For years I have been following Hari Kirin and wished I could go to one of her trainings, and this year, with the generous help of Gwaii Trust Society, I was able to finally go and immerse myself in a sacred practice of art making, yoga, being in community with fellow teachers, artists and art therapists.
Community and Alchemy
As Hari Kirin writes, "The combination of yoga and the arts invites an experience of wholeness and healing that brings.... to be whole.... even for one breath is healing. It leads to being fully human, to heal and become a source of healing. Clearly more than ever before, today we need a sense of interconnectedness of our world. Whatever happens to any of us human, animal, plant or ecosystem is happening to all of us."
My experience within this community was indeed deeply healing, alchemy happened and transformations took place.
Our group turned out to be thrown in the deep end, as we had to present our practicum on the second day of the training! We were asked to come up with an art project incorporating Affirmation Dolls, brought from India by Krupa Devi. I had the honour to teach with Navneet Khalsa, yoga teacher and art therapy counsellor, Prema Dev Inderjeet, a trauma informed Art Therapist, and Sahaj Kaur, yoga teacher and established artist.
It was fun and challenging in a team of 4 experienced teachers and artists to come up with a theme for our class, division of who teaches what and giving each part enough time: yoga, meditation, art, relaxation/closure. Deep listening, being able to alter/adjust on the spot, limit of time, letting go of expectations and the need to be perfect, trusting each other, and recognizing when participants are in their own (sometimes difficult) process, were all part of the lessons I came away with from this practicum. I'm so grateful for this enriching opportunity!
Krupa Devi, International Art Therapist and founder of Sankalpa Journeys in India, and Siri Gopal (Kristi Williamson), a a dynamic, embodied movement facilitator, assisted Hari Kirin during this training:
The Mountain that Stands Alone
Thomas encouraging us to embrace the eccentricity of being an artist, an image maker, allowing our soul to speak from this place of solitude and eccentricity while bridging existence in the outer world.
On this day, the Great Monadnock Mountain, the 'Mountain that Stands Alone' cleared the clouds and showed itself to us in all its glory.
While diving deep into the waters of art, yoga and soul, I found a great treasure in the depths, patiently waiting for me for over 40 years. It's been a re-birth of a kind and now I'm in need of rest, solitude and quiet to process, to cocoon and to allow the creative process to unfold naturally. I can't wait to see what emerges next!
Thank you to all the Sacred Soul Sisters and Brother who attended this training. It was a deep honour and pleasure to work with you, to share the sacred space with you, to learn, to grow, to transform.
Thank you to the generosity of Gwaii Trust Society, for their Workshop & Mentorship Grant Program, to make my attendance to this training and journey possible!
And last but not least, thank you to our family for supporting this time for training, for developing myself in order to be able to give back to our community. You know who you are. Love you all!
Blessings, love and light to all.