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The Kausala Conservatory

  Gateway To Inspired Living 

A Gap Year (Semester, Quarter or even a Gap Month) can be like a Gateway to a whole new world! It presents a tremendous opportunity to step back, see the bigger picture, learn what's truly important to oneself, and make the best choices moving forward for a most-fulfilling life! 

Offering progressive educational alternatives with life-changing service experiences to college age youth, career transitioning adults and retirees who are ready to make their biggest impact in the world, Kausala Conservatory focuses on two indispensable tracts of study that are most relevant to the urgent needs of the times:

Humanitarian & Planetarian

Both of these tracts have strong artistic and spiritual threads, guided (not by money, not power, not influence, not even "success", but...) by the great  and universal virtues;  the essential foundations needed to make meaningful change and forge a wonderful, fulfilling life-path. Nevertheless, most of these courses offer:

  • Certification in fields of service that can generate a comfortable living wage but do not require a license or degree


  • Responsible, ecological, entrepreneurial opportunities, by forging these unique courses into fields of service the world desperately needs, but has rarely seen.

Some people die at 25

and aren't buried til 75.

~ Ben Franklin



    Kausala Humanitarian Courses: 

We are still determining the dates for most of our 2024 - 2025 courses, but we feel it's important to start planning now. The kick off will probably begin in the Fall with our Vishwa Yoga Journey across southern India. Scroll down to read more about the VYJ

The Therapeutic Art of Listening

One of the biggest chaos causes in the world is simply the inability to communicate in helpful rather than harmful ways. Inspired from the "Person Centered Therapy" techniques of the great psychologist, Carl Rogers, the Virtues Project, founded by Linda Kavelin-Popov, and studies on the power of dialog over debate. The Art of Listening (AoL) has the power to change the world one extremely sincere and compassionate conversation at a time. Furthermore, if you take our Vishwa Ayurveda / Elemental Yoga Therapy training, you will also learn...

The Elemental Art of Listening

This course takes AoL to another level.  Listeners learns to put the speakers communications, including body language, into a five element context (earth, water, fire, air & space) that point to many elemental variations of holistic approach we are able to use to a person's challenges; and even more so if it is applied withing the context of the next course...

Vishwa Ayurveda: Elemental Yoga Therapy

A healing art that bridges Ayurveda, TCM and other Medicine Wheel methodologies from around the world that not only helps one to heal, but to optimize health and even work thru the emotional and psychological issues that help one to improve their vitality and perspective as they embrace obstacles as developmental opportunities. 

Vipassana Meditation / aka: The Art of Living*   

Other than suppressing or acting out destructive behaviors, most people do not realize there is a 3rd option: keen observation! However, for observation to be keen it requires one to also be non-reactive. Thus, it is a skill that one needs time to learn and develop. Nevertheless, it doesn't take long to see the wisdom and powerful peace movement it causes both in the individual and the greater society. (*Some refer to Vipassana as the Art of Living, but there are at least 2 other well known yogic programs in the world that also go by that sub title. Our course is similar to the Art of Living course as taught by S.N. Goenka, but it is not run by the Art of Living foundation and has some significant differences; mainly that we allow for that practice of asana to enable comfort in ones sitting practice.)  

Five Element Rhythm & Drums / "Change your Rhythm, Change your life!"

The Dagara medicine wheel from west africa has a rhythm associated to each element, which leads to a unique form of natural mood modulation that can attune one to the energies they need to tackle a challenge. From depression to problem solving, as the Dagara say, "The sound of the drum is the tuning of the soul." And, "Change your rhythm, change your life." 

Bhuta Thai: Elemental Yoga Massage Therapy

You can read more about this powerful mode of therapy (that doesn't require a license to practice) Here.

The Delsarte System of Expression

The Delsarte System was once used around the world. An entire era of history praised its contributions to acting, singing, dance, oration, and many therapeutic arts. In fact, its influence on asana may be the very thing that inspired a pioneering yogi named Sri Krishnamacharya to declare asana as a form of yoga; which, prior to his declaration, there is no record of asana being considered a part of yoga. 

Sound Healing, Reiki, Qi-gong

More description to come.

The Art of Seeing

In this epidemic of excessive phone and computer usage, myopia and other eyes dis-eases have risen over 300% in the past 20 years. And yet there are many simple methods to prevent and reverse these problems. Furthermore, many of the techniques are very meditative and stress relieving. "When your eyes are tired, you're tired!

