I had the pleasure of attending a yoga workshop with Sri Sudhir Tiwari at ashtanga.ie last weekend. Tiwari, visiting from Lonavala India, comes from a rich yogic heritage and is an expert in traditional yoga practice and Ayurveda, meaning that he is as versed on the ancient teachings of the gurus as he is on how it applies to modern living.
As if by chance or maybe destiny, I find myself in the lucky position to be able to attend a week long yoga retreat taught by Paula and David from ashtanga.ie in the small hilltop town of Montefiore, on the east coast of Italy. The road to Angeli di Montefiore where the the yoga centre is located is steep, winding and narrow but offers the most beautiful panoramic views overlooking sloping valleys down to the sparkling blue Adriatic Ocean. The owner Heike, who picks me up from the nearest bus stop, tells me that angels brought her to Montefiore and indeed the old stone farmhouse and courtyard alongside the purpose built yoga shala do seem to have a celestial mystique about them.
Manju Pattabi Jois is one of the most experienced teachers of Ashtanga yoga in the world and as the son of the Sri K. Pattabi Jois the renowned guru of Ashtanga Yoga Tradition, he has been practicing yoga since the age of seven. Manju has been coming to Dublin annually for many years and his workshops are typically full, drawing a large crowd of yoga practitioners. When I was just starting out in yoga as a beginner, I attended one such workshop and remember being genuinely inspired by his wise and learned approach. Last week, he held a 5 day workshop in ashtanga.ie and though my schedule was tight, I managed to sign up for one morning of mysore practice, pranayama (breath) and chanting. Continue reading “A morning with Manju”