Yoga & Social Justice Teacher Training Begins April 13th, 2018
Spring 2018 DATES
April 13-15, 2018
May 25-28, 2018
June 8-10, 2018
July 20-22, 2018
Stay tuned for information regarding an upcoming information session with Sarahjoy.
Why Yoga and Social Justice?
Do you have a passion for social justice?
Are you inspired to bring yoga to people who would benefit from yoga but whose life circumstances either prevent them from participating or for whom our culture’s approach to yoga excludes them?
Would you like to learn more about the philosophy and psychology of yoga (universally applicable teachings for awakening out of human suffering), anatomy and alignment, your personal dharma (duty, responsibility), and mindfulness tools?
This unique, inspiring, and life-changing teacher training is a passionate call to those who long to use yoga as a social justice tool! Whether you’re already working in the field of social justice or endeavoring to start, this training program opens your mind and heart, expands your vision, develops your life skill set, deepens your intra- and interpersonal sensitivity and compassion, and prepares you to provide yoga as a life-changing, empowering, and accessible tool for those whose potential may as of yet remain untapped, unrecognized, or marginalized, but who can flourish and thrive with the integration of yoga in their life.
Social Justice is based on the concept of human rights in which all humans have, as their birthright, the freedom to realize themselves. Yet we live in a world with so much social injustice, an injustice to which we, often unknowingly, contribute. Some of the obstacles people face in realizing their potential include access to resources for education, health care, mentors, healthy community, as well as both developmental trauma (growing up in invalidating, mis-attuned, chaotic, or troubled environments without access to safety, consistency, and nurturance) and event-based trauma (violence, humanitarian crisis, war, and so on).
Sarahjoy on Yoga & Social Justice
(2002) As the larger (macro) culture in which I live and participate reflects my personal culture, and if my personal culture is to be reflected back in that larger community, it compels me to understand that when I deepen my sensitivity, cultivate my compassion, commit to my accountability and integrity, inquire into my blind spots, and engage in the reflective process that supports my emotional and mental well-being in all its depth and intricacy, including that I can acknowledge my own survival strategies (behavior tendencies) with transparency and accountability, I become a part of the healing process for the larger culture.
(2001) If we are to be true healers, our task is to reclaim those aspects of ourselves that our culture shuns, to “take back our shadow,” as Robert Bly would say. We must start to see ourselves and those marginalized, institutionalized and disowned persons as somehow connected, for, fundamentally, we are! The tools we have at hand for instilling this sense of connection include yoga, meditation, community, restorative justice, curiosity, communication, self-awareness, and our willingness to be uncomfortable enough to grow.
(1998, 2012, 2014) How do I see yoga being a tool for social justice? If the system is going to change from one of punishment to one of justice, how we see each other in the web of life has to change. How we understand healing and restoration of the self must undergo a radical shift. It isn’t effective enough to focus only on the restraint of behaviors, such as those that are socially-challenging, cause harm to self or others, or continue to wreak havoc and generate community-wide vulnerability. We must also focus on generating new life skills; learning new behaviors that develop respect, agency, and personal stability; creating new conversations based on capacity and potential, rather than limitations and failures; and open opportunities for this new efficacy to be expressed in community. I believe that through such a process our now disenfranchised, under-supported, and isolated community members would move toward accountability for the pain they’ve caused and a natural urge for restoration would arise along with the inner sense that they have the capacity to carry out specific restorative actions.