Exploring the possibilities
Man am I off on an adventure! I was expecting a fun summer trip with our planned family time in Iceland, Scotland and Italy. Almost overnight it changed from 5 weeks away to 7 months away.
Meditating in Annapolis Monday, 29th, this thought as clear as day comes into my head. You need to go to India now, this year, go to Isha. Everything will fall into place, the kids will be okay, the man is going to be busier than he wants to admit, your house will be rented out to a friend you trust, you have support of many great people, now is the time. I wasn’t expecting this.
Last year I had looked into Isha Foundation 21 week Hatha Teacher training program, watch video here or read about it here, I really wanted to add this into my schedule, but not in 2017. I have too much going on, too many obligations, commitments, others to consider, starting a new business takes times to build. No way I can leave and be gone from July to December and left this as a “I really want to do this, but not now”.
They say everything comes to you when you need it. I was introduced to Sadhguru’s teachings while experiencing many transformational changes in my life. His words resonated deeply with me, he spoke my language. This mystic has a presence. After hearing him talk at a book launch in Austin I attended his Inner Engineering Program in Houston. I had never attended a program quite like it before, there were many surprises, all good ones. I continue to practice the teachings from this program, if I miss the occasional day, I notice a difference in my clarity and ease. They say a new routine becomes a habit after 40 days. Something that may feel awkward when you first start doing it can feel as automatic as brushing your teeth with regular daily practice. Unfortunately many give up before the 40 days and do not get to feel into the true value of a new routine, this happens with many habits.
I am a certified hatha yoga teacher and believe I have had some of the best training, but these scratched the surface on what there is to know. I am continuously learning and beginning of May I participated in the Isha 2 day yogasana program. I liked the format of the teaching model. The practice is both powerful and balancing for body and mind. I want to take my yoga back to its true Eastern origins. I believe Sadhguru is the real deal.
I started a new morning routine combining the practice of my yogasana and Shambhavi Mahamudra. My body started to feel lighter, I have great clarity of mind, a sense of peace and a joy for life. This is brilliant!
I’ve been curious about my own well-being and self-care for a number of years now. The deeper I go into this the more curious I become, I am always striving to get to you my own body better, what foods work well for me, how much sleep do I need, how much exercise, you get the picture. How good can your body and mind feel. When do you reach the point of peak physical and mental health? Is there such a thing? I feel great, but know there is more. I’m not there yet. I am loving the ride. Everyone thinks about the things they have to give up when stepping into better health, and I would have done this at one point myself. They do not think about the things that are being gained and how the scale can tip in such a positive vibrant way. I look around me wherever I go, so many people are walking around without vibrancy, without a love of life and have a longing for something they cannot grasp. An open mind opens the world to opportunity.
My biggest, you gotta be kidding me moment with this idea that had popped into my head unexpectedly, I was getting on a plane to Europe in 10 days and if I did this Isha training in India, I would not be back to my home until January 2018. No way I had time to pull this off.
I digested this calling for a full 24 hour before feeling ready to discuss with my partner. He was super supportive, said if I could, I should, he would jump at such an opportunity. So I jumped! Sent a text to my kids planning our days in Iceland and finished it with, but I might go to India for 6 months after, no response. Nothing, I mean nothing back.
I contacted Isha about the training dates, found out the program is only offered once a year and is very intense. I had already watched all the YouTube videos on the Isha Hatha Training Program, watch video here. I entered my information on the application form, gulped and submitted. This is big. This is transformational. Time to be ready.
It is close to start date for the program, Isha responded almost immediately to set up a Skype interview and I had to arrange for a physical. We returned from our trip on the Wednesday, both these things were set up for Saturday morning. I knew the physical would not be a problem. The interview was an opportunity to discuss the program, what was involved, was I prepared for the rigorous training? They want to ensure you know what you are signing up for with this program to make sure it will suit both parties.
You live in the Ashram at the foothills of the Velliangiri Forrest in Coimbatore in South East India. An ashram is a very spiritual place, no alcohol, no caffeine, modesty in dress, no bare arms, knees on display. The days start at 5:30am and finish at 9:30pm, 7 days a week. The routine is consistent with small variations, morning body practices, breakfast, physiology and anatomy, another meal, learning text 250 pages worth for your teachings, and a regular evening routine. We will always have four hours between eating and body practice.
