November 22nd, 2009 – by: kskillen
I love Ubud! My place is amazing. I feel at home here. The roomâ€™s energy suits me. I sleep like a rock and wake ready for anything. The owner of the household sees me on the front porch and comes over to offer me breakfast. I happily accept and within minutes Iâ€™ve been given a fresh pot of tea, toast, pineapple jam (HELLO!) and a pile of fresh fruit. I could get use to this!
I can feel the soulful power of this home and this town. It resonates from everything I see. The women of the family come out to put fresh offerings in the temple.
I watch them as they carry the baskets of flowers, rice, and biscuits to the temple, how they methodically and purposefully place them, the silent prayers they give as they waft the incense. I canâ€™t hear anything except the birds chirping. I feel rejuvenated by this place. This space fills me with a deep elastic connection to something, to a divine world and a powerful place within myself. I place I recognize. This is exactly what I need. I place to rest, to think, to pray, to listen to my body and heart. I know I will learn a lot about myself here. And Iâ€™m ready.
View from my porch
I have my first yoga class today! Its Vinyasa Slow. It introduces the moments of Vinyasa yoga to beginner yogis.
While Iâ€™ve done yoga before I didnâ€™t want to assume Iâ€™d know how this place does their practice so I thought this class would be a great place to start. Vinyasa yoga is a very active, dynamic class which involves a continuous flow of postures characterized by rhythm, breathe and a lot of sweating! It is very challenging. The beginner class was just what I needed to brush up on my moves and learn some new tricks! I was pleased to see the yoga Iâ€™ve done in Canada matches what Iâ€™m being taught here. My teacher is amazing, telling us with careful phrasing how to hold each pose, move to our breathe and get the most out our movements. I am already a better yogi after just one class!!
The setting for our class is GOREGOUS! Weâ€™re in the lower studio. Glass windows show us the rice paddy fields on two sides, on the other walls, natural barn board wood covers them, hiding the entrance to the main reception and providing storage for all the mats, pillows etc.
The floors are dark hard wood, the room is painted soft grey. Each class here is an hour and a half. My goal is to take two classes a day. Spending my in between time, writing, soaking up the atmosphere and doing some soul searching.
All of the kids!
After yoga I meet a guy named John, who will become a good friend to me while Iâ€™m in Ubud. I head to the cafÃ© to meet two people I met in Kuta and tell John to join us if he wishes. He does, and we all have dinner together. John and I then go back to the studio for a night yoga class called Kirtan. Kirtan uses yoga along with songs and chanting to call out your spirit and share it with the world.
That night was a special night.
Typically at this class there is only one musician, but tonight the teacher has invited five of her friends to play with her. She was going away on holiday until the new year so in celebration of her final class before 2010 she invited her friends to play with her and give us a special show! It was AMAZING!! The group of students sat on pillows and mats around the room while the musicians lined the wall facing the rice paddy fields (we were in the upstairs studio).
Getting ready for yoga
We were asked to listen to the music and follow along with the mantras. Everyone was so gracious, giving their hearts and positive energy to the people in the room and beyond. The first mantra focused on sending positive energy to someone of our choosing. I chose Ethan, my new nephew. I wanted to send him all of my love, support and hope for his future.
I wished him a happy and full life, knowing that his family loved him deeply. Our next mantra was to Ganesha (the Hindu god), asking to be freed from obstacles in our lives (it went like this gam-ghuana-pa-tie-ya nam-an-namo). We also sang to Shiva, to a god of our choosing for creativity, to our mothers for giving us life and loving us, to mother Theresa and to the ocean. It was remarkable to be in a room for of beautiful music, in the heat of Bali, in an open air studio, surrounded by rice fields, and humming with the energy of these thoughts.
Each musician played an individual song. I loved the harps and Tibetan bowls the most. The sound from the bowls â€“ wow is all I can say! They sent vibrations right to your core!!!
I am so blessed to be here. To have this time to devote to my body and mind. I will not waste it. I canâ€™t wait to go to bed in my new home, watch the prayers in the morning and do this all over again.