Rama Jyoti Vernon began her interest in metaphysics and mysticism as a child, with parents who were pioneers in holistic health. In the 1960’s and 1970’s she hosted and studied with many great Yoga masters from India, such as B.K.S. Iyengar, and became one of America’s first yoga teachers. Rama Jyoti has been instrumental in creating a number of organizations, including the California Yoga Teachers Association (CYTA). Rama was one of the original publishers of the CYTA newsletter, which gave birth to the magazine, Yoga Journal. Rama founded the B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga Association of Northern California, and established a two-year curriculum for the first state-certified yoga teachers’ training program through the California Institute of Integral Studies. This training program became the B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga Teacher Training Institute. She started Unity In Yoga, an international organization that sponsored seven national, and three international conferences, and provided the non-profit umbrella for the Yoga Alliance. As a housewife, mother and yoga teacher, Rama found herself applying yoga philosophy in a whole new arena, international peacemaking. During the 1980s she made dozens of trips to the U.S.S.R, and in 1987, she founded the Center for International Dialogue (CID), based on the idea that people can join together to initiate solutions for political, economic, ecological, humanitarian and cultural conflicts.
Integration of the Yoga Sutras
Rama Jyoti’s approach to the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali integrates these ancient teachings into asana practice, and explores applying them in daily life. Her unique teaching style emphasizes opening the body by extending and breathing into each pose as a deeply spiritual offering, assimilating breath, energy, philosophy and one’s own appropriate structural alignment within each posture.
A Breath-based Practice
While breathing is fundamental to yogic practices and life functions, daily stress, chronic breathing maladies and environmental pollutants affect our ability to fully receive the benefits of the breath. How we breathe can deepen our yoga practice, alleviate problems and provide a more vital lifestyle. Rama Jyoti will introduce her signature approach to using the breath as a way to open the body to enhance asana, deepen spiritual practices and enliven day-to-day activities.
Awakening the Endocrine System
The powerhouse of our physical condition, the endocrine system, is endlessly taxed by the world around us. At an early age Rama Jyoti was exposed to mystics, great spiritual leaders, and natural healers whose experience was simultaneously traditional and ahead of its time. Through her personal experiences and the teachings of her parents and other great healers, Rama Jyoti has found ways to stimulate and renew this complex system that governs much of our physical being. She will share stories from her vast background, and apply her knowledge to asana for rejuvenating the endocrine glands.