For 2016 our intention is to honor a yogi from our community every month. This March we invited Dariush Kashani to demonstrate our pose, Pincha Mayurasana (Forearm Stand), and share his yoga journey. Namaste, Dariush! We’re so thankful that you finally gave yoga a chance.
“When it was time to begin my Yoga practice, it welcomed me lovingly.
Ironically enough, I’d resisted Yoga since first becoming aware of it in my mid-twenties. It was introduced to me by my brother as well as my movement teacher in grad school. My ego had a firm grip of my convictions as I pulled out Arnold Schwarzengger’s Bodybuilding for Men:“This is the bible, this is all I need!” My movement teacher said, “If you’re as hard as a rock, you can’t take anything in.”
Those words actually latched on somewhere within me. Looking back, I’ve asked: Why all this resistance and distinct prejudice toward something I wasn’t familiar with at all?
Last year I felt stuck. Living in this world with all its difficulties, where’s the coping mechanism? I’d catch myself holding on to my breath and my jaw was clenched throughout the day. I’d find myself gripping my right hip socket when I was standing. And I was sitting in contradiction to myself and incredibly blocked. All this found its way into my work in a way I hadn’t experienced before. Surprisingly, it didn’t take a tremendous amount of mental effort when my movement teacher’s words resurfaced in my mind. It was time to take a yoga class. My wife (also a yogi) was ecstatic and my brother, now a Yoga teacher, reaffirmed my choice with a smile on his face.
I don’t think I found Yoga 216 by chance. I wondered if a place that wasn’t a scene and wasn’t over-crowded actually existed. Much to my surprise, an internet search pointed me to this oasis and upon entering the studio I had a feeling of euphoria. Nicole greeted me with great care and all her direction that first day — from which mat to take, to my breath, to reaching the crown of my head to the ceiling — all created an opening. I felt an incredible sense of ease walking home that night. I knew I’d begun a process where I could begin to “untangle myself” and perhaps discover why I had resisted for so long.
8 months in, so much has unraveled. The mental and the physical benefits are without question. My spiritual welfare incomparable to before and the openness which seemed out of my grasp, now firmly available. All the teachers at Yoga 216 have played an integral part and I’m deeply grateful to them for their patience, their lightheartedness and their kindness.”