By Michelle Jayne, Yoga Facilitator/Therapist/Coach
I love teaching yoga but like any job, there are pros and cons.
On the pro side, I go to ‘work’ everyday and do what I love. I usually see the best in people and the essence of possibility and growth, all interwoven into a well themed yoga class. I have freedom during my week, and there is a sense of irresponsibility that goes along with it. I feel like I never managed to ‘grow up’ get a ‘real job’ and ‘settle down’. This is a good thing!
But one of the biggest cons of the life of a yoga teacher can be a sense of disconnection.
While there is a lot of community within the studios, I need to teach at more then one of them if I am to make enough money to pay the rent. Running around to multiple studios a day leads to a feeling of disengagement as I move from one group of people onto the next.
Then there is the quest for popularity which is reflected in our class numbers, and feeling a general sense of disservice to the practice of this ancient form of Yoga.
While I accept my personal limitations, I still wish I could effortlessly follow the practice of yoga down to the last limb.
It is so vital for me to continue to spend time with teachers that relight the flame within my heart.
The kind of teachers that teach from a place where it feels as though you can see the actual universe flowing through them straight into your solar system, and they make you want to jump up and yell ‘Namaste!’ from the bottom of your Manipura Chakra.
Seane Corn is one of those teachers. Seane has been around the yoga community since 1987 when she left home and arrived in New York, winding up at the Life Café, run by David Life and Sharon Gannon (Jivamukti Founders).
In Seane’s passion, integrity and devotion to the role of the yoga teacher, she makes an offering of herself as a bridge between the physical world we live in and the mystical journey each of us are on.
I was fortunate enough to attend a weekend workshop with Seane Corne called The WakeUp Project.
Seane is passionate about being able to hold space within a yoga class and has no fear as she lead us deeply into our energy centers, and pinpointed how our different experiences revealed whether the centre was deficient or in excess.
For example, did you know that if your Solar Plexus Chakra was deficient (Manipura) you might experience fearfulness, anxiety, restlessness and an inability to settle?
Seane’s fascination with the chakras and energy bodies is potent and authentic as she lead one hundred strong participants at The WakeUp Project event through a fairly traditional practice. She also lead a conversation that began to melt down the armor we have built around ourselves and for some, the injuries and illnesses that have resulted.
Seane’s message during the weekend rings out loud and clear. We are all responsible for our internal wake up call.
Once this call is heard, it is necessary to continue to stay in the inner inquiry, diving deep into our psyches and unraveling the myriad of stories we have told ourselves about who we are, what we believe and where we are going. We must see how that plays out in the world we live in, influencing those near and dear to us, and even participating, by some abstract essence, to the external violence we witness daily from news reports.
Seane is passionate about sharing her truth that, as Gandhi said,
Create the change you wish to see.
Stop trying to fix everything out there, and begin with yourself. Understand the way you view the world, other people, your connection to it all and the realization that ultimately we are all one; there is no separation apart from that which we create in our minds.
This pioneer in the Mindful Revolution has definitely done her time on both sides of the fence.
One moment she is gracing the cover of a magazine, the next she is activating on behalf of a myriad of organizations, including a yoga program she founded called ‘Children of the Night’, a shelter that houses and educates adolescent prostitutes in the LA area.
During my journey over weekend with this inspiring woman I was pulled deeply back into the sacredness of yoga – the joy and the sadness, the light and the darkness, the flow and the resistance.
I marveled at the way Corn upholds the tradition of yoga, both in the practice and in the conversation that she has with you during the practice.
In the current popular yoga culture, it has often becomes more about the design of the studio than what is occurring within it. It is empowering to spend time with a women who is not willing to dilute the effect of yoga in any degree.
This is what makes Seane so potent – her absolute attention is with the class, her years of teaching and her own inner work. She is a powerful women who can speak from her authentic voice and is not afraid to shake a few feathers in the process.
Yet she delivers her message with utmost devotion to the essence of what the yoga practice offers us. It’s like an internal prayer that requests we remain present in our body and mind, while continuing to grow, learn and expand our consciousness so as to know our higher self.
During the weekend I found myself one step closer to this version of my higher self – a version I hadn’t seen for a while. I was supported by Seane’s generosity with her teaching and her absolute conviction in her message of understanding that we are truth and we are expressions of a divine creation, sons and daughters of the same universe.
I returned to my teaching turf in Melbourne feeling utterly awake, inspired and enthusiastic about that return to my truth, and the knowledge that I am one of but many voices out there.
We are all learning from the ancient teachings, delving into the information of the energy bodies, and offering back to those that are open to hearing.
I feel clear in the lessons that I have learnt and the prospect of being a light worker in this world.
The pros and cons of the experience of the yoga teacher seem to reveal that in actuality there are no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ moments. The whole experience in itself – the disconnection to teach me what connection really is, the Peter Pan life to reveal how freedom can be found doing what you love, this bigger picture that presents itself in each moment – each moment is perfectly designed to encourage me, if I am willing, to step up and melt down another layer that prevents me from shining the light from within, so I can continue to reveal the path for others to walk.
I have caught Seane Corn fever, and I LOVE the way this feels.
Michelle Jayne is a Yoga Facilitator in Melbourne. She teaches Vinyasa and Restorative style classes at some of Melbourne’s most popular studios, hosts Mini Yoga Retreats seasonally and is about to head the upcoming Winter Escape Retreat in Ubud, Bali. Michelle loves travelling and learning and counts Ana Forrest as one of her main inspirations on the yoga path. You can find more about Michelle on her website.