Everyday I have been wanting to get some time to sit down and write but this has been a super busy week. (I did manage to get to the river once and do my practices but no time for writing and reflecting with all the email, video reviews, classes, podcasts, meetings, etc. (Speaking of which last week's podcasts are up- Live Form the Castle 7, 8, and 9 were the classes I taught this week. Check them out. Remember- these are live classes- raw, uncut, not trying to meet every mark for certification, just trying to give a good solid class! So enjoy with that in mind. The sequences and dates are listed if you click on the title of the podcast. Print that out and you have a guide to use as you practice. www.shop.christinasellyoga.com)
It is a Teacher Training weekend at Breath and Body Yoga and so far it is going really well. Zoe M (one of the fabulous luminary yoga teachers in Austin) came to take class last night to celebrate her birthday. Desirae gives a free class on your birthday so keep that in mind. It's one of the many generous things she does at that studio- along with a $10 yoga-teacher-drop-in-rate to support yoga teachers in coming to class.) SO we worked on some back bends with the theme of beauty and courage- two qualities I think really describe Ms. Z.
I have several ideas percolating in my mind that I want to write about one is really about how yoga- regardless of what kind you do- seems to facilitate deep growth and change in the people who practice it. I have had several profound conversations with yogis lately telling me how their involvement with yoga- all different styles, mind you!- has helped them overcome personal challenges, deepen the quality of their relationship and truly provide a lifeline of sanity and support in dark times.
So I think its worthy to consider in a day and age where methods compete and try to assert their "rightness" in the market place. I think, the direct evidence I see, is that it is all working pretty well. Different emphasis perhaps, different expressions fo the same principles and certainly different practices abound. But at the end of the day I really think we hgae more in common with each other than we have in opposition. I really wish as a larger community we would drop the whole 'use music or not use music" discussion and the 'to flow or not to flow" discussion, and the "right place for the drishti" and the righteousness around the bandhas (or lack thereof) and instead, anchor ourselves in our practice, open our hearts to others and their practices and instead spend our time talking about how this practice is helping us grow, change and evolve into who we most truly are and can be. I wish we would testify more about the deepening of our relationship with ourselves and the loosening of the bonds of self-hatred that come to practitioners of every style. I wish we would talk more, and feel more, how connected we are to ourselves, to nature and to those we love as a result of our yoga and stop using yoga-style conventions to create one more wedge between us and someone else.
All right -- enough said on that for now.
Along those line, I did get the most wonderful testimony from a student and friend , Lauran Janes who shared with me a piece of her writing. Lauran is a great teacher here and is owner and founder of Love Yoga Coop and she said she would be happy for me to share her writing on the blog. I hope it moves you as it did me. Seriously, I think we live in the presence of greatness around here.
Highschool’s long over.
Crows feet now decorate your smiling face. You are dreaming of babies, babies, babies. You are ‘over’ having to be that all-powerful-famous-rich person and have moved on to being honest, living with integrity, devoted to love-based values and loyal to your family.
Loud music seems a lot louder than it used to. Stilettos seem like an overall bad idea.
You don’t cancel plans with friends any more because you intentionally make half as many plans.
You’ve forgiven all the major criminals in your life.
You’ve forgiven yourself.
You’ve accepted yourself.
You respect yourself.
You still make mistakes, but they are no longer held up as evidence as to why you’re ‘not enough’.
You don’t pounce on your ringing cell phone anymore.
You canceled your ‘text’ plan.
You schedule email ‘hours’ a couple times a week and hike, play, make love, work, relax, teach, cook and enjoy life in the moments between.
You prefer reading to watching television.
You have a sharp discerning eye.
You’re not angry anymore.
You don’t speed when you drive.
You kindly let others into your lane. Why not? What’s the rush?
You cook for your friends.
You listen to your friends.
You laugh a lot.
You are relaxed and you help others relax.
You stop eating long before you’re full.
You mostly choose colorful fruits and vegetables... and dark chocolate, the expensive kind.
You can afford a $5 chocolate bar - you’re all grown up now. And though you rarely drink, you can tell the difference between a Shiraz and a Cabernet.
Your husband loves you with a hug, not a cage.
He admires who you are and how you are.
He kisses you on the tip of your nose.
He kisses you everywhere.
Getting into bed with him is like landing softly in Love’s tender arms.
He’s your best friend.
Other women no longer scare you.
You cheer on the hot-bodied 19 year-old who bubbles over with gleeful enthusiasm for every subject under the sun. “You go girl,” you whisper to her. (And you send her a silent prayer of protection as you watch her sexuality spill unconsciously onto every passer by. She’ll learn.)
As for those women who glare with jealousy, who roll their eyes, who still gossip...you’re heart goes out to them.
You’ve learned to meet female cruelty with indifference. This was not easy.
You no longer strive to meet the demands of society or race to match society’s pace.
You take up yoga or move to another country to remember your natural cadence.
You discover space and quiet within you.
You discover a deep Peace - a Peace that words can not touch but that deeply touches those around you.
You embody Love.
People experience you as Love.
And this is enough.
You are Woman, finally.