Day 3 — My 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Experience

(I write about my personal experience doing a very intense one month immersion program for my 200hr Yoga Training. I originally wanted to write every day, but didn’t, either out of exhaustion or because I didn’t feel like writing that day).

12:00am – Someone’s watching me while I sleep. Feels like a weird dream but I’m too far out to be bothered, plus the transdermal magnesium oil and the sleepy-time tea are doing their job at keeping me asleep.

Nope, change of plans! I need to wake up!!!!!

I do expect to sleep through the night at some point. Not today though! This recurrent theme of no expectations is getting old real soon!

This time is not the mind keeping me up. Somehow my daughter has slipped into my bed and is resting next to me. Can’t believe I didn’t notice her coming in! It’s a first for me, and just plain crazy too! Must be that I’m beyond exhausted from teacher training. For super light sleepers like me, even a stealth, plush slippered ninja, tip-toeing on a carpeted floor, is enough to wake me up. Now I know why I had that weird feeling of being watched in my sleep. It was my sixth sense saying something was going on around me. But there won’t be any more sleep tonight. My little one’s in my bed because she’s not feeling well and spends the night throwing up.

6:30am — My body says I’m weak and starved, triggering another first for me. Instead of my usual fruit smoothie, from now on, I’ll consume a full meal for breakfast consisting of rice, two scrambled eggs, a slice of feta cheese, and cucumber with avocado salad. Instinct tells me that only this kind of hefty breakfast can sustain me through the physical and mental rigors of immersion teacher training.

Today’s Hot Power Flow class starts at 8:45am and is immediately followed by a Hot Hatha class. Glad I fueled up this morning!

The claws come out

Back in the locker room I witness a group of women getting unnervingly catty with each other. This place receives hundreds of people everyday for yoga and fitness classes, so the occasional clash of tempers and personalities could potentially be expected. Not cool though!

An ad I saw, weeks ago, when shopping around for teacher training programs comes to mind. It said something like “meet like minded people”. In general, nothing could be further from the truth. The one thing that we all have in common in this place, is that we practice yoga asanas (poses). The rest no one knows. Each person is his or her own world and has unique personal reasons for being here. Many are battling demons, many have different expectations than yours, many have different learning desires than yours, different filters, different attitudes, different values, and different everything than you. If you can understand and accept this fact, then teacher training will be so much easier for you.

Do this instead

After lunch, we begin our meditation practice. But I’m too rattled to follow in the breathing exercises. Instead of breathing mindfully, I’m ruminating on the nature of the mean exchange between those Lululemon-clad, locker room women. I’m passing judgement and taking sides before catching myself in the act and realizing how wasteful this is. I should be focusing on my meditation, ridding myself of all judgment, not adding to it. Where’s my dancing sun? Find my third eye… Awww… there it is! The rest of the mediation I spend thinking about my daughter and sending her healing love. A much better feeling. A much better use of mental energy.

Sanskrit – the language of the gods

Yoga was originally developed in Sanskrit language and today we study this ancient language, which as you’ll soon find out, is rich in history and mystery. I love being able to speak many different languages. So I’m not dreading it. I’m embracing it with open arms.

Sanskrit has several similar meanings. It means: refined, perfected, polished, sanctified, perfectly or entirely done. In other words, whoever invented it, regarded Sanskrit as the Mac Daddy of spoken word. The supreme Masterpiece of all verbal communication.

There are a few claims out there about Sanskrit’s magical virtues. Unsubstantiated reports range from Sanskrit’s usefulness in speech therapy, to its helping to learn math and science better, to it’s correct pronunciation helping to improve the tone of speech, to increasing concentration, to the development of imagination, to improving memory retention, etc. Some proponents of the revival of Sanskrit also say, without concrete scientific proof, that Sanskrit is the best language for computer programming due to its ability to express any situation with the minimum number of words and a proper structure that brings out the meaning of a sentence much better than any other language without confusion. But, there seem to be no studies that actually proof these claims.

Sanskrit is the ancient language in Hinduism. Originally spoken only by the Brahmins, the highest caste, the priesthood of the Hindu temples. Making it, in today’s world, an originally discriminatory and polemic communication tool. Much like the Catholic priests of the middle ages, forbidding readings and translations of the bible from a dead Latin into local languages, ensuring this way, a stronghold of power over the uneducated non-latin speaking masses.

Mystically speaking, Sanskrit is said to have been invented not by humans, but by Gods. Termed Deva-Vani (Gods- Language), Sanskrit’s creation is attributed to the god Brahma, who in turn passed it to the celestial Rishis (Sages), who in turn passed it on to their earthly disciples.

Currently spoken by only a minor fraction of the Indian population, Sanskrit is still recognized in India as one of its many official languages and continues to be used in religious ceremonies. There’s also a push by the current Indian government to make the study of Sanskrit mandatory in all Indian public schools.

Sanskrit is also still used in Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism.

Sanskrit is actually one of the oldest languages in the world. And, although debatable for some, it’s said to be the mother of all languages. Grammatically and structurally, it does have its virtues, as expressed by Sir William Jones, a British philologist who dedicated himself to the study of Sanskrit in the 18th century:

The Sanskrit language, whatever be its antiquity, is of a wonderful structure; more perfect than the Greek, more copious than the Latin, and more exquisitely refined than either, yet bearing to both of them a stronger affinity, both in the roots of verbs and in the forms of grammar, than could possibly have been produced by accident; so strong indeed, that no philologer could examine them all three without believing them to have sprung from some common source, which, perhaps, no longer exists.

Sir William Jones – Linguistic Scholar (circa 1785)

You can watch a very interesting video below about the Sanskrit connection to many other languages, including english. Could Sanskrit be indeed the mother of all languages?

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