Helen Stephenson has practised Hatha Yoga and Insight Meditation since 1979. Initially she was taught by the late Robert van Heeckeren and in 1981 she began to study classical yoga with the Indian Yogateacher Sri. S. Rajagopalan. Her movement work is influenced by the work of the late Moshe Feldenkrais "awareness through movement" and her training in body centred therapy with the late Ron Kurtz. Having lived most of her life in a communal setting she and her husband are now part time wardens at a busy Quaker centre in Milton Keynes.
For those, who struggle with the advaita/ non-duality teachings, the yoga also offers the alternative and/or additional practice of "surrender to God", a devotional practice. Readings of the mystic Kabir are used to illustrate the devotional aspects of the yoga practice as lied down in the Patanjali Sutras.
Yoga should not get confused with the circus like postures we see today. It is meditation in movement, slow and inward focused. The quietening of the mind, until it can experience the silence within and around us, is what we are looking for. The practice is one of simplicity and kindness, no striving.
Tensions in the body are physical manifestations of mind and thought patterns. As we smile into the body it becomes our friend. The body is the gateway to the mystery of life, and in it we can experience the silence that is in us and around us.