The first time I taught a Chakra workshop, was in Peru to a group of 15 men and women who were on a spiritual retreat. I was supposed to be assisting my friend and yoga teacher Chaitanya. Knowing that I was knowledgeable on the subject, he asked me to accompany him in place of his wife Saranagati. The workshop was held at some of the most famous Incan ruins in the Sacred Valley.
Shaina’s Chakra workshop is coming up! Starts 10/30/11
Above the terraced mountainside, about 15 of us gathered, looking down upon the valley below. It was just before sunset and we were all nestled alongside a small stream, amongst the crumbling remains of an Incan empire. The scenery was breathtaking.
Chaitanya took his time diligently setting up crystals, singing bowls, paulo santo and chimes. Finally, it was time to begin. Everyone was seated in a circle, eyes beaming with anticipation. Chaitanya turned to me, leaned over and whispered in my ear, “You teach it”. “What!??”, I exclaimed. “You teach the workshop”, and he smiled. I grimaced back at him, and hesitantly nodded my head in acceptance. Shit, I thought, how did I get myself into this predicament? There was no time for hesitation, everyone was looking to me for an experience, one that I had not in any way prepared for. I prompted everyone to close their eyes and begin connecting with their breath and their reason for being there, at which time I did the same. I asked for guidance and to pretty please not be humiliated.
I began with a rebirthing meditation, which I think came to me because while in Peru, I was delivering babies with Chaitanyas wife – the local midwife. Just days before, we had listened to an online talk about the power of revisiting your own birth, and suggesting a smooth, easy and loving transition from the womb, into the world. The root chakra is all about your connection to family, the material, and your origin. A healthy root chakra is indicative of a clear sense of belonging, and security in knowing that you are well provided for in this life. I have since began every chakra workshop in this same way. As we moved up the spine from chakra to chakra, the words, sounds, and teachings just flowed out of me. I got my wish, I was clearly being guided. When we arrived at the solar plexus, we did a boundary exercise, strengthening our intuition and and our ability to clearly assert ourselves. When we arrived at the heart chakra, many people shed tears, others smiled and laughed, as the love in their hearts swelled. While exploring the throat chakra, people shared deep inner yearnings and we all bonded in an exercise intended to investigate speech in a new way, reconstructing how we communicate. By the time we arrived at the crown chakra, the energy in the circle was both intimate and heightened.
When the workshop was over, it was as though we were all floating on a cloud of bliss. Once we opened our eyes, the sun was setting, filling the sky with various shades of red, orange, blue and purple. All together, we floated off the mountain, feeling grateful for the gifts that had been given to us by this special place. As I walked, I silently expressed gratitude for the teachings that came through me that day, offering these people an experience to remember.
Those very teachings have become the basic content of my chakra workshops. I have done some refining, but the overall teachings have remained the same. I figured that there was a reason for things unfolding in the way they did that day. The most valuable lesson that I learned, is that deep down inside, boundless information dwells, just waiting to be discovered. I could spend my whole life studying about spirituality, but in the end, my spirit is wise and forever connected to an infinite source of knowledge. I feel that my role as a teacher is to help people find their inner voice and inner wisdom. It is my belief that there is nothing more powerful than discovering the truth that lives within you.
For more information about Shaina’s Chakra workshop coming up, see a flyer here. To sign for it, you can do it at the studio or online by clicking on the WORKSHOPS tab here.