Soraya began practicing yoga when 19 in the Northern Territory. At 20, as a dental therapist working in Katherine, Soraya had a spiritual experience which changed her direction. She soon discovered the Satyananda Yoga Ashram, and did her month long yoga teacher training in 1981. Soraya took Sannyasa on the 1st of January 1982 and was given the spiritual name of Swami Devashakti Saraswati. Soraya continued to live and teach in various Ashrams for the next 8 years.
Holistic Health Studies
Serving through her teaching, singing and allied trauma informed therapies Soraya believes in the intelligence of love in action. And this love begins in our own heart. Holistic healing includes clearing imprints of past trauma and completing our unfinished business, so we begin to love the life we are privileged to live.
Terry Oldfield and Soraya
Together with her husband and musical partner composer/musician Terry Oldfield, Soraya runs Mangalam Meditation Retreat in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, Queensland, Australia. Terry and Soraya also run an annual India Retreat or Pilgrimage.
Soraya manages Mangalam Meditation Retreat outside Palmwoods on the Sunshine Coast. With weekly classes, ongoing courses and monthly music and kirtan gathering.
Non-duality or Advaita
Our philosophy is that of oneness, understanding the universe that is unfolding moment by moment. And NOW is when life occurs. The energy of love abides in the oneness that unifies all sentient beings. Shared in our Free online Global Satsang.
Tragedy and Awakening
In 2009 Soraya tragically lost her 17 year-old son to suicide 3 years after sadly losing her brother to suicide. This sparked a period of deep grief and much soul-searching.
Author: Shining Through From Grief to Gratitude
Soraya shares her incredible life story in her memoir.
This period of deep grief sparked many deep and profound shifts and internal changes over a period of years. From this period Soraya awakened to a whole new way of living. One of deep and profound peaceful loving presence. Soraya shares this sad story and her uplifting and profound insights in her book Shining Through from Grief to Gratitude published in 2016.
Her life has since been dedicated to supporting others through trauma and to awaken to a new way of living. To remember who we truly are as divine beings, and that our essence is that of love. It is the monkey-mind we mistakenly identify with that tricks us in believing otherwise.
Music and Mantra
Soraya loves to sing and encourage others to sing too. ‘It does wonders for your nervous system and awakens the heart’ She loves encouraging others to sing through chanting and kirtan: The ancient languages such as Sanskrit override the intellectual brain and promote joyful relaxation