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The yoga of communication:
Leading groups the Kripalu way
A free resource for KYTA members
brings together teachings from
the East and West Coast ashrams

Summer 2003

by Shobhan Richard Faulds


Many people are unaware that a sizeable Kripalu ashram was started in California in the 1970s and continued through the mid-1990s. Founded on the teachings of Swami Kripalu, the ashram counted communication techniques among its primary spiritual practices. It offered a three-day program called the Enlightenment Intensive that served as a template for the development of Kripalu Center's first program, the Inner Quest Intensive. It's noteworthy that both of these seminal programs are still being offered today.

For the past several years, Shobhan Richard Faulds has been working with Skanda Lawrence Noyes, a senior teacher from "the other Kripalu ashram," to explore the interface of these two different facets of Kripalu. Shobhan and Lawrence have co-written a pamphlet, The Yoga of Communication: The Use of Small Groups and Dyads for Personal Growth, that explains the fundamentals of leading small groups and dyads as taught in the Kripalu tradition. They will also co-direct a program on communication dyads, Heart-to-Heart, Aug. 14 to 17 at Kripalu.

For teachers in general and yoga teachers in particular, learning how to facilitate such exercises is an essential step toward becoming an effective workshop and seminar leader. Structured communication done in small groups or dyads provides participants with a valuable opportunity to interact outside the restrictive bounds of social convention. Speakers can express what they think and feel without fear of being interrupted or judged. Listeners can focus on hearing another person without being required to evaluate content or formulate a response. Small groups free students to learn from their own experience and interaction with peers, rather than being told the "truth" from their teachers. Communicating in this manner stimulates a rich interpersonal learning that people find helpful and meaningful in their lives.

You can download a copy of the Yoga of Communication pamphlet from the KYTA Home Page.

Complete list of articles by this author:

Kripalu's Non-sectarian Approach to Yoga

The Path to Tantra: The first in a series of articles on the evolution of Kripalu Yoga

The sadhana of Swami Kripalu: The second in a series of articles on the evolution of Kripalu Yoga

Yogi Amrit Desai, originator of Kripalu Yoga: The third in a series of articles on the evolution of Kripalu Yoga

Professionals with Heart and Soul: Teaching Yoga in the "Yoga Boom"

Eastern tradition meets Western disciples: Co-creation in Kripalu's resident community

The yoga of communication: Leading groups the Kripalu way

Kripalu Yoga: A path of transformation

What distinguishes Kripalu Yoga?

Facets of transformative teaching

Looking back to move forward: The guru-disciple relationship

Students, mentors, midwives: A model for transformative teaching

The journey from known to unknown: The first in a series of articles on yoga's transformative process

Purifying body and mind

A Kripalu Yoga definition of enlightenment: The last in a series of articles on yoga's transformative process

Mastery in teaching

Swami Kripalu’s Inspiration for Yoga Teachers

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