Walking A Spiritual Path
The yoga tradition is filled with many paradoxes and countless diverse voices. In this upcoming workshop, Govinda Kai will share his experience from over 30 years of practice and travel. He brings a fresh perspective through his intensive exploration of the spiritual life that comes from yoga, meditation and philosophy.
Students who attend this workshop should come prepared to be challenged, inspired and called to a deeper understanding, not just about yoga practice, but about what it means to live a truly meaningful life. Govinda has been blessed to have studied with some of the top spiritual teachers of this age, including Swami Muktananda, Sogyal Rimpoche and Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. He has been to Mysore over 20 times and practiced almost exclusively with Guruji from 1995 to 2007.
A Unique Opportunity
Come, study and learn from a master teacher. Allow your yoga practice to deepen. Govinda Kai has studied and dedicated himself to martial arts, meditative disciplines and yoga. His quest for truth and purity in the more essential parts of his self and life has taken him all over the world. Govinda has worked with many students in Asia, America and Europe, bringing his passion for the spiritual life and for deep transformation into his classes and workshops. Govinda’s teachings will bring real experiences of celebrating the truly profound possibilities of yoga and spiritual practice.
All levels of practice are welcome – afternoon sessions on philosophy require no previous experience with Ashtanga yoga.
Saturday, June 9th
10:00 am to 12:00 pm Led Primary Series
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm Understanding Yoga Philosophy Correctly Is Essential To An Authentic Spiritual Life!
In this talk/discussion, we will get into the reasons why a proper understanding of Yoga Philosophy (as stated in texts such as the Bhagavad Gita) is absolutely essential to a truly authentic and vital spiritual life. We will also discuss the most powerful ways you can utilize the principles in Yoga Philosophy in your practice and day to day life to produce greater clarity and personal power.
Sunday, June 10th
9:00 am to 12:00 pm Led Primary + Intro to Intermediate
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm Spiritual Warriorship: Utilizing the principles of the Bhagavad Gita to cultivate personal empowerment in your relationships and work.
In this talk/discussion, we will discuss how to utilize the principles of the Gita to cultivate genuine and practical empowerment in your relationships and in your work place. It is important to learn not only to practice yoga deeply on your mat, but also to integrate the wisdom of the tradition into many aspects of your daily life. This great tradition and practice was intended not only to benefit the practitioner individually, but to positively affect one’s larger community as well.
All levels of practice are welcome. Mysore space is limited so early registration is suggested.
Monday to Friday, June 11th to 15th
5:30 am Mysore
7:00 am Mysore
Saturday, June 16th
10:00 am to 12:00 pm Led Primary Series
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm Kirtan
Full payment is required to reserve a spot.
All sales are considered final. Refunds are not available.
Govinda Kai grew up in the San Francisco Bay area during the 60ʼs and 70ʼs and was strongly influenced by the chaos and unrest of the time. His father, Edward Yamaguchi, was an Aikido sensei who received his training directly from the great master, Ueshiba or OʼSensei. Govinda’s father was a deeply spiritual man, and his values and beliefs strongly influenced Govinda.
At the age of 19, Govinda encountered a very powerful, spiritual man at an ashram. Introduced by one of his teachers, Govinda met Swami Muktananda, the guru and leader of the Siddha Yoga movement and whose ashram Govinda was visiting. The experience in meeting this man was very powerful and life changing. Never again would there be any doubt to the power of yoga.
While attending University of California, Santa Cruz, Govinda had the great fortune to meet one of the more prominent spiritual teachers of our time, Sogyal Rinpoche. The young Tibetan lama had recently come to America after completing his Western education at Cambridge University in England. For the next few years, Govinda studied meditation and Tibetan Buddhism with direct instruction from Rinpoche while attending numerous retreats and intensives. This very special time deepened Govindaʼs thirst for the mysteries of the spirit immensely.
After leaving University of California, Santa Cruz, Govinda thought he would take monastic vows and enter a life of spiritual solitude and reflection. However, his teacher, Sogyal Rinpoche, encouraged the importance of him to “be in the world”. Following his teacherʼs instructions, Govinda moved back to the San Francisco Bay area and pursued a career in real estate. Within a few short years, Govinda started his own company and for the next 12 years built up his own business.
In the early 90ʼs, Govinda discovered the practice of Ashtanga Yoga. He met and studied with a few influential teachers, including Tim Miller, Richard Freeman, John Smith, Eddie Modestini and Nicki Doane. All of these strong and wonderful teachers encouraged Govinda to travel to Mysore, India and practice with the guru of Ashtanga Yoga, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.
In 1995, Govinda made his first trip to Mysore, India to study with Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. The trip was especially momentous as it was also the grand celebration of Gurujiʼs 80th birthday. In India, oneʼs 80th birthday is particularly auspicious. A large gathering and celebration was planned with Gurujiʼs oldest and dearest students coming from all over the world. The chance to meet and to practice with the worldʼs most respected Ashtanga teachers (including Tim Miller, Richard Freeman and countless others) made a particularly lasting impression on Govinda. His first trip lasted about three months and was one of the most powerful experiences in Govindaʼs life.
Since that most memorable visit to Mysore, Govinda has returned nearly every year since then. Indeed, he considers Mysore his second home.
Upon returning to the US, Govinda worked to quickly save enough money to return to India for a few years. Having the freedom to travel wherever he wanted, whenever he wanted and to practice as deeply and as regularly as his heart desired was a true dream come true. Govinda discovered a kind of happiness and freedom he never imagined could be real.
In 1999, Govinda moved to New York City. During his time there, Govinda had the opportunity to work with numerous celebrities and high profile individuals. He spent significant time teaching private sessions to Christy Turlington and Sting and his wife, Trudie. Less time was spent with Tobey Maguire, Gwyneth Paltrow and other high profile clients. Teaching yoga to celebrities afforded Govinda a chance to meet and get to know people living extraordinary lives under extraordinary circumstances.
Great changes are sweeping our world right now. Many beliefs and institutions that we took for granted as being the foundations of our society are either crumbling or transforming entirely into something else. This is most certainly an incredibly challenging and exciting time to be alive.
This phenomenon we call yoga is both a driver of this change and a tool that helps us to cope with the change that is happening. Let us join together more than we ever have to encourage and to inspire each other to seek out the highest expression of ourselves and of this life. Now, more than ever, is the time to gather to discuss, to debate, to practice, to sing, to dance, to cry and to laugh. Let us explore the great tradition and practice of yoga together in ways and with a level of passion and enthusiasm that we have never given before.