Tantra is going to be the next wave in this global explosion of yoga according to local Jindabyne yogi Jane Corben, and it’s not what you think.
“The west has the wrong idea about it”, Jane tells me in the beautiful serene space that is the Jindabyne Yoga Shala. “One of the oldest forms of yoga, the aim of tantra is to weave all the different techniques together using all the tools; mantras, breathwork (pranayama), asanas and meditation. In today’s modern world we’re very asana focussed, we’re very physical, so this is taking it back to the roots. People start with the physical with yoga and then they get an enquiring mind. I like tantra because it gives you systems, if you make these postures and do the breath this way, you get this effect physically and physiologically and that will transfer to your mind. Your mind is its own little entity and you need tools to work on it. Tantra says, work on your prana, work on your energy, change the way you feel in your body and that will influence your mind. It’s a more effective, functional style of yoga than anything else I’ve come across. Really targeted and specific work on the energy in your body to affect your mind.”
Images Boen Ferguson
“The west has this misconception about Tantra being a sexual practice. We all have and need desires and Tantra says not to fight desire, it’s about controlling the ego with the desire, not stopping yourself from doing everything, because that’s not sustainable. One of the old extreme schools of tantra was all about rituals and offerings and there was a sexual component with orgasm being the ultimate all-consuming heightened state. In tantra we’re trying to get to these higher elevated states that are similar to the orgasm. To get to those states, and I see it happening in my own body and my own life and my own practice, I can be driving along and just go, wow isn’t life grand, you know look at that. When you’re not awakened you just don’t notice things, you’re just in your mind, you drive up and down the roads around here and never actually realise the beauty.”
In Tantra they say all the creativity comes from shakti, the feminine, and nothing happens without creative female energy. All of the big Tantra leaders around the world are male and that’s why Jane and Amy Bassett started up Jai Yoga Tantra Teacher Training. After their first teach training last year, the feedback from attendees was amazing and that Jindabyne was a great town to do a yoga training, quiet and simple with plenty of accommodation options and easy to get around. Being able to walk to the Shala, go to the lake after class and of course being in this beautiful landscape all makes Jindabyne the perfect place for teacher training. Despite the current situation, the next teacher training will commence in on May 25th 2020, if face to face training isn’t possible, Jane is prepared to run it online. If you don’t have time to do the full 200 hours, you can do workshops or individual subjects like ayurveda, anatomy and yoga sutra’s. Check out www.jaiyoga.com.au for more information on teacher trainings in Australia and New Zealand.
Jane’s yoga journey started when she found herself in an Ashram in Sri Lanka at 19 whilst travelling with her ex-husband. Having children and living in Manly, there weren’t many yoga classes at the height of 80’s G-string aerobic scene, but Jane was attending an ashram once a week and studying Psychology and Hinduism at university between having babies. Leaving her ex-husband she started bookkeeping in order to raise her three boys and her yoga practice was shelved. Moving to Jindy 20 years ago she did a few local yoga classes, then started doing teacher trainings, becoming more and more intrigued as to why yoga works.
Wanting to bring the yoga community together, Jane thought Jindabyne should have its own yoga studio and bought the Jindabyne Country Women’s Association building. Originally built in the ‘60’s when the old town of Jindabyne was flooded, it is a very fitting evolution now that Jane and Amy are the only female teacher trainers of Tantra yoga in Australia. Opening the Shala in July 2015, Jane wanted to create a space where new teachers can get work and where there can be consistent yoga practice. Throughout winter there are morning and evening classes daily and many others in between, with a variety of different teachers and styles. Adapting to the current circumstances, the Shala has gone online and you can now do your favourite classes from the comfort of your own home www.jindabyneyoga.com.au
In today’s world, yoga has never been so important to find stillness and clarity.