May 20, 2016

HYTA term 2

Our second term has started, but we will still be accepting late entries for a week or 2. Although I am befallen with jitters every time a term is about to start, thus far we have had wonderful starts and amazing students. 

Jan 22, 2016

the start of a dream ...

HYTA Discipline and Orientation Course

The aim of this course is to provide students with a firm grasp of the Yogic Philosophy and all its relative components, as well as its history. The course will also assist students to adapt and use these components as a daily part of their life in order to facilitate their own spiritual growth.

The course is divided into 3 sections (terms) each lasting 3 months. Those students that whish to accredited themselves as Yoga Teachers will attend a 4th term. It is our aim to turn out students that comprehend the formation of Yoga, how the various aspects of the philosophy relate to their life and spiritual growth now, and how to use the components daily.

During this course students will learn the history and philosophy of yoga, the physical practices including (but not limited to) the asanas, meditation methods, mantras, and the energy system of the body. Although not a school, students are expected to commit to this course with the same diligence. Knowledge will be tested throughout the course to ensure that the students are on track and that no one is left behind.

Those students that wish to acquire a Yoga Teacher’s Diploma, will be required to attend a 4th term. During this term they will start practicing their teaching skills before a final exam is taken. The 4th term takes place at the same time as the 1st term so that future teachers can start practicing their teaching skills through teaching new students. During this term, future teachers will also be given guidance on the nuts and bolts of running a studio, or teaching yoga for a living.

Once the course has been completed, we aim for students of 3 terms to have detailed knowledge of how the components of will assist and support their life spiritually, physically and mentally.

Once a student has been accredited as a teacher, we will have ensured that he/she is fully equipped to translate this knowledge to a yoga asana class and provide any students of their own with both physical and spiritual guidance in yoga.

Sep 6, 2015

yoga basics

As we all move to make yoga a part of our lives, let's just quickly touchdown on what yoga is exactly:
The term yoga can be derived from either of two roots, yujir yoga (to yoke) or yuj samādhau (to concentrate). The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali defines yoga as "the stilling of the changing states of the mind". Yoga has also been popularly defined as "union with the divine" in other contexts and traditions.

Various books and philosophies will expand on this theme at length. The core that I wish to share with you is that yoga boils down to anything that is done with one-pointed concentration. As simple as this seems, as humans we tend to think of a gazillion things all at once and find it extremely difficult to focus. If it were easy, we would all meditate for 3hours a day. Concentration is something that comes with practice though, and as much as yoga benefits our bodies, it also benefits our minds, bringing it to stillness as we focus on breath and body.

When you enter a class then, do your best to release your day, knowing that you can't do anything until class is done anyway. Focus on your body and your practice, honouring where you are and knowing you will get where you aim to be soon enough. Progress in yoga comes in steps.

Mar 23, 2015

the journey

Following a spiritual route, a path that leads you to a place of non-suffering, bliss and ultimately to being a better person that you would be if you just ran on auto-pilot, is not an easy thing. Often we are asked to follow through on actions that will serve our souls but make our egos throw its heals in the dirt with the force of a Tsunami. The lessons learned during these times are usually the most profound, and the largest in both quantity and expectation.

For the past few weeks, I have been dealing with a very particular case that caused a lot of heartache, anger and confusion in my life.

Because sometimes the people that you need to be there the most, aren't. Even when they are suppose to. And sometimes, even in the face of all the evidence, they will still just turn their back on you and take the other side. This happens. Sometimes more than once and whether you accept these repititions or not, really does depend on the role the person plays in your life. For some people we give more chances than others. I am not yet sure if anyone ever gets unlimited chances...

In my normal day to day, I vented a little to my husband and my best friend, and then I went right on cleaning my house, doing laundry, driving the kids around and giving my yoga classes. Most of the time with a smile on my face too. But internally I was trying to resolve a tiresome struggle.

This event stirred up a bunch of emotions, emotions as old as I am. I was angry, upset, distraught, furious, sad and I also felt dejected. In a previous life I would have written angry emails and letters, set up meetings to battle this out, or just have rushed in and confronted the situation head on and very aggressively. I don't do this anymore. I have learned till now that these actions don't serve a purpose and that people make their own choices, choose their own paths. I am not expected to resolve other people's internal struggles for them, only my own.

What I did feel was required was forgiveness, compassion and letting go of the emotions tied to this person. Without letting my trust in humanity be broken; Without losing my faith in love and peace which can heal all; Without unloading a bunch of hurtful lines; Without holding on to the pain of the memories. But with or without these wonderful expectations, I just could not bring myself to a point of forgiveness, and without forgiveness, compassion and letting go can't be reached.

I wanted to hit something. And I wanted to embrace that anger. I wanted to give in to all the reactions that came so uncontrolled at one time in my life. Although harmful, it does provide an easy point of relief. These emotions were what resonated with me at this time. And then it also didn't. I had an intense desire to slap someone, and a part of me really wishes I didn't want to, and still another part was a little saddened that the desire came up at all.

Evolving is not easy...

I am on a better path (for me) now. I want to forgive and forget. I have obviously not graduated from this path yet.

Emotions should not be repressed, but we do need a firm handle on what is acceptable behaviour and what is not. All emotions are acceptable, not all actions are. Toddlers need to unlearn tantrums and grown ups should not return to that as a reaction to things that don't go as expected. We need to know our triggers, and while we are still learning how this 'being human' works best, we need to embrace the emotions that do come up and deal with their core creation.

So while one part of me wants to give in to the actions of the anger, a part of me knows this is not permissible or healthy. Another part of me knows it should forgive and move on, but forcing this and thereby repressing the emotions that are felt is also not healthy.

There are of course things that can be done to alleviate the building pressure over such conundrums, and these usually aid in resolving the issues on a sub conscious level as well. Things like yoga, breathing exercises, mantras, and the like. When you can see how your actions affect those around you, who they hurt and what they damage, these practices are worth delving in to as a means to awareness, of which the main aim is not to control your emotions, but to not let your emotions control you. 

On the surface it might often seem as if you have failed in the lesson because you do become angry or you can't reach forgiveness. This is not always true. If you can remain aware of the actions, reactions, rigger points and resistance that takes place, you are learning and absorbing what you need to. The next time something happens you may be able to catch your triggers in time, or refrain from letting your anger control you, or be able to find instant compassion or forgiveness, but only because you paid attention during this event.

If you travel in awareness, you choose where your focus goes and therefore you choose how you grow and travel on this journey, your life. In the meantime, and with full awareness and the knowledge that this is all a big part of it, just make peace with the contradictions and conundrums that this journey brings and settle fully into the fact that you willing to learn and change. This in itself is a major defining and differentiation point.

* may love always find you; may you always find love *