Saturday, 13 October 2012

For a change, our Friday night Hatha practice was replaced with a public Kundalini class.  Before I arrived in Vancouver, I’d never even heard of Kundalini.  It’s like no other form of yoga I’ve ever practiced, and if you asked me to sit in on a class a few weeks ago, I would have sworn that it’s not yoga.  Fortunately, a friend from YTT had taken me to a Kundalini class last week so it wasn’t a complete shock to the system.  Kundalini is the specialty of Semperviva director Gloria.  It’s a whole body work out that stimulates your nervous system and mind in a Saturday Night Fever sort of way.  According to the Yogi Bhajan, a Kundalini guru, "Kundalini yoga consists of active and passive asana-based kriyas (power of thought), pranayama (breath control), and meditations which target the whole body system (nervous system, glands, mental faculties, chakras) to develop awareness, consciousness and spiritual strength.”

Kundalini yoga with Gloria is an intense dance party.  I’m not talking Saturday night at Chateau Marmont, gin and tonic in hand - this is 4am on a Sunday morning at Fabric or Ministry of Sound.  Without all the cocaine floating around.  If you need to let go of your ego for a while, dancing in the dark like an idiot with 80+ other yogis dancing like idiots is a great way to shed any self-conscious insecurities.  I have a love-hate relationship with kundalini – or at least Gloria’s classes.  I loathe holding my arms in the air for 20 minutes at a time.  At the moment, extensive periods of squatting are agony for me.  But then, when I’m swearing that I will never go to one of her classes again, we’re jumping up and down to Enrique Iglesias, or belting our Time of My Life (no joke).  There's lots of singing.  I can think of a whole lot of people who would give up their prejudices towards yoga and jump right into this if they attended a Kundalini class.   

There are a few videos online of Gloria demonstrating Kundalini, but this was the only one I could find with her leading a class.  This is a taste of what it’s like, but just imagine it with the lights off and pounding pop music in the background.  

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