Are you as sick of this as I am?
I know it's last week's news already but kind friends are still emailing me the article, in case I missed it.
I didn't miss it.
I thought Christina Sell had said everything worth saying about this thing but since I'm still thinking about it, and still growling a little, I might as well get it off my chest.
This is what bugs me. It's not that there aren't some truths in the article. It's the way those truths are muddled with unsubstantiated claims to paint an unflattering portrait. So hotel room keys are pressed into John's hand? Okay, maybe. I'm not there at every event. I suppose it could have happened, although I doubt it. According to who, though?
Who said that?
There's not a hint of even an anonymous source.
You're not supposed to just make things up, if you're The New York Times.
Why, in five pages, didn't the reporter even once see fit to interview anyone besides John? Why not interview any of those students who are allegedly waving their room keys around? Why not interview any of the Anusara teachers? Why not ask any of us who see on a daily basis the way this particular yoga transforms people, day by day, and in huge evolutionary leaps, too?
As John has always said, and as Christina reiterated, Anusara is much, much bigger than John Friend. Most of us Anusara teachers are not traveling rock stars. Most of us aren't yoga moguls. Most of us are local teachers, in local communities, doing something we passionately believe makes the world a better place even if just in a very small way. Most of us are probably considering taking a shift or two waiting tables just to cover our rent.
I am a Certified Anusara teacher, and damned proud of it.
As such, I'm always mindful when I teach my classes, Immersions and Teacher Trainings that I reflect back upon my teachers, John and Anusara. More than almost anyone I have to remember that. I probably have a little more Kali in me than most of our teachers, and a smart mouth to boot, so I, especially, choose to remember that I represent something greater than just myself. The last thing I would ever want to do is to discredit this tradition, not when I owe so much to it.
It's not just a one way street. In the same way, John represents hundreds of Anusara teachers who believe in what we do on a daily basis.
Not to make this all about ME ME ME but fuck it.
Frankly, I'm embarrassed by this article.
It's got a certain stink to it.
Not that I think it would be a problem if we were but most of us are not getting rich teaching yoga. Not Anusara or any other kind.
I feel this article discredits my efforts, and the efforts of hundreds of other teachers who stand for, and behind, Anusara. I think it discredits people who are trying to do something worthwhile with their lives, and who are often not compensated nearly enough. I think it diminishes the efforts of people who attempt to inspire their students to learn how to love life. In this world that's as fucked as it is beautiful, and where inspiration can be hard to find, that's the real shame of it. That sucks.