The Church of Yoga

There’s no place like OM.
That’s why it’s so nice that elite yoga instructors from all over the globe come here, to our little valley in Colorado, to teach and practice at the Telluride Yoga Festival.
The mountains that surround Telluride have a spiritual quality, that same sacred feeling people get from yoga. For some people the breathing, stretching and meditating practices of yoga are like going to “church,” a little bit of contemplative, hallowed time. This year, the festival’s fourth annual, one of the special offerings is a world-class Kirtan, in which devotees chant a mantra and meditate. With a large group, the chanting becomes not just meditative, but musical and moving. “It’s a form of Bhakti or devotional yoga…it’s like a concert that’s also a really deep meditation. A musical meditation is the best way to describe it,” says Yoga Festival founding director Aubrey Hackman. The event is $15 (free for passholders) and will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Telluride Conference Center; children are welcome and there is no charge for their admission.
This year, “slackline” yoga is back. If yoga already intimidates you or makes you feel clumsy, you may not want to watch this, but at Elks Park from noon to 4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, people will be practicing yoga and holding poses on a slackline. A slackline is webbing attached to two points above the ground and is used to practice balance. It is a challenge just to stand on a slackline, never mind holding a difficult pose while balancing on one. It’s fun just to watch, but there will also be a chance to try it out and get some tips from instructors.
There are still passes available to the festival, but Hackman says there are also 14 free classes for people who want to attend. “I just really think that yoga should be available to everyone.”
Check the Telluride Yoga Festival website for a complete schedule of events.

1 thought on “The Church of Yoga”

  1. Very cool! I had no idea there was a yoga festival in Telluride. I have a friend that lives close to there, so I may have to plan a visit around the next one!

    I’m sad I missed the date of this summer’s- I just saw on the site that it began yesterday. I’ll celebrate anyway- with you from my living room with a yoga mat, a cup of tea and a yoga memoir – The Tenth Door by Michele Hebert. It’s the closest I can come to the Telluride experience!

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