THE ALCHEMY OF YOGA
Maybe you just discovered Yoga or you have been taking classes for a while now and have a desire to take your yoga to a deeper level?
I can only speak for myself, but when I have attended yogaretreats for teachers that I am inspired by I have taken so much out of that experience. Something quite magical and mystical happens when a group of intentioned individuals gather together in a breathtaking natural environment for the purpose of uplifting their lives, yoga and meditation practice and expanding their consciousness.
The result is something that best could be described at the Alchemy of Yoga at its best. And fundamentally this Alchemy serves to change your life in three ways.
1. Rejuvenation and Deep relaxation—
You will take a complete break from your life; daily responsibilities and the fast- living lifestyle. At a retreat the environment is calmer, more serene and the settings offer an ambiance that makes you feel safe and nurtured. You feel you can let go and soak up the now, a beautiful environment, releasing more and more facets of the stressed you, giving you the opportunity for the true you to come to the surface. Your spirit will feel rejuvenated! Taking the time to deeply relax and rejuvenate often has the longest term benefits even months later.
2. Transformation happens faster—
How you evolve accelerates. Something happens while on a yoga retreat that breaks the bonds of ordinary awareness and expands the consciousness of each individual to a level that would otherwise would have taken months or years of ordinary living to attain.
This acceleration is mystical, meaning that the change is beyond logic and reason. It is best decribed in quantum physics as “the quantum leap”, which means “a phenomena where an electron orbiting the nucleus of an atom changes its position without having traversed the space between its old and new orbit and without taking any time to do so. As scientifically verifiable as this phenomena is, it is also on the order of a miracle, for science has no explanation how this effect happens.”
3. Break old patterns and habits—
Breaking mental bondage and to get a emotional detox is also a fundamental benefit of going on retreat. Healing can only take place once we are relaxed and in a new environment old emotional paradigms emerge so we can see our mental habits as the samskaras or unhealthy patterns they have become. From there our ecology of mind evolves and while on retreat we reset the internal dialogue to one of positive intention with an eye to moving forward.
By unplugging yourself from your daily life, you detach yourself from the pulls and pushes of technology and commerce and by being engaged in healthy activities in an excellent environment you will be able to easier see, observe and hopefully release unwanted habits. Some of these patterns include detoxing the physical body by eating fresh, healty and minimizing the amount of alcohol, sugar and coffee.
And, it is very benefiting to surround yourself with people who don’t know you or your past. They see you as you really are and it is sometimes easier to share and evolve with people that are also interested in yoga and meditation. It might even be so that you will develop new and deep friendships. Life long friendships are formed with like minded people who will support your growth and your new lifestyle choices.
Retreat or vacation?
I try to organize my retreats differently. Some are more upscale and serene, for those who feel they need more privacy, tranquility, great accomodation, smaller group and little more luxury. And others are more downsized or nature- oriended in the wilderness and therefore simpler on all levels and cost less therefore.
Yet something that is very important to me is that my students get time to rest, time to relax in between sessions in order to allow the fruits of the practice to come forth and a growth to happen and that allows me as a teacher to be there with them, being accessible.
Often there can be too many classes on a retreat and very little downtime and that is to me more of a vacation based training camp. I am cool with that too, but to me it is not the perfect setting for a retreat. A retreat to me is when you invest to go away and Re-Treat yourself. Where you can immerse yourself in just being, where the environment, practice and food is supporting that and that gives you tools to grow further on all levels.
My next retreat will be on Bali in February/March 2016. If you want to tag along, go here for more details.