Last week I attended a ‘one day retreat’ hosted by a very good friend at the most beautiful venue. It was a group of approximately 10 women ranging in age from 60’s to 30’s.
The retreat was fantastically facilitated and of course I expected no less from our hosts. There was however something that struck a chord with me and that was how beautiful it is when a group of people with similar interests finds themselves together. Our little community immediately began to share thoughts, ideas and experiences with each other and it made me realise how much I long for community and how lacking it is in our contemporary lives.
In yoga we call this community Sanghat. It is in coming together and sharing that we learn new ideas, grow our own ideas, laugh, cry and become more human. With the onset of modern technology we’ve moved away from Sanghat and it is really sad to see the effect that this has on people as we move away from community and towards technology. Facebook cannot ever replace the divine interaction of sitting and sharing time and space with humans who have each had their own lives. Without the stress of constantly checking to see how many ‘likes’ your post got. In this time of technology we are led to believe that every man IS an island, we are expected to do everything on our own. Modern woman has to have it all and prove that she can be a career woman, a wife, mother and friend. Yet traditionally we lived in communities where the elders would help with raising the children and share their knowledge and experiences with the younger generations. Today the elders are no longer revered, and we miss out on so much of their vast knowledge leaving a vacuum in society, this is particularly what I loved about the retreat last week.
The sanghat we receive in attending our yoga classes provides that same effect of having yourself surrounded by people with similar interests to you (or not) and sharing your experiences with them.
Our 40 day kriya has created a wonderful sanghat of yogis all going through the same process and sharing different experiences of the same event. It has made me more empathetic because I realise that even though the event is the same each person has had their own experiences.
While there is so much to be gained from the discipline of a self-practice be sure to mix it up with some sanghat to get out into your yoga community to share, to learn, to love, to laugh and just simply be.
Sat Nam yogis xxx