We find ourselves at the crux of an important and pivotal moment in the consciousness of our world, the planet Earth, and also in our relationship to yoga practices, discipline, optimism, history, truth, guru cultures, and how we human animals share time together. We are in a process of individually and communally soul searching - as Ashtanga Yoga practitioners in particular but also more broadly as contemplative practitioners and spiritual seekers.
So we summon you to join us in a desert gathering of yogis. This is a moment when we have a fertile opportunity to:
examine the essence of the practice (a regular, dedicated and contemplative yoga practice)
explore tradition, lineage and adaptation
contemplate the ways in which time changes our relationship to practice
communally look at the role of the teacher, the student, authority and hierarchy
place ourselves in a global and temporal context
consider what kind of a community we want to be a part of and co-create, grow and learn from
and to more firmly grasp how we evolve: what we leave behind; what we respectfully break from or stay with; and what we carry forward with meaning and grace
Throughout this weekend-long gathering we will remind ourselves of the beauty of yoga practice, and the poetry of a daily rhythm. We will do this through asana, breathwork, guided meditation, talks, facilitated conversation and ritual.
We have invited An Olive Branch to facilitate throughout the weekend and bring their expertise on the student-teacher relationship in spiritual disciplines, and to facilitate a listening circle - an open conversation time that allows each person to say what’s on their mind. This, we hope, might lead us towards a clearer understanding of what this time requires, and perhaps down the road towards a code of conduct, and grievance procedure, so that contemporary yoga-related practices in general—and Ashtanga Yoga traditions in particular—can continue to be a place of refuge for us and our students.
Ashtanga Yoga (and those of us who find ourselves practicing) have always been a bit rebellious, anarchic even. Some call the movement punk rock. We don’t want that to change. We do want it to be a refuge. And we want to hold space for all of it. We will show up. We will sit in the discomfort. We will let wisdom run through us. We will explore what it means to be spiritual practitioners in a post-Guru culture.
Let’s hold the paradoxes, and a new paradigm.
We, Erica and Spiro, look forward to sharing in time together soon.