Time is the most precious resource we have in this busy age, and can often be the most significant factor when we are considering developing our practice and exploring our personal growth. And so often time is the reason that we put off taking a course, booking a retreat, or even getting to a regular yoga class. These days, our needs have been seen and met with an incredible variety of yoga, fitness, personal growth and meditation programs that you can study and experience in your own time at home.
In a recent newsletter I discussed the enormous catalog of downloads, podcasts and many free classes available on sites like YouTube, Itunes, and Yoga Basics. Podcasts give you an opportunity to experience a wide range of teachers and styles, and all on your own schedule. (for that article visit https://yogatrinity.com/ArticlesandRecipes/FeaturedArticles/tabid/181/Default.aspx#homealone)
Digital media certainly doesn’t take the place of being in the rich and dynamic environment of a class, but if regular classes aren’t happening in your life, what do you have to lose? And for Yoga Instructors, podcasts are a great way to experience new styles, cues, transitions and variations that you can bring to your classes.
But, beyond the practice podcasts and the physical explorations, what else is available in home study that you might consider exploring? Here are a few programs that I have found practical, experiential, and truly inspiring:
The Rosicrucian Order or AMORC is an ancient organization dedicated to the academic and experiential exploration of the natural laws of our world. With lessons coming to you by mail, and a suggestion to spend 1 hour once a week in formal study, this is a system of study and personal growth that can fit into the busiest of schedules. As well, there are lodges in cities around the world that offer regular meetings, discussions, and group events to support your practice. The Rosicrucian Order offers a fascinating exploration of self, reality, and the magic behind it all. The Rosicrucian Order is particularly suited to those who prefer a more intellectual exploration. And far from being “new age”, famous Rosicrucians include Leonardo daVinci, Francis Bacon, and Marie Curie. You can find out more about the Rosicrucian Order at www.amorc.org
The motto of SoundsTrue Audio is “tools and teachings to spark your inner evolution”, and I have certainly found this to be the case. Soundstrue has a website that offers audio and video programs from teachers around the world sharing personal growth, meditation, insight and wisdom teachings that are sure to inspire your life. Authors include Jack Kornfield, Stephen Cope, Ekhart Tolle, Pema Chodron, and the teacher whose work I am currently exploring, Reginald Ray, whose programs “Meditating With The Body” and “Your Breathing Body” are a fascinating study and a rich practice.
SoundsTrue is a well respected company that has been offering insight and inspiration for over 15 years, and you are sure to find some resources there that can support you in your “inner evolution”. Check out www.soundstrue.com for all their offerings.
If you are looking for a more in-depth study experience, Naropa University, offers “Buddhist Inspired Contemplative Education” and their correspondence programs in Eastern spirituality, psychology, arts, and deep ecology are all very well recommended. You can find out more at www.naropa.edu. For those of you wanting to delve more deeply into the philosophical foundations of Yoga, Georg Feuerstein’s Traditional Yoga Studies programs are world-renowned, most particularly his studies on the Yoga Sutras and Yoga philosophy. www.traditionalyogastudies.com is the website, or you can join their Facebook group to learn more.
Finally, I have just received a few emails on an upcoming (and apparently the first ever) Virtual Yoga Conference, allowing you to benefit from the teachings of a wide range of practitioners and teachers in a conference “environment” without having to travel. You can get details at: https://www.yogahub.com/ref/raymond/a71bc19d.html and if you want to attend, you can use the coupon code RAY219 to save $100 on the virtual conference fees.
Published in the Mind Body Messenger Newsletter 2010