How the First Teacher Training in the Czech Republic Came to Be
By Guru Sansar Kaur
The Czech Republic is a small country in Central Europe. It was a socialist country from 1948 until 1989. Socialism was a very Piscean way of living. It was a great way to train people how to not be who they were, and how to make sure they wouldn’t stand out in any way. We were trained to envy everything and be very critical and self-critical. Though these seem to be overall negative characteristics, they can make us advance as individuals as well as a country. In the depth of envy, motivation and growth is ingrained. The basis of negativity creates a constant striving for excellence, and the pressure of not being who you are forces you to search for liberation. Kundalini Yoga can give people the awareness to realize this and the strength to manifest the “national” and individual gifts that no socialism could take away: endurance, strong determination, natural sensitivity, and a big heart.
I am a Czech with my heart and soul. I was born and raised in the Czech Republic. I only moved to Los Angeles ten years ago to join my husband-to-be, Raul. In a moment of a personal crisis, I discovered Yoga West and the teachings of Yogi Bhajan. I started taking classes and even though at that time I didn’t have the resources to take teacher training, I made a promise to the Universe that one day, I would bring this gift to my country for my people to experience.
In the meantime, Marta Moody, another Czech woman, took her teacher training at Yoga West, and in 2005 she returned to the Czech Republic and started teaching. For several years, she was the only Kundalini Yoga teacher in the country. She has developed quite a following, especially in terms of steadiness, heart openness, and commitment. Her students are a real solid base for the emerging Kundalini Yoga community there.
As for my part, it took me a while to get started. As a matter of fact, I had to wait until winter 2009. That year something shifted. The first contact was made and that summer, there I was teaching Kundalini Yoga to a group of twenty local women in the Czech language in the Czech Republic. It was funny as I was struggling to explain Kundalini Yoga concepts and postures in Czech for the first time, and people were laughing at my language inventions. Overall, it was an amazing experience. I felt very deep longing for the unity of the body, mind, and soul, and gratitude for these teachings.
I did teach a lot that summer. It was a vacation time so I took the opportunity and subbed a lot for teachers of other forms of yoga that were traveling. Many people could experience the gift of Yogi Bhajan’s legacy that way. I also traveled a lot nationally to teach. When the summer was over, Nada, who had studied Kundalini Yoga in New York and took some classes with me that year, took over some of the classes and continued the work after I left, along with Marta who also kept teaching.
The following year, more contacts appeared and more people started coming to workshops and classes. My biggest surprise was the national “Miluj svuj zivot” (Love Your Life) Festival—a local festival of healing and esoteric arts. Some workshops had as many as 60 attendees! I kept on teaching all over the Czech Republic and meeting many amazing people—several of them “future” teachers.
Another key thing last year was that Katerina Novohradska, a successful costume designer, opened the first Kundalini Yoga studio in Prague. Kundalini Yoga Center is a petite, heartfelt space with a very unique atmosphere. It is a reflection of its owner, a beautiful woman with a big heart who is now taking teacher training as well. We started morning sadhanas there and even though it is not the most popular class hour, people find their way in when they are called to do so.
The projection for 2010 was to prepare the ground for the first Kundalini Yoga teacher training to start in 2011 or 2012. Although 2012 seemed more logical as it would have given us more time to prepare, I had a feeling it would be needed sooner. My intuition proved right. Things started happening smoothly and synchronistically. For example, I coincidentally reconnected with my Czech speaking cousin in Hamburg, Germany, after many years, just to find out she was about to start Level 1 teacher training with Satya Singh. I had heard about Satya before so I reached out to him and he is now our Lead Trainer. Through Satya I met Ferial Hargobind Kaur, who was instrumental in pointing us to the owner of our future training venue. All things were just happening. A promise that I made years ago to the Infinite to start teacher training in the Czech Republic was starting to manifest.
The manifestation often felt like a raging river rushing to the ocean—there was such a force behind it. The Universe was adjusting the flow to a vision. Of course, with vision and all, we still had to catch up with the administrative part of the event. Being a strategist and visionary by nature, this was the difficult part for me. Being thousands of miles away didn’t help. Many things such as the price calculation and the website information weren’t finalized until the end of December. With this delay, many people, myself included, doubted that we would have enough students to cover the costs. In the end of January we only had 7 sign-ups and the training was starting in the end of March! That’s where the wisdom of a spiritual teacher came in. The solution proved to be very simple: Guru Singh and I simply decided on a number and that’s what I set my projection on. Within a week, 15 people applied and more kept signing up until the day the training started. I felt it was a miracle. We ended up having 25 students and added two babies conceived during the time of the training!
The administration of the training also reminded me of a rule that I knew from International Business: it doesn’t matter where you are from if you now live somewhere else. You are a foreigner in your country and you have to relearn the culture to be able to “do business” with locals. It was a shock to me, as my communication created some resistance and I had to realize it and adjust how I related to my people. It made me more humble and I am grateful. It helped me to connect deeper with the group.
When I first met the teacher training group a few months after the beginning of the course, I was very impressed. I felt the strength, cohesiveness, openness of the heart, and also the strength to lead. It is an amazing group, very eager to learn. They are very Aquarian; flowing and sensitive. Some of them have already been teaching for some time, others are just getting started. This year the teacher trainers also made a first step in connecting to the larger 3HO community by participating for the first time at the European Yoga Festival. They had a very deep experience with the White Tantric Yoga and studying with many great teachers. Now they are working towards their own local 3HO organization.
The Age of Aquarius is approaching and people are changing very fast. The Czech Kundalini Yoga community is a baby of this age as well. People intuitively know Kundalini Yoga can help them in this life and age, and they find their way to it. The first group of teachers, the first generation, has all they need to lead their country and people towards prosperity and peace of mind in this New Age. May God give them the courage and heart to serve all.