“Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass…It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”- Vivian Greene
India, the birth place of yoga, a destination for one to immerse themselves in a Yoga Teacher Training course. Twenty-eight days spent learning from the masters, in the mother land; however isn’t that mother land a hot place to be sat learning and doing physical asanas?
Those are the exact thoughts that I had and decided to book my course in August- the ‘rainy season’ or monsoon. Coming from rainy London, we have ‘rainy season’ all year round. We do not have ‘monsoon’, just the word brings images of endless waters and an unsafe terrain to my mind.
But I had August free to go, so I researched the monsoon online and some of the advice was not to go, the rain would be too much and ruin the experience, however looking at the course schedule of nine hours a day sat in lessons, how could I be getting that wet?
So I booked the course, and travelled to India during ‘rainy season’; I would dance in that rain!
I am so glad I did…
Listen to the rhythm of the falling rain
Rain soothes, it clears the air, it turns the brown earth green; it creates life.
The Yogashala at Rishikul Yogshala is located overlooking the imposing Himalayas, sat on my balcony the first evening with my neighbour a cup of tea in hand we saw the sky in the distance turning dark and the most spectacular storm clouds; a mood of shades of grey roll in. Sheets of cooling water fell from the sky, dogs ran for cover, cows sat down and we listened to the rhythm.
Roads turn to rivers
In the streets roads turned to rivers within minutes, locals experts in the art of the monsoon quickly pulled in their wares pulled down the covers and sat and waited for the roads to return to roads. An hour later and the sun was back out, it’s intense heat drying the tears of the rain, life went on as normal, the air cleared and cooler than before. A real sight to behold and an experience that I am so glad that I had.
On our days off we would visit one of the many cafes that make Rishikesh such a vibrant place to just hang out or take one of the many excursions that the school had arranged. If we happened to be out as a storm came we sat in a café, ordered more chai and waited for it to clear, whilst making new friends.
The river Ganga which runs through the holy town was at full flow and capacity from the heavier rains further up the mountain. During the monsoon season the rivers main tourist activity, rafting is prohibited, as the waters are too unsafe. This means that there are less crowds in the town making it more enjoyable for all.
Booking a yoga teacher training course during the monsoon season is a perfect way to spend a month, sheltering from the rain in the classroom, practising asanas, learning philosophy and anatomy and delving into deeper mediation. The rain does not happen all day long, it comes in short bursts. Then the intense sun some out again and it can be hot and humid, so the rain acts as a nice way to cool the air.
The monsoon is a magical experience, seeing the power of nature in all its glory in a setting so spectacular. A wonderful back drop to connecting to oneself with yoga; one that let us dance in the rain.