Summer schedule

Dear Friends,

During the summer, I will do my best to be present for as many classes as possible. However, I will also be taking some small trips during the Summer months. Please keep track of what classes I will be teaching by looking at this calendar, which will be updated with any changes as soon as possible.

Meditation Workshop

I’m excited about this workshop at Laughing River Yoga this Sunday. I don’t know anything about Dada Gunamuktananda except what I’ve seen on his Youtube Channel.

I do, however, know something of the tradition he follows, Ananda Marga, having been initiated into their meditation practice in the final weeks I spent in Cairo. I’m excited to attend his workshop and would encourage anyone who is able to join me.

Happy Memorial Day

Dear Friends,

I hope you enjoy your long weekend and get a chance to go outside. I am busy on Monday, and won’t be teaching Yoga @ First on Monday. I hope to see you later in the week! (also, in case you just can’t wait that long, come join me tonight for a 6:15 class at Burlington Yoga.)

 

Searching for Ahimsa

I don’t really know how to address this article about my Yoga Teacher Trainer. I had been made aware in general terms of some of the accusations against him in the last year, and have been slowly coming to terms with this. If you download the print version of this publication, you can read more of his self defence in his own words, which may do more harm than good in terms of public perception but certainly seem like an accurate reflection of his experience.

I’m glad to see that he has incorporated consent cards into his teaching, although, as many of the people interviewed say, it may be too little too late.

The difficult part for me is trying to figure out why I was so attracted to his style of teaching in the first place, and what lessons I can take from this. I stopped taking classes as soon as I heard about the allegations about him, but more importantly, I need to rethink what yoga classes should be. I am so grateful the studio here for helping me process and develop my understanding of adjustments this last year. The workshops and discussions we’ve had have been transformative in the way I see the role of a yoga teacher. That, along with the Yoga and Movement Research Community that Diane Bruni runs, have set me down a path towards a radical change in how I teach.

The other side of this, though, is great sympathy for everyone involved. The people who were hurt at Bhava, as well as for Peter. This #MeToomovement is so important for our society. We need to come to terms with the harm and abuse that happens so regularly, and understand how our silence and acceptance makes us all complicit in that harm. It is time to truly learn how to practice Ahimsa, on and off the mat.

 

A Solstice Poem

I like to post poems on the Solstice, but, searching this morning, I couldn’t find one that fit my mood. Here’s the one I wrote instead:

Stay, Sun, on thy appointed rounds
Eight minutes are not enough today
Linger just a moment more
Among the frozen trees
Let time and nature pause
Restoring light and heat.
Tonight, we bank our fires low
Hoping to last until the morn
Listing in the shadow of the Earth
The darkness cloaks our dreams
Murmuring, “Not dawn, yet!”

#MeToo comes to Yoga

 

“Seek in the heart the source of evil and expunge it. It lives fruitfully in the heart of
the devoted disciple as well as in the heart of the [person] of desire. Only the strong can kill it out. The weak must wait for its growth, its fruition, its death. And it is a plant that lives and increases throughout the ages. It flowers when the [disciple] has
accumulated unto himself innumerable existences. [Those] who will enter upon the path of power must tear this thing out of his heart. And then the heart will bleed, and the whole life of the [person] seems to be utterly dissolved. This ordeal must be endured; it may come at the first step of the perilous ladder which leads to the path of life; it may not come until the last. But, O disciple, remember that it has to be endured, and fasten the energies of your soul upon the task. Live neither in the present nor the future, but in the Eternal. This giant weed cannot flower there; this blot upon
existence is wiped out by the very atmosphere of eternal thought.”

There is evil at the root of all human endeavor. No one is exempt. The latest airing of Patabhis Jois’ violence toward his female students is not news, but it brings to mind the question of what do we do with a practice which is a product of history. If history is, indeed, a nightmare, then the path to awakening must lie through truth telling. Perhaps all that we hold dear will seem to dissolve, but it must be torn out by the root.

Ashwattha Yoga Sequences

 

Well, it’s taken me two years, but I finally have a working list of sequences. These are all links to the google doc sequences, which means that as I make changes (which I surely will) these documents will be updated. Please feel free to share, and to make comments/suggestions. I’d also be happy to answer any questions about them.

  1. Salutations
  2. Standing
  3. Balance
  4. Shoulders
  5. Hip Openers
  6. Twists
  7. Inversions
  8. Heart Openers
  9. Forward Folds
  10. Restorative