The idea of a Kundalini workshop based on service of peace came during a Level 2 course held at the School of Karam Kriya in Portugal. Shiv Charan Singh had asked me how I thought the peace process was developing and when I expected to see results. My answer was don’t hold your breath.
My feeling was, and still is, that we need a worldwide change of consciousness for true peace to be established, a change in priorities, a change in projection, a change in our value systems, but I was at a loss as to how to accomplish this. Although as teachers of Kundalini Yoga we aim to elevate and awaken the higher consciousness of our students in every class, I felt I needed greater focus in order to have any significant effect. On the course in Portugal with me were Harlal, from the Lebanon, and Hari Karam, from Iran. Having enjoyed working together we decided the time was right for us to organize a workshop with peace as its theme, and we asked Shiv Charan to lead it for us.
The result, after a bit of planning, was four wonderful days spent in Cyprus – an island with its own history of violence and which was easily accessible to those flying in from the Middle East. There we explored with our teacher the ideas of tolerance, forgiveness and acceptance, recognizing the truth that real peace starts within and with the individual and then radiates outwards. The whole process was helped along by sadhana, sunshine and excellent food, long walks in the afternoons and communion with nature and the relics of the island’s past.
We had ample time to talk, to discuss the problems that arise when you are living and teaching in a war zone or under a despotic regime, and how to ensure that the teachings are truly inclusive and accessible also to those whose religious practice might make them a little scary.
Of all the material we covered it was a quote from Yogi Bhajan that really resonated with me and that I feel has given me the direction I was searching for. “I believe that so long as those born of women do not respect women, there shall be no peace on Earth”. I now see my role very clearly as one in which I work with women for women, to elevate and empower them so that they can elevate and empower the men who surround them, and we can build a strong and steady foundation upon which a real and lasting peace can flourish in this world.
Sahej Anand Kaur has been practicing Kundalini Yoga for over ten years and has been teaching for seven. She teaches in Kochav Yair and Elli, and hopes to be opening a group in Ra’anana soon.
She is a member of the Kundalini Yoga Asia Teacher Training Team and a past member of the Kundalini Yoga Israel Teachers Association Committee.
In Service of Peace will be moving to Greece next year and will take the form of a women’s campled by Shiv Charan Singh and Satya Kaur. The dates are 25-29 June 2015