Workshop Review: Jai-Jagdeesh, The Gift of Inner Peace

Jai-Jagdeesh recently concluded her first Northeast US tour, and as predicted, it was a musical experience not to be missed.  The tour took this amazing performer through Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Ontario, Canada, and then concluded with three events in the metropolitan Washington, DC area.  At each stop, Jai-Jagdeesh played to sold-out yoga studios and community centers, bringing love and light to all who attended.

Jai-Jagdeesh launched this tour with two other phenomenal artists: world-renowned sitarist Leonardo Har Prakash and percussion master Tripp Dudley.  Many of the events were structured as yoga and meditation workshops with live music, with two different themes: The Gift of Inner Peace and The Wisdom of the Heart.  I was fortunate to have attended The Gift of Inner Peace at Golden Heart Yoga in Washington DC, and it was a remarkable experience.

The evening started out with an introduction by Jai-Jagdeesh, as she welcomed the guests and asked us to do our best to keep up during the practice.  She reminded us that yoga is not a competitive sport, and that we should remember to differentiate between pain and discomfort (noticing if the mind is telling us that we can’t do something). She also encouraged us to be completely at peace with whatever our 100% looks like.

After a few gentle warm-ups to become present, Jai-Jagdeesh then launched into the first kriya, Elementary Adjustment of the Brain. This kriya consisted of three exercises separated by 3 rounds of cannon fire breath, and it worked to tune us into our intuition, the voice that guides us.  Each exercise was a different type of pranayam, or breath, with different mudras, or arm positions.  The haunting sounds of Leonardo Har Prakash on the sitar and Tripp on the guitar created a sense of other-worldiness as we worked through the postures.

The second kriya worked to clear the unconscious mind.  This one used several mantras, allowing the sound current to reverberate through the skull, releasing the unconscious and tapping into the healing effects of chanting.  Some of the arm positions in this kriya were fairly challenging, but people kept up with the chanting, with Jai-Jagdeesh’s magical voice leading us.

This concluded the yoga portion of the evening, and by now we were ready for deep meditation.  The first meditation she taught was the Ra Ma Da Sa healing meditation.  Jai-Jagdeesh introduced the mantra and explained what it means (“Sun, Moon, Earth, Infinity. Infinity I am thou”). The musicians’ soulful tones cushioned Jai-Jagdeesh’s soothing voice as participants chanted their hearts out!

Jai-Jagdeesh then presented the second meditation, using the mantra Aad Guray Nameh to allow us to be held in the heart space.  Humans tend to speed through things, she told us, and then she reminded us to let this be a process.  We should relish every second of our time, allowing ourselves to sink into the heart and let the seed of peace open.   The melody was beautiful, and as every participant in the packed room chanted, you could feel the energy of love permeate through the entire place.

After a brief relaxation—accompanied by more of Tripp and Har Prakash’s gorgeous music—Jai-Jagdeesh brought everyone back to earth. As the workshop drew to a close, she told us to breathe in light and love, and breathe out that which no longer serves us.  By the end of the night, every soul in the room was feeling an open heart and uplifted spirit. It was unquestionably a night not to be missed!

Catch Jai-Jagdeesh, Tripp Dudley and Leonardo Har Prakash at Sat Nam Fest Mexico in December!

 

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