Thank you. Thank you to the guardian that Bob Sinclair was when he believed in Genevieve’s and my vision in June of 2009. Bob was the landlord of the 112 Camino de la Placita property at the time and his faith in our project (and us, baby business people that we were) launched us into entrepreneurship on shoestrings with big dreams. He affirmed those dreams and in many ways, they have come true over the last eleven years. We did create a safe, nurturing, and welcoming environment for people to gather and gain awareness through movement. We did keep our focus on and stay rooted to a celebration of intrinsic goodness and the awakened spirit of an aware and aligned body. We did keep doors open for a community space, designed to empower and uplift everyone who entered. It wasn’t perfect, but we did what our mission set out to do and the Yoga did its work on all of us along the way.
Thank you to everyone who ever walked in the doors of the studio. I learned much from each one of you and am grateful. Thank you to all of you who offered words of encouragement and financial support at the beginning, middle, and new middle of this pandemic time. Your commitment to Shree Yoga, for whatever reasons it is valuable to you, empowered and inspired us to hang on for this long.
The confluence of events that have brought us to this closing point is something I can accept, albeit with heartbreak. When Geneveive and I both stepped back from being involved in e.v.e.r.y.s.i.n.g.l.e..t.h.i.n.g. that happened at Shree in 2019 – she directed energy to Clean Taos, I focused on growing a tiny human – we supposed that Shree would clip happily along into the future. We didn’t create a smash hit of a business, but it was a good enough model to continue to serve the community and keep on keeping on, for those times. Now, the whole world is changing. The model of the brick and mortar yoga studios is changing, for so many reasons. Everything comes to an end.
Here’s a tidbit I am very much enjoying lately from Susan Raffo, an activist, writer, and bodyworker, among other magical human things. Her work moves me. She says “Self-care is the constant practice of not letting more pain accumulate.” Radical. I’m working on it, every day, with every breath.
Shit happens. Pain is unavoidable. But in devotion to the cause of LOVE and kindness, to healing and liberation for ALL, we can all do our own yoga of clearing the residue that painful experiences leave. This kind of self-care leaves our mirrors clean so we can reflect any beauty we may encounter along the way. This kind of self-care actually allows us to participate in the moment by taking care of each other and the earth we are so lucky to be breathing with. In this way, my practice is stayin’ alive. I hope you gained some self-care tools at Shree, I know I did.
I trust that somewhere in this process of letting go of our sweet studio, home to so many thousands of hours of practice, and so many transformations of fear to LOVE, there is an opportunity for us all to take our practices closer to home. Save gas and lessen carbon footprints by not driving to yoga class. Consume one less thing. Step back and reconsider the ways in which we can better appreciate – especially if we come to these practices as westerners – and not appropriate, which the industry would have us continue to do forever. No thing is forever, until we reach eternal bliss.
I can see through my participation in this project the impact small actions have on a massive webwork of life. If Yoga works with a mirror for our self-reflection and growth, teaching yoga is a house of mirrors; humbling, hilarious, at times, totally bewildering. Thank you to all the teachers of yoga. This includes everyone and anyone who has dared to try and live the precepts, everyone who strives to become a better ancestor, everyone who aims to make their impact on the planet lower… really, everyone. I learn from you all. I have so loved sitting in the circle with you. Sharing my practice has been a great honor. I hope it has served in some way. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
I pray that you and your closest are well,
In breath, love, and big respect,