Gifts of Teaching: the Students


Among the many gifts of teaching, first and foremost are the students.

Truth: a teacher needs students–even one student will do; no teachings can occur without the creative presence of someone who needs a lesson.

The relationship between a teacher and a student can be a funny one. There may be little to no details to fill the storehouse that make up intimacy between people and there might not be much talk, small or big.

But in a Mysore space, the practice inevitably brings a strange closeness. Breath and the asanas unite them. The teacher watches and waits for the right opening. And when that opening inevitably comes, students, when they are ready, surrender.

In those moments, there is a precious exchange. It is like two travelers meeting on a shared journey, one welcoming the other to a new road.

A month into my Cairo stint, feeling very grateful for the students who have been attending Ashtanga Yoga Egypt classes this month, who have entrusted me with their bodies and their practice in the absence of their regular teacher Iman Elsherbiny, who is currently studying with our teacher Sharath (grandson of Pattabhi Jois) in India. This is the precious thread that connects us, from which the energy of this practice passes from one person to the next.

I am grateful for the regularity in which many come to class and the dedication to show up despite crazy Cairo traffic, politics, life at large. Looking forward to one more month of teaching here!

Photo: Flowers care of student Zeina. Thank you!

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