Yogis and yogini from all over the world converge on Ubud, Bali for four days of music, yoga and dance. The Bali Spirit Festival is on its final day of celebration.
Asana Practice: I attended a yoga class by taught by Danny Paradise yesterday. Danny is trained in the ashtanga tradition, but he teaches an experimental and playful class. He was one of the first westerners to be trained in ashtanga yoga and is responsible for introducing such famous people as Sting and Madonna to yoga.
In addition to ashtanga, Danny has also studied and practiced with numerous teachers of other Yoga forms as well as various martial arts including Karate, Kung Fu and Tai Chi. His influences in Spirituality have come from Krishnamurti, teachings of Buddha, Jesus, Shiva, Yoga, as well as numerous Shamanic traditions of Native North and South Americans, from indigenous cultures of the Pacific, Tibet, Africa and South East Asia. Some of these traditions also include Mayan, Egyptian, Hawaiian…
Danny gave a quick lecture on the health benefits of yoga, encouraging people to practice in order to feel good late in to life and to avoid the suffering most people experience in the years before death. Additionally, Danny spoke about the “little death” experience of ayahuasca, a psychedelic shamanic medicines, encouraging people to come to peace with the transitional experience of death in this lifetime.
A highlight of the festival for many people is the music. Last night was no exception. My new friend Marcus Thomson (aka “Deva”) rocked the stage along with such acts as a Canadian band “From Deli to Dublin.”
Today the festival is free to the public and most of the classes are geared for kids. I’m looking forward to a final night of great world music.