By Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500

Yoga is many things, but long-term practice results in a deep realization about oneself and the world around us. Sometimes, obvious truths lurk just below our level of awareness. Whether we are beginners, serious practitioners, or Yoga teachers, all of us have worked for a paycheck. Most of us like what we do, make ourselves learn to like what we do, or change jobs.

In the process of starting a career, we tend to be lulled into the myth of job security. We forget that the company we work for can terminate our employment at any second. Our parents and grandparents may have worked for one employer their entire lives, and then retired with a “gold watch” in hand.

A friend of mine recently lost his job of 31 years. He started at the bottom, right after he got out of college. He continued his path of corporate assent, as he worked his way up the ladder to become an executive vice-president.

Then a larger company purchased his company. Within days of the purchase, he and his fellow executives were terminated. It is a long way down from a corporate executive vice-president position to the unemployment line.

Lately, there is a lot of blame to go around within companies, state government, federal government, banking institutions, and stock markets. Depending upon where you live, the economy might be good, or you might be in a recession.

When we had a Yoga studio, in Rhode Island, the current recession started about eight years ago. Yet, I could talk to other Yoga teachers in California, Canada, or the UK, and they saw no signs of a recession. These days, almost everyone sees signs of less prosperity.

What does this mean for all of us? Will Yoga survive this recession? Yoga has been around long before the word “recession” ever existed, and Yoga will be around the next time the Dow Industrial Average goes over 10,000 points.

The truth is people feel stressed out. Is the best solution to go to the nearest liquor store? This is what most people do in an economic crisis. To be honest, I cannot bring myself to sell “fire water” to the public, in order to compensate for their mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual pains.

We all know that alcohol abuse compounds the daily problems people face in life. Alcohol is not a solution, but it can mask a problem, and alcohol abuse can distract us from finding solutions, by becoming our primary problem in life.

However, there are a fair number of educated students who frequent our Yoga studio. They come through the doors for a variety of reasons. Lately, the most common reason for attending Yoga classes is for stress relief.

Many Yoga teachers tell me similar stories. The reason is simple: Yoga offers humankind a logical remedy for suffering. Yoga teachers still offer sensible solutions for those who experience pain. So, you may ask: “Is there job security in teaching Yoga?”

The creative Yoga teacher, who is willing to look outside the box, and network with the community, does not, and will not, have problems finding teaching positions. If you think all of the teaching opportunities, in your area, are within the four walls of a Yoga studio, you are familiar with – you may be in for a struggle.

Therefore, the simple answer to those who are established teachers or those who want to become a Yoga teacher is: Bring Yoga to the masses and do not wait for opportunities to come to you.

© Copyright 2008 – Paul Jerard / Aura Publications

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