I've always been more interested in the internal side of yoga. Well maybe not in the beginning but definitely the longer I practice its what I find like Laruga says below "keeps me coming back morning after morning"
I'm sure you can tell with the focus of Ekaminhale.
One of the reasons I was excited to talk to Laruga was because years ago I saw a video with her where she said: [Paraphrased]
"Through this sequence of postures - it forces us to transform - Ashtanga Yoga can be very deceiving in that it seems only physical - but really there is not way you could sustain yourself in this practice without working internally - using the breath - we have a gazing point - consciously breathing and moving and flowing through the practice, you just start to get carried away with the breath and even in the beginning when it seems quite hard and the energy starts to take over - and that's really the beautiful aspect of the practice - once we tap into the breath and the rhythm of the practice it becomes totally energetic and then we tap into this part within ourselves that is unlimitless and we tap into this energy that just seems to take over. That's what keeps me coming back morning after morning after morning. If it didn't have that aspect, if it was only physcial, I don't know if I would be doing it for as long as I have" - Laruga Glaser
She was kind enough to make some time for me when she was leaving Mysore and was my first interview (hence the little bit of blurry footage).
Her words sat with me for days after - particularly the part about building what's real.
Well I'll let you see for yourself what I mean.
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How did you get into yoga?
If I were to be really brutally honest, I went through a time that was a little traumatic. A little traumatic time. But I remember I started to become interested in spirituality and just trying to find "Okay, what's this life about?" It kind of like at the same time just living kind of like a normal life: going to school, graduating, planning to go to college... these type of things.
Interesting, before I started doing any type of practice, like actually coming on to a mat, I was doing a lot of reading about spirituality and I came across the 8 limbs. I remember thinking how interesting it was because for one, it seemed quite practical; and two, maybe it's because the way my mind works a little. I kind of notice there's one limb, two limb, four. It was like these steps that you take and it seemed like to me, kind of like a road map to some type of greater knowledge.
When I was in college, I started to take some yoga classes and then I was also a cheer leader- in college, too. Then I started to have some back problems, actually. Even being quite young, and then what kind of inspired me. In yoga there's seems to be some type of healing, too with the postures. Then with that curiosity I had before, I started going to Asana practice.
Around my 20's, that's when I found Ashtanga. That's around 20, like a few years later. Cause I kept doing this research, "Oh, this yoga thing is so interesting," and then when I found Ashtanga, I was like "Wow!" This is something that really captivated me. I feel like these sense of movement are what yoga does. It allows you to feel the spirit more, within your body.
It took quite a while for me to give up the security, or what I thought was security. Soon I started to realize that security is actually more building my life on something. It's not tangible, but this yoga I feel like is more real than this material or conditioning societal ways of life.
So I navigated to different types of work and before I stopped all of that and started teaching yoga full time, I actually was working for a pharmaceutical company. My boss' boss, I was going to a training, and he had a one on one meeting with me. He told me, "Laruga, you can be the best. I see it in you. You can be the best but I can see that there's something holding you back. What is it? What do you want?" And I looked at him, and I really had nothing to say.
A New Model For Success
I mean my model now for success is someone that's living in their own authenticity.
I feel like there's still so much more for me to work on, to more fully inhabit that authenticity. I definitely feel like I'm doing what I love, I'm doing what I'm passionate about.
There's no turning back from this point. And it goes back to what I was saying, is building your foundation about something that's more real. It's not of this material world. And so when you build it on something on this, I don't wanna name it. That internal power. Your soul, your connection to the greater, to the greater source. Whatever you wanna call it, that connection, you start to become more fearless. Now I can't say that I'm always in that space. But the practice definitely helps me to connect to it.
Find out more about Laruga like where she is teaching workshops, inspirational blog posts and lots of amazing photos and videos at her website - Larugayoga.com
Also check out her Instagram here
Photo credit: Rose - Ashtangayogaitalia.com
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