Rewriting Embodied Myths: A Yogic (w)rite Of Passage In Iceland
September 22, 2019 - September 28, 2019
According to Joseph Campbell, Carl Jung once asked, “What myth am I living by?” And when Jung realized that he did not know, he wrote, “I took it upon myself to get to know ‘my’ myth, and I regarded this as the task of tasks.”
Join Jessica Patterson of Colorado’s Root Center for Yoga & Sacred Studies as we journey into Iceland and make pilgrimage into our own inner myths and inner truths. Discover Yoga as a practice of revising inner narratives and use writing as a Yogic tool for self study.
Rewriting our embodied myths is about recognizing the body/experience/perception as a kind of discourse–wherein we read and write reality (what we assume is “real”) upon ourselves and all others. Through our practices and sessions together, we will identify the personal and collective stories according to which we are living and explore revisions of thought, word, and deed. Through traditional Yoga practices (including asana, pranayama, meditation, chanting, kriya, satsang, and more), creative writing exercises, music, and specific rituals that usher us from the mundane into the sacred, we will give voice to the stories within and without and reclaim the truth of our stories.
We all are the embodiment of the stories we collectively, individually, unconsciously, and consciously tell through our thoughts, words, and actions. While some stories empower us to access and tap into hidden or unknown aspects of our whole selves, we often cling unconsciously to faulty, self-limiting myths that inhibit and imprison us. Whether we are reflecting on the internalized myth of not being good enough or calling upon the narrative of our inner courage, we are invited to look at the stories we have writ large into our body, our minds, our spirits, and revise (see anew).
Yogic scriptures have long taught us that the body is made of unresolved karmas—the echoes of these stories of thought, word, and action. And through the practices of Yoga, we can access and address the underlying myths that determine how we experience our bodies, our breath, our relationships, our lives, and our world. Further, we are always reading and writing the world–imposing and extracting meaning from our experiences and encounters. Thus it is a powerful practice to give voice to the internal dialogues, the hopes and dreams, the fears and heartaches that underpin our sense of self. We meet our patterns and so much of our inner workings when we provide a sacred space for what seeks expression.
Our weekend will invoke and call upon diverse wisdom traditions to guide and inspire us, from the Nordic myths of Iceland’s own heritage to the stories of the Celts, Hopi, African, Hindu and ancient Greek gods and goddesses. Together we will explore which myths we are “living by,” how those stories are carried in our bodies, thoughts, and actions, and how to write our way to freedom and joy. Like all rites of passage, we will bring sacred inquiry into our practices of yoga (asana, meditaion, pranayama, bhakti, and kriya), dance, song, story-telling, masks-making, and more. We will savor solitude and silence, partner/small-group activities, and collective/tribal experiences to support reflection and expression. Reading and writing your life from these transformative perspectives, you will leave with a better sense of “your” myth.
Yet, always, we talk of transformation: Who were you? What childhood stories were impressed upon you? What were your favorite games? What did you treasure in your youth? What is enshrined on your mantle, hung from your rear view mirror, taped to your refrigerator door? What lies forgotten in the basement? What’s secreted in the attic? Whom do you aspire to be? What new adventures do you envision? What face do you hope to see in the mirror? What’s set upon your metaphoric altar, emblazoned on your bumper, pursued in your fantasies?
If you are willing to re-vision yourself, then join this improvisational ritual of rebirth.