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 Kausala Planetarian Courses: 

Asta Kosala Kosali: (aka: Balinese Feng Shui) 

A design art that beautifies and optimizes the relationship between man and environment for health and harmony

More description to comeLearn More Here.

Sacred Geometry

From yoga postures to one's words corresponding to their actions, "everything is about alignment." Mayans, Masons, Mound Builders, Crop Circles and other interconnected geophenomena have pointed humanity towards this truth for ages. Learn More Here.


A 5 minute walk from Bali's world famous Green School, Kulkul farm offers classes in a permaculture and many other earth-friendly practices. Learn More Here.

Bamboo U

A course in artistic bamboo building design in environmentally sustainable ways that uplift and edify.

Learn More Here.

Trekking Therapy & Environmental Dialog

To learn more about Adventure Trekking as a form of therapy, check out this video with one of our partners:  // Something in addition to what you see in the video is that we add environmental service projects like the one seen below. This is actually a component of therapy as well, as we find when we give our attention to important things to help with in the world it takes our attention off of ourselves and places it within a greater purpose. In addition to these service projects we engage in reflection and dialog about our work together.

Adventures in Recycling

Most of Bali is gorgeous, but many of its beaches get a lot of trash that is washed over from other islands and countries. Therefore we have created a program that is both a trekking (mostly to Bali's beaches) and a service project. It also leads to our next program... 

Repurposing and the Creative Arts

There are endless ways to repurpose trash and junk creatively. It is very rewarding and also is a great way to make useful things out of that which would be ugly and a menace to the environment. However, it wouldn't be the Balinese style to not add enchanting artistic components to your creations. You will be surprised how as to how junk brings out enormous creative ideas, and often in ways no one has ever thought of before.

Fostering Peaceful Dialog For Ethical Transitions

The planet is in need of a huge transition. It needs humans to find more clean and ethical ways of living. One of the biggest obstacles to this transition is the inability for most humans to have good dialog. This is largely due to attachment to one's own ideas or tribal ideologies, but also because of poor listening skills and the tendency to want to debate rather than dialog. This course will teach one the arguments of various sides of varying issues, but will not teach you how to argue, but rather to dialog. As an example of this I present to you a video featuring a man nicknamed Earthling Ed. He is a master of  peaceful dialog for veganism. However, our purpose in showing this video is not to convince you about veganism, but to give an example of how one can calm down irate attacks upon ethical movements (and politics) and get into real dialog about important issues. Furthermore, this training is an elaboration upon the first course (in the Humanitarian tract of studies) called The Therapeutic  Art of Listening



One of the main purposes for choosing Bali for so much of  our course work is so that folks would be naturally inspired to take some of Bali, along with what they have learned in our courses, out into the world. And, to help our students in "taking it with them", we have made connections with some key places where, what you learn at Kausala, can also be put to great use in service:   (In addition to the list below, we will soon add another tropical adventure in the Philippines.)

Kausala / Ubud, Bali

Yes, right here at our headquarters, there are many learning and service opportunities; including experience in running a guesthouse, cafe, yoga shala, yoga & thai massage training, and the conservatory courses. While doing so, you can also take the courses as a way of compensating you for your service.  {1 to 3 months} Learn more about Kausala.

Five Element Farm School /  Zambia, Africa

This unique school in Zambia builds, educates and empowers a community through ecological farming and environmental rehabilitiation. Serving at Farm School. Learn more about Five Element Farm School

Sadhana Forest, Auroville, India

Besides doing service through Sadhana Forest (pictured in the above slides), the sky is the limit in Auroville, India! You can learn just about anything and find a million ways to serve. We can help you with that, but first you will need a deep understanding of Auroville. Start with this video:

What Next?

If at this point you already know you would like to get started with a Kausala course or tract of studies, there are many ways to begin. Basically, after choosing the course or tract you want to take, the gap year (or gap semester) process is broken into four Segments:

  • Preparation: It can take 1 to 3 months to prepare for international travel. We will guide you during this time with how to prepare for travel, as well as the next 1 to 3 month segment in Bali, Indoesia.

  • The actual Humanitarian or Planetarian tract (3 month) or course work (1 month) held in Bali.

  • A 1 to 3 month service project / internship; putting to use the things you have learned at Kausala, at places such as the Five Element Farm School in Zambia, Africa or a great variety of other service projects in Auroville, India. Or you can just stay at Kausala in Ubud for this period, to do another tract of studies while also serving Kausala's mission.

