Yoga by the Ganges, lemon nada and Reiki attunement.
By the time breakfast has come, I have been up and moving for 5 hours. Silent meditation, dynamic meditation, asana practice, asana teaching, pranayama. With a blocked nose. Raj has cooked us what looks like an omelette but is instead a chickpea flour pancake of sorts. Its surprisingly delicious.
During philosophy we talk about the source a lot, and some form of Himalayan Ayahuasca.
We will be following this with the long awaited Yoga Therapy, but have just been told we have an hour break before class, so I head down to the cafe for a sneaky chai masala. I notice a man in the corner as soon as I walk in. No, not a potential lover type man, just one who’s presence and energy is piercingly intense. He obviously feels it too and sits near me after I order. Okay Universe, what are you telling me here? I find something to talk about. He’s holding a book on Osho. “Oh, so you’re learning about Osho?” He laughs. “Learning? I’ve only been practicing for 17 years.” Okay, yes we’re in India. So naturally we start talking about meditation and yoga. He is a Hatha Vinyasa teacher from the South of India and has come to Rishikesh for a holiday after hiking the Himalayas. He wants to know what I’m doing here. He says that there are some world renown Yoga Teacher Trainings in Thailand. I explain that’s where I’ve just been. He then says that actually some of the best programs are in Australia.. so I explain that’s where I’m from. I then start to tell him about the dialogue this week regarding coming to the source vs. taking a Western style course. He explains to me that almost all of the yogi masters who are worth learning from are out across the globe spreading seeds, and the ones that are left are essentially the left overs. Great. The whole thing reminds me of people who travel to Peru to have an “authentic” ayahuasca experience but often fall into the tourist trap. The reality is there are Shamans across the globe who will host a better experience than most of the faux Shamans in the Amazon, just as there are Yogis across the globe that will offer a far superior training than those in the Himalayas.
Everything works out just the way it should. You can gently steer your ship, but don’t try to send it up stream.
So what message did the South Indian Yogi appear to send me? “Satyananda Yoga Mangrove” are the words he punched into my laptop. The words he said at the same time were along the lines of one of the best Yoga practices in the world. So where is this world renown Ashram? Mangrove Mountain, 20 minutes from where I grew up of course. Naturally. Even more bizarre is a friend mentioned it to me just a could of days ago as they returned from a retreat there.
And as fast as he came, he left. Like a cat. Or maybe a snake. Never to be seen again.
Onto Yoga Therapy and I learn how to read imbalances in Ayurvedic Dosha composition by looking into my peers eyeballs. Apparently I have way too much Pitta which is causing e to be overly physically active, causing irritations on my skin and all kinds of digestive problems. Sounds about spot on. He then delvers the same news as the Ayurvedic doctor down the street. No spice. This time he also says no milk and no sugar. Unless of course it is taken at night with turmeric, in which case I can eat spice and milk. I don’t really understand this logic and am pretty down that my only vice since kicking coffee is out the window. Chai Masala is all of the things that are bad for me.
V and I have come down with some form of head cold and have been struggling through the day so we decide to go swim in the Ganges after lunch to cool down and freshen up. On the way down the stairs, a second snake appears. This one is in the physical form of a snake and it slithers across my path. Ciao little guy.
We bump into Geo down by the river and all chill out doing our own thing. Geo having a moment to himself, V swimming and me upside down on a platform jutting out into the river. Bliss. A small child appears with impeccable English. He is trying to sell me flowers. I ask about why he isn’t at school and where his parents are. School is finished (its only 2pm?) and there is some form of disability with his father. I feel bad telling him I don’t want his flowers because I can find flowers anywhere and tell him to start thinking up something unique that he can give me that no-one else can. Vero suggests he starts making some art. I ask him about the crystal he has in his box and explain why a lot of the tourists like them and like to spend money on them. I explain to him how to cleanse it in the Ganges. Eventually he decides to move on and I hope that we’ve planted the right seeds rather than giving him a quick and easy 50 cents.
We head up to Little Buddha for a quick Lemon Nada – lemon and mint juice before heading back to class. Little Buddha is bustling with yoga teachers, travellers and sleeping dogs. We sit by the window overlooking the river and can do nothing but laugh at the deep electronic music completing the scene.
We end the day with a surprise Reiki attunement. I now have the light. Right on.