Community is About More Than Togetherness

After a very full month with our Give Big campaign of 30 days and 30 ways to give, we are(mostly) ready and (fully) excited for Yoga in the Park tomorrow!

In our most recent podcast, we talked about why we feel that practicing in community, as we will do in Wright Park on Saturday, and as we do each and every day in our studio, is essential.  Kate shared that at the heart of the yoga tradition is the belief that unity, and the yearning for connectivity, lies at the very center of all living things. It is within our community – the people with whom we choose to be in relationship – that we are reminded of our interconnectedness and interdependence. This reminder doesn’t always come in a beautiful sunshiny moment of supporting each other in a circle of tree poses (a lovely moment from last year’s Yoga in the Park). Sometimes – often, in fact – we are reminded of our interconnectedness when we experience the heartache and wounding of being in relationship, as we all struggle to show up in the world as our best selves.  

Just as some of our deepest wounds come from being in relationship, so too does our most effective healing happen there. Right or wrong, beautiful or broken, clear or confused, our community - our people - hold up the mirror and show us who we are, how we’re showing up, and how we’re impacting those around us. And if we’re lucky, they do it with love, holding us in wholeness, never losing sight of our inherent and inalienable goodness.  

This is the community we are all co-creating here at SKY. It is a community of practice; a community of connection, love, and mutual healing; a community of accountability and forgiveness. It is a community that values radical vulnerability, integrity, and reciprocity.  It is a community committed to social justice, one that does not shy away from naming and facing the wounds of the world. Our practice is our prep work for moving through the world with big hearts, open enough to be broken by the suffering of the world and strong enough to respond with love.  We are an ecosystem of interdependent beings engaged in a deeply transformative practice as we model an alternative way of being and challenge the status quo. (Check out this video to hear more about that last bit.)

Choosing to be in community in this way means more than practicing together, though. It means more than sharing physical space. It means acknowledging the incredible power that we have as individuals and as a group to impact each other and the world. How we spend our resources of time, energy, and money - these are all choices that impact the people around us and the wider beautiful aching world.

During this past month we’ve been asking you to consider reallocating your precious resources to the work we’re doing of empowering people of all incomes and abilities towards lives of peace, purpose, and joy through affordable and accessible yoga.  Approximately 75 people in our community (both near and far) have given just over $12,000, which is really quite impressive. (That breaks down to an average of $160 per person…again, impressive!)  In just this past week we’ve had over 220 people pass through our doors and over 650 since Give Big Month began.  And we have about 3,000 folks who get our newsletter. That means that with about $13,000 more to go to reach our goal…

-If everyone who gets our newsletter gave, we’d reach our goal of $25,000 with each person giving just $4.30.

-If everyone who came through the studio during Give Big Month gave, we’d reach our goal of $25,000 with each person giving $20.

-If everyone who came through the studio during just the last week gave, we’d reach our goal of $25,000 with each person giving $59.

Of course, not everybody who receives our newsletter or passes through our doors has monetary resources to give. The purpose of this breakdown is not to suggest that there should be 100% giving but to show just how manageable a goal like $25,000 becomes when we all dig deep and spread the privilege of giving throughout the community, At the risk of sounding trite, when we all do what we can as individuals, we can do really BIG things together. The money we raise makes it possible for our impact to extend far beyond our studio walls, expanding the reach of our arms and drawing into this community of practice folks out on the margins, who just like us are yearning to be in transformative and healing relationship.

We are so grateful to be in a community of generous, audacious, and tenacious lovers and dreamers. We’ve had SO MUCH FUN raising money. (See our Facebook page for the proof.) And we are stoked to see you at Yoga in the Park. Here’s a quick reminder of the lineup:

9am Warm-Up Flow with Pamela Higley

10am The Heart of Our Practice: Yoga and Sacred Activism with Vania Kent

11am Kids Yoga with Rebekah Jurgensen

11:30am LIVE The Horsefolk of the Yogapocalypse Podcast

12pm Partner Yoga with Angi Donovan + Danny Connelly

12:30 Laughter Yoga with Michelle Zebrowski

1pm Qigong for Healing with Najeea Leslie, Live Music by Kristen Rubis

1:30pm Meditation with Kelly Rothwell, Live Music by Kristen Rubis

2pm Kirtan with Kate Fontana and Claudette Evans

(AND, a reminder that the first 50 folks get some really great swag.)

Looking forward to being in community with you on Saturday. Until then give big (i.e. what-you-can), give often, share widely, and love well.