The students of the 2018 Source Yoga Mindfulness Based Yoga Teacher Training are about to graduate! I have spoken one on one with many of these dedicated students and soon to be teachers, and have been so impressed by their eagerness, their curiosity, their commitment, and their heart.
These dedicated students of yoga and mindfulness have been learning and growing together and forming a heartfelt community together for 10 months. What a journey they have been on!
I think they would all say that they have gained more than they had expected. Yes, they gained a solid foundation of alignment-based asana, anatomy, and sequencing, as well as a tangible, experiential understanding of mindfulness practice and how to guide meditation. They certainly learned the components that make up a thoughtful yoga practice. Beyond that, they found themselves exploring and studying the history and origins of yoga and mindfulness practice, learning about classical yoga philosophy and Buddhism, and deepening their own foundation of yoga and meditation through home practice. On another level, many have found themselves on a journey of personal transformation that was surprising.
One of our teachers in training has been open about being on a both difficult and opening journey of healing this year. When met with the challenges and the effects of past traumas arising in meditation, I was grateful that she shared with me as her mentor. We agreed that it was best if she modified her meditation and yoga at that point, to best support where she was on her journey, and she also wisely engaged the support of other resources, including therapy, alongside her yoga and mindfulness practice. Coming to the end of this portion of the training, she wrote this:
“I know now how to truly take care of myself: I have compassion and love for myself and self-care come really easily for the first time. My thinking is clearer, my body is healthier, my relationships are deeper, my compassion for myself and for others is growing. Because of mindfulness, I’m more aware of my patterns and my needs, and I can live my life so much more fully. So, I’ll be continuing my mindfulness practice (modified, for as long as is needed, to honor my trauma and its effects) with the deepest gratitude for its role in shaking up my life and ultimately leading to my healing. I believe that we cannot be healers of others until we have done some radical healing ourselves, and my mindfulness practice really brought me face to face with the things I needed to work on, and will ultimately allow me not only to be happier myself, but also to be a better, compassionate, more humane, and more effective guide for others along their journey.” *
This is one story of many as these students have transformed into teachers. I have been telling them that this is the end of this portion of their training, but just the beginning of the next step of their training as yoga teachers. This next step is getting into the world and sharing what they have learned. This might be teaching a yoga class at a studio or a gym, one on one with people they know, volunteering in some way, teaching in their work environments, or sharing their practice with their families. No matter how they share their practice, or even if they choose to not teach, I think they all are grateful for the path they have traveled and the friends they have made.
I invite you onto this incredible voyage as well. I know many of you come to Source Yoga because of your love for the practices, the benefit you feel from slowing down, tuning into your body, moving and breathing with awareness, as well as the sense of community you find here. Consider this deeper exploration of the path of yoga and mindfulness in our 2019 Mindfulness Based Yoga Teacher Training, which begins in February.
Rebecca Ray, my co-lead in the program, and I will be offering a free info session this Monday evening, 7:15-8:15pm at the UP studio. Join us to learn more and see if this is your next great adventure…Learn more about our program here, and sign up for our free info session here.
With gratitude for the journey,
Source Yoga Studio Director
* Please note that a yoga and mindfulness practice is not a substitute for psychotherapy or medical treatment.