Evening Came and Morning Followed - The Fifth Day

I am entering the last day of the week long gathering of Anusara Yoga teachers...

Yesterday was an incredible day on so many levels...

One of my first two yoga teachers, Betsey Downing, who co-chairs the Anusara Yoga certification committee, shared with the group that teaching Anusara Yoga is about experiencing an on-going process of personal growth - this coming from a woman who continues to exhibit great studentship.

I thought these were very appropriate comments on Thursday, which is traditionally recognized in Indian tradition as the day of the Guru - or teacher...

One of the things that John Friend always does, is quiz his teachers and students to make sure they know the method of Anusara Yoga thoroughly. The other thing he does is ask teachers to demo a pose and then he often deepens their experience of it. But the pose and person he chooses to do it, are never accidental...

Yesterday, he assisted a woman who has a beautiful practice through Viparita Chakravakrasana - which involves going from a handstand - to a full backbend - back to a handstand and down. You are literally flipping in the sequence of poses. At the end of the morning session, when we were sharing, she noted that though she felt she did not have the energy to do the pose, she trusted John implicitly and knew that somehow she would do it. As she reflected afterwards, she noted that she no longer needed to doubt.

I had also was asked to demo a pose yesterday morning during an incredibly active practice - and it was handstand - or Adho Mukha Vrksasana - in the middle of the room. Many of you who follow this blog know that for many months I could not go upside down. Yet here I was, doing this pose surrounded by many of the best teachers in the world. I came down after holding the pose for quite some time, feeling exhilarated and empowered, and I knew in my heart of hearts it was no accident that he had asked me do this pose since he knew many details of what had transpired in my life the last couple of years and the strides I had made.

Later, I received a number of compliments from my colleagues on the pose - but perhaps the one that moved me the most came from Betsey - who high fived me - and was not only one of my first two teachers and the woman I first did teacher training with - but she was also the person who first gave me a job teaching yoga - when I never thought I would do this...

Everything comes full circle...A true teacher cannot take the seat of the teacher if he - or she is not always a student first!

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