Well, I suppose it must be harder for you to teach yoga now, as it’s a job involving a certain serenity of mind.

Says the puffy guy sitting at my right, past dr. Kojimi. I don’t know his name yet, best guess he’s in his late fiìfties. He didn’t really introduce himself. Only three people did out of 10: Jolie, best guess early fifties, hard to tell though due to evident drug abuse record, arms, chest and part of the face covered in amateurish but somehow well fitting tattoos, first impression: really really lovely; Chino, kind of nerdish looking overweight with glasses, hyper-talkative, offers tons of practical advice immediately after my presentation, been two years in group therapy and I think it’s worked fine on him, as he says he was ready to shoot people in the street when he started; Susanne, very controlled, mid fourty, also offers some advice and talks about her own depression, unemployment, etc.

No, it’s not like that, PUFFY. Serenity is not a requirement to teach yoga. That’s complete bullshit. Actually, the hardest part of the job is to daily fight against these common places, these assumptions about what yoga is and how a yoga teacher should be, held by all the people who want to start doing yoga, have no clue of how it works, but think they know better than you already…

No, I didn’t tell him that. I was very polite and thankful of his interest. I’m just pondering about it now. After-thoughts…

I actually thought I agreed with him when he said that. As I did all the many times I’ve been told that same thing before.

It’s very easy to agree with such common places, especially for a low self-esteem person like me.

Well, you want to know what?

It’s bullshit, it’s cretinity, stupidity, the worse blasphemy in the universe.

The requirements to teach yoga is to understand yoga. And to understand yoga, the requirement is to suffer. To be acquainted with the experience of suffering.

You are just judging on false, or at least incomplete evidence.

Just like a comedian is not necessarily a funny person in his private life, and a musician, dancer, actor who performs in from of thousands of people, may very well be shy.

Public exposure alters your state of consciousness. It endowes you with energy, triggeres endorphins. You get into your role and re-projct this charge on your audience.

It’s like a drug. And like a drug, it lets you down.

After the performance, both the artist and the yoga teacher may experience a kind of hangover.

It’s not always the case. You may feel like going partying and going out for dinner at times, and fall into a pit of loneliness at others. And anything in between.

In time, I am learning to balance things out and switch my focus in subtle ways I couldn’t really explain, so that I enjoy myself much more both during the height of the class and in the aftermath.

But I’m learning this mostly by understanding, through practice, how it’s the interplay between light and darkness that generates charismatic power.