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Astana Open House Weekend
The Astana, 112 E Cary Street, Richmond, Virginia
May 3rd – 5th, 2024

We long for your presence at our Astana Open House Weekend next Friday, May 3rd (evening) to Sunday, May 5th (5 pm). We will gather ourselves, internally and externally, entirely in person, for a bit of baraka with our Pir. 

Many close friends will join Pir Zia including Srinivas Reddy, Anirudh Alva Changkakoti, Jabriel Hasan, Rabia Povich, Tarana Jobin, and other unexpected special guests. Our plan is to be together in silence, meditation, ritual, music, sama, suhbat, practice, and friendship, deepening ourselves within the attunement of the mystical teachings of Hazrat Inayat Khan. We hope you’ll make your way to Richmond to be with us!

Please come for one or both days. Tuition for one day is $55 and for both $110. This amount helps us cover costs and includes unlimited tea, coffee, snacks, sweets, sound techs, and our luncheon and concert on Saturday. You may also just attend our Saturday night concert w/ Srinivas Reddy & Anirudh Alva Changkakoti. Tickets: $20

You can find details about travel, parking, accommodations, and local restaurants at astanarva.org. Also, you can send any questions to astana@inayatiyya.org. May we be together for the tea and sweets of Sufism soon, God willing!


ASTANA OPEN HOUSE WEEKEND SCHEDULE

Friday, May 3rd

  • 7:00 pm Doors Open
  • 7:30-9 pm Welcome Gathering w/ Pir Zia

Saturday, May 4th

  • 11-12 pm Universal Worship, “The Perfection of Love” w/ Jabriel Hasan & Cathy Arhama Reynolds
  • 12:15 pm Astana Community Luncheon (Healthy Mexican from Blue Habanero)
  • 1:30-2:30 pm Kinship Circle—”Manifesting Love” with Rabia Povich & Jabriel Hasan
  • 3-4:30 pm Suhbat & Practice w/ Pir Zia 
  • 7-9 pm Indian Music Concert w/ Srinivas Reddy & Anirudh Alva Changkakoti (also online)

Sunday, May 5th


BIOGRAPHIES

Pir Zia Inayat Khan, PhD, is a scholar of religion and teacher of Sufism in the universalist Sufi lineage of his grandfather, Hazrat Inayat Khan. Pir Zia is president of the Inayatiyya and founder of Sulūk Academy, a school of Sufi contemplative study and practice. He is the author of Immortality: A Traveler’s Guide; Mingled Waters: Sufism and the Mystical Unity of Religions; Saracen Chivalry: Counsels on Valor, Generosity and the Mystical Quest; and the editor and compiler of Dream Flowers: The Collected Works of Noor Inayat Khan, for which he also wrote the critical introduction. Pir Zia divides his time between Richmond, Virginia and Suresnes, France. inayatiyya.org

Srinivas Reddy is a scholar, translator and musician. He studied classical South Asian languages and literatures at UC Berkeley and currently teaches at Brown University and IIT Gandhinagar. Srinivas is also a concert sitarist who trained in the traditional guru-shishya parampara in the lineage of late maestro Pandit Nilkhil Banerjee. He spends his time performing, teaching and conducting research around the world.  His latest book is Raya: Krishnadevaraya of Vijayanagara (2020). www.srinivasreddy.org

Anirudh Alva Changkakoti, the son of Dr. Rupak Changkakoti and Sarojini Alva Changkakoti, is a young promising tabla player from Virginia. Anirudh’s love for tabla was very evident from a young age, when his father was learning from Dr. Narendra Verma, disciple of the illustrious, Ustad Allah Rakha of the Punjab Gharana. Dr. Verma started teaching Anirudh at the tender age of 3 years. Since then, Anirudh has won many awards of excellence in both state and national level contests in the US. Over the years, he has developed his own style of playing for solos as well as, refined accompaniment.  Anirudh has performed across the US, Canada, Mexico and India and in prestigious venues such as the Kennedy Center and Department of State as well. He has recorded albums with multiple Grammy nominated artists and even Grammy winners. Through his Guru’s referral, Anirudh has been training with his hero, the maestro, Ustad Zakir Hussain for the past 11 years.

Jabriel Hasan is a graduate of Union Presbyterian Seminary and currently a student at the College of William and Mary studying counseling. He is a returned Peace Corps Volunteer and a former resident of Richmond Hill, an ecumenical Christian community and retreat center in Richmond, Virginia. He is also a founding member and officer of the Black Coalition of Change, a local community organization also in Richmond. As of spring 2023, Jabriel is an ordained Healing Cherag within the Inayatiyya.

