Wa Yo Yogi

Leanne Kitteridge's adventures in Yoga

Anusara Teachers Intensive Tokyo 2010 April 6, 2010

Inari Shrine- Shinto sees spirit in everything

I just left the girls and said I wasn’t writing tonight because I was so tired but here I am!  I practiced three times today so my body is a bit wacked out- my teacher says, ” Come practice with us” and I don’t even think I just go. Rare opportunity now a days.

Today was intro day for the teachers intensive and we started right into one of the most basic things to do in your class. Ready for this? Greet the students.

I know you think “of course” but in many classes, in many styles, this is not the case. We are making a safe place for our students where they feel welcome and you are building a relationship of trust. Saying hello and making someone feel welcome may do more than the whole next hour of asana. Such a little thing.

We talked about holding the space and making a “mandir” or temple and holding your intention from the invocation all the way to the end. The two highest reasons for practicing yoga are  CHIT and ANANDA. This is a spiritual practice that we do in our bodies. You have to tell the students why they want their arms straighter , why the need to pay attention to foundation. Many people come to me and say ‘” Anusara-oh yeah- spirals and loops right??’  I just cringe! At least more people are coming to me now and saying. ” Anusara- oh yeah- Shri and Shakti“.  It is easy to fall into the technical trap when you teach Anusara but of you do you are not really honoring the highest teachings and it just becomes a physical education class. They might feel really good after but it would be a good class- not a great class. How do you make good into great? That is what John is trying to teach us.

We spent the morning creating a class all together with a theme, a heart quality, and apex pose. We then looked at what type of poses could led us to the apex pose. John then took what we had created as a group and taught that class with lots of pausing for explaination and clarity. I think it worked well.

I am too tired to write more tonight but I will use Pamela Walsh’s 6 word story to summarize the day:

Always start from the universal-spirit

Manas sees difference- buddhi sees universal

Open To Grace has two parts

Inner body bright- melt the heart

Sequencing- Do forward bends before backbends 

Spirit- One light in many colours out

Alignment is rules without the why

Do not be dogmatic- remember why

Play your instrument in the orchestra

Celebrate diversity and glorify the universal

We are the embodiment of spirit

Inari - shinto god of rice, agriculture, fertility & business


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