Kundalini yoga with the first full moon of 2014
Last night I went to the meditation and kundalini yoga session that is organised every full moon here in Cuernavaca by our group of kundalini teachers. I don’t often get to go as work usually gets in the way but last night I did make it. It was a really good class with an excellent senior teacher and 2 hours later we finished, feeling good and peaceful and almost floating on air. Maybe that sounds like I am exaggerating but really I am not.
I have been practicing kundalini for nearly 20 years now and I love it. In fact, I have started to do Level 2 of the teacher training. I did the Level 1 training about 9 or 10 years ago and that was hard. Level 2 is even harder and consists of 6 modules, each one on a different theme and the commitment to meditation and studying is actually quite high. I did the first module a year ago, on the subject of Conscious Communication, 6 full days from 5 am until about 7 pm at night. Exhausting but fascinating, a journey of self discovery and the realisation that even though you think you might be a good communicator that it’s really all about the intention more than anything else, when you communicate with others. It isn’t just a question of words, but the order in which you say them, your tone of voice, your body language, and all this depends on from which chakra you are talking from. Sounds easy to understand? Not really and you have to do loads of meditation to get close to understanding enough to start communicating more effectively. We had to do a 40 day meditation which was hard, very hard, to do, but I did it. What we now have to do is the exam which is looming in February. I’ve forgotten so much so this weekend will be spent going over material, reading and meditating.
I am thinking of doing the next module, this time on the subject of the Mind and Meditation, which will no doubt be fascinating. I have to make a decision soon, sort out my finances and then go for it. It’s 3 days in February and another 3 in May.
Taking an exam in Mexico is a bit of a joke. The idea of an exam always fills me with panic and the possibility of failing it is always uppermost in my mind. But then I remember that in Mexico exams are ridiculous. The first exam I ever took here was when I went on an advanced Spanish course in Mexico City, years ago. It was just 4 months and the emphasis was on learning the subjunctive which is incredibly complicated and I have never mastered it and I don’t suppose I ever will. Anyway, the exam was on the last day and the teacher gave out the papers and then disappeared. So what happened? We all started helping each other, I couldn’t believe it. But that was precisely why the teacher left, so that we could do it as we wanted. I felt terrible and thought no way, I can’t do this, but then everyone was yelling out the answers and so you just get sucked into it all.
When I was teaching I was a fierce invigilator and would allow absolutely no cheating or talking or going to the loo, or the use of phones or computers. I made the students leave their bags at the front of the class. The students hated me for it but that was the only way to stop them cheating. I was helping out another teacher once and had to oversee an exam and one guy was actively copying from the next who had pushed his paper closer so that the first guy could copy it more easily. I had to literally stand between the two to stop them. The copier is now a film director, the other works at Walmart, both very successful. Neither they or I have forgotten this. They would argue that copying is not important, it hasn't stopped them being successful in their own right. I would argue that it's wrong, from a moral standpoint. Naturally I would not win the argument.
So the yoga exams are the same. You are allowed to take the exam with your books at hand, in groups so you can discuss your answers. It’s totally ridiculous. Obviously no one fails. I am patently very old fashioned and too English in this respect, cheating is something that you just do not do. That was how I was brought up and it’s hard to change. However, if that’s the way we are allowed to do it then that’s how we will do it. But you do have to study first, no book is useful if you don’t know what’s in it. At the end of the day it is not really an exam, it's a final piece of work, and that's the best way of looking at it.
So the moon was absolutely beautiful last night, in a clear sky full of stars, lighting up my garden. It was a good evening and I slept really well.