Thursday, May 07, 2009

Sanga Hats

Three hats and a scarf to go before the 18th, when I leave for two weeks of yoga therapy training in Tennessee. I'm focused and going with an easy but solid choice of the Turn a Square hat. This one is for someone who requested reds, purples and blues. Cascade 220 left over from a felted purse and a Noro Silk Garden in reds, blues, pinks and purples. In a week and a half I go back into Sangaland to spend two weeks with 30 other students as we review case studies in yoga therapy. Sanga means community, the people who you choose to spend time with, surround yourself with. According to the Yoga Sutra-s, a good sanga can help to reduce suffering by providing companionship, good advice, support, laughter. A bad sanga can increase agitation, bad choices, confusion.

It will be intense. This is the first time that we will be showing our work to the group, and I anticipate some strong emotions as people choose how to respond both to critiques of their own work as well as commenting on the work of others. A group of yoga teachers is not always more evolved; they simply realize more clearly when ego, worry, defensiveness, pride shape how they respond to others.

In preparation for the trip, I'm trying to get all my yoga and knitting ducks in a row. For the yoga, I'm working on reviewing my notes (will one more Sanskrit term stick in my crowded brain? and wow, I've learned a lot in two and a half years) and putting together as clear and concise a presentation of my case studies as I can. That means writing up the paperwork, making 35 copies - including practices written for each student - and gathering my thoughts so that I can stand up in front of the group, say sufficiently interesting things to keep the group awake, and be efficient in making the points or raising the questions that I'd like to hear suggestions for. Such as: what best to give a student who is very busy, very stressed, has a breathing problem, but almost falls asleep after just a few exhale-focused breaths (which usually help to lengthen the breath and create a relaxation response)?

For the knitting, I'm taking along the Ruffled Shawl, a skein of Silky Wool in the garnet color and a beautiful burnt orange for the unruffly ruffled edge (meaning that it will be more of a soft undulation than a girly ruffle, I hope). And the goal is to complete the rest of the hats that I offered to knit for colleagues at the training in October before I leave. After the one pictured above, I have left a version in brown Cascade 220 with a brown, orange and red Silk Garden; a blue Cascade 220 with a grey, blue, and green Silk Garden; and maybe an orange scarf for someone from Arizona who doesn't wear hats.

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