My reinvigorating weekend at the Sivananda Yoga Camp in Quebec
I awake at 5:15 am in the women’s dorm and begin to get ready for the 6 am start to the day at Sivananda Yoga Camp. I walk out into the half-light of dawn in the Laurentian Mountains, and the cool air spiked with dew is refreshing. I feel part of a big, green, living eco-system. After a quick shower in the communal women’s bathhouse, and a stop at the artesian well to fill my water bottle with sweet water, I take my place in the temple for morning satsang. The community gathers around me and we begin the day with meditation followed by joyful chanting and a talk by one of the spiritual leaders.
After a short break, we assemble for yoga — there is a class for beginners and another for intermediate students, who are familiar with the Sivananda style of yoga. The beginner’s class is gentle and instructive; the intermediate class is invigorating and challenges students to push the comfort zone we habitually occupy. After a lengthy sivasana and more devotional chanting, we head to the dining hall for a big, healthy vegetarian breakfast. I sit outside at a wooden picnic table, surrounded by glorious views of the rolling, forest-covered mountains and the big, dramatic sky that changes moment to moment. It is an incredibly energizing way to begin the day and will, I hope, help give me the clarity I need to face an anxiety-provoking dilemma in my life. Continue Reading →