Yoga: Back to School
A Yoga Empowerment weekend with James Boag
The true sense of education is to draw out and bring forth what is inside.
Yogic education seeks to draw out and bring forth our unique gifts and the whole of who we are.
Unfortunately, a significant part of conventional education seeks to cram in, to train to conform and to squeeze uniquely rounded beings into restrictive little boxes.
Thankfully we have access to a time proven rehabilitation and recovery program: yoga.
What is it?
An immersive, experiential exploration of the holistic yogic education model. The sessions seek to engage different learning styles: active, pragmatic, theoretic and reflective, and work with multiple learning intelligences. This is yoga, so we’ll seek to join these different aspects, to bring them into mutual support. And this is yoga, so practical, active, whole system learning will be the emphasis.
Who is it for?
Anyone who wants to expand their toolkit for lifelong learning. We will draw on the rich, time-proven principles of the yoga tradition and apply them to foster harmony, skilfulness and empowerment in our lives now. It does not matter if your ‘yoga experience’ is zero or many thousands of hours, this is about being human, you already have a body of practice behind you.
We live in and have grown up in times where there is a bombardment of disempowering influences. Yoga seeks to empower each individual to recognise and recover sovereignty for our own life, actions and experience. The aim of the weekend is to empower participants with practical, experiential understanding of principles you can then make your own and apply in your own life and practice to cultivate greater mastery, discernment, self-trust, cohesion, steadiness and joy.
What will we do?
We will work holistically, with practices of movement, meditation and song, with games of inquiry and relating.
- Movement/Embodiment/Yogāsana: We will explore and deepen our understanding of the foundational principles of haṭha yoga in relation to classic modern yogāsana practice and broader movement. In particular we will learn and explore:
- Principles for longevity and collaborating with the nature of our bodies: warm ups/tune ups to tonify the organs, activate and harmonise the bodily system. Learn efficient and scalable techniques to keep the body balanced, connected and regenerative, and principles for nourishing, lifelong practice.
- Haṭha yoga 108 (like haṭha yoga 101 but next level): ha and ṭha, sun and moon, yin and yang: marrying structural integrity and resilience with space and relaxation. Learn how to work in yogāsana-s to foster the type of balance you are looking for, including how to use āsana to develop strength to protect the spine and joints and facilitate freedom of movement all life long. This will include exploring the principle of bandha and how we can harness it to facilitate nourishing circulation and flow through not just the skeletal joints, but all the junction points of the body.
- Practising for life – using haṭha yoga principles in broader movement applications, training the senses and the reflexes as part of yoga practice. Preparing to be spontaneous.
- Inquiry: We will explore principles that can help us look in ways that reach beyond our habitual ways of looking, and that can help us navigate a world of information overload and propaganda bombardment with greater ease, discernment and power. What we can do to invite a different type of conversation and deeper communication, that can actually foster connection and recognition and lead us away from scapegoating, blamegaming and perpetuating sufferering?
- Relationship: yoga happens in the junction, it is all about our relationship, to ourselves, to others and to our environment. We will play powerful authentic relating games.
- Meditation: the foundational yoga technique. We will devote some time each day to meditation practice, working with simple, accessible principles and techniques that participants can then take home, work with and make their own.
- Sound: in a sense all yoga practice techniques are about sound, yogāsana is described classically as a space of sustainable good vibrations. We will dedicate time to practices of kīrtan and song, which reach the parts that other techniques are not always able to.
The workshop will be five sessions of 2-2.5 hours. Sessions can involve any of the learning styles and activities, wear clothes you are ready to move in. In keeping with our theme, all sessions may draw on multiple elements of practice and inquiry, so come ready to move, to listen, to share, to take notes, to play and explore.
Thursday 6:00-8:00pm: Introduction: Yoga as a school of education. Inquiry, relationship, not knowing and Truth. The holistic model of yogic education, working with our strengths and weaknesses, bringing awareness into our shadow, appraising our partialities and inviting expansion of our perspectives.
Friday 9:00-11:30: Haṭha yoga 108 part one: the body as the schoolroom. Harnessing the principles and techologies of haṭha yoga to deepen our understanding of our amazing bodily vehicle. Cultivating balance through the spectrum of ha and ṭha, marrying structural integrity with spaciouness and adaptability.
Friday 1:00-3:30pm: Inquiry, circle and authentic relating. Applying principles of yogic education to listening, conversation and our self-talk. Tools to appraise our use of language and our biases. Practice of listening, authentic relating and working/playing with others.
Saturday 9:30am-12noon: Haṭha yoga 108 part two: the world as our playground, the elements as our teachers. Infusing our āsana practice with the spirit of inquiry, wonder and curiosity, training ourselves as lifelong learners. Using haṭha priciples to explore the world of possibility in familiar āsana-s and in recreational movement.
Saturday 1:00-3:30pm: satya, satsang and song. Using breath and sound to bring greater resonance and attunement to the field of our experience, practices of song, movement and kīrtan
Full program, all five sessions: £198
Single day: £96
Single session: £48