Once more another year has almost passed into history, for me becoming too many to want to count! However I am no longer so directly involved in the manic movements so often a part of the year end. My daughters are now both parenting their own children with a seven year old boy and a fourteen month old baby girl. Plus this year we are joined by my son returning/visiting after two years roaming North America from a Canadian base, followed by this past year travelling throughout South America.
So these days, with my kids directing the Xmas show, Granpa can sit back from the details and embrace the break with its offering of space to pause and reflect on what has passed this year. Time to root out what is now deadwood to discard and what are potential seeds to hold onto for planting in the 2019 Yoga garden.
Regarding seeds I feel are important to hold onto, my Dharma commitment will continue to honour that which remained at the heart of Krishnamacharya’s and Desikachar’s priorities throughout their lives, namely teaching personal lessons within a private context. Furthermore it still remains the vital element in appreciating what Desikachar intended when he introduced the term Viniyoga in 1983 as a collective description of a process for a systematic development of the student’s personal experience of Yoga.
Thus for me holding time in my diary for individual lessons remains a priority. This also means conserving space around my teaching week in order to sustain an intensity of relationship. I remember Desikachar would always take a 3 hour lunch break, this I really appreciate with time to walk in my beloved Cotswolds, lunch, rest and practice before meeting students through to the evening time. Supporting this work I host weekends for students wishing to explore Yoga practice and study through a mono topic within a small group.
Of course, as well my teaching having space around it to protect its robustness, there is the website. Here the behind the scenes work adding new material from my many notes accumulated through my lessons with Desikachar continues. Plus the website also needs a continual review and refinement of the curation aspects of the existing content so as to facilitate a more fluid and extensive cross linked access to its multifarious Yoga resources. More on the website refinements and developments as we arrive into 2019.
The purpose and value of this web based project also means that I am happy to continue donating time and space to engage with transposing my personal studies into the present Yoga age and landscape. By all references a vastly different landscape from the environment and atmosphere that surrounded me four decades ago as I ventured in 1979 into my first visit to study with Desikachar. A two year stay I now look back on and see as the beginning of my studentship that returning over thirty times continued and enriched.
However I remain available for my one to one students, though given the one to one process, I have to limit the number of students I am working with at any one time. It’s also important to have time to reflect around what is most appropriate for any given student at a given point in time, rather than the more generic grouping of teaching content that increasingly abounds within modern postural Yoga’s multi-styled, multi-levelled large group classes. In addition I will be reducing my small group introductory modular study weekends in order to concentrate on running advanced practice and study modules for developing students.
Meanwhile my apologies for one of my failings, once again not prioritising enough time to attend promptly to the numerous emails I have been receiving, especially those still awaiting attention. It has again been a challenge this year to extract correspondence time with others alongside my study and teaching work and of course as always, making time to sustain my personal practice as something more than just maintenance.
Otherwise Year end greetings and best wishes for 2019 to all those who have engaged with my teaching work either through lessons, workshops, courses, or my online blog writings, posts and associated Yoga miscellanea, along with contributions offered from my teacher and his teacher’s decades of Yoga Sādhana.
I thank you and am grateful to you all for your support, encouragement and exchanges and I look forward to continuing my contributions, through these different virtual mediums, alongside my realtime teaching work, when I resume my study, writing and blog posting contact with the Yoga world sometime in the New Year.
Śrī Gurubhyo Namaḥ