Connecting With Community

Below is an incredibly sweet note from a student who recently attended a TBB Meditation Challenge.

Hi Andy,

I was endorsing your workshop to the nice woman working at STIL STUDIO the other day. I told her I had attended one of your workshops and that I was a complete novice, and that you are wonderful (which you are!) and that she should certainly attend. You get my thumbs up, way UP!

I started my yoga practice a little over 10 years ago, but it wasn’t until the past year or so that I noticed I needed something else other than asana. Don’t get me wrong, I love the asana part of my practice, but something inside of me told me I needed more, that I deserved more.

So, I began seeking out ways to get in touch with with the real me, my authentic Self. I started practicing another style of yoga (Para Yoga), focusing on pranayama and realized that beginning a meditation practice might be what I need the most. But where was I to begin?

After so many years of practicing yoga (asana), I sort of thought I already was meditating.  Plus, I kept thinking people would laugh if after so many years, how did I now have questions about beginning a meditation practice?

And then I saw a posting on FB about a Meditation Workshop for Beginners at Health Yoga Life.  Instantly, I knew I had to sign up.  After all, I was a total beginner and just wanted a place to begin. Well, on March 11, 2012, I began my meditation practice and it all started with you.

You simultaneously helped to ‘demystify’ what a meditation practice is, helped us to understand just how magical a meditation practice can be, and how extraordinary our ‘inner teachers’ are. Not only are you down to earth, friendly and sweet, but you are knowledgeable, well-practiced,  and have the gift of being able to make something that once seemed so complicated and unreachable, so attainable. You told us about your background, how you began your meditation practice, gave us a brief overview on the benefits of meditation, asked us to join you in meditation during the workshop and above all, simply listened. I think sometimes we’re just so confused and caught up in our day-to-day lives that we don’t know how to just stop, take a moment and just listen. But, you provided us with a space where we could feel comfortable asking questions, commenting on how we feel and understanding that we are not alone. I think we’re programmed to think we can handle anything, that ‘faster, harder and more’ is better, that asking for help (from others and from ourSelves) is prohibited.

So, thank you. Thank you for introducing us to a new way, for showing us that our ‘true Selves’ have always been there, and that with a little hard work, commitment and (quiet), we can find them. Thank you for opening the door for me and for guiding me. While I’m still new to my meditation practice and I know I still have much more work to do, I know it’s something that I’ll always have in my life and it’s something that I will always treasure. It’s a journey that I am happy to take, and one where I know I am not alone.

Also, about your Meditation Challenge, I wanted to let you know that ever since taking your workshop in March, I have been meditating twice a day. I started off at about 12 min./session and now I do two, 20 min. sessions daily. Yesterday was the first day I only meditated once (in the morning). And every time I meditate or struggle to find the ‘gap’, I hear your voice reminding me to not ‘try’ so hard and to think of meditating like the mist coming off of the Charles River.

So, I’m thinking anyone who attends your workshop will have no problem taking on and meeting your challenge. You help people to see that meditation can and should be practiced by everyone, that it can be an invaluable asset in our lives, and that with practice, we can attain a little bit of the peace, calm and happiness that you so graciously exude. Thank you for introducing me to my meditation practice. I will be eternally grateful. Keep on doing what you’re doing… it’s working!

I hope you, Catharine and Hayden are all doing well.

Have a nice rest of your weekend.

Nicole Chow

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