Yoga, Up There!

October, 2012:
A crisp fall day. I’m climbing up the steps to what will one day be the Pilgrim’s Landing Loft for the very first time. I hear the wooden beams under my feet, and I sense the space before I actually see it. I inhale the soft putty colored walls, and the smell, the gorgeous smell(!) of planked floors and wood walls and wood beams fills me. My heartbeat steadies, my breath deepens, something is softly opening up inside me. I have tears in my eyes and goose bumps cover my arms. I feel like I have come home. There’s a deep resounding YES pulsating in my body. As I wander around up there, the space feels like it’s an old best friend, waiting for me. And a whisper threads the air: yoga.

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At the time, I didn’t know that Pilgrim’s Landing would be born, or that we would host concerts and workshops “up there”. I just wanted to be up there! I didn’t know what I would do up there, say specifically, but I just wanted to be in that space, up there. I couldn’t get enough of it. I wanted to drink in all the wood with every breath.

 

As we moved forward and opened Pilgrim’s Landing, I found myself spending time up there, as often as I could, in the sacred bare room. Late at night, music loud, smudged with acrylic paints. Early in the morning, rolling out my yoga mat, moving, flowing, breathing. Meditating. For my birthday, with friends and lounge cushions, sung improv-poetry, seafood pie and libations, and love. And it felt so good to be up there.  But practicing yoga up there?

Oh. So. Good.
Why?
The loft, to me, is a sacred space.

 

So why yoga?  Truthbomb Alert: Yoga is an ancient, transformative spiritual practice that seeks to unite us with the Divine that, by the way, lives within each and every one of us at all times. How cool is that?!  Forget the sit-ups and power core work that vanilla-coats our Western approach to yoga. Yoga is a deeply spiritual practice. Through physical postures (asanas), breathing techniques (pranayama) and meditation, we practice meeting our deepest, truest, highest selves. In other words, God. Or if that word doesn’t tickle you, Spirit, Universe, Creator, Divine, Allah, Mother Earth. The sweet thing is it’s all the same!

 

In yoga, we practice mindfulness, awareness, devotion. We practice being in a process. Contrary to popular belief, yoga is not about attaining a certain level of flexibility or being able to twist our bodies into poses. Yoga is the practice of being present – to our breath as we move in our bodies, to our thoughts, to our feelings, and to the world at large. It’s the practice of being curious and playful as we explore our mind-body-spirit connection. It’s the practice of letting go and beginning again, over and over and over again. One of my teachers said jokingly, “Look, you can put your foot on your head and still be an a**hole.” Yoga is about how we treat ourselves, and how we treat each other- on AND off the mat. It’s a practice of meeting ourselves, right where we are at this moment in time.

 

And so here we are,
June, 2014:
We open the loft to you, and your yoga practice!  Come take care of your body.  Sweat sweetly, flow and glow, celebrate the sun. Calm your mind and connect with the divine within you. I seek to offer yoga as a healing, transformative and deeply spiritual practice; ripe with mythology and music, sprinkled with devotion, calling your radiance and truth to the forefront of your life. I’m honored and so very grateful to be able to share your practice with you.

 

The light in me honors and bows to the light inside you.

Namaste,

Danielle

“Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn’t matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.”
-Rumi

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