Yoga. Sound Healing. Angelic Reiki®. Well-being.
Week two of my YTT experience was pretty much all about finding deeper connections with my beautiful friends.
It was also ‘Kriya Week’, which had me nervous before I arrived!
Kriyas are the yogic cleansing techniques. I already do Kapalabhati and Jala Neti all the time, had tried Nauli once before but hadn’t tried the others. I remember I was chatting to Federico about the idea of doing these before I went and thought he was joking with me when he said we would be doing them all because I found the idea of them so intense- and quite mad too!!
I was ready to try the Sutra Neti- where you put a catheter up your nose and cough it out of your mouth. The rest seemed too out of my comfort zone. For Dauti, you eat a long cloth holding onto just the end of it and then pull it back out to clean your digestive tract- which seemed clinically insane to me when reading about it! Also, there was Shanka Prakshalana, where you drink a number of cups of salt water and then purge them. Again, I thought it all sounded a bit mad but decided I would see how I felt on the day and choose whether or not to do them then.
I think if you were open, the energy of the teachers and the group just took over and it made it quite easy to try them all. I was laughing at myself as I was feeling proud post-water purge and cloth eating! Not a normal thought to me! 😀
I now understand why they are recommended though and I know I will definitely do them all again as my system felt amazing- really clean! I just want to add here, please do not try these unless under the supervision of a teacher or with the proper knowledge. I have purposefully left out all the particulars here!
Week 2 also saw the arrival of the Kid’s Camp. This is a wonderful concept that Swami Vishnu-Devanada had- he wanted to train future world leaders through it and the YTT.
It is a three week camp where the children learn asana practice, pranayama and the yogic way of living and being in this world- such a beautiful idea! They brought such a lovely energy to the ashram- it was fun and energising to see water fights and hear laughter echoing around the grounds!
The bonfire in week 2 was held in a beautiful forested area across the road from the ashram. It was SUCH a lovely experience! The week before was brilliant too but it was beautiful to be in a close-knit circle together. It really began to feel like we were a little (and kind of bizarre!) family at this point.
Week three saw us all start to teach the beginners classes. I was pretty nervous for my first teaching class but had a lovely group of ladies, Kathleen, Marie-Lynn and Heather in my group acting as my newbie yogis!
Preparing for these classes took up quite a bit of the scarce free time we had. I found my favourite practice spot, where I would sit and repeat Sun Salutation and Pranayama instructions aloud, over and over. It’s also where I would go to practice some chants as we were being called up by our role-call numbers to chant in Satsangs. I’m pretty certain a number of kids walking by as I was giving a class to invisible people or singing on my own, thought I was kind of mad but they seemed accepting of the madness at the same time!
This was the first week where I had an emotional release too. I was quite surprised it took so long! We did a beautiful ceremony at the ashram temple, which ended in us all pouring ablutions on one of the deities. It felt so cathartic and I had a huge emotional release at the service- and felt really amazing after it!
It was also the week we learnt about pregnancy yoga and all got to do a pregnancy yoga class- baby bumps and all! It was pretty funny looking around the hall at the ‘pregnant’ women and men!
Kathleen and I with baby-bumps, Amelie the graceful, beautiful mum-to-be,
Suzy and her Siva-bump, Lucia almost escaped the camera, Shinae and Hanna baby-bumping
Kathleen, a very happy mama, and the 70+ pregnant YTTers!
We also got to partake in the amazing Kavadi Festival in Week 3. This was a series of pujas which were so beautiful- colourful, loud, moving, filled with incense, bells, people….it was a real honour to get to see and be part of.
The final day of Kavadi was in Week 4, so I will talk more about it in the next and final post about my experience on the YTT in Val-Morin.
I am slowly but surely catching up on all my favourite people’s posts that I missed while away from the world of interweb, I look forward to hearing all of your news and chatting to you soon!
With love and light,