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Sharing Sacred Space & Ganesha Churti


For a long time now, yoga has been my sacred time and Shine has been my sacred place. Both the practice and the place creating space for me to connect more deeply to the spirit of my heart and the spirit that makes it easier to connect with others and to enjoy my life.

When I learned that Shine might close two years ago, I felt like I was actually about to lose a part of myself. The opportunity for me to keep it going presented itself, but as much as I loved Shine, I was doubtful and scared to be the one to hold the space. I explored my options and when I couldn’t find a better solution, I decided to step forward on the path that was unfolding before me.

Of course, it wasn’t just me working to keep Shine going strong. I felt supported by the community, and by a force of spirit that truly was palpable throughout the process as problems arose and seemed to gracefully work themselves out.

Holding the space at this studio has challenged me in many ways, and as is in life, by standing strong here, I’ve had to let other things go in my life. As the time has approached for me to renew the lease and I was told that I’d have a new landlord, I’ve had to dig deep to decide, are the challenges worth standing here? The answer is – Yes! So the past few weeks brought some negotiations about the lease renewal. It wasn’t anything dramatic but I’m coming out of a few weeks of confusing times.

Then yesterday, everything just fell into place. The lease renewal was resolved. The sale on the building closed. And, it was clear, I am holding this space as a place for us to meet in sacred time and practice. Later in the day I realized it was the first day of Ganesha Churti and thought, “of course it is!” Ganesha Churti is the celebration of the birth of Ganesha who is known as the remover of obstacles.

One of Ganesha’s stories is that his father Siva severed Ganesha’s head in a fit of rage when Ganesha wouldn’t let his father pass through a door he had been asked to guard. The story continues that Ganesha was able to survive and flourish with his replacement elephant head. Even after this challenge, Ganesha stands as a joyful, loyal, wise, and generous deity.

Ganesha’s elephant head is of course symbolic. “The elephant head represents both gyan Shakti (the energy of wisdom) and karma Shakti (the energy of action). The enormous head of the elephant signifies wisdom & knowledge and because elephants are rarely stopped by obstacles because of their intelligence and strength – they also symbolize effortlessness.”

“When we embody Ganesha energy, these qualities within us are kindled and we take these qualities on as our own.”

Today I am incredibly grateful for all the forces of wisdom and action at work in the world and in spirit that keep us all standing strong here at Shine!

With love and gratitude, Kate

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