Sunday, November 4, 2012

Day One: Different

The Life of a Yogi

       I feel like I can’t adequately express my delight at being back in this place, with all these people. This morning I actually woke up feeling quite neutral – not too nervous, not too excited… It sort of unnerved me a bit, because it wasn’t the norm for me.
But after the first om of the day, everything shifted. Of course there’s something unique and special about doing om japa on your own (which was one of our dharana exercises for the first month between modules), but there is something utterly miraculous about chanting the om all together at the beginning of each day. It just feels like all of the energy becomes focused in one place; at the same time, I myself get this feeling of being physically very high up and far away from the sound – like I’m watching.
The day began with a check-in of sorts. Adam spoke a bit about the decision to hold the training on schedule, and acknowledged that some people are not able to be here right at the start; it seems like the LOAY team is going to do their best to make sure everyone gets all the information covered, and they’re extremely open to working with people on a personal basis, which is awesome. We then went around the room and shared a bit about the experiences we’ve all had over the last two months. It was interesting to hear about other people’s struggles, as well as what came easily. Of course everyone had slightly different stories, but overall it seems like each one of us grew immensely, realizing the great power of a consistent home practice.
          After that we had a master sadhana with Sri Dharma, which for me personally was a little difficult to get through. After the craziness with the hurricane last week, I wasn’t really able to fuel my body the way I am accustomed to, so little things feel off for me. Then again, by the end of the practice all of that seemed to melt away…
          After lunch we had a session with Adam on pedagogy – discussing methods of teaching, and taking a closer look at how to teach. It was actually kind of challenging for me: We had to teach a partner about various niyamas, and I’ve never been all that great at speaking. It was a great exercise, if only because it made me realize that my ego is really judgmental today (I kept tripping over my words and then thinking, “That was a silly thing to say. Get it together, loser!”).
          We closed the day with Dharma III, taught by Melissa, and Yoga Nidra, taught by Andrew. During this module we’ll be learning to teach Dharma III, so we’ll be practicing it a lot in our small groups. At one point during the Dharma III class, I caught myself thinking, “How on earth am I going to get through the next seven days?”
This series is really physically challenging, and I feel less prepared for this module than I did for the first one. Throughout the day I sort of got caught up making little comparisons between the last module and this module – it’s cold outside this time, I don’t feel as receptive right now, I see myself being very harsh and judgmental now… But then I just sort of took a step back and thought, “Hey. You’re here. It is what it is. Just experience the experience, one moment at a time if you need to, and let go of everything else, because it’s not necessary to compare it to the last module. It will just be something different.”


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