I can’t believe I am now officially halfway through my teacher training course. It has flown by! I wanted to give a little summary of the things we’ve learned in month 2 and some of my thoughts on it.
What is Ayurveda? It’s a “science of life” that aims to harmonize our bodies and minds with the environment we live in. Its focus is on preventions rather than cures and the roots of problems, finding the reasons, which are at the origin of ill health.
I think the concept of Ayurveda is a nice, idealistic approach to life, but I disagree with its idea that the mind is the cause of all health-related problems because you can’t just think away certain diseases or maladies. You can change your outlook on them, sure, but you can’t prevent for example, a genetic disease appearing later in life by thinking it won’t. You can change the way you perceive it and react to it, sure.
Ayurveda is all about leading a balanced life. “Everything can be poison; everything can be medicine. It’s how you use it.”
Again, I feel like a lot of the concepts of Ayurveda are idealistic: eating local, organic foods. My gripe with this one is if you’re on an extremely tight budget or you have 4 kids to feed and working multiple jobs, how do you afford local or organic food? You probably can’t. How available are these foods in the areas that underprivileged people live?
Another idealistic concept is following “the dosha clock”, where each period of the 12 hour round of the clock is marked by a different energy and each 12 month period of the year is marked by a different dosha. I suppose this one could be maintained by keeping up a strict routine or schedule and extreme forward thinking about how you plan your days, but what about people who work 9-5’s or night shifts or work multiple jobs in one day leaving them only a few hours to themselves and even then, it’s probably spent caring for kids?
I think the biggest takeaway for me about Ayurveda, is that you do the best you can with what you have.
This was a heavy weekend full of deep thoughts, conflicting information, and mental battles. I honestly don’t even know where to begin or what to type here because I’m still so confused about the philosophy of yoga. There are many different philosophies of yoga and we only covered two of them: one on Saturday and one on Sunday. The two we covered were Samkhya and Vedanta. I’m not going to regurgitate what I learned (or what I didn’t learn) but instead just say that this is a topic for further reading and reflection on my part. I like bits and pieces of the yogic philosophy and am trying to figure out how to incorporate those pieces into a modern world view/lifestyle. Mainly, I’m concerned with how to relate/understand/teach these ideas in a way that is authentic to me, but also how to take these ideas or principles and apply them to various situations or lifestyles. Further study needed here.
The third and final weekend of the month was by far my favorite. We learned all about sequencing, how to write classes, come up with themes, and essentially unleash a lot of creative energy. I tend to think of myself as a creative person and for me, yoga is another creative outlet. Attending yoga classes as a student, I loved to go along with whatever the teacher presented that hour and learn their flow. In my own home practice, I like to play around with poses and just move my body in the way that feels right in that moment. Now, creating classes for other people to take, I’m at the beginning where I can just taste where this is going and what it will lead to. I’m excited to create sequences in a meaningful way but also ones that can be fun and playful.
We were encouraged in our last class to create a 6 week course with themes to help us be creative and come up with ideas for poses to include. I’m not going to share mine just yet as it’s only in the beginning stages, but I can feel a lot of time on the mat with a notebook close at hand in my future.
A bit of a longer post this time, but there’s really so much information and things that you learn in just one month on this course. I only scrape the very surface of everything here. Now, I have a bit of much needed time off to pack up my life and move into our new flat!