This article first appeared in OM Yoga magazine's Valentine Special, February 2022
The power of compassionate community. By Sevanti
I have shared my love of Partner Yoga before and have, of course, focused on the love between partners and families in a duo/group practice.
As someone who is passionate about the state of our beautiful planet at this point in time, I now want to focus on how Partner Yoga can bring us all together for the benefit of our shared natural environment…the ultimate sense of unity.
We know that the practice of yoga helps us return to a more gentle, centred, grounded, loving and respectful place within ourselves.
When we join together with one or more others and practice in harmony with each other, the love, vitality and collective yearning for a wider sense of peace and safety is enhanced.
It is natural to come together with conscious meditation, breath and natural movement. I personally experience it (particularly when outdoors in nature) as a deeply sacred practice; it feels ritualistic and primal.
After creating Unity Partner Yoga back n 2000, I have enjoyed witnessing so many people open, relax, smile, laugh and connect with something so vital – the power of compassionate community.
Partner Yoga calls on us to feel vulnerable and courageous at the same time; to support another and to fully be held, to tune in to each other’s needs, to be authentic and to be fully present and immersed in a timeless practice of true human connection.
I know I’m not alone in feeling anxiety about our current climate emergency. We are, perhaps all doing what we feel is important, sometimes passionate and optimistic and sometimes in fear and overwhelm.
As we make time for practices which can centre us, we feel more able to face the challenges and approach them with a calm strength. As we unite with others and connect in the powerful silence of meditative movement and stillness, we can connect with the one solution that we all harness: love.
In this place, we can see more clearly what needs to be done to take care of our suffering land, oceans and atmosphere; we can tune in to a collective wisdom.
Practicing Partner Yoga outdoors, we silently sit and move together listening to the backdrop of nature. I find this practice a humble one. We take our place in natural surroundings, slow down and connect with our true essence. We are invited to feel part of an interconnective group soul within our natural world.
We can of course share such sacred practice in other movement, holistic and art forms, as well as yoga. Within my workshops and Unity Partner Yoga Teacher Training, I integrate mantra, mudra, massage, natural movement, Reiki and Yoga Nidra to enhance the experience.
I am one to love my own personal space and I like to balance time alone with time with one practice partner or perhaps a group of four, then eventually to experience the immense power of a full group. The power of the group is enhanced by ensuring individual needs are met.
This practice can be shared with all different age groups and abilities. The beauty of it is to find the common connection rather than our differences, to celebrate our abilities rather than our restrictions and to honour each and every participant as an essential part of the whole.
The experience for me is a balance of lightness, joy and playfulness with a deeply sacred, awakening, inclusive practice.
The result is feeling a part of something, an integral and essential part of a group which has an immense power to make a change.
The time is now to make a personal and global change.