  • The Great Return! After coming home you won't be the same; and frankly you might even need counseling to make the transition back to the ordinary world. But besides the therapy, our time together is far from over. You will have seen many whole new worlds of possibilities, and yet may not have a clue as to how to set out for these new horizons. But, not to worry! We know many ways to help you find your own way. 

So, if this all sounds good to you, then the next step is to get in touch with us HERE!

Or, if you are like most people who want to know a whole lot more before they fly half-way around the world for 6 months, you'll probably want to take a look at the following topics:

How a Gap Year Can Be A Gateway

What is a Conservatory?

Who is it For?

Why Bali?

Why Ubud?

Why Kausala?

Meaning of Kausala

Kausala Gap Year Q & A

Why Bali?

We chose Bali for many reasons, but mainly because its natural beauty attracts people from around the globe. And when they come, they take as much as they can into their heart and, in some way, back home with them. And perhaps this is why Bali is one of the most popular destinations people return to again and again; especially yogis. Bali relieves the mind, revives the body and uplifts the spirit! Simply put, Bali gives a beautiful, magical, healthy, sustainable, glimpse of what our best selves and our best world could be. If humanity could just find the restraint to get out of nature's way and the virtue to foster her growth (rather than destroy it), this place we call home could become a paradise, both outwardly and inwardly, materially and spiritually. 

(See Trip Advisor article: Travelers Choice - Best of the Best" / "Why Bali is most Popular destination in the world.")

The Saraswati Temple is the center of Ubud and just a 10 minute walk from Kausala

Classes & Courses
Art of Listening
Anchor 1
Why Bali?
Why Ubud?


Ubud is the art and cultural heart of Bali and also to become the hub for our international training center. Often it feels like a work place that is too good to be true, given the location and the incredibly fulfilling work we do; and yet it is actually an ultra-practical location and facility as the experiences we host there indelibly stick with our students, teachers, volunteers and visitors. Hence, it is a place where one takes with them a meaningfully beautiful experience when they leave; as well as being ever enticing to return for more, to spread more, to return, to spread...


The name Ubud is also aligned with many of our endeavors. It is derived from ubad which means both medicine and place of healing in Balinese.  But this is not just because of the abundant medicinal vegetation naturally found throughout the area, but also because of the healing environments that the inhabitants take great and reverent care to create and maintain. 

Bisma, Ubud


Kausala is the name of the Virtues First (501c3 not-for-profit) headquarters in Ubud, Bali, wherein, we hold many courses. However, this headquarters is also our administrative center thru which we work with many of our beautiful neighboring facilities that often can provide a more conducive atmosphere depending on the course / classes one is taking. 

Kausala at Bisma Ubud

Bisma is not just the street that leads you to Bali's "Ancient Monkey Forest" but also the area where Kausala is located (though not too close to the monkeys). Bisma also means freshness and, with its many healthy restaurants, spas and soul restoring villas, one is surrounded with opportunities to refresh their mind, body and spirit. In fact, it is inescapable. Furthermore, these conditions create a great learning environment; at least in relation to what our organization teaches and want to impress upon our students as they go back out into the world. For example, many of our courses hold the theme the natural world should not be kept entirely apart from where we live our lives, as it is in most cities. But, like so many other places along Bisma Rd, Kausala sits away from the road where the many restaurants and shops operate, and to the opposite side of Kausala is a big, green, rice field with mountains in the distant background. Thus, you would never know that a busy street was just a minute walk up the green alley way unless you needed an amenity from the city. And if you walk just a minute the other way, you find yourself in a quiet, green rice field. There is no need to get in a car and drive for 20 minutes to escape a city so you can find some greenery. In Ubud, you do not have to swap one for the other. You can have both at any time, and very often simultaneously. Because on this magical island humans and nature not only co-exist, but do so beautifully! This is a lesson the world needs to learn, urgently, but not just to save the planet, but to make the most of this planet and, thereby, make the most of our humanity.  

Kausala meaning

Q & A


Why our Gap Year can be Your Gateway?

As someone who went to a prestigious liberal arts college only to find that the value added to my life was infinitely small when compared to the ginormous student loan debt I found myself under ~ even before ~ graduating - and with little to show for it, I founded Kausala knowing that another typical college or university was not the answer to the many ailments plaguing most students around the world. In America, it is mainly the huge cost. But there are so many other huge obstacles to furthering ones education in a meaningful way in countries throughout the world. And often even when a student can get thru the obstacles and pressures of a college, and actually find a job within the options given to them, the work is discovered to be perpetuating more devastation upon the planet, which in turn and among many other things, is also lacking in any inspired aspired aspects for acquiring an education other than a job; and yet to even that end, the typical sense of job satisfaction among graduates today often quickly plummets; even when making a lot of money. 

