I forget sometimes that my very presence can be a trigger for someone because of the dynamics of power and privilege.
I forget sometimes because my intentions to share the yoga practice are from a kind place. I assume I am always welcome. I assume my smile will soften the edges of what my white ancestors have done.
Maybe more often than I realize I get in the way by asserting myself in spaces where folks are marginalized—that is, under-resourced and not seen by systems of oppression—or where I wasn’t explicitly invited.
Lately I’ve been unpacking the reality that I’m not needed in every yoga space. As white yoga teachers, this is a hard fact to face. I know my passion can cloud prioritizing the already capable & powerful lived experience of others.
Stepping back does not equate to inaction (there are plenty of white spaces where I need to speak up). If I’m not inserting myself into every space I will still be working to heighten the redistribution of resources/knowledge of this yoga practice—so folks are empowered from their own experience and not an external (albeit benevolent) intention of “serving” or “helping”.
A principle of the yoga practice is satya—being truthful in thoughts, words, and actions.
Sometimes (more than you think) getting out of the way and listening truth.
Less helping (implying power over) and more being in relationship.
Relationship over outcome and ego.
A student & seeker on the path of breath and the collective.