Posted by Jennvp on February 27, 2011 at 10:59 PM
As many of you know, since last autumn I have had the opportunity to study the ParaYoga tradition through Devanadi Yoga in Minneapolis.
This 200 hour yoga teacher training program has been a growth experience for me, and upon realizing I have only one weekend left of this section, I wanted to reflect a bit on the experience.
One of the many gifts to come out of this training is the amazing sense of community and shared experience with the diverse group of individuals who have come together in this program. Some are there to deepen their personal practice, others are there to explore the possibility of teaching yoga, others are there to deepen their offerings as teachers.
I have come to deeply value the sense of community that has developed within this group of amazing individuals. The concept of "sangha" dates back centuries to the time of the Buddha, and while it has several meanings, one overarching meaning of the Sanskrit word "sangha" refers to a community with a common goal.
Our sangha has over these months developed into a place of self-expression and self-exploration, of support for each other, and a nurturing environment in which to explore our meditation and yoga practices, and through them grow as people.
The sangha has a sense of community and shared experience that creates an organic link among its members. Facilitated by the teachers who guide our group, we learn and explore the many topics presented in the program. The process is enriched by our diverse backgrounds, and flavored with a common sense of humor. I am grateful for all of it.
My reflections on the idea of sangha remind me that in my life I am fortunate to be part of more than one of these communities of shared purpose. At Synergize Yoga, the community of teachers and students and practitioners and clients is a sangha of which I am also grateful to be a part. People of diverse background and purpose coming together with the simple shared purpose of practicing yoga, and in the process enriching not just their own experience, but also sharing the process with those around them and so contributing to the experience of those other members of the sangha.
Similarly, in my bodywork practice I am part of a sangha of healing and learning. And so on. So while I see this poignant experience of organized meeting of my teaching study group coming to a close for now, I also realize my life is enriched by the fellowship of sangha in more than that single context.
Gratitude. Humility. Inspiration. My experience is enriched by the people I have the pleasure of encountering along the path.