The more I learn about chakras, the more intriguing it is. It's a subject that begins to make sense to me now that I have taught for a few years and a few hundred people. In Teacher Training I had no interest in it. Now, I can see that some parts of the body refuse to respond to physical posture practice. How can it be that I cue drawing navel to spine day-in-day-out but some yogis’ abs simply say ‘no’? Why do some bodies look delicate, ethereal and without groundedness? Why do some yogis seem to punish their bodies with yoga? Why don’t some yogis care particularly? Why didn’t I for so many years?
Our consciousness, personality, experience and posture are driven by energy. Actors study this in drama school. You know what your energy is like: forceful or not, hedonistic or not, loving or not. Is your dominant energy power-driven (third chakra) or driven to charity work (heart chakra)? Is it pleasure seeking (second chakra) or intuitive and meditative (third eye)? Is it driven by creativity and expression (throat chakra) or driven by materialism and the need for security (root chakra)? The chakras actually refer to things we already know about. ‘Unblocking chakras’ is really just a way of describing some kind of counselling or therapy that shows you how to recognise and tackle harmful patterns laid down in formative years. It’s not an obscure subject. It’s actually a useful tool for that old chestnut, self discovery. James French, the brilliant teacher I did a chakra workshop with last weekend, is teaching at Triyoga till early September.
There are still places left in classes next week. Book a place and have a go. Spin your chakras. I’ll also be teaching at Yoga West for the next two Saturdays: 19th and 26th at 8.30am-9.45. It’s early... but gather a group of buddies for a yoga/breakfast outing and it won’t be so bad! These are Ashtanga classes usually expertly taught by Jenny Fearnley. If you need an introduction to the only dedicated yoga studio in our corner of London, come along.
I’ve signed up for two workshops that you might be interested in trying with me. The first is tonight; Ana Forrest’s Celebrate Your Practice. It starts a weekend of interesting but massively expensive workshops held at Lord’s Cricket Ground to hold the massive numbers of Ana Forrest’s Yogis! The second is Stewart Gilchrist’s Asana Chakrisation on September 9th, again at Indaba.
Yoga in the News
Sweet, local stories this week. The Louth Leader celebrated the birthday of a 90-year-old who says that yoga saved her life. Half her life ago doctors told her she wouldn’t live long due to an incurable chest complaint. They seem to have been wrong. She’s still teaching yoga. For Cambridge yogis, the launch of an illustrated guide to children’s yoga makes the news. It looks like a good one.
This is an entertaining article if you agree that “all this constantly changing information on what to eat or which exercise class to take” means that we form distorted mindsets towards the idea of a healthy lifestyle. Vogue UK asks; ‘Are You Suffering From Wellness Fatigue?’ I think it’s only about people with too much money and not enough sense... but see what you think.