ANAHATA GIRI

For nearly 30 years, through practising yoga, meditation, writing, listening practices and social change work, Anahata has explored an authentic integration of the personal, spiritual and political.

When she was 20 she began emotionally processing the domestic violence she experienced growing up, began yoga and also joined the nonviolent social change group, the Melbourne Rainforest Action Group. This began her conviction that we need all aspects of ourselves – the physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual – to become whole human beings. Anahata worked in the domestic violence sector, both counselling and supporting women and on violence prevention projects. She has worked as an activist in the environment and peace movements, and is one of the founders of The Peoples Charter to Create a Nonviolent World.

When Anahata was asked by Craig to join him in offering theatreyoga, she immediately resonated with the way theatreyoga meets our full ‘humanility’ and helps us bring our full potential into the world, with depth and celebration.

Anahata has been teaching yoga and meditation classes and retreats since 2002. She is the Director of One Heart, a yoga and meditation studio based at the Abbotsford Convent. One Heart is also home to One Heart, One World, established in 2016, a social change project that aims to prevent violence and create a world based on nonviolence and love. The Love in Action Series is the first project of One Heart, One World.

She has the following qualifications: Certificate IV in Training and Assessment; Diploma in Community Development; Somatic Psychotherapy Diploma; Certificate IV in Small Business Management and Graduate Certificate in Yoga Therapy. Anahata is a skilled listener, group facilitator, teacher and trainer. www.oneheartyoga.com.au

 

 

CRAIG MATHEWSON

A Desert Story

I studied a BA in Theatre in Sydney; I lived in Germany for a number of years working in theatre; I studied an MFA in Film in Los Angeles; I toured theatre throughout Asia and many European countries; but it wasn’t until I lived in the Australian desert that my life turned into a genuine search for a deeper meaning into our existence . It was borne from a yearning to dissolve anything which I recognised wasn’t authentic within myself.

For many years while traveling the vast interiors of inland Australia, I found myself constantly drawn towards the three major icons of this country; Uluru ( Ayres Rock) , Kata Tjuta (The Olga’s)  and Attila ( Mt Connor). One day in a state of ‘quiet desperation’ I arrived at the first of the the big three, Attila, often mistaken for Uluru by tourists. ( Some people from India consider this site the incarnation of Shiva). I pulled off the highway to the lookout and observed the majestic mount, and suddenly broke down sobbing. The word Celebration overwhelmed my senses. Not only the word but a profound insight that we must Celebrate THIS LIFE ! I cried with the realisation that I had not been honouring my life as a human being. I had forgotten the simplicity of how to celebrate and participate fully, and that I must learn how to play again.

After some time had passed I lifted myself out of that red, she-oak tear-moistened, sand leaving with immense gratitude, and headed to Uluru, a further 100 km along the track. I reached the much visited 2nd icon and parked away from the Mutitjulu waterhole and walked 400 metres onto the edge of the pool. I sat on an ornate wooden seat for tourists. After about 45 minutes  I realised that I hadn’t been thinking anything for the entire time. No Mind. Which is incredibly difficult to do if you ‘try’. I left Uluru ( apparently known as the incarnation of Ganesha , who interestingly lost his head or maybe his thoughts) . Also it seems that the indigenous story for Uluru is at best vague or secret.  Another 45 km up the track and I come to Kata Tjuta; A Pitjantjatjara phrase meaning Many Heads, which coincidently to some Indian pilgrims the site is known as Parvati / Kali, who happens to carry around many heads herself.

I walked into the ‘valley of the winds’ at Kata Tjuta and was immediately silenced by a profound feeling of Devotion. Live your life as a Devotion was the calling. Devotion to myself, to Mother Earth, to the Source, to God, to Her, to Him, to the Divine in all of us.  The three messages  were complete, unequivocal and an unmistakable gift. These three qualities; Celebration, No Mind and Devotion represent the three pillars of theatreyoga.