The Path of Strength & Resilience:
Embodied Tantra Yoga
November 4 & 5 || A ParaYoga Immersion at the Heartwood Center in Evanston Illinois
>SCROLL DOWN TO REGISTER<
Yoga promises so many gifts, but can it resolve our most pressing concerns and challenges? Can it help answer our biggest questions?
The human condition has remained the same since time immemorial. While modern life exacerbates many of our challenges, the roots of our difficulties are timeless. As the Buddha described it, suffering is part of life, yet there is a solution.
The vision of yoga and tantra, as outlined by the ancient texts like the Gherand Samahitam and the Hatha Yoga Pradipika allows us to see our best self as well as gain insight into our less-than-idea qualities. Indeed, both yoga and tantra are paths dedicated to expanding self-knowledge to better understand ourselves, others, our communities, the world at large and finally Source.
At a basic level the tools of tantra offer uniquely powerful and practical processes to resolve stress and lift the veils of our misunderstanding. Approached holistically, the practices take us to even greater heights by lighting the twin flames of wisdom and compassion,thereby allowing us to go deeper: to not only see our limitations, but to evolve, take inspired action, and finally to tap into a lasting source of love of life and others.
The weekend workshop will feature 5 sessions. Four different practicums highlighted by a specific focus and yoga, meditation and contemplative practices that bring these themes to life.
Saturday will feature a panel discussion with esteemed colleagues and teachers who will share the practical aspects of living their yoga and teaching, as well as how we claim our humanity along our spiritual journey while fortifying our communities. Everyone registered for Saturday sessions is welcome.
Session 1 | 9:30 – 12:30pm: The Yamas and Niyamas of Tantra
When practiced mindfully, Tantrik Hatha Yoga is a supreme approach to building resilience. Self-regulation, the methodical cultivation of life force, are the well-known parts of it. But according to the tradition, additional contextual elements must also include the practices related to insight, reflection, charity, and forgiveness––prescribed as being necessary for our full development as spiritual beings. We will practice and explore some of these critical themes that help us to cultivate our spiritual potential.
Panel Discussion | 1:15 – 2:15pm
Meeting This Moment Together: Cultivating Curiosity, Community & Strength A conversation with ParaYoga Certified teachers and colleagues. An opportunity to elevate our personal understanding as panelists share about the practical aspects of living their yoga and teaching, discuss their concerns, the gifts of practice, learning from life’s challenges, claiming our humanity and a call for renewed community.
Session 2 | 2:30 – 4:30pm: The Supremacy of Silence
The heart of yoga is learning to still the movement of mind. A still mind becomes increasingly transparent, from which we gain insight into its subtle patterns including our self-created challenges. This is the plateau from which to begin to deepen the practices of self-inquiry. Journey deeper into stillness, expand awareness and move closer to the intelligence that pervades the natural world. From here intellect blossoms into intuition and right action flows spontaneously. Eventually it carries us to Source–the Sacred.
Session 3 | 9:30 – 12:30pm: Gherand Samahitam
According to this ancient Tantrik text, the complete path of yoga includes far more than just physical practices. Instead of describing itself as a system of Hatha, the text describes it as “ghata yoga” (ghata means “pot”)—which refers to the concept of the necessity of baking our mind and body on the way to maturing fully. It teaches a sevenfold path that includes contemplative approaches, combined with the familiar techniques of hatha as the journey toward wholeness.
Session 4 | 2:30 – 4:30pm: Sri Vidya
Sri Vidya marks a high point of tantric philosophy and practice. The most “resplendent” (Sri) science of the sublime, it invites us, if we are prepared––to dissolve the wall that appears to divide the mundane from the sacred. As we expand our capacity for inclusivity––both within ourselves and the world around us––we become more capable of embracing the totality. This is the process that leads us to become most wholly ourselves and to live and breathe in partnership with the Sacred.
Closing | 4:30 – 5:30pm
An opportunity to share reflections in smaller groups and as a collective. The intention is to not only renew a sense of community, but to promote sensitive integration of the entire weekend.