Arhama Cathy Reynolds is an ordained Healing Cherag within the Inayatiyya. She is a certified spiritual director with an inter-spiritual and interfaith focus. She also is a lay Franciscan within the Third Order, Society of St. Francis (Anglican/Episcopal) Order. Arhama has served as a chaplain and a formation counselor, and is currently an assistant formation guardian. Arhama enjoys writing icons of angels, saints, and other inspired illuminated souls, and lives with her husband and rather rambunctious elderly parrot in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Rabia Povich, a student of the universal Sufi path, co-leads a local Inayatiyya center in Charlottesville, VA. Motivated to advance the ideals of justice and equity, Rabia is engaged in a local community low-barrier homeless day shelter and an interfaith clergy group addressing inequity caused by systemic racism. Her professional background spanned 25 years in public policy, where she utilized advocacy, research, communication, and organizational development skills to reduce poverty and injustice and increase opportunity. She currently serves as North American Vice President of the Kinship Activity.

Sara Tarana Jobin is the Inayatiyya’s Music Director and Emeritus Vice President of its Music Activity. Professionally, she has a long career as an opera conductor and continues to freelance professionally. As a student of Sufism since 2010, and graduate of Sulūk Academy, she is dedicated to reviving and sharing the musical legacy of Hazrat Inayat Khan with all who find a home in his teachings.

Kenneth Sparks is a seasoned professional, with over twenty years of administrative, human resources, and operations experience. He serves as the Director of Operations & Human Resources for the Astana, the Inayatiyya’s Headquarters in Richmond, Virginia, and in this role also serves as Kinship liaison. He has worked with corporations, nonprofits, and small businesses on many levels. Kenneth has had extensive training in customer service, logistics, and time management. He has used this training to play a key role in supporting organizational growth and success. Kenneth was born and raised in New York City, and received his education in Business Administration. He and his family have been residents of Virginia since early 2016.

Joshua Octaviani is an administrative professional with extensive experience working in the nonprofit sector, from small to large-sized organizations. Beyond this, he also has experience founding and growing independent all-volunteer community organizations in the Richmond area. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the College of William and Mary. Outside of his professional life, Joshua actively nurtures and develops an incredibly wide range of personal interests and practices.

Jennifer Alia Wittman has an extensive background founding, stabilizing, growing and advancing nonprofit organizations and small businesses. She has served as the Inayatiyya’s Executive Director since 2014. Prior to her work with the Inayatiyya, Alia was a leader within the National Service movement in the United States, helping establish AmeriCorps in the state of Maryland. After that she served as Executive Director of Hands on Baltimore, a volunteer organization dedicated to working with every segment of Baltimore’s community, from grassroots organizers to corporate leadership, to better the city and its people. After years of such service, Alia turned to helping organizations build administrative and operational capacity. She has served as General Manager of Suluk Press correcting a financial downturn, managed the start-up of Seven Pillars House of Wisdom, a modern-day wisdom collaborative engaging an inspiring group of leading thinkers, and contracted with many groups to help during times of transition and reorganization. Alia lives in Richmond, Virginia. 

Date

May 03 - 05 2024
Expired!

Time

ET
All Day

Local Time

  • Timezone: Asia/Singapore
  • Date: May 03 - 06 2024
  • Time: All Day

Cost

$55 - $110

Location

The Astana

Organizer

Language: English

Speakers

  • Pir Zia Inayat Khan
    Pir Zia Inayat Khan

    Pir Zia Inayat Khan, PhD, is a scholar of religion and teacher of Sufism in the universalist Sufi lineage of his grandfather, Hazrat Inayat Khan. Pir Zia is president of the Inayatiyya and founder of Sulūk Academy, a school of Sufi contemplative study and practice. He is the author of Immortality: A Traveler’s Guide; Mingled Waters: Sufism and the Mystical Unity of Religions; Saracen Chivalry: Counsels on Valor, Generosity and the Mystical Quest; and the editor and compiler of Dream Flowers: The Collected Works of Noor Inayat Khan, for which he also wrote the critical introduction. Pir Zia divides his time between Richmond, Virginia and Suresnes, France. inayatiyya.org

  • Sara Tarana Jobin
    Sara Tarana Jobin

    Sara Tarana Jobin is the Inayatiyya’s Music Director and Emeritus Vice President of its Music Activity. Professionally, she has a long career as an opera conductor and continues to freelance professionally. As a student of Sufism since 2010, and graduate of Sulūk Academy, she is dedicated to reviving and sharing the musical legacy of Hazrat Inayat Khan with all who find a home in his teachings.

  • Jabriel Hasan
    Jabriel Hasan

    Jabriel Hasan is a graduate of Union Presbyterian Seminary and currently a student at the College of William and Mary studying counseling. He is a returned Peace Corps Volunteer and a former resident of Richmond Hill, an ecumenical Christian community and retreat center in Richmond, Virginia. He is also a founding member and officer of the Black Coalition of Change, a local community organization also in Richmond. As of spring 2023, Jabriel is an ordained Healing Cherag within the Inayatiyya.

