Learning and growing under the guidance of a skillful and compassionate teacher is one of the greatest joys in my life.
I have been thinking so much lately about what Desikachar wrote in "Health, Healing and Beyond" about his father's approach to teaching: "And caring - above all, caring. When people arrive at the Mandiram and ask us, 'Can you help me?,' the only response we can ever make is 'I can care.'"
I love the Thursday night beginner's class at the Iyengar Yoga Center of the Palm Beaches. Colleen's soft voice and bright eyes communicate the depth of her caring and it feels as though with each breath I am learning and feeling something new. I am very grateful.
Looking at this photo, I see myself, the student, as the one with the older, wrinkled hand and the teacher as the one with the younger, softer hand. Because a teacher can have such a vitalizing effect. Great teachers are so wise but their hearts are so young, and their laugher or the twinkle in their eye restores a sense of freshness and innocence to everyone in the room. Pablo Picasso wrote, "It takes a very long time to become young." Teachers help us to become young and to feel fully alive again.
Thank-you to all of the teachers in my life - past, present and future - for your incredibly caring.