Ten years ago Shiva Rea, who revolutionized yoga into a free-style, flowing yoga, gave a talk on Burning Man called:
Tending The Sacred Fire; The origins, repression and revival of free-form movement
Her talk tells the history of dancing, and how it is something babies do instinctively, yet it was almost equally instinctively repressed by the church, because it represented creative power.
And when you read creative power, you could also read sexual power.
Because those are the same thing.
And it wasn’t until the 50s brought us rock n roll, that it ended.
Shiva points out, how you cannot be afraid and dance at the same time. Fear needs you to hold still.
In the 50s Elvis came, people started to dance freely and the spell of fear and repression was lifted.
This analysis from Shiva Rea touches on something I have been trying to make up my mind about, as I am wondering how to start, or root, my second career in yoga.
Will I continue to write yoga schedules for my yoga classes and my yoga videos?
The reasons to do so, are absolutely overwhelming.
Methodical teaching will give you a system that will allow you to understand yoga as a whole. You will be able to take classes, wherever you are, and feel like you know the poses and have some kind of reference.
And I ve also quite enjoyed making schedules, usually based on vintage yoga books, on videos from YouTube, courses I took, or on dvds.
I always had one schedule for every class week, which I often made available for the people in class. It gave me a sense of groundedness, as a teacher.
In the final years of teaching group classes, I already had the desire to be a teacher without a script.
Just like my blog posts are never planned, but the story comes out as a whole, and without me knowing the end of it;
That is how I want my classes to be!
So from a personal perspective, this really is the perfect time to step up my game and no longer teach something I have planned or written out before.
Which does not mean I will not make schedules based on dvds and books;
Just that I won’t be teaching or doing them.
I have always liked watching dvds, reading books, and from there to write out yoga schedules. That is a creative process. But to then actually go do that? Then it is no longer creative.
So to satisfy my own creative needs, there really is no better time for me to start coming to the mat without preparing what I am going to do.
Just like when I practice yoga myself: I also do not have a schedule, and sometimes my poses are not “really” yoga poses.
I ve been wondering how I could teach this free-style. Or, more specifically, I have been realizing I cannot teach it.
That it’s too difficult.
That I have no idea what I am doing, and that I could analyze and name it, but then I end up with a system, and it would be a scheduled practice all over again. And I don’t want that.
The talk from Shiva Rea made me realize that despite being absolutely clueless on how to teach yoga that has no system or no form;
That that is precisely why I want to teach it.
That my personal system of writing down exercises, and doing yoga by what I have on paper, may not be two-thousand years old, but it is over two decades old.
And that’s a long time.
Who knows how many Victorian yoga values I have internalized.
I know I still feel exposed when my yoga top shows cleavage, or when the shirt curls up and you see my belly.
I get this 50’s Catholic feeling of being too sexual;
So yeah, it is still in me!
Shaming someone, including shaming yourself, for their sexuality is in my opinion evil in its purest form.
I ve internalized values which are directly opposing everything I stand for.
And there is a very high chance the feeling I was a better yoga teacher if I prepared my classes, if I stuck to the known poses and their names, if I rooted my teachings in existing lineages;
Is tied to those same internalized Victorian values which may have worked in 19th century colonial India, or early 50s in The Netherlands;
But they’re not my values.
My yoga, which I already do on my mat to one Bon Jovi album every day;
And our Bon Jovi inspired yoga, which I will teach for both my English and Dutch channels;
It will not be rooted in those yoga lineages, regardless if they were good or bad or if their leaders (yes, there’s more plenty more than just one Netflix documentary) have fallen off their pedestals because they have abused their power, and justice caught up with them.
Our yoga will be rooted in freedom.
In rock n roll.
In Bon Jovi.
And let’s give them something to worry about, for the next two-thousand years.
Rock Star Writer
II Inspiration for yoga:
Yoga Inspiration: Creative Sequencing | Meghan Currie Yoga