We came together last October, just a group of yogis interested in having a deeper conversation. My co-teacher, Naomi Gottleib-Miller (I love this post btw), and I knew that it would be an excellent forum for discussion and discovery for everyone in the group who chose to engage, students and teachers alike. One weekend a month for nine months, totaling 108 hours of in-class time – 108 is an auspicious number for some crazy reason – is a real commitment for people who have friends, family, and a life outside of yoga. And that does not include home practice time, reading, and further outside contemplation.
To say the least, the Immersion was an investment in one’s self. We all had an inkling that we would be changed after being thrown into the fire together for nine months, but to experience that heat, that mental and spiritual and physical churning, and then come out on the other side feels like a real accomplishment — something true that cannot be taken away now that we know it. This is the stuff of the heart. This is the stuff of the spirit. This is the stuff of life itself.
Shiva said, “I know that I am.” Shakti said, “Let’s do this thing.” Sarasvati brought her books and her music, Lakshmi invited everyone to play, and yes, even Kali reared her fearsome head and brought a little dissolution to the Anusara Yoga collective during our time together. No matter, we started as a seed of Anusara Yoga, but we finished a healthy tree of Yoga itself, broad and expansive and all-inclusive, each branch a uniquely beautiful expression. And yeah, Kali made a dent in our individual lives as well by helping to release the mental junk that clogs clear thinking.
And then it becomes time to end this chapter and move on to the next phase. I will always be grateful and cherish your playfulness, sense of humor, eagerness to learn, creative answers to questions, creative questions themselves, intention to do great yoga, sincerity in your own practice, honesty in baring your soul, willingness to try something different…
Ralph Waldo Emerson said that what lies behind us and what lies before us are nothing compared to what lies within us. An ending is always the beginning of something new.
With deepest gratitude to the entire Capitol Hill Yoga Immersion class of 2012, I give you my heart. And tiger paws.
Next: Compassion in Action
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