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Tribute to Guruji at Evolution 09

David Swenson’s closing keynote address & tribute to Sri K Pattabhi Jois was the most striking part of this year’s Evolution.

It was recorded & should be available online, so I won’t try to summarise–these are just some impressions I’m taking away;

2 Sri K Pattabhi Jois statements David Swenson quoted,

“A yogi leaves a place nicer than he found it”
“Yoga is not easy”

Very simple but I think sum up what we were all doing there & will continue trying to do.
We were there to recharge as much as to learn, and be reminded that the small things we can do are equally important in the eyes of God.

To most of us (well–to me) Sri K Pattabhi Jois was Guruji, a scholar, teacher, founder of Ashtanga, student of Krishnamacharya.
From the anecdotes last night we saw a side of him that loved funny people & chocolate;

(David Swenson wickedly told a story about Guruji ‘corrupting’ the no-sugar-organic-vegetarian-reared-tastebuds of visiting students’ children with chocolate… next speaker Paul Dallaghan revealed it was likely His son’s tastebuds David was referring to!)

Even with minimal English, his presence was great & inspiring.

The image David Swenson left us with: A great & magnificent tree has fallen.
Our first reaction is: absence. The tree with such presence is gone.
But then we glimpse, in the sunlight coming through the gap in the forest canopy this tree has left, a multitude of seedlings growing–we are the legacy if we choose to accept it.
It may take a forest to replace the knowledge & wisdom of this one tree but perhaps that is the point.

And as Paul Dallaghan said next, the important thing to remember is “Get on with real life”. The point of yoga is to equip us better for ‘real’ life and discovering the joy in real life.
Everyone leaves an impression and that makes a greater impact than the teaching. The impression left by Guruji was one of great joy in life.
It is up to us now to pass on that joy.

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