Dear yoginis and yogis,
September means back to school / university for the younger yogis and more action at work for those yogis with office jobs, whilst those working in hospitality are breathing a sigh of relief after a busy August! I am now officially a yogi nomad for the next months, and will be sending prana and positive mantras to the Eurostar train, which has been quite disrupted in recent months. I will be living half in London and half in Paris until Christmas, commuting between the 2nd arrondissement and Notting Hill, so some of my regular classes will be covered by the wonderful and very experienced Marie-Christine Tchernia who was trained in the viniyoga tradition (Desikachar-Krishnamacharya lineage). She is delightful!
I am also busy organising a sound bath in Paris in October, as I learned to love this practice in London this summer (see my last post and learn more in this lovely article by the yogibanker: Soundbaths, latest saturday night craze?) More about that asap!
Finally, I would like to say a brief word about gratitude. It is a central practice in yoga, as well as in Buddhism, (especially Jesuit) Catholicism, and many other philosophies to count your blessings and say grace for what you have. As a former political scientist and consular officer in charge, amongst other things, of delivering visas, the current refugee crisis touches me deeply (not only because it disrupts the eurostar schedule). The practice of compassion (karuna in sanskrit) means that we do not feel separated from those people who have had to leave their homes – it is them today and maybe us some day (European history is a history of migration).
Organisations like Off the Mat into the World, from whom I borrowed the name “yoga-in-action”, remind us that our asana and meditation practice is meant to make us stronger in order to fully participate in the life of our society, to bring peace and calmness to the world around us. And to be grateful for what we have – a roof over one’s head and a school or office to go to is a lot more than many people have. Whether you send money to a charity, help a refugee personally or just send some good thoughts to those people, there is always something one can do.