After the Saturday interview I was sent a document with the description for four routines. My task was to select 2 and recite them 48 hours after my interview. I selected the one I couldn’t even pronounce during the interview, angamardhana and yogasana because I had just learned how to do this and was chastised during the interview for picking out a few of these postures and incorporating them into my classes. Sadhguru stipulates they must be done in a particular order to direct the energy flow.
After a weekend of practicing this memorization I woke up at 3am on the Monday morning and immediately practiced angamardhana by reciting into a voice recorder app and was delighted, I nailed it! I then went on to practice yogasana and if I missed a few key words I lost my flow. By 5:30am my brain was saturated. I stopped, did my yogasana and Shambhavi Mahamudra and made it a deep long practice to clear and calm my mind and put my body at ease. Shower, breakfast and a couple more practices and I was ready. Skype started ringing, okay I am ready, let’s do this. I’ll do angamardhana first, off I went – “Angamardana a fitness routine rooted in yoga offers everyone the opportunity to………. BLANK….. the opportunity to…… WHAT! I’ve only just started and I have never stalled at this part before, I then started adding in phrases from yogasana, this was not going well. STOP! Take a few deep breaths. “Why don’t you try yogasana and we can come back to this one?” I gulped, and said that angamardhana was my better recital, but yes, let’s try yogasana. I sailed through this one, felt a great sense of relief and then said okay now for angamardhana. Initially I stalled at the same part, focused and got through the next few words and it then kept on rolling and flowed out of me. What a sense of relief! I need to practice this daily so I can get better, I haven’t done this kind of thing for probably over 30 years. I’m giving myself permission to be rusty for a short time, it will get easier.
After the interview I had to wait. I didn’t want to make this common knowledge until I knew if I was in. My darling children who did not bat an eyelid to their mother’s announcement re India were both very supportive. They both said I needed to do this and they thought it was inspiring and my natural next step. I did want to check with them as it will mean I will be away American Thanksgiving and Christmas. They were okay with this. Tuesday was a bloody long day I can tell you as I waited, I kept remembering what my son had said to me, “mum if they don’t select you then who are they letting in to the program, you are an obvious choice!” I woke up at 2am on the Wednesday morning to emails regarding accommodation and student visa, woot woot, I was in, holy guacamole, lots to do. I’m leaving on Friday, this is Wednesday!
As part of my process of digesting this message from the Universe I had texted a friend from the airport after Annapolis trip asking is she was selling her house and did she want to rent mine. Immediate response of Yes and Yes was my last sign that I was meant to do this and hit that Submit button. As time was short I started preparing on Monday, this is going to happen, there was work to do and I couldn’t wait. Monday I went to lunch with my friend who had said yes to renting my house, we worked through the details and started the wheels in motion, the house is now in her capable hands.
Monday I started preparing as if I was in by emptying out my closet (wardrobe for my UK peeps), emptying bathroom drawers, removing all my personal items. I had to do some work, but not too much just in case it does not come together.
I’m acting like this is certainly going to happen, but there are still some loose ends to tie up, like a student visa and a flight to India for 6th July arrival. The student visa process was not going to work in time while I was in the US so I have started the process in the UK. I’m not new to visa applications and have done these to various place all over the world and learned a few lessons along the way, work what you can and don’t stress about the things outside your control. I have had cases where I have been waiting for a car to take me to the airport and waiting for my visa to arrive before I can travel into a country. Flexibility is key in the visa world.
Aaaahummmm… another slight wrinkle I have a permanent residents card for the USA (aka Green Card) that expires in October while I plan to be out of US. If anyone knows a good immigration attorney who can help me work this while I’m away please, please, thank you. I have submitted the online application to renew and will work the details, hopefully, while I am away. It will all work out, right?
Lots of details still to be worked out while I am in Scotland, but when you follow your heart, your intuition, and listen to your guru’s calling it will all fall into place as it is meant to.
I plan to journal my adventure so you can follow me if you wish, There will be good times, hard times, joyful times, and if it comes together as I hope blissful times.
My mind is open, my body is ready to soak Hatha Yoga into every cell of my being.
Let the adventure begin
Future Postings will not be this long!
I’ve heard wow and said it a lot myself these past few weeks!