I’ve taught at OM Yoga Center since 2009, and I’ve been practicing there since 2004. Cyndi’s recent announcement that the studio is closing at the end of June represents a big upheaval in my professional and personal life. Everyone in the OM community is sad to see it go, and anxious about what comes next – and a lot has already been said about impermanence, gratitude, sitting with emotions, and how practice helps us deal with change.
OM has provided a container for me – a supportive space to engage my practice as a yogi and as a teacher. While the physical container is going away, the people who have embodied it, and the practices it allowed us to cultivate, are still going strong. For me, the keys are precise attention to detail, without losing sight of the big picture; the indispensability of feedback well given and well received; and the centrality of honest and direct interpersonal connection. I intend to carry these practices forward in whatever else I do.
A lineage is not a rote transmission of instructions. We are responsible for teaching not what our teachers taught, but what we learned. A tradition that is not continually reinterpreted will stagnate and become ineffective. So as teachers, our task is not to mourn OM but to move on.
For 15 years, OM has been a gathering place for people who are serious about their practice, but not overly serious about themselves – people who are willing to engage with the real difficulties in their lives and share that engagement with others. Like any organization, it hasn’t been 100% successful in its goals, and the dispersal of so many wonderful teachers can’t be counted as good. If I’m dissatisfied with this situation, it’s because my teachers have cultivated high expectations and rigorous intentions. It’s really their fault ;).
I’ll still be teaching after June (details soon!). And I’ll still be refining that teaching to be more helpful, precise, perspicacious, and direct. Thanks ॐ.