  • Rabia Povich
    Rabia Povich

    Rabia Povich, a student of the universal Sufi path, co-leads a local Inayatiyya center in Charlottesville, VA. Motivated to advance the ideals of justice and equity, Rabia is engaged in a local community low-barrier homeless day shelter and an interfaith clergy group addressing inequity caused by systemic racism. Her professional background spanned 25 years in public policy, where she utilized advocacy, research, communication, and organizational development skills to reduce poverty and injustice and increase opportunity. She currently serves as North American Vice President of the Kinship Activity.

  • Srinivas Reddy
    Srinivas Reddy

    Srinivas Reddy is a scholar, translator and musician. He studied classical South Asian languages and literatures at UC Berkeley and currently teaches at Brown University and IIT Gandhinagar. Srinivas is also a concert sitarist who trained in the traditional guru-shishya parampara in the lineage of late maestro Pandit Nilkhil Banerjee. He spends his time performing, teaching and conducting research around the world.  His latest book is Raya: Krishnadevaraya of Vijayanagara (2020). www.srinivasreddy.org

  • Kenneth Sparks
    Kenneth Sparks

    Kenneth Sparks is a seasoned professional, with over twenty years of administrative, human resources, and operations experience. He serves as the Director of Operations & Human Resources for the Astana, the Inayatiyya’s Headquarters in Richmond, Virginia, and in this role also serves as Kinship liaison. He has worked with corporations, nonprofits, and small businesses on many levels. Kenneth has had extensive training in customer service, logistics, and time management. He has used this training to play a key role in supporting organizational growth and success. Kenneth was born and raised in New York City, and received his education in Business Administration. He and his family have been residents of Virginia since early 2016.

  • Arhama Cathy Reynolds
    Arhama Cathy Reynolds

    Arhama Cathy Reynolds is an ordained Healing Cherag within the Inayatiyya. She is a certified spiritual director with an inter-spiritual and interfaith focus. She also is a lay Franciscan within the Third Order, Society of St. Francis (Anglican/Episcopal) Order. Arhama has served as a chaplain and a formation counselor, and is currently an assistant formation guardian. Arhama enjoys writing icons of angels, saints, and other inspired illuminated souls, and lives with her husband and rather rambunctious elderly parrot in Williamsburg, Virginia.

  • Anirudh Alva Changkakoti
    Anirudh Alva Changkakoti

    Anirudh Alva Changkakoti, the son of Dr. Rupak Changkakoti and Sarojini Alva Changkakoti, is a young promising tabla player from Virginia. Anirudh’s love for tabla was very evident from a young age, when his father was learning from Dr. Narendra Verma, disciple of the illustrious, Ustad Allah Rakha of the Punjab Gharana. Dr. Verma started teaching Anirudh at the tender age of 3 years. Since then, Anirudh has won many awards of excellence in both state and national level contests in the US. Over the years, he has developed his own style of playing for solos as well as, refined accompaniment. Anirudh has performed across the US, Canada, Mexico and India and in prestigious venues such as the Kennedy Center and Department of State as well. He has recorded albums with multiple Grammy nominated artists and even Grammy winners. Through his Guru’s referral, Anirudh has been training with his hero, the maestro, Ustad Zakir Hussain for the past 11 years.

  • Jennifer Alia Wittman
    Jennifer Alia Wittman

    Jennifer Alia Wittman has an extensive background founding, stabilizing, growing and advancing nonprofit organizations and small businesses. She has served as the Inayatiyya’s Executive Director since 2014. Prior to her work with the Inayatiyya, Alia was a leader within the National Service movement in the United States, helping establish AmeriCorps in the state of Maryland. After that she served as Executive Director of Hands on Baltimore, a volunteer organization dedicated to working with every segment of Baltimore’s community, from grassroots organizers to corporate leadership, to better the city and its people. After years of such service, Alia turned to helping organizations build administrative and operational capacity. She has served as General Manager of Suluk Press correcting a financial downturn, managed the start-up of Seven Pillars House of Wisdom, a modern-day wisdom collaborative engaging an inspiring group of leading thinkers, and contracted with many groups to help during times of transition and reorganization. Alia lives in Richmond, Virginia.

  • Joshua Octaviani
    Joshua Octaviani

    Joshua Octaviani is an administrative professional with extensive experience working in the nonprofit sector, from small to large-sized organizations. Beyond this, he also has experience founding and growing independent all-volunteer community organizations in the Richmond area. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the College of William and Mary. Outside of his professional life, Joshua actively nurtures and develops an incredibly wide range of personal interests and practices.