A Transformative Weekend by Susan Marinac (YTT Cohort 1)

I experienced my 2nd weekend of Yoga Teacher Training through House of the Gathering Yoga School this past weekend. We had 2 nights at Camp Janette Pollay just north of Duluth, amidst the towering pines. The sounds of various birds, woodpeckers and even a distant cow mooing were a constant backdrop. 

It was a transformative weekend for our cohort as we got to know each other better. There was yoga asana and meditation each morning, and awesome potluck dinners! We had campfires at night, roasted marshmallows and got to hear beautiful music by cohort member Kristy Marie as she sang and played her guitar by the fire! There was a lot of laughter, a few tears and some deep conversations and "Aha" moments throughout our weekend together.

As we dove deep into Dream Tending and Depth psychology, it was nice to have Hilary's dog, Pacha at camp to bring us back to a sense of lightheartedness. Moving through Dream Tending, there seemed to be a common thread while we were sharing our dreams in circle. One of us would share a dream and often start out animated, laughing, light hearted while explaining the goofiness of a dream. But as we tended the dream together, through focused questions while uncovering the symbolic meaning, the dreamer’s mood would visibly shift and become more serious as the unconscious meaning of the dream would come into awareness. We all saw and felt this as a collective experience and a deep social connectedness. It was incredibly powerful, that feeling of dropping down into the unconscious, together.

As part of our training, we are keeping Dream journals. I found that once I started journaling, I have been able to remember my dreams in more detail.  I also must write my dreams down right away when I get wake up or they get lost. I have a reoccurring dream about not being able to find my class in school or not being able to remember my locker combination or class schedule. It feels like panic and then when I find my class the students are taking a test that I hadn't prepared for.

In our Dream Tending circle we were asked to draw a symbol from our dream as a way to engage with the unconscious and its symbolic contents. I drew a locker with a combination. Then we were asked to dialogue with the symbol and ask it "What are you trying to tell me? Or "What do you want me to know?" We were then asked to free write what came to mind. I wrote "It's OK. In the big scheme of things all is perfect, all is well." I perceived this as an invitation to not worry so much about the future and, to maybe let go of the feeling of not being “prepared.”

Monday morning after our Yoga Teacher Training weekend, I woke up to recall a synchronicity, which are another hallmark of the depth psychological practices we are learning. Another assignment over the YTT weekend during our workshop on the Yoga Sutras was to partner up and spend a few minutes just looking into the eyes and face of our partner without talking. I felt like I was looking into the "Divine." It felt vulnerable and I started to tear up. My partner said, "It's OK". The same first 2 words that came up in though my dream tending process. It was reassuring, and I felt like it was a message from soul!