It seems impossible that so much happens here in a week, especially during the high season.
We've initiated two new classes of students for teacher and advanced teacher training - close to 100 between the two groups, with special puja (ceremony) celebrations.
Vasudha Narayanan, a professor at the University of Florida, started out the week as she gave interesting satsang and workshop talks about the path of Bhakti Yoga(devotional and from the heart), while James Reeves from London taught a course on yoga nidra (deep yogic sleep) and Silvia San Miguel taught a course on Growing Older and Wiser with yoga.
A few days into the week, best selling author, Joan Borysenko packed her workshops with writers who learned from her about 'Retelling Your Life's Story', and Joan shared very personal and beautiful life stories with us during evening satsangs. Laughter and tears flowed freely during her talks.
A line from her presentations that I particularly found interesting,"What goes through the fire becomes resilient."
She shared about her personal story of her home being on fire and related that story to many challenges that feel like fire and destruction to experience. She also shared that a clay pot that had previously been fired, remained among the ashes of metals and other materials burned in her home.
Her messages of positivity and focus on love are truly yoga philosophy in practice.
And as I write this, the powerhouse in a tiny form, Tao Porchon-Lynch is still here at the Ashram.
She's 97 years old, beautifully dressed, bejeweled and exudes life, joy and love. I will attend her yoga class today and was able to be at the beginning of her class yesterday.
There was a packed platform - at least 100 people taking yoga from the oldest yoga teacher in the Guinness Book of World Records. And she commanded the space and taught the entire group while sitting in lotus posture! (I'm still not even close to being able to do this posture)
She's presented two nights in a row and wowed all of us with her grace, charm, humor and beautiful spirit. She shared that besides yoga, her other great love is ballroom dancing.
She first learned to ballroom dance at the age of 87 and has won more than 700 competitions for dance since then. Her spirit and liveliness are so inspiring!
She has a new autobiography out, and I'd encourage you to read it. Tao is such a beautiful spirit and blessing. I'm so happy to have had the honor to not only hear her speak but to daily eat meals with her and to greet her each day with kisses on both cheeks. She is showing us the way through her own strong faith and positive approach to life:)
The last, but best excitement of the week for me, was to assistant teach and demonstrate for the Essentials 1 Yoga course. The course was 6 days, and I had the privilege of assisting alongside one of the best senior level teachers at the Ashram, Rukmini.
Each class was 2 hours long of helping, learning and joy for me. I loved watching the progression of the students in the class and sharing the knowledge of yoga I've gained. To observe and learn in this step by step, course introduction of Sivananda yoga, from Rukmini was a true gift.
While I just completed my teacher training with amazing teachers, Rukmini brought different elements to the practice and refinement to what I'd already learned. Each teacher shares of themselves and their talents in a unique way. I am grateful that I had this opportunity to learn from her and give at the same time:)
I had challenges too - like fitting in my own yoga practice, coping with rain, a sore throat and laundry, with such a busy schedule - but I made it through the week and am feeling so blessed to have experienced such a full, interesting, enlightening and inspiring week!
Today, the sun is shining, my throat is feeling better and laundry is done:)
And to think next comes "On The Wings of Ecstasy" - an interfaith devotional singing festival - Wow!
Sending You Love from the Bahamas,🌞
Thank you for taking this journey with me!
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