Jane’s Work:
The Yoga of Embodiment [pdf]
– Jane’s thesis, written in 2002, and submitted for an M.A. in Counseling/Depth Psychology.

The Yoga Loft, San Francisco
The Yoga Loft was founded in 2002 by Jane House and Meg Whitbread with an intention to create a home for “The Yoga of Embodiment” in the heart of San Francisco. Over the years, The Yoga Loft has grown into one of California’s most beloved yoga schools. “The Loft” has become a home-base for the city’s most authentic teachers. It is a place where evolutionary relationships are formed and every time you walk up the stairs, you are bound hear stunning amounts of laughter.

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The Yoga Loft, San Francisco, CA
Hale Mind & Body, Nashville, TN

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Imagine back to the greatest state of innocence that you can possibly recall. The way it felt last time you stood in the middle of a wet forrest and allowed the smell of the forrest floor to overwhelm whatever else might be happening in your life. Or leaning with your back up against the sturdiness of an old tree, for example. Or staring out at the Pacific Ocean in a way that worked to both fill and empty the heart simultaneously as your feet sunk just a little, the perfect amount, into rough and salty sand.

Back and back and back. Because these are the states that work to open the body. And as my teacher Sofia loves to repeat, ‘Freedom IS an Open Body!’   It has taken me about a decade to realize this in the way that I have wanted to realize it, which is more now from the place of experience and less from that of the sheer gutsiness that it took to make my mind up to trust her in the first place.

In the house where I grew up, my kid-bedroom had a magical crawl-space, most practically fated for storage purposes.  But I saw this crawl-space as  absolutely sacred in that it had a latchable wooden door and, for some reason, it was also carpeted, painted, and well & softly-lit. This was my place. It saved me. I saved it.  Every day after school, I would crawl into this sacred place for the unfurling of imagination with my three best friends. In time, the room collected all kinds of things of our loving. We had a record player and all of our favorite records from ‘The Muppet Story’ to ‘Chicago 17’ to all of Cyndi Lauper.  The music evolved over time. But I can certainly remember listening to ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’ about a thousand times on repeat in there, and I can also remember taking the time to transcribe every word to every song that I had ever truly fallen in love with, as if my life depended on it.  And, who knows, maybe it did.

In that cave-like place somewhere in the the midst of suburban condominium sprawl, innocence lived and thrived. A pod of girls talked, giggled, confessed, wrote poems, and called and hung up on boys. And…and this is  very important!…we also did inversions on the wall because the wall space was just about high enough for the extension of our legs in what-we-didn’t-know -then was Viparita Karani.  It just felt good to be upside down, and it was fun.

So now, as I hang wall ropes and curtains in the small & cozy-perfect room in the back of the graceful studio that is Steadfast & True in Nashville, Tennessee,  I am giving out a giant Divine Wink. It is all starting to make sense. This place, this sanctuary, this return to some place that is so new and so strangely, beautifully familiar.  Place-allujah!
(and I know the blonde student looks kinda like me, but i am the photographer here;)

Posted October 29th, 2010
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