Embodied Wisdom - On the Field of Dharma A 5 Day Philosophy & Asana Intensive

Noah Mazé - Los Angeles, CA
January 20-24 2020

There are no standards or agreements over methodology and pedagogy in modern postural yoga. There are stylistic boundaries in modern yoga; however these are not always instructive or easy to understand. In yoga, the quality of your education and depth of your knowledge can make all the difference. Yoga is a wide and deep ocean of wisdom, filled with symbolism, mythic narrative, and rigorous philosophies. Hold this truth while affirming that many people limit their definition of yoga to a finite number of body postures. Regardless of whether you are a philosopher or fitness buff, interpretive possibilities are likely to affect every yogi’s experience in practice. As students and teachers move past “scratching the surface” of yoga, the openness of possibility in yoga can spark frustration. The space to make choices can also spark wonder and curiosity. For us, the range of possibility sparks our strong desire to know more, as knowledge empowers educated, responsible and varied choices. Information and knowledge in context supports your ability to confidently trailblaze.

This comparative learning and experiential educational intensive is for yogis who want to learn more about yoga and use that knowledge in practice. In these 5 days, we dive deeply into the mythic storytelling traditions of yoga combining all things yoga philosophy with postural yoga. We explore the stories and symbolism behind yoga poses and practices of asana, meditation, mantra, mudra etc. We practice postural yoga daily, as story, theme come alive in our body/mind/breath — with endless variation. We will pay particular attention to the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali and the Bhagavad Gita in the Mahabharata. We will put this all into our bodies with daily asana classes taught by Noah, inspired and themed by teachings from the Bhagavad Gita (class descriptions below in program details).

This intensive is entirely secular. We do not ascribe to any particular philosophy. We are educators who advocate only for sound decision making. We will not ask or expect you to believe in anything or anyone (other than yourself). Bring an open and curious mind, and an engaged and courageous heart, and the somatic storehouse of your body.

Over these 5 days we will divide our time together. Each day will include:

1. Immersive learning, study, conversation, contemplative practices (inquiry, meditation, mantra, mudra) and practices of asana and pranayama (Immersive learning topics covered are more fully outlined below in program details–see part 1).

2. Teaching skills and pedagogical approaches of story telling, theme based sequencing strategies and the conscious use of myth and metaphor (Teaching skills/approaches topics covered are more fully outlined below in program details — see part 2).

Dates

January 20-24 2020

Complete participation is strongly recommended. However, life events and circumstances sometimes take priority, and we are as flexible and reasonable as we can be with our students. Makeup options are available. Please see our Makeup Policy for more information.

This intensive is entirely secular. We do not ascribe to any particular philosophy. We are educators who advocate only for sound decision making. We will not ask or expect you to believe in anything or anyone (other than yourself). Bring an open and curious mind, and an engaged and courageous heart, and the somatic storehouse of your body.

Over these 5 days we will divide our time together. Each day will include:

1. Immersive learning, study, conversation, contemplative practices (inquiry, meditation, mantra, mudra) and practices of asana and pranayama.

2. Teaching skills and pedagogical approaches of story telling, theme based sequencing strategies and the conscious use of myth and metaphor.

Part 1: Oceanic Immersion

The symbolism and mythology of yoga’s spiritual tradition can add deeper dimensions of meaning to the practice on your mat. Symbolism and mythology can also provide insights that expand our understanding of the historical traditions of yoga philosophy and mythic storytelling. Gain deeper understanding and appreciation for the depth and richness of the history of traditions that influence modern yoga, as well as how we each bring our own cultural and personal stories to the practice.

We will examine the main currents of yoga philosophy and religious traditions of South Asia, from Veda to Tantra to Modern Postural Yoga, including limited teachings from a handful of indigenous religious traditions of South Asia — Hinduisim, Buddhism and Jainism. What are some basic teachings about the nature of the cosmos and human nature? How might these teaching be relevant to us? How has yoga come to be associated with posture, asana, and the dissemination of yoga to the west (and subsequent proliferation of modern postural yoga)? As 21st century yogishat insights might we tease out of important stories and texts? What are some of their teachings about conscience, culture and nature. Our discussions will include background in story telling, folklore and oral and aural traditions of memory, recitation, interpretation and commentary.

Part 2: Using Conscious Myth & Metaphor in Yoga Teaching

Over 4 afternoons, we will dive into how, when and whether to weave the philosophy, history, myth, and storytelling into yoga classes and workshops. As yoga teachers, how and when do we use and apply what we know? Spark your own deeper interest and creativity, and your students will learn WAY MORE. We are experiential educators that facilitate the theatre of mind, body and heart, We have the opportunity to teach to every learning style, to explore the analytic AND creative sides of our brains.

