Monday, October 25, 2010

final day of tulum yoga teacher - closing + celebrating

"I am not a teacher, but an awakener." ~ Robert Frost

It's hard to believe that our time is coming to an end. We've all been so focused, so present, so dedicated to this process.

And now the time comes to bring it to a closing. Just like that.

We meet at 5:30 at our usual spot by the pool, under what has become our yoga palapa. Everyone is radiant and dressed in white. It pretty much takes my breath away just seeing them.

We've created a beautiful circle and sit atop festive, colorful, large cushions. Copal incense wafts through the air. As does a soft breeze. We hear the sounds of the sea so close by. It's a sound we've all come to love, a sound that lulls us to sleep, a sound that fills our hearts with joy.

We check in. I share with them the emails and messages I've received from students at home. Cheering them on. Supporting them from afar. Connecting to them and this process even if they haven't met. This is so much of what yoga is really about. Union. Without restrictions. Without definitions.

Then I guide them to find a comfortable seated meditation position. Truly the last time here in Tulum.

I take out the manifesto of encouragement that I'd written upon getting to Tulum over two weeks ago. I read it slowly. So that I can fully receive the power of this moment. So that they can receive the power of the moment.

I feel my emotions. I feel the emotions of the group. It' so strong. It's palpable.

Upon finishing we all sit in meditation for a few moments. I then guide them through our two weeks together. Meeting as strangers and students of yoga two weeks earlier. Now lasting friendships have been forged, and these students became yoga teachers. Inspiring and wonderful yoga teachers. They are awakeners.

I speak of the process honestly. The process was not without challenges.
There were tears.
There were frustrations.
There was confusion.
Anger too.
We missed our family and friends.
We were nervous and anxious.
We were exhausted.
We questioned ourselves.
This process.
And this path too.

But my oh me.
There was goodness.
There was greatness.
We paid homage to scoochasana (some thought "scooch" was either a word I made up for a KY word. ;)
There were poolside dance parties.
There were communal meals.
There were walks, talks, and practices of reverence.
There was giving and receiving.
More giving. More receiving.
We were heard in a way that's rare.
We were seen for our greatness.
We were humbled by how others witnessed us.
We got out of our head and into our body.
We got our of head and body, and into our heart.
We overcame doubts and fears.
There was powerful and transformative energy.
There was passion.
There was magic.
More magic that I could have dreamed up.

The depth and the breadth of this rare and wonderful

This process of yoga teacher training was pure bliss for me. All of it. Nothing was wasted, I kept telling the group. Every bit of it was needed for our particular growth. For the healing of our heart, for the development of our teaching.

I guide the students to think about what they are now ready and willing to let go of. And what do you want to take away from this experience?

We go over to the altar we've been creating as a group over the two weeks. Each person takes two gifts from nature. One represents what they want to let go of. One represents what they want to take home and remember.

We walk to the sea and send back what we want to let go of. To see these students tossing their item to the sea was so powerful.

The lighting on the beach at this time. On this particular day is breath taking. We take photos. Lots and lots of photos. We hug. Laugh. And celebrate. We joke that we look like some type of weird wedding party donning our white and taking tons of photos.

We go back and finish our closing with receiving certificates and love from the group. One by one teachers received their certificate then they got to sit and receive love from the group. People went around the circle and expressed something from the heart.

We did this. One by one. So very touching.

Pure bliss watching students become teachers.
Pure bliss witnessing stangers become friends.

They come to learn to teach yoga.
They leave with so much more.

For they're not only teachers.
They are awakeners.

**photo taken by Martin Husch**

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