“Yoga means to move towards an experiential reality where one knows the ultimate nature of the existence, the way it is made.”
“Yoga Sessions with Penelope
Whilst I enjoy active yoga at gym I find I leave a yoga session with Penelope feeling destressed, calm and happy. I love her warm and patient, guiding instruction and the special attention to breathwork and gentle stretching relaxes me. I highly recommend Penelope’s brand of yoga.” – Julie Collett
Yoga and meditation are often considered as two separate practices whereas they are very much related and even inseparable. Meditation serves the purpose of the yogic practice and yogic practices serve the purpose of meditation. The word yoga essentially means ‘that which brings you to reality’ so, when you are in yoga, you are in unity with every part of your being and you can leave nothing of yourself aside. Yoga has become synonymous with vigorous, breath-focussed workouts whilst the classical foundational perspective is that yoga is a series of practices that lead to a healthy body, equanimous mind and pure heart.
Meet your system where it is not where you want, need or expect it to be.
Every human being lives in a 4-dimensional body so yoga also needs to be 4-dimensional. Yoga is not wholly a physical exercise but a means to use the physical body as a vehicle of transformation by recruiting and purifying the emotional, mental and psychic aspects of the self. It is only through the correct and consecutive ascension through the lower chakras that one can reach one’s own spiritual source and find one’s true soul purpose.
HA: Sun (surya), breath (prana), pure consciousness (purusha), highest self (atman).
THA: Moon (chandra), outbreath (apana), consciousness (chitta), nature (prakriti).
HATHA: Union of the entire reality of existence.
Founded and created by Swami Vidyanand and based on the teachings of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo, Transformational Yoga is an integral approach to Hatha Yoga, using the physical body as a tool of ascension through the representational chakra bodies. Transformational Yoga combines and layers the yogic systems (including asanas, pranayama, raja yoga and prayer) to purify and awaken all five bodies and seven chakras. The consequence of this purification process accesses and releases dormant kundalini energy in the lower 4 chakras to clean and clear the bridges to the upper 4 chakras in a process of ascension through a purified body. Through this practice we remain fully present to the physical, emotional, mental and psychic bodies so that transformed pure energy consciousness from source can travel downwards through our lower chakras into the energetic anatomy of the human system to experience a continuous state of physical health, emotional balance, higher mental guidance, unconditional love and spiritual bliss. The only pathway to samadhi is through a purified system; there is no bypass to true transformation and healing.
This pathway is the spinal column. Physiologically, the spine houses the nervous system; spiritually, it is the source of all our energy and determines the way we live and grow. The level of its health is the most crucial pathway to vitality and wellbeing as it carries Shakti Kundalini from the base to the crown via the main nadi channel, Shushumna. Just as the cranial nerves of the central nervous system are connected to the spinal cord, which is in turn connected to the brain, so too is the vast network of nadis connected to Shushumna, which is connected to Sahasrara (Source). For the subtle kundalini energies to flow upward unimpeded to source, the system needs to be cleaned of impurities–from root to sacral to solar plexus to heart. The flow needs to be consecutive and sequential.
Every living thing has a vibrational resonance–either towards progression or regression based on the levels of impurities in the physical (earth), prana (water), mental (fire) and psychic (air) bodies and minds of the lower chakras. Together with spiritual (ether), everything in the universe is reflected in the body so, through purifying and transforming the elements within, we can have a profound impact on our environment, nature and humanity. Element mantras create a vibrational force that highlights and stimulates the energetic shape between apara and para consciousness so that higher energy returns and comes down to strengthen the physical body, balance emotions, cool thoughts, harmonise love and equalise the samadhi source.
I mean this not in the sense of training two people in complicated and entwined asanas; I mean it in the sense of being your partner in co-creating a new narrative, designing a new map and partnering with you on your pilgrimage to a new way of conceptualising yourself and in being in the world. When walking besides one another on any journey, there is a resonance that creates an alignment of all the intelligences: Somatic, Emotional, Mental and Intuitive. From this foundation, the pathway opens up in a way that you are better equipped to find your own way and I ultimately become redundant as you re-member where it is you need to go.
Regarding myself as a devotee to the transformation of humanity may sound fanciful but, if you break it down according to the Glossary of Terms included here, and layer that with the immersion and integration I have encountered in my decades of studies, curiosity, research, experiential learning and explorations in the physical, emotional and spiritual realms of human existence, it may sound just right. I have both knelt and been brought to my knees at the alter of my own self transformation and I have discovered that health isn’t the absence of disease but the resilience of the being to find harmony despite the disease.
Transformation is an inside job and you have to feel whatever you want to heal. But some people would rather lose their fingers and toes to frostbite than experience the excruciating pain of the feeling coming back. I do not target quick-fixes, transcention and bypass; instead I target the deep inner work that may not be particularly comfortable or easy, but is the only means to ascend through this human body you have incarnated into and which is, therefore, the only vehicle you have for this journey.
We are constantly shedding and becoming and in that shedding and becoming we purge those parts of ourselves that no longer contribute to the version we want to be and we upgrade to new versions of who we want to be. But in the upgrade we often fail to recognise that we need the appropriate building blocks–the resources on a physical, emotional, mental, psychic and spiritual plane–for it to be successful and sustainable until the next upgrade. Together we look for your life purpose, who you were born to be, your innate intelligence, how you want to be, what that looks like in the world, and the meaning you want to forge. Through the combining of Transformational Yoga with the other modalities I specialise in I will co-create an itinerary with you that provides safe containment of any discomfort and dis-ease so that the thaw can be slow and gentle as you ease into your transition.