being yoga: dispatch from the omega institute

Omega Institute’s abundant garden.

Hello from the beautiful Omega Institute in upstate New York!

I’m here for Being Yoga, Omega’s annual yoga conference and retreat. I’m also happy to report that the grounds are free of hula hoops, fire dancers, rock stars (other than the occasional rock star yogi) and marketplaces. It all gets rolling tonight, August 17 and lasts until Sunday, August 19.

What is Being Yoga? The press release tells us:

“As a nonprofit organization, Omega strives to model the philosophy of ‘being yoga.’ Through expert teaching, community activities, self-reflection, and Omega’s inspiring and sustainable learning environment, we help people directly experience the breadth of yoga, which goes beyond physical exercise to become a way of being – a lifestyle of awareness, peace, and service,” said Carla Goldstein, chief external affairs officer at Omega.

Throughout the weekend, participants of Being Yoga can personalize their experience by designing their own schedule. Omega has also created special tracks for beginner and seasoned practitioners, and for specific areas of focus, including asana, discussion and philosophy, meditation, and other practices that support health and well-being. In addition to classes, participants can spend time in quiet contemplation, make new friends during meals and community gatherings, take advantage of services at the Omega Wellness Center, and explore the outdoors on Omega’s 195-acre campus.

I’ve created a personalized experience by signing up for workshops with Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa, Elena Brower and Sadie Nardini (but don’t tell her I’ll be there! I’m trying to be incognito – maybe I’ll wear a wig and sunglasses).

I’ll be following up with more crappy iPhone pics and awesome interviews with faculty. In the meantime, keep up with my adventures on Twitter at @itsallyoga_baby.

And now, time for the sauna!