Thursday, February 5, 2009

fun in South India

So- yesterday I woke up and did my practices and the group went to the on-site yoga class. They seemed to impress the teacher who had planned an easy "tourist" yoga class for them. Somehow, at some point, they invited him to the class I would be teaching later that day. He said he would bring his brother who, evidently, is a "yoga champion."

I made my way to Yogi Ramsuratkumar Ashram and went to there morning program there and had lunch. It was great for me. Yogi Ramsuratkumar and his temple is really the inspiration for the book I am in the process of working on- please do not ask when it is going to be out. When it is done, and everyone has had their say about it, then it will be out- much of it is actually out of my hands, but I digress. So after lunch I had the opportunity to spend some time with a great woman named Ma Devaki, who was Yogi Ramsuratkumar's personal attendant for many years. She spoke with me for a while and gave some really great teachings about mantra, pranayama and about devotion.

One things she said about Yogi Ramsuratkumar is that 'he was incapable of acting in anyway other than a big way and thinking in any way other than a big way." She said, "After a life of the ordinariness of the world and its concerns that is what I wanted."

One of the main practices that Yogi Ramsuratkumar gave was the repetition of his name as a mantra. She said he told her one time, :Devaki, when I call your name, don't you turn around? So to, when we call the name of God, He turns around. As soon as you say Krishna, he is there. As soon as you say Om Namah Shivaya, Shiva turns to see who is calling him."And this is true, she said, whether we feel it or not!

I came home and rested and then taught my yoga class. And sure enough the yogi's came. After 5 minutes the teacher looked at me and said, "Wow, you are teaching the real yoga!" (This was after I was giving some hands on adjustments that resulted in some pretty loud moaning and groaning!) Then the yoga champion brother joined in the fun. On a side note, several of our group pushed up to urdhva danurasana for the first time. I had surveyed the group about how the pose was for them before we go started and they were like, "oh not very good" etc, and so forth and well, they grossly misrepresented their ability. When I told them this, they swore, that it wasn't usually like that! Funny. Maybe you have to go all the way to India to push up in that pose!

So after shavasana the yoga champion did a short demo for us. He was pretty bendable. He did tittibasana and I said, now go to handstand and then he looked at me like, "are you crazy?" So I showed him. We laughed and ahd a reayy good time. The boys at the end said, "you all are my yoga family and looked at me and said "yoga sister". So well, the kula is over here too! What fun. They promised to come today so I can teach them arm balances. he said he has not learned them yet where he studies.

This morning we got up early and climbed up Mt Arunchala to a cave where Ramana Maharshi lived for 7 years and we meditated in there. It was just opening and so there was a priest there chatning their morning puja for the place. It was really potent. So still, the energy there. So easy to sit and be quiet. Really, no words.

After that the goup went into town for some shopping and I went back to the ashram. It was great. Ma Devaki asked me to lead one of the chants and so that was fun. I must have done it okay because when I was done she said, 'Well done, Christina!"

So, now I am going to take a dip in the pool and get ready for the yoga class. Really we are having quite a fun time here in the south. The very fancy resort isn't hurting! And also, the people here seem a tad more open. The area is a lot more rural and perhaps that is part of it.

1 comment:

whatnot said...

I love reading these. And I love the idea of a "yoga champion!"