I wrote this as an introduction for my new teacher training manual, but thought it would be nice to share it as a blog post.
To be a yoga teacher is a great responsibility, to be a teacher trainer is even a greater one. It is a responsibility I never took lightly. During my long journey of a yoga student followed by a yoga teacher and then a teacher trainer 12 years after, I have put many hours into practice and study of this wonderful science of life we call Yoga. I have spent (and still am) countless hours practicing, attending workshops and trainings, reading books and researching the mysteries of human body, mind and soul. On this path I have discovered much, but the more I learned the more I saw how little I know. How little we humans know and how very often we are attached to beliefs we never questioned, facts we never checked and outdated traditions we swear by. Yoga teachers are no different. We teach what we never questioned, we present facts we have never checked and use words like tradition we know little about.
First time this truth revealed itself to me I felt like I wanted to drop everything and stop teaching yoga teacher trainings. I am sure all teachers, whatever the subject may be, feel the same at some point. But then I realised that, instead of quitting, all I need to do is just teach what I know and have experienced thus far and teach it in a way to make my students understand that I am only sharing what I know and believe is the truth. That’s all I can share with authenticity; practice I embodied, the truth which resonates with me. Yet, my truth may not resonate with you as we are all different. We might all be on a journey to the same destination, but that doesn’t mean we’ll take the same road or face the same obstacles on the way. The other thing I realised is I have an obligation to never stop exploring, studying and questioning, but more importantly, I have an obligation to let go of the old and embrace the new knowledge if I now know better. It’s not about being right or wrong, it’s about allowing the evolution and change to happen. Just like in life.
The first lesson I will teach you is to question everything. To question me and your other teachers, but not with judgment, not to prove we are right or wrong but to make sure that the teachings you get align with your own bodies, hearts and minds. As teachers we can only teach what we believe to be the truth in this moment in time, but that doesn’t mean the same truth applies to all. Often times it can also mean the student might not be ready for that particular one, and that is also ok.
My wish is for you to take from this teachings everything which resonates with you, everything that speaks the language of your body, mind and soul, and to let go of all which doesn’t. Take responsibility for your own path. The teacher can shed some light on it, but you still have to walk it.
“In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.” - Bertrand Russell