Sometimes, while teaching yoga, I say something ridiculous by mistake and people actually do it.
It takes me off guard at times to realize that if not carefully paying attention, one in the role of yoga teacher can easily abuse the power that’s handed to them in the yoga teaching setting.
It opens a much deeper discussion about student-teacher dynamics and how culturally we view our teachers as "all knowers" or holding a secret key to something that is special, and desired.
While a devoted teacher must have the capacity to share practices that help individuals evolve and digest the wisdom of the yoga teachings, it must not ever be a power-play. The best teachers I know have taught me that at the end of the day I don’t need them.
In my view, teacher and student are one person. As a yoga "sharer", my job is to keep practicing, keep learning, and find the verbal and body language to communicate the teachings with reverence and respect to the best of my ability—openly, vulnerably, with humility, curiosity, and care. So that those who study with me may make meaning of the yoga and life teachings relative to their own experience and interpretation.
It’s important for us to ask, am I holding the students best interest at heart here or am I blindly leading with ego? Am I transferring, projecting, countertransferring? Am I stepping into my role without having to put another above nor beneath me? Do I grasp that even if I see us as equals, they may not, and, can I hold space for this with compassion and heart?
Before we can ask ourselves how we want to step into role of teacher, we first must look at ourselves as student. What are our personal expectations on our teachers? What type of student am I? How do I learn best and how does this differ from how others learn?
Most always, the wishes we have on our teachers and how we tend to interpret information will inform what type of teacher we will become.
One does not have to be a perfect person to share yoga. Yogis too are messy humans trying to figure out this wild ride called life. All we need is to keep walking towards healing, and the willingness to bring others along towards their own healing.
Transmute. Transform. Share. For the greater good of all.
If you have any desire to carve your path as a yoga sharer, let me know. After a two+ year re-boot, FLY Yoga School Teacher Training will return in 2023! Yay!
It will be a hybrid online and in-person experience. Dates and more details, coming soon!