Often we can be so caught up in the mundane, and even the destructive, that we cannot see beyond these trappings and, therefore, never get a glimpse of a bigger picture for ourselves within a brighter future for all humanity. A Gap Year at Kausala can provide the space and vision needed to learn what's really important to ourselves, but within an even greater vision for humanity and the planet; while also giving you many tools and resources to pursue such a life.   

What is a Conservatory?

A conservatory is not a multi-tiered university, nor is it confined to specializing in only arts such as music or drama. And, interestingly, it is also defined as a garden space.  Thus, we find yet another word that encompasses the heart of Kausala. For this is a conservatory that sees sustainable living technologies and the beautification of the natural environment to foster and enhance the health and healing for both humans and the planet, as the high art that it is and ever will be.


Who is it for?

Unfortunately, it has become common place to think that ones education should only be emphasized while young, and yet it isn't till most people are much older that they only begin to know what they truly want out of life, and out of an education, but, for some odd reason, they feel it is too late. But we believe this is backwards. Although we are excited to work with youth in helping them find their hearts desire and dig into it most discerningly (more on that later), we also find it very rewarding to help adults between jobs or out of a job or wanting to get out of a job find what is most meaningful to them. And in both cases, we also create learning and serving experiences to get a real taste for further work in a variety of very meaningful humanitarian and planetarian fields (especially where it relates to the Virtues First Vision).  

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The Meaning of Kausala

A meaningful word in many different regions and religions of the eastern hemisphere, with its variations congruently overlapping to create waves of depth, kausala is also an abbreviation of the Balinese form of Feng Shui, called Asta Kosala Kosali. Wherein, there are few common structures, for nearly the whole culture of Bali practices Kausala in some way. For example, most every structure has representations of the Five Great Elements (earth, water, fire, air, space) and each is infused in some artful and spiritual manner. In fact, the Asta Kosala Kosali manner of building is meant to embody a sum of integrity, and integrity is the sum of virtue. In other words, Kausala implies both Virtue & Integrity. Furthermore, in terms of building layout, it considers a framework for parents, children and grandparents. It is too much to go into here, but perhaps you have heard of a new community building trend in Europe called Inter-generational Living. However, it is not new at all. To this day Balinese families still create homes that are made of several buildings, (rather than several rooms), and always with an auspicious area for both grandparents and a family temple.  Hence, if you have studied the Virtues First Vision page (by clicking the image above), you will see that there is a connection. In brief, sustainability goes beyond the farm. When we learn that everyone's life should be as interconnected as the elements in the environment itself, a social structure of many interconnected pillars are enabled to maintain the integrity of the social ecology.


In fact, in Sanskrit we find both Kausala and Kusala, the former being the more layered term, but the latter is Virtue. Dharma is often described in a vague manner making one's understanding and application of it vague, as well. However, it is not at an over-simplification in the least to say that, essentially, dharma is the application of the virtues that attain and sustain health and harmony in the universe; and, in turn, foster Moksha—liberation from the tendencies and attachments that keep us from cultivating the virtues that help us attain our full potential.

Yogic science, Quantum Physics, Sacred Geometry, Hermetic wisdom, and the like, also demonstrate how these laws of harmony channel for us ever greater degrees of GOD (Good Orderly Direction) within us and all around us, and that one acts upon the other. In other words, good alignment fosters dharma/virtue and virtue/dharma fosters good alignment. 

Those who protect Dharma

 The Dharma protects.

~Hindu saying


Thus, it is written that every object and ideal in the universe is conceived as having an ideal location, and if we can align ourselves properly -inwardly and outwardly, materially and spiritually, we can channel its corresponding virtuous energies (much like adjusting the dial to tune-in to a radio frequency). Hence, Moksha can be facilitated by the geometry of one's geography, both immediate and galactic. **

The placement of objects in Balinese architecture -known as Asta Kosala Kosali- is not only keen to these theories, but have also become the greatest place on earth to see these theories actualized. Furthermore, though I doubt many of the world leaders who attended the G-20 in Bali the fall of 2022 were aware of it, AKK was concerned with "sustainability" ages before it became an existential threat.

Why a Gap Year Conservtory?
What is a Conservatoy?
Who is it for?
Q & A
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