This blog is written by Emily Curtis for Parimukti

When I look for a yoga class to take, where I’ll spend any appreciable amount of time—I care a lot about the teacher. My connection, my trust, and my respect all form potential roadblocks; as well they form potential clearings to my learning, to my practice flourishing.

I got really lucky when I gave yoga a second chance. In the first class I took, over 15 years ago, I injured myself, the ‘final’ pose was too unfamiliar, too demanding—even for a supple 18 year old dancer—and I pulled a muscle The Buddhain my rib. The teacher in a class of 40+ people didn’t offer variations, nor did she explain the risks of ‘over-doing it.’ I don’t blame her now, but I didn’t go back to her class, or yoga eagerly.I did eventually find my way back to a yoga class after glowing recommendations from a friend about her teacher. Little did I know, this was to mark the beginning of a new chapter with my beloved teacher. Her class was like a shelter from the storm of my engineering curriculum. She had deep roots in yoga and meditation and she taught from a base of insight and awareness, curiosity and play. I fell in love with yoga. I flourished. Because I respected her, and I trusted her, I was able to connect to yoga through my connection to her; and most importantly, the  flourishing meant that I was able to connect with myself—an attribute that typifies a yoga entanglement. My time with her lasted over 6 years, but she will always be my teacher, and my friend. I got yoga. Thank you Therese.

Recently I just completed a teacher-training course with Parimukti. Wow. The month long experience was sound, helpful, and safe. I got what I wanted from amazing teachers and an amazing environment. I got community, individual attention, to practice like mad, to inform my teaching style, confidence, knowledge, and inspiration… Now here I am at the gates of a new track. One where I will stand at the front of the class. And as my first class as teacher approaches, I have many memories, tools, and feelings standing with me. I know the texture I will bring to the classroom is unique to me, and yet I hope, its ubiquitous in its conveyance of the yoga I got. The yoga that has been alive for millennia, that has touched millions. I naturally have lots of questions. The questions that stand out in my mind are the aspects that point to my own spiritual development—things that place me as a student on the path of a teacher. I’m happy that it’s a process and that the learning continues. And I’m ready, to embark on the journey as a student on the teacher’s path, to share my passion, to share what I’ve been given, and to learn how to reach people. I’m ready to take on a new lens for my yogic development and to discover a new ground of being.

Merel Martens

Merel is the founder of Parimukti Yoga & Meditation Center aiming to spread the beauty and benefits of yoga with everyone. For Merel, Yoga is awareness, both on the mat and in everyday life. Classes and teachings serve as an inspiration when stepping into daily life.

All points of view are welcome, even contradictory ones ? All we expect is that you put your point across in a civil manner.

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