I had been planning my trip to India for the best part of 2 years, and I wasn't sure I was going until 31st January 2018 when all the barriers were lifted and I was released for 5 weeks. I had been drawn to exploring my body through yoga and had found the Guru and Ashram I wanted to go to through a match in psycho-spiritual and philosophical beliefs. That was the easy bit, it took 2 years of negotiating with myself, my family and my employer to finally get on that plane! A lot changed in those 2 years, including the relocation of the ashram from South India to the North, and that gave me my final big wobble...but I wanted to be by the sea on a turtle preservation beach! I don't know land locked mountains, I know and love the rhythm of the sea! Needless to say, this was all part of the higher order, everything was finally just as it was meant to be. I had done all the personal work I needed to do to get on that plane and do my body work.
India was everything I had expected, and a whole lot more. The taxi journey from the airport to the ashram was more extreme than I had expected - no seatbelts, plastic grass on the floor of the taxi, 4 lanes of traffic on each side of a dual carriage way, motorbikes with 3 passengers plus babies and no helmets, tuk-tuks, lorries and cars driving by horn blowing, random cows in the middle of the highway and the occasional vehicle driving the wrong way along the road towards us! It all seems incredibly chaotic, especially when you are jet lagged, but I soon fell into the rhythm of this culture. There is am absolute flow within this seeming chaos, it was a change in mindset that allowed me to RELAX and enjoy the flow. That was the overriding message of this journey, and a never ending message of the daily yoga practice.
9 hours a day of yoga and lectures over 28 days resulted in the most gentle integration of my body, mind, emotions and higher self. I shed 5 kilos and learned how to become intimate with my whole self. This yoga creates muscular skeletal alignment which creates space to allow hormones, emotions and consciousness to flow through the body. The yoga is a movement meditation. Its done with the eyes closed. Its a set flow designed by a Guru who understands the energy flow of the body and how to achieve balance and harmony. Until one knows energy flow at the same level one follows the flow! Supporting the core practice are standing, sitting and dandasana flow series that strengthen the body and encourage heat. Also bandhas, which lock (the Sanskrit meaning of bandha), the torso, regulate the internal physical body and energy functions. Additionally pranayama, meaning extension or flow of the prana in Sanskrit. Pranayama amounts to breathwork which reconnects our wholeselves., which is more than our physical bodies.
In addition to the yoga we learned Sanskrit, Thai yoga walking massage, ayurvedic massage, puja rituals, chanting, jala neti, all of which combined in reducing tension, body fear, stress and inflammation from the body.
On reflection I think that the sight of the two tributaries joining at Sangam Devprayag (meaning Land of the Gods) to form the Ganges summed up my whole journey to India (see photo below)
In the photo you can clearly see the darker slower waters of the tributary on the right mixing with the faster lighter waters on the left. For me, this totally aligns with the integration of the masculine and feminine energies within ourselves; something I have been diligently working on for many years. Gradually moving away from the poles of duality, into harmonised integration. This is the same, integrated water that flowed right past the Ashram I was living in and bathing in most days. This wasn't the sea I am most familiar with which breathes in and out on a twice daily basis, this was Ma Ganges, a complete and integrated healing flow.
Through my experience of my own personal journey I believe that humanity has fragmented itself to near annihilation, and that integration is the solution to complete annihilation.
We are at a unique turning point in the history of humanity where old systems are breaking down through external challenges beyond our control, including political conflicts, acts of terrorism, natural disasters, inequality in private asset ownership, the decline in natural resources and the disruption of ecosystems through industrial pollution. We are all impacted by these external forces in our personal and working lives. This breakdown is part of a natural order in any complex system making way for a new paradigm to emerge. We are at a point of global transformation, a chaotic and seemingly unstable place, however within the chaos there is a new order waiting to be perceived.
At Synthesis I am offering you a unique opportunity to learn how to integrate your whole self through yoga, energy practices and coaching. I will be commencing the first yoga course in the new yoga studio at Synthesis on Wednesday 30th May. This will be a 5 week course where you will learn all the flows and practices which will enable you to commence a daily practice to become integrated, trust yourself, reduce fear and take responsibility for your own health and wellbeing. To secure your place on this course, sign up through the programmes section of the website, or alternatively make direct contact with me.
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Looking forward to welcoming you into the new yoga studio at Synthesis at the end of this month.