(Discorso di Sharath Jois a Aravind Godwda)
One month has gone by and I am left with just a few more days to spend in Mysore. I am already feeling that funny butterflies sensation in my belly when thinking about my life waiting for me in Milan. I am starting to miss my family, my friends and my cat. Yet I don’t want to leave India… Not yet! So many things I would like to do here, and not enough time left. I will miss practicing with Saraswathi, chanting, Sanskrit classes, the feeling of living in a Yoga community, actually a Yoga city. Wherever you turn, a friendly smile, somebody you can immediately relate to, somebody that won’t think you’re a bit mad talking about bandha, dristhi, asana, Yoga Sutra and the likes. But it’s almost time to bring India back with me. It’s time to give back what I received here, and most of all, what I felt. I never thought this practice could be healing to such powerful extents, even if I have been practicing for years. Coming here put me to the test on many levels. I learnt how to deal with my fears and how important it is to always be yourself, on and off the mat. Over the past few weeks I learnt that my slipped discs cannot stop my practice and can actually heal through it. Sometimes pain is more in our minds than in our body! My practice grew in stability and concentration and I learnt how to balance my natural flexibility with my new strength. But most of all… I met some amazing individuals that I want to thank. Some are old friends, some are new additions to my life that I sincerely hope to cross path with soon again. Greg Nardi, a Teacher I have known since 2007, and his husband Juan Carlos Valan. Alessandro Sigismondi, photographer extraordinaire, his wife Paula Vahos and lovely Leo, you’ve got a friend forever. The brave and intense Taylor Hunt, whose book I can’t wait to read, and his great family. PJ Heffernan and his rock and roll energy. Sam Chen and his adjustments… and vegan cakes! Mark Robberds and Deepika Metha with their beautiful love. Kelly Hogan and our rickshaw ride to Devaraja market. My Italian crew: Martina and Chiara Cova, The Best room mates ever, Rosa Tagliafierro and her hugs just when you need one. My Teacher Elena De Martin with her wisdom and experience, so great to have her here. Maria Luisa Gorla and our afternoons by the pool. Susanna Finocchi and her wonderful smile. Gian Renato Marchisio and his Sama Konasana performance on the rocks. Every single Yogi who practiced next to me at Saraswathi’s and in the main shala. Lakshmish and his great tuitions; Arvind and his philosophy talks, Jayashree and her melodic voice, Akhil Lanka and his healing singing bowls, Nektarious and his sitar. Sudha and her tempting Yoga Shop not to mention Meena and her jewellery… Manju and Ravi the rickshaw drivers. All the guys at OM Cafe, Chakra House, Santosha, Anoki, Anu’s Cafe, Depth’n’green, Kushi, Maya… All the Yogi’s hung outs in Gokulam. And the chai master Amruth Cafe! There is not enough space to mention all of you guys and I have to work on remembering names, but you are in my heart and always will be. I will think of all of you every morning before practicing and it will be like being here, only on a more subtle level. I love you. We are One.
In India, I am amazed at how many things I am quite happy without. No TV, radio, CD player, newspapers or magazines. No PC. No dishwasher or washing machine. No supermarkets, no car. No phone calls, texting or posting only when wifi is available. No high heels! And the list could go on. In exchange here’s what I got: practice every morning with Guruji’s daughter, Saraswathi Jois and her wonderful assistants. Saturday conferences with Sharath. Chanting, Sanskrit and Hatha Yoga Pradipika with Lakshmish. Philosophy class with Arvind. Sound healing with Akhil Lanka. But most of all: eye contact, conversations, random kindness, hugs and smiles from everybody – practitioners, Teachers, rickshaw drivers, shop owners, every single person I meet on the streets. Help from whoever you ask, from the Ashtangi community as well as any Indian person I bump into. Kids calling me at every corner. Praying at any temple, where there is always somebody ready to tell me how to do it properly. Lovely evenings watching the Indian sky and the moon phases. Wonderful books at the Green House and rest days at the pool or at the Market with new and old friends. Time is running up and in a few days I’ll be back to my hectic western world, where now is always contaminated by the “what’s next” thought. This is what I want to take back with me. The ability to live rooted in the here and now, wherever I am. Living at the pace of our soul, that never worries about the future or cries about the past, because only the present moment is real, and we have to give it all the love we’ve got.