What have you been up to since we last met?
I have been intensely working on my path by engaging more and more with Yoga, Yoga Therapy and Pranic Healing. I’ve taught many wonderful Yoga Workshops focused on Meditation, which calm the mind and clean the Chakras, so the participants can benefit more from that than from a typical Yoga class.
I am now planning to move to the countryside and find a therapy room, where I can work with my students really intensely and closely, and integrate Pranic Healing more into my every day life so that I can help others go deep within themselves and hopefully inspire them to awaken to a spiritual pathway.
Have you been to any exciting places or done any exciting things lately that have influenced the way you look at life or teach and share yoga?
Currently I am in India deepening my Yoga Therapy practice with my wonderful teacher Saji. Saji offers so much wisdom about how our mind works, and how many diseases derive from stress and anxiety in our every day life. So, when we quiet our mind with meditation, start breathing properly again while doing Pranayama, we are actually able to heal and to find the inner Guidance within ourselves. It all sounds so simple. We just need somebody to show us that path, and that is what I aim to do with my students as well.
My teaching approach will certainly be altered, after coming back with so many new ideas, meditations and healing methods. And India is always an inspiration in itself, as it shows us humbleness and how to be in the flow of life within a spiritual context.
What are your fondest memories of the retreat week you lead at Suncokret last year?
My retreat week was called “Yoga for Heart and Soul”, so it was a healing process we all went through that week and whose aim was to help the participants go deeper and deeper into those aspects of self every day.
The most touching moment was towards the end of the week, when we opened our senses which became more permeable with the wonderful Yoga and Meditation lessons. Then we did a Rebirthing session and the participants were able to experience for the first time in their life the connection to their inner guidance, to everything which lies beyond the physical world. There was a lot of healing energy in those last days and a lot of tension-relief and heart-opening, which still makes me incredibly happy when now looking back after almost one year. There is so much Love…
What was the biggest challenge / greatest learning moment?
The biggest challenge was to become a group entity, as we started with seven really different people with individual personalities and needs. In the end, though, we all came on retreat for a reason, and the daily Yoga practice helped us become closer as a group and exist in the same energy towards end of the week. That is why I am happy to teach three weeks in a row this time, because I will be able to experience those group dynamics more intensely and grow with that.
What are you offering this year that is different from last year?
I offer three very different retreat themes this year.
In the first, “Dancing into Summer Summer Solstice Event” with integrated movement and dance, we will be able to experience the lightness and joy at the start of summer, but still experience deep practices and meditations, which will help us discover the five Elements within us.
The following week is a continuation of the, “Yoga for Heart and Soul,” event I held last year, where I hope, based on my own recent growth with all the wonderful meditations I have now deepened during my recent yogic exploration in India, to take students even deeper than we went during last year’s event under the same name.
And, finally, I will conclude my three-week retreat teaching adventure by leading Suncokret’s annual “Summer Breeze” program, where the focus is just on having a good time together in a light and joyful way. So this is more about finding the bliss state in everything we do, discovering our happy moments in every day life and how we can stay connected to that energy within the daily Sadhana.
What are you currently reading, learning, and growing from?
I am currently reading a Kriya Yoga book: “Insights Along the Path” by Marshall Govinda, which inspires me a lot.
I did my Kriya Yoga Initiation in Chennai in February and just found it an amazing experience to do the initiation in India within a group of Indian people. I feel that the heartbeat and the pulse of Yoga is in India, as there is so much wonderful energy around.
The various meditations I’m practicing are teaching and accompany me now every day, and it helps me to observe my thoughts and be aware of my actions every single moment in my everyday life.
Is there any spiritual / yogic literature that you most appreciate and why?
Last year I finally read “Autobiography of a Yogi” by Yogananda. So many people had recommended it to me but I only was ready to read and experience it now. The insight this book gives is incredible and it is undoubtedly an intense opener for the spiritual path - it guided me to the Kriya Yoga Initiation and deep Meditation.
What inspired you to create the themes for the upcoming retreat weeks?
I feel really blessed to be able to teach at your wonderful Suncokret Body & Soul Retreat again! It always feels like coming home, when I take my first step into your retreat. That is why I chose the first topic, aligned with the Summer Solstice, called “Dancing into Summer”. It fits so well to the place and time of year, as there is both the lightness but also the energy to move deep within ourselves.
So I start my first retreat week exploring the Five Elements through this particular theme and practice - and at Suncokret we are actually able to experience all those five Elements every day by walking barefoot on Mother Earth, to have a swim in the sea, feel the warmth of the sun touching our face, and sense the air on our skin. Everything which lies beyond, the element Ether, we will find through the Meditations, Pranayamas and Rebirthing session. The integrated dance moves and the Yoga Asanas help us to feel the elements and to get connected to them again.
The second week “Yoga for Heart & Soul” will be quite similar to last year’s event, as we all need to find the path to our heart and thus heal our whole being.
The Heart Chakra is the connector between the lower and the higher Chakras and therefore the gate to our soul, where lie all the hidden secrets, patterns and programs, we are often not so aware of.
This retreat week will help us to open our heart to everything which lies beyond and needs healing. What will be fresh with this year’s Yoga for Heart & Soul journey is that I plan to introduce a new technique to the program, which works with Prana. And I will also focus more on the Pranic Healing part, as this is the life force, which keeps us happy and healthy.
And the third week’s theme was suggested by you, Evening, to lead the Summer Breeze program that you traditionally have taught for years and of which I was once a retreat participant and fell in love with your retreat, so I loved that idea.
It is a really light-hearted Yoga program, we do yoga by the sea every morning, and where we are encouraged to just enjoy ourselves, the sun, the air, the light in those wonderful locations. The morning program is followed up by a light meditation by the sea or back at the retreat, and this helps to deepen the practice and to focus on living the joy and happiness of life.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
I am looking forward to the upcoming retreat weeks and already feel really blessed to be able to teach at Suncokret again. My heart is wide open for all the Yogis and Yoginis who sign up for my programs - as we all meet for a reason - where they can learn from me and I can learn from them. The students are my best teachers ;-)…
Thanks, Daniela! We're looking forward to having you back, too!