Saturday mornings at WYC are devoted to classic yoga practices. If you have never meditated before, you can come in at 7:00 and get basic instruction. Then stay for the actual sit at 7:30. If you already have a meditation practice feel free to come in for that. Arrive before 7:30 because the 30 minute sit starts on time. There is a Q&A after the meditation. We call it a “dharma talk” because we focus on gaining knowledge about spiritual practice.
At 8:30 Sat morning, and at 7:30 on Mon nights, there’s Yin Yoga. It’s relaxing, but not necessarily easy because the poses are held for a long time. Even for most beginners the poses are easily adopted, but holding a stretch without any muscle engagement for up to five minutes can be emotionally as well as physically challenging. The thing is that people who don’t experience their life force pleasurably on a regular basis become numb. So if you want to feel how pleasurable it is just to experience “prana,” come a practice Yin Yoga. In connection with our Meditation classes, this becomes a positive loop. We meditate and learn why we need to stretch. We stretch and learn how to experience what real meditation is about. We meditate for real. We do Yin Yoga. We meditate some more. We become enlightened. Kidding. But it is cool what happens.
Also, starting this summer, Dr. Laura Cueva-Miller will be teaching Mindfulness on Thursday nights. This practice is also related to meditation and yin yoga. Everyone is welcome, especially healthcare professionals looking to help themselves and others manage the stress of life.
MEDITATION AT WYC
Really, everything we do at Western Yoga College is relatable to mediation, or at least the cultivation of it. But there is no actual pre-requisite for attending mediation sessions at WYC. Everyone is welcome and everyone is free to meditate however he or she chooses.
Thirty minutes can be very challenging at first. But the thing about starting with a relatively long sit from the start is that it gives people a chance to really experience their mind. In thirty minutes, what a person’s mind does becomes obvious. If he or she pays any attention at all, some facts come into the picture, and while some of those facts may seem like negative realities, coming face to face with the challenge of having a mind can bring some much needed clarity. After all, it’s lack of clarity that allows us to be so self-deceptive. We don’t tell ourselves the truth because it’s so easy to lie. Then mediation helps us recognize that and maybe for the first time, we uncover what’s beneath all the self-deception, and with some encouragement from a whole community of other meditators, it’s possible for us to be truthfulness enough to see the natural goodness being uncovered.
It’s easy for people to spend their whole life without that happening. We stay in self-deception. And though we we don’t even know we’re being untruthful, the unidentified feeling of not being honest with our self creates a negative sense of who we are. So, in that state of mind, no one thinks they have natural goodness inside them. They think the opposite. Still, everyone wants to be happy. So by luck one day, a person gives mediation a try even though there is no conscious sense of what might happen.
Then, after facing the challenge for however long the initial challenge of meditation presents itself, the aforementioned clarity happens. Then, with support of a group, the natural goodness is uncovered. That’s really just the beginning. But there is no point in describing anything more to someone at the start. And if starting to meditate is too challenging, then start doing yoga first. Stick with yoga practice until it’s possible for you to start meditating.
So, in any case, we hope you feel like Western Yoga College is the place for you. We call ourselves a college to make it clear that we are not just a yoga studio. But there’s nothing fancy about us. Anyone who wants to attend WYC can do so. We work with anyone’s budget. And while we accept donations, we don’t charge at all for our meditation sessions. It’s totally free. If all you want to do is come in and meditate, that’s fine. Practice any way you want, but we’ll be there supporting the possibility of you practicing on a teacher level. That’s what we do. WYC is a teaching school. People who start with mediation actually have an advantage when it comes to yoga practice because classic yoga practice is meditation. Lots of so-called yoga teachers today don’t meditate. It’s a huge disadvantage. All yoga teachers should be meditators. It only makes sense.