Yoga is generally sold online and off as a great stress reliever. I can vouch for that: with the right teacher, yoga can be very healthy emotionally. I’ve often come away from a yoga class with a great big smile on my face that was certainly not there before.
However, last week when I was preparing for be my first serious theosophical lecture, and stressing out – and managing my stress – I decided NOT to go to yoga class. Instead I stayed at home, made what physical preparations were to be made and read a book. I avoided yoga class because my teacher is, aside from very good at guiding us through our bodies, a bit emotionally needy.
She makes a big deal about people not coming, about people not drinking tea afterwards, about students not showing up without telling her in advance that they’re not showing up. Paradoxically that was the very reason why I did not come, and I decided so late not to go that I also didn’t phone to let her know.
I did not go because I knew that her emotional neediness, her lack of detachment, was going to increase my stress level if I did go.
I guess that’s why detachment is so important in a spiritual teacher.