Living Fully

Yesterday I had the honor of subbing in my yoga teacher's class. This is a wonderful group of dedicated students and it was a joy to spend the time with them and see them beautifully expressing their poses from the inside out.

I began class by noting how Suzie Hurley, is really the best of the best - and certainly - I could not hope to fill her shoes. She is a teacher who exudes joy and is so present - in a way I had rarely experienced in a class. I told the students, they were so lucky to be here and have her as their teacher.

Earlier this week, I received several newsletters from various studios. But it was only this one I found truly inspirational. It was only this one that touched my heart and soul. I will excerpt a few paragraphs and encourage you to go to Willow Street Yoga Center's website to read the whole thing, because it is truly beautiful:


"We all want to live life as fully and as happily as we possibly can. For myself and many others, the practice of yoga helps us to find the energy to live our lives with more zest, more enthusiasm, and more inspiration - to live our lives fully. The word for fullness in sanskrit is purna or purnava. When we do things with purnava, whether it be poses on our mats, or writing poems, or playing sports, we enjoy a great feeling of satisfaction. These moments are indeed perfect, as energy or Shakti courses through our bodies...

With the current world situation, it is easy to sometimes see the glass as half empty vs half full. With our fears about losing our job and not having enough...it is easy to lose sight of that which supports us. That which gives us greater will, desire and aspiration to surmount whatever challenges arise...

Coming to class each week, and even practicing a little every day at home, gives us a touchstone, bringing us back to our deepest longings and knowing. Through the asanas, our energy is freed up to accomplish what we need to more effectively and fully. Our minds are cleared and calmed through meditation, and we can be more fully present to what is, through observing our breath. I have tried to create a supportive community of the heart at Willow Street, a kula, that along with being warm and welcoming, is a sanctuary of sorts. A place where no matter what, when you step onto your mat, you feel safe, sustained, supported and at home..."

Suzie has truly created that kind of place - and the community of teachers there truly carries out her vision. From the first moment I came to study there over three and half years ago, I was struck by how the teachers there - people I hardly or didn't know at the time - always thanked me for coming to a workshop, often embracing me warmly. I was also lucky to study with a wonderful woman for three of those years, who helped me re-experience yoga from the inside out, and taught me more about teaching than I had ever learned anywhere...

As a teacher myself, all I can hope for - is that I pass on some of that light to my own students - hoping I create that sanctuary of sorts as well. For in so doing, I - and all caring teachers - contribute to healing this wonderful world, one person at a time!

Thank you Suzie! For all you give - for in touching me - you nurture my students as well!

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