David is a super special teacher, totally unlike all the other Ashtanga teachers I’ve met so far. He attracts really interesting and driven students. It takes a certain type of person to fly around the world to India for a month of getting up early and making funny shapes with your body with an intense teacher like DG. It’s definitely not a vacation, despite the pretty beach.
This particular student with whom I was speaking is from Argentina. He had discovered David’s videos on YouTube and so decided to come all the way to Kerala to meet him.
The part of this conversation that was so awesome was when my new friend said basically…
“In my country we have this word – blank (I can’t remember exactly what it was) – it means ‘this man is very sick, but in a good way’. When I saw David teach in the video I thought, he is a maniac! Obsessive and in love with Ashtanga Yoga. You can tell, he thinks about yoga, all day and all night. Total maniac!!”
For those of you who know DG, you are probably giggling right now, just as I was at this moment. This statement pretty much sums up David.
He teaches with a fiery passion and love for this practice. Every practice is approached with an insatiable curiosity and a burning desire to know more and go deeper. This is clear by the way he teaches and the way he shares the practice with others. Even when he instructs us in Led Primary, he is simultaneously writing notes in his journal and reflections about the practice and path of Ashtanga Yoga.
To fully commit to this practice, you have to be kind of crazy. If not, why would you do it? Seriously, it’s hard and painful. It confronts you constantly with your weaknesses, your fears and your vices and it forces you do either face them head-on or run away like a scaredy cat. But you’re crazy, you don’t want to run away! You do, but you don’t, and more accurately – you can’t! There’s too much magic there to resist. Too much wonder and beauty to ignore.
Ignorance was bliss, I remember it fondly. Once you step foot down a path of truth and self-discovery, you really can’t go back to the beginning, even if you want to.
David often says, you have to engage in the practice not out of duty, but from a place of deep love.
Love is good with me and I’m okay with being crazy. In fact, that is not a new or foreign moniker for me.
I remember as a wild and reckless early teen reading “On the Road”. I remember reading this one passage and feeling all the voices in my head shout out in unison – YES!!!
To this day, I still feel the same….
“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”
– Jack Kerouac
God Bless you fellow crazies. I’ll see you tomorrow on the cosmic Mysore rug.