As I am preparing to head off to India once more for some time of self-reflection and study, these will be my last words posted here for 2013. This year has brought many blessings and I am truly grateful. I have been again so lucky to be able to share my joy of yoga with so many and have had quite a few students now go through the Sivananda teacher training and become teachers themselves, so a huge congratulations to them and I am so proud of you all spreading this beautiful way of life to others and helping them to become more confident in themselves, overcome their obstacles and find peace. Let us continue to breathe through our master of Swami Sivananda. I read a beautiful quote from Swami Vishnudevanda the other day that said ‘If I have ever given you anything good then it has come from my Master Swami Sivananda.’ And with that I always say to my students when they thank me for this or that, that it has not come from me but it is Sivananda always at work through us, he was so full of love for all of humanity that I hope this love is reaching out to you all through us.
I have had the great pleasure to meet so many different people from around the world from all different backgrounds and different ages, I have had students from 8 years old to 77 in my classes, workshops and retreats and it really has been a joy to meet you all and share OM, laughter and tears.
I have always said that I am more of a yoga sharer than a teacher, your greatest teacher lies within your own heart but we need someone to share the knowledge to reach that guru, to give us some direction on the pathway. A few days ago the great man Nelson Mandela passed away or his great spirit left this physical prison that we journey in, now Nelsons heart is truly free and he has left this plane of existence in the knowledge that he really did try to bring change to this world, that he really worked for humanity. I remember being in South Africa maybe 10 years back and visiting his cell that he spent most of his imprisonment in on Robin Island. The thing that I brought away with me the most from that visit were the words of the ex political prisoner that was showing us around. We were in a small group and one of the couples there had a child with them of about 3 years old. The child was taking much delight in rolling around on the mats that were the prisoners beds and making quite a noise and some of the people in the group were getting quite cross about it. Then the ex political prisoner told us a story, he said that one day whilst out on hard labour with Mandela and others, whilst they were crushing stones with useless tools, they heard a sound that made them all stop, after a few moments they recognised that sound as laughter from small children and they all begin to feel the tears flow down their cheeks. The sound of these children was coming from outside the prison but the sound of their laughter was being carried by the breeze to where the prisoners were working. The prisoners had not heard children for so many years that they had forgotten what that sounded like and once they remembered they had shed tears for their loss of this sound. Of course then nobody was cross any more at the sounds that this small boy was making on our trip and we were all humbled.
With this in mind I really want to encourage this sharing of yoga with the younger generations, to allow them to think differently and to find their own destiny in hope that we are creating more peaceful people with mindfulness over the planet and themselves, that they can breathe peace back to the Earth. That we can all rejoice in each others company and accept each other without entanglement and labels, without borders and colour, that we indeed can find the harmony in our hearts and live in it, finding compassion for all living entities. Finding the knowledge is a beautiful thing but then sharing it is even greater. For this you don’t all need to go off to study to become a yoga instructor but for some simply sharing chanting OM with somebody can bring empowerment, joy and peace. So think of how you can share what you learn and let us make this world an even more wonderful place.
“Serve, love, give, purify, meditate, realize.” Swami Sivananda
I will be back to my studies until mid February so I won’t be posting here until I return to Kathmandu. Then I will be ready to give my full attention to share as much as I can. Looking forward to connecting with you again then,
I salute you Nelson Mandela and may your soul be truly free.
Om Lokha Somasta Sukhino Bhavantu
May all beings find balance and harmony
May you all find joy in 2014 Happy New Year!
Pranams – Love
Mangala - Nicky