Thomas Michael Fortel
is a longtime yoga practitioner/teacher, influenced by the Iyengar, Ashtanga, and Anusara styles of Hatha yoga, and drawing from his devotional experience in Bhakti yoga. He travels widely, sharing his love for yoga.
As we walk this pathway and journey of yoga — and engage the study of the self — we cross the broad terrain of the personality, ego, and soul. We see more clearly who we are in our daily lives and how we’re connected to the greater whole. Sometimes we find ourselves on the mountaintop, in blissful love and unconditional self-acceptance. At other times, we’re descending into the valley of darkness and learning to embrace hidden, or shadow, aspects of ourselves. The experiences of oneness and expansion are a huge support in these moments of deep reckoning.
In many ways, our whole lives are a series of doorways and passages into new or forgotten ways of being. Over time, the practices of yoga can create a softening of habits and patterns, a clarifying of mind, and a gradual opening of the spiritual lotuses (chakras). All of this can lead us to an expanded field of awareness beyond our personal ego, and into a wellspring of lifeforce and our place in the ocean of consciousness.