Morning breaks through the windows the last Sunday that I have come in to open Mysore SF. There are no students yet. The sun’s glow is diffused by white curtains. The room feels soft, somewhat malleable.
I have gotten to know this space well over the last seven and a half months I have been here. As a teacher, I have observed if from the first moments of the morning, when it is still dark, the heaters have just started to warm the room, it is a little like a womb, and the room feels like a space where the world asleep and the world awake meets. I see one mat, then two. I see how the room ignites, how the first round of surya namaskara is like a match being struck against the rough edge of a match box. How the students who come in one by one, or two by two, between 5:45 to 6:15 are like kindling to a flame. By 7am, it is warm and toasty. By 7:30, it’s a proper fire, we are cooking in here. Come 8am, the whole room is aglow. By 8:30, the remaining practitioners have the feel of glowing embers.
The room is an oven, sometimes it is a furnace. It is a kitchen and a laboratory. On other days, or for another person, it is something else. It can be an arena for heroes battling their multiple-headed demons. It can be a safe room or a therapist’s office. Other times it is a temple or solitary confinement. It can be a heaven, a purgatory, a hell. It is a stage where countless scenes are played, replayed, and eventually deconstructed.
It is a road, which, at first, might seem like a short road that goes nowhere, but eventually becomes a long journey which seems to have no end–sometimes it goes somewhere while other times it feels like it goes nowhere once again, and that either way is ok because what matters is that you’re walking the road, nothing else.
And then there are days it’s just a sweaty room full of sweaty people and you wonder why you are there at all. And then there are days where it’s still this weird sweaty room but you kind of just love it.
For every person everyday is different.
A Mysore space is not an ordinary room. It is a field of infinite possibilities.
I will miss this particular Mysore room, the room itself, yes, but also the energy of it, the countless stories that unfold here, the stories of courage, raw grit, the personal battles, the moments–some so small, they could go undetected–of incredible vulnerability, those precious breaks where something shifts. Of course, this happens in all Mysore rooms where real practice and teaching is happening. But for me, Mysore SF is where I have been lucky enough to live it these months; to have a home in such a space is a gift.
Life goes on in this infinite room. For Holiday schedules: http://www.mysoresf.com. As for me, I head to the Philippines soon and will be teaching there January 4-9, 2016 at Surya in Makati, Manila before making my way to India in February.