We will navigate and study practical educational theory and experiential education methodology and it’s application to teaching yoga postures and philosophy. We will explore multiple strategies for sharing concepts with our students. We will study the art of “theming” a yoga class or workshop. We will learn about simplicity in messaging and will also explore how to effectively share increasingly complex subject matter with our students via postural practice. We will create a tapestry of step-by-step postural instruction infused with the evocative power of metaphor and myth. We dive deeply into the rigor of philosophical thought and find practical ways for you to bring some of these larger concepts to your teaching.

We will plan and sequence classes each day; please budget some time and energy for this homework in addition to our schedule together.

Daily Asana Classes:

Immersion students will practice to Noah’s series of strong all-levels yoga classes themed to teachings and stories. We enter the Bhagavad Gita, an ancient tale, to find out about our lives today, here and now, in all that is relevant and present. We may also draw down ideas from the greater epic Mahabharata. These asana classes will take you on an integrated journey of thoughtful inquiry (mind), courageous engagement (heart), and experiential embodiment (body). Each class will begin with a brief exploration of philosophical teachings and/or a mythic narrative of yoga. We will then physicalize the teachings in asana practice through choreographed sequences of postures, and internalize the teachings in contemplative meditative practices.

Day 1: On the Field of Dharma

The opening setting and context for the Bhagavadgita inspires this full-spectrum asana class with an inversion emphasis. We will explore the possible meanings of Dharma in the Gita and it’s greater context of Mahabharata, and what it may mean to lay claim to the Field of Dharma, dharma-ksetre, and to “Stand in Yoga,” yogastahah [BhG 1.1 & 2.48].

Day 2: The Yoga of Action

Inspired by the teachings of action, Karma-Yoga, this session will build strength and opening in a steady and skillful sequence to backbending peak postures. Krishna will tell us that we are always acting; the question is whether or not we are doing it well. "Yoga is Skill in Action,” yogah karmasu kaushalam [BhG 2.50].

Day 3: The Yoga of Insight

The inspired by the teachings of wisdom and knowledge, Jnana-Yoga, this session sequences forward bends, hip openers, twists and meditation to conspire to bring you ever more deeply into your own embodied wisdom and “Yoked Intelligence,” buddhiyukto [BhG 2.50].

Day 4: The Yoga of Devotion

Inspired by the teachings of love and devotion, Bhakti-Yoga, this session will challenge you, even as it systematically prepares you, for arm balance peak poses. Expect lots of core and shoulder strengthening, hip opening, and a passionate call to rise to your greatest possibilities of heartfelt commitment.

Day 5: The Yoga of Equanimity

Inspired by the teachings on equanimity and the three qualities of nature, guna, this vinyasa style class will challenge (and bolster) your equanimity in an up temp sequence of sun salutations, linked balance poses and inversion variations. "Yoga is Evenness of Mind,” yoga-samatvam [BhG 2.48].

Entire Module: USD $950
Entire Module
Mornings: USD $445
Mornings
Afternoons: USD $445
Afternoons
The Mazé Method
Larchmont Village
Los Angeles, CA 90004
yogamaze@icloud.com

More information about exact location and logistics will be provided to students in the program welcome materials.

  • 1 year of yoga practice recommended
  • No prior teaching experience required
  • Stiffness and injuries OK
  • Willingness to participate in a group process
  • Ability to give and receive feedback skillfully
  • Dedication, motivation and self directed studentship
This training is led by Noah Mazé.

“I would definitely recommend this program, and I already have. It was top notch in quality and quantity of material, as well as in support and openness and communication. Noah’s unique experience has produced an unparalleled leader, facilitator, and guide. Lessons learned in our training modules have extended far beyond the scope of yoga into life and relating to others in a more effective manner. I received SO MUCH, this training goes above and beyond for any student wanting to deepen their skills, gain confidence, and reach a new level of mastery in yoga.”

“Noah is inspiring and exhibits an unparalleled mastery of teaching. For some time now, I have been contemplating the notion, “be impeccable with your word.” I tried to think of people who embody this and would often come up empty until I met Noah. Noah is careful with his words, exhibits accuracy, accountability, and thoughtful articulation. These are important qualities in an effective leader. When Noah speaks, people listen – and they take it to heart. Along with that, he also embodies creativity, playfulness, humor, sensitivity, and ardor. All of these qualities make for a very well-rounded, inspiring leader and I feel honored to have received guidance and to have learned such a great deal, not just about yoga, but about life.”

For more information about the program or the curriculum contact Tracy:
Email: yogamaze@icloud.com
Phone: (310) 871-8808