Yoga is a 2000 year old, all-accepting holistic tradition. RightYoga seeks to continue it that way.
Yoga as a spiritual tradition – by intrinsic definition
Though yoga is a holistic tradition encompassing body-mind-soul, it is primarily a spiritual tradition.
For instance, by removing Jesus or God, Christianity couldn’t be called Christianity. Jesus or God is its very essence. Without Allah or Mohammed, Islam can’t be called Islam. Allah or Mohammed is its essence. Without Buddha or his message, Buddhism couldn’t be called Buddhism.
Similarly, without including the ‘union’ (yoga) of the individual consciousness and the universal consciousness or achieving ‘stillness of mind’ (ancient Yoga Sutra 1.2) and establishment in the true inner Self, yoga can’t be called yoga. It’s as simple as that.
Without this spiritual aspect it cannot be called ‘Yoga’ at all. Without the spiritual perspective, its postures are just physical exercises any gymnast or diver can do. It doesn’t matter how ‘aligned’ your body or how long you hold your breath – you can never be called the blessed name ‘yogi.’
In the cosmos of yoga, the term yogi is superior to any worldly medal you might receive. These medals are temporary and associated with your impermanent body. The term yogi is associated with your eternal, true self – your soul. It’s who you are.
Yoga as all-accepting
RightYoga believes all yogis should be eligible for yoga instructor certification. This should be regardless of where they learned yoga – from a yoga class, yoga school, a friend, online, or anywhere else.
Yoga can be self-learned. In fact, this is ideal. In Sanskrit, yoga’s holy language, it is called ‘svadhyaya’ which means ‘self-study.’
Yet, some organizations only recognize yogis who have learned from yoga schools that have paid large sums of money to be their members. As such there appears to be a conflict of interest and these schools often charge HUGE fees.
RightYoga believes all this is antithetical to the genuine spirit of yoga which is non-greed or ‘asteya’ – a component of non-stealing.
Yoga is universal and yogis should be universally recognized. Yoga means unity and all yogis are one.
The exclusive registration and credentialing of yogis who have graduated from certain schools – which often don’t even have oversight – and the rejection of other authentic yogis, is a narrow approach unreflective of the all-inclusive, all-respecting nature of yoga.
In this open spirit of yoga, RightYoga embraces yoga instructor certification, registration, and promotion of all yogis, provided they are authentic and can provide visual demonstration via video.
We are not judgmental about where they may have learned yoga. This is the reason we accept ‘grandparenting.’
Authentic categories of yoga instructor certification
In authentic yoga, there are only categories. No tradition is ‘greater’ or ‘higher’ than another. Even teachers are not superior to non-teachers. Ultimately, yoga teaches us to become our own gurus, our own teachers!
This is because yoga is unifying, non-comparative, and non-combative.
Yoga is not a competition. It’s not judgmental. It’s about becoming a healthier and better person who is enlightened – from whichever tradition, background, or faith you may come.
Holistic categories of yoga instructor certification
Yoga is not only about looking great. It’s more about being healthy and feeling great.
The truth is that there are plenty of people in the world who are thin and flexible and yet are still in poor health. They’re anxious, stressed, have high BP, and are susceptible to strokes and heart attacks – and so many other illnesses.
Yoga postures cannot help them much if they do not practice yoga’s breathing techniques, meditations, and holistic lifestyle.
A complete yoga practice is therefore holistic. It’s about body-mind-spirit. Yoga is not only a physical exercise. It is a holistic lifestyle and worldview.
The physical postures of yoga comprise only 1 percent of yoga.
Yoga is 99 percent self-control, self-awareness, compassion, lifestyle, worldview, and spiritual enlightenment.
Scientific categories of yoga instructor certification
Scientifically established yoga – that means, the yoga that has been scientifically proven beneficial for your health, heart, and wellbeing – actually supports the more holistic, gentle, therapeutic asanas together with the practice of breathing techniques, meditation, and a balanced diet.
Most of the twisted pretzel and deep bending postures have comparatively little health value and are simply gymnastics. They might help with some digestive maladies, but simpler postures could do that too. Additionally, the gymnast poses can lead to injuries.
So medically proven yoga is rarely about twisting yourself into a pretzel. It is about untwisting the wound up mind.
Yoga and self-improvement
Yoga is not only about self-improvement and growth. It’s also about charity and helping others and viewing even your enemy more positively!
Authentic, holistic, and proven yoga is only 1 percent what you feel while you’re on the mat. 99 percent of yoga is how you feel and behave during the rest of the day off of the mat.
Have you experienced that longer-living transformation? Does the peacefulness and grace continue after you’re off the mat?
If yes, you’re an authentic, experienced yoga practitioner, whether you’ve been practicing for a lifetime or a month. And you probably belong in RightYoga – a community of The Most Authentic Yoga Practitioners in the World. How to apply.
Yoga and ‘Brand’ Names
RightYoga can give a yogi yoga instructor certification for any yoga posture, breathing techniques, meditations, or devotional chanting.
However, we currently do not give certification for so-called ‘brand’ names such as Bikram Yoga.
But there is still a way we can certify you. Bikram yoga consists of a string of ancient yoga postures, each of which we DO certify. It is the same for most ‘brand’ names. The actual yoga poses and practices are all ancient and the same – or similar. RightYoga can certify you for these.