Words by the great yogi Patthabi Jois.
This post is for my teachers. I wrote it about a month ago, poolside, early morning from the hotel in Cincinnati where I was currently training with Sianna Sherman. Now, one month later, I’m at another Teacher Training, in Tucson. More to come on that.
After class yesterday a few of us went back to the hotel and did some deep backbending practices. I’m so grateful to have met such wonderful people who want to, after 8 hours of yoga study, squish themselves in between 2 double beds and laugh while we practice.
So I suppose the purpose of this is about practice and about learning to study solo vs. having a teacher.
When I started yoga, the very first time, I had a most wonderful teacher, I think I have mentioned her before, Gail Malizia. She was radiant and kind, her shining white hair a shock of courage, her knees so toned.
Over the time that passed, I have had the opportunity to study with many different teachers all over the world, but my biggest teacher up until just a few years ago was myself. And a book called Light on Yoga by Sri BKS Iyengar. (I like how Sri and Sir are both titles that signify respect)
When my practice really took hold, I was living in the jungle in Costa Rica in a little Tica hut made livable by myself and two wonderful friends. We slept in hammocks for months, read by the light of candles by night and by day macheteed our way into a deeper understanding of what it means to live and work in community. I woke up early to practice yoga on a cut piece of linoleum with my old copy of the astanga first series.
End of first post.