Carolyn, 2016
Palm Desert, CA
I've taught individuals and classes since 1969.
Still Loving Yoga
Carolyn Relei


Shankar Prasad Organic Farm and Ashram, Karnataka, India  This is Swami Yogaratna's place near Gokarna, India.  Swami Yogaratna is a Swami in the Bihar Yoga lineage.  Australian by birth, she has lived in India since childhood and has been dedicated to the yoga path for decades.  She speaks English and has accomodations for guests.  Her chanting is sublime!  And she does yoga teacher training workshops and is a specialist in teaching pranayama.
 
Allen Ginsburg and Swami Bhaktivedanta introduced Kirtan (chanting of the Maha Mantra) at the Avalon Ballroom in San Francisco in 1967.  I was there!

The first Human Be-In was my exposure to Chanting - although I didn't hear chanting there, a paper airplane landed on my lap that day, while I was sitting listening to the speakers.  I opened it up and the words "stay high forever, no more coming down" jumped out at me.  The airplane was a flyer about chanting the Hare Krishna mantra. Within a couple of weeks I was regularly attending the kirtans at the Hare Krishna temple and Hatha Yoga classes at the Cultural Integration Fellowship, and immersed myself daily in practice, study and meditation.  Within a couple of years I was teaching chanting and yoga in Mt. Shasta.  Sometimes, I felt like I was one of the "troops", like a soldier sent to the front lines.  I had some training, but not years and years, and there I was demonstrating to groups and teaching people everything I could about yoga.  And though I practiced a lot, it also seemed that the words came to me more beautifully than I alone could speak and definitely when I performed the postures as a demonstration, I could feel how the postures were done much more perfectly that I really knew how to do them when I was practicing by myself.

My favorite edition of the Bhagavad Gita is very simple and short, not translated by a yogi spiritual teacher, but by a scholar.
Nonetheless, it resonates with me, so here it is:
The Bhagavad Gita (Penguin Classics) translated by Juan Mascaro
And while I am recommending books, I also recommend the Dhammapada and the Upanishads, featured on the same Amazon page.   All three of those volumes will take up almost no space on your bookshelf, but if you read them and  memorize some verses from them, you will have riches that will serve you well in times of pain and change.