Two weeks ago, I graduated from the 200 hour YTT program. Here’s photographic evidence that I did indeed, make it through the fire onto the other side in one piece.
My classmates and I were burped out into the big, scary world where statements like “You’re breathing is AMAZING!” and “I can feel your energy.” are met with raised eyebrows and padded rooms instead of warm smiles and thanks. Don’t even get me started on our conversations about Bhandas…
Two weeks out and the biggest lesson that I’ve learned is that I don’t have a clue. This is not to say that I was ill-prepared to teach in my training. I left the training feeling strong in my voice and method of teaching. At the same time, I still don’t know shit.
I don’t know the student’s background or triggers or personal practice or state of mind. I don’t know why they’re coming to my class or what they want to get out of it. I don’t know if they’re sick or injured. I can’t tell the difference between a new student giving 10% effort or 100% effort in an asana. The students’ bodies stretch and move in ways completely foreign to me. The only thing I know 100% is my own body and my own practice.
As a teacher, my personal practice is my lifeline. It’s the umbilical cord attaching me to the space of the room, keeping me alive in the jungle of students. The jungle is terrifying. The only way to survive the jungle is to embrace knowing nothing, and let the trust in my personal practice point north and lead me and my students through class.