Why I quit my job to become a Classical Hatha Yoga teacher?
Ok... here I go...
When I was little, I once saw a bus conductor standing on the last foot board with his head sticking out the door and wind blowing through his hair. I wanted my hair to fly like that, so I thought I should become a bus conductor when I grow up, but that did not happen!
As I grew up, I constantly put myself in other’s shoes to see how I would like doing the job they did. I became passionate about computers when I was exposed to it in my first grade. Eventually, I ended up working as an IT professional.
I was raised in a typical middle class family in India. So people had no money or had very little and when they had some money they did not know how to manage it well. There were constant struggles in the society at large which definitely poured down to my door steps and into my life.
Going through hard times was very challenging for me, especially being the only child at home. I saw quite a few people of my age group also go through similar tough times. Fortunately, through every hardship I found an opening to better myself and my life.
I always kept thinking how I could contribute to the society around me as I felt they were going through similar struggles as I was. I had fancy ideas that if somehow everybody got formal school education then everybody would live happily, but the most educated people I came across did not seem very happy. Then I thought if everyone had financial stability may be we will all live joyfully, but I noticed that the rich around me were also not happy. ‘What is that we are missing?’ was a question that left me wondering every moment of my life.
But like everyone, I had the need to stabilize myself financially first, so that I myself was not a burden to my parents or the society. So I continued working as a software professional trying to stabilize myself and my parent’s lives.
When I was 9 years of age my mother enrolled me into a Yoga class. I woke up every morning at 4 o’ clock, walked about 2 Kilometers each way to get to my Yoga class and back on my own. After a couple of years, one morning on my way back from the class, there were a bunch of older boys on the street who teased me about my looks and mannerism. I was then in 5th grade. I went home and immediately told my parents about this incident. They got scared and this brought an end to my Yoga.
In 2008, my friend nagged me to watch a video of a spiritual Guru on YouTube. I reluctantly sat down to watch this 5 minute video. I was astonished with this man’s clarity of thought, intelligence and how logical he sounded, making everything about life seem so simple. I was then hooked on to watching many more of Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev’s videos. A very close friend of mine visited me after a month or so and asked me “something about you has dramatically changed, what have you been doing?” I said “I have not been doing anything”, giving it more thought I said “I have been watching videos of Sadhguru talking about a variety of things. May be that’s about it”.
In 2013, I attended a Yoga program called ‘Inner Engineering’ (www.innerengineering.com) online, offered by Sadhguru. This was my first program with Isha Foundation. Since then, I have attended various Yoga programs offered by Isha Foundation in India and the USA. These programs gave me a different perspective about life and everything I was doing. It gave me immense inner strength and helped me in handling my life situations in a much better way, which would have otherwise broken me down.
I now realize that the 2 years of Yoga I did as a child and the Yoga I do now, gives me a sense balance within myself, which I feel is the key to my ability to handle anything that life throws at me. This has been a very subtle process but tremendously strong. Now that I know these Yoga tools have helped me, I want to take this to as many people as I can.
I have worked as an Information Technology professional for last 15 years. In my last job I worked in Hollywood and made a decent living. But I have a fear of dying in regret having done nothing that really mattered.
So I am redirecting my life to equip myself to teach Yoga by going through a full time residential 21-week Isha Hatha Yoga Teacher Training program at Isha Yoga Center, Coimbatore, India (https://www.ishayoga.org/hata/teachertraining).
Though I do not have a big bank balance today, I know I will always have the capability to have a roof over my head and a morsel of food in my plate. If I do not take this step now and today, I might never.
Hence I quit my job and I am committing myself to go through this rigorous training program and soak myself in this powerful space.
Time is a limited resource. I wish and hope each one of us find what really matters and have the opportunity to pursue it sooner than later.
I wish and hope I have your continued support and blessings in this endeavor of mine.
Girija Sampath, Long Beach, Los Angeles, California, United States of America.