Thursday, July 9, 2009

Look for what is Auspicious

So when I talked to John Friend about the instructor group practice I organized, I asked him for some advice and feedback about our first meeting together. He spent some time asking me about why I wanted to create such a space, what my goals and intentions were and what I hoped to accomplish. After we talked a while he gave me some profound nuggets of wisdom which follow here. (Not as an exact quote but as a fairly accurate paraphrasing.)

From John:

"I think it is a great idea. When yoga teachers from different styles come together one of two things can happen. The first is that the differences between methods can be highlighted and division and competition can result. And you do not want that.

The other option is that unity can be created, whihc is what you want. However, in order to create unity you must make it a point, individually and as a group, to look for what is similar among methods, to look for what you all have in common,. You must look for, affirm and express that which is Highest in each of you and in each of the methods. You should begin by talking about what is auspicious and spend your time with that ideal guiding you.

It's a good time to remember the adage, "If local yoga teachers cannot get along, why are we praying for world peace and what hope do the world leaders have?"

So, I took my teacher's advice and used this as my theme for practice and we really had a great time. Many of the people I had expected to be there were absent- a few were sick, three folks had car trouble, another had a family emergency and so on like that. But those of us who came had a grand time. We did a strong back bend practice toward kapotasana and scorpion and it seemed to me like we all had an opportunity to help, be helped and from what I could tell we all enjoyed the time together. So I think it was an auspicious start.

We meet next on July 24th and Desirae Pierce from Breath and Body will teach Power Vinyasa so come with an extra towel and be ready to sweat!

I used the same theme for my 4:30 class at Breath and Body. We worked a lot to refine updog and cobra and moved into some backbends where we focused on the work of the legs. People did a good job and it is fun to see folks so used to a strong flow practice that always keeps moving be willing to watch demos, try new things and learn about refinements in their alignment. Their studentship is very inspiring to me.

Same with the students at Bodhi last night. I worked with long timings very little obvious flow sequences and the students were just so game for anything. Last week was a quite small class there so it was fun to see some more folks in attendance this week. At one point I realized I was teaching them some poses they do not normally see because the first side was always pretty shaky and the second sides were going so much better. Then I asked everybody if my conclusion was correct and they agreed. So I made sure we did 3rd and 4th sides as well to maximize on the improvements I was seeing. Bodhi has such a nice friendly laid back vibe and the students there are really open and receptive.

All right then- just a commercial for the Big Love block party at The Love Yoga Coop. Please join me on Sunday morning for a yoga class at 10am. (For those of you in my TT this weekend, why not start the day with some asana and then we all head over to south studio for TT? Not a bad idea....)

Have a good one.

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