatory techniques, and a few traditional breathing practices. The course is based on the teachings of pranayama master O.P. Tiwari, director of the Kaivalyadham Yoga Institute in India, with a lot of input from Richard Freeman. Those with a regular yoga asana (or meditation) practice can skip Level 1 and come straight into this workshop.

Next workshop begins in May. See this news link for details.

 

pranayama level 3

Coming in October 2017, this course is for those who’ve had an established (daily) pranayama practice for a minimum of four months. We’ll be learning breath retentions and how to channel prana through bandha and mudra.


GUIDED OPEN CLASSES (P400)*

It’s challenging to establish a daily pranayama / meditation practice, particularly when you’re surrounded by the typical distractions of home. Very often it helps to surround your practice with the support of other practitioners. Guided Open Classes are for those who have already taken the two-part Level 2 intro course, who wish to benefit from a group’s energy, and for those who want to jumpstart a personal practice.

If you are already familiar with the various pranayama techniques, as taught in the Kaivalyadham tradition, please feel free to drop in for any of our Open Classes. Each class begins promptly, and lasts about an hour and ten minutes. Those who wish to practice asana or meditation after class are welcome to do so at no extra charge.

Next Open Class will be on Tuesday, April 11, Full Moon, 7 to 810am.

*Not for beginners


relax & restore (P500)

Whether you’re coping with erratic moods, stress at work, or a mind that just won’t quit, this class allows you to let it all go for 75 minutes of relief and restoration. Breathing, softening into easy poses, and gentle neurogenic tremoring combine to restore balance to the system and induce deep relaxation. Those who suffer from chronic or acute stress can really benefit from these profoundly restorative sessions.

This class begins in May. Please send us an email if you’re interested in attending.

 

Restorative Ashtanga (P500)

When practiced with laser-sharp attention to the internal forms of breathing, bandhas, and dristi, an Ashtanga-based practice that includes stillness and time to soften into the present moment can penetrate more deeply than one might have ever imagined. This class will include simple pranayama practices that enhance the ability to go deeply into any asana practice.

This class begins in June. Please send us an email if you’re interested in attending.

 

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morning self-practice (by donation)

We welcome practitioners from all contemplative traditions, and would like meditators and pranayama practitioners to feel they can come and sit quietly alongside asana practitioners. We ask that you put your phones on silent–and that you talk only if necessary. We’re usually open for self-practice every weekday from 630 to 1030am, but on some days the Peace Center might be booked for a private. Also, moon days are reserved for group pranayama practice. Please text or email the day before to find out if it’s ok to drop in.