Friends General Conference

Nurturing faith and Quaker practice

(FULL) Find Embodied Truth and Wisdom: Kundalini Yoga

Workshop Number: 
Ann Ritter
Who may register?: 
Open to All
Experiential Activities: 
part-time attenders welcome (can come any day; some might only attend Thursday or Friday)
half gathering attenders welcome
First half (Monday-Wednesday)
Second half (Wednesday/Thursday-Friday)

Kundalini Yoga meets you where and as you are, asking only that you open to its richness. We include moving/held body and hand positions, and breathing, all to music. The practice attunes the body, quiets the mind, and opens the way for worship and true communion of spirit with Spirit.

Workshop Description

Suitable for beginners (those with no yoga experience) as well as more advanced yoga practitioners, this Kundalini Yoga workshop is not about how to perfect postures. Rather it is about showing up and staying present. It is about how to use the parts of the body--including hands, arms, legs and feet; the breath; the voice; and the brain to gain deeper access to true, embodied worship. Through both movement and stillness, the yoga is your guide to a more authentic and heart-centered way of walking the earth every day.

The yoga sessions will include various mixes of asana (posture), mudra (hand and foot positioning), mantra (chant), and meditation done to music. Following each session, we will move into silent meditation, followed by worship sharing.  There will be small amount of lecturing on Monday. This lecturing is more by way of explanation and clarification than about yoga pedagogy. On Wednesday and Friday, we will have shorter sessions of yoga in order to allow participants to ask practical questions and share their experiences of the yoga practice over the course of the week.

Experiential portions of the workshop will include a mix of sitting and standing, with the majority of time devoted to sitting. Those who cannot sit on the floor on a yoga mat are welcomed and encouraged to use a regular chair, an exercise ball or any other props that will allow them to feel included and enabled, as well as comfortable. Worship sharing also may be done seated in chairs or on the floor, depending on our room assignment and available resources.

Please plan to dress in clothing that is stretchy and allows for freedom of movement. A personal yoga mat is most desirable, as well as pillows and other personal props, and a light covering for meditation, in case our room is kept cold.

Leader Experience

I have lead similar Kundalini Yoga workshops at the Gathering in 2008, 2013, 2014 and 2017. I regularly teach Kundalini Yoga classes and in the past years have done specialty workshops at various yoga studios on Kundalini Yoga as an aid for ongoing self reflection, and personal growth and healing. I also became certified in 2013 in Kundalini Yoga for those suffering from post-traumatic stress. I have taught Kundalini Yoga and Meditation for PTS in Atlanta, GA, and Nashville, TN, on numerous occasions in the past three years. And I am beginning to work as a yoga therapist on academic research teams examining the benefits of yoga and meditation on those suffering from cancer (one project) and those with side effects from mild traumatic brain injuries (a second project).