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Standing Against The Flow

Yoga is not about the corporations, yoga’s only real purpose is to help the people that need it.

Written September 18th, 2010

No matter the style that is practiced, no matter what brand of clothing you wear, no matter who taught you – yoga can help and actualize the individual person who practices it. No one, not one person… none of the Certified Yoga Teachers or Un-Certified Yoga Teachers, none of the yoga scholars, none of the board members, none of the CEO’s, or CIO’s, can dispute that fact.

Yoga helps those that can recognize that they are holding themselves back, and allows a person to accept or surpass their own limitations.

As teachers, as practitioners, as yogis… we are ultimately responsible for our own process.

Today, the majority of America subscribes to the low-grade yoga credentialing, provided as a lackluster “social credential” of safety, that is in essence, a literal “non-license” that only serves to give the public a false-sense of security.

Yet, as a discipline (and also as independent teachers and practitioners) of yoga, we have to accept our own our own universal teaching methods as a modality that supersedes anything that is provided by Yoga Alliance.

We need to accept responsibility for ourselves – because it is the responsible thing to do, and because it’s the right thing to do.

How do we do that?

Any sort of real ownership must come from ourselves : teachers from different lineages, and even teachers who teach yoga to the masses. Fundamentally, yoga continues to be passed down from teachers to the practitioners, but what is the literal, figurative and spiritual cost?

Will yoga teachers continue to allow themselves to be guided by a non-profit that has been devoid of any type of real legitimate responsibility?

April 19, 2010 Brian Castellani and Yoga Therapy President John Kepner at the National Ayurvedic Medical Association in the Bay Area  

Will yoga teachers continue to allow Yoga Alliance to promote fraudulent tradition of claiming they are the “benchmark of yoga education” despite not doing anything of value for yoga or yoga teachers for 30 years?

Yoga Alliance is a non-profit entity that has held America yoga hostage while peddling inadequate, un-regulated, and the generic “minimum of hours that are required” to be a yoga teacher.  Yes, hard to believe, but that is the entire truthful summary of the entire situation.

Since Yoga Alliance (via Unity Yoga) began in 1999, the organization has continually skirted the edge of honesty for motives of profit. They altered the truth to suit their agenda, bending the truth to yoga teachers for almost two decades. 

Through consistently misappropriating the perception of yoga credentialing, Yoga Alliance has assumed yoga teacher legitimacy in America. Yoga Alliance has misrepresented themselves to local New York State and Virginia governments about “yoga regulation” within the U.S.

Before they “fought for yoga’s rights” in 2010, Yoga Alliance actually hoped state regulation would pass and require all teachers in America to register with them by default.

It didn’t end up happening that way, and it totally backfired on them (Yoga Alliance) in four states.  So, before you sign up for your YA 200/500/800 – realize that while Yoga Alliance was busy denying yoga teachers information about the origins of State Regulation, those same yoga teachers were literally pleading for their (YA’s) help with a situation that Yoga Alliance had partially started, themselves. 

From 1999 – 2007 to the world, Yoga Alliance was falsely claiming to be the “silent benefactors” of yoga… the paragon of yoga teaching standards, while financially taking in $2-5 million-plus a year in collecting dues. 

Yoga Alliance has proven through their actions that they are not responsible enough for the future of yoga. Yet yoga teachers side with them because they are the only option that is available.

And why is that?  Because they are good at their jobs?  No, that isn’t it.  Because they have amazing ethics and rigorous honesty?  No, I assure you that isn’t it either.  The only reason they are still around is that there isn’t an alternative. 

No one credible has created a better organization.  In my lifetime, I pray you get your shit together.

Who holds your leash?

Are we truly this complacent? Are we destined to only be in Yoga Magazines with watered down ads and Yoga Non-profits that are run like the Good Old Boys Yoga Network of Abundance, or are we individuals who stand together?  

Are we so set onto our path of Yoga Rockstar Dysfunction  that we would rather collect the pennies that Billionaire Yoga Corporations pay us to endorse their products?

DOES yoga set you on the path of searching for your own truth?

DO you simply want to dance ecstatically so you can keep feeling that sting of delusion?


Apologies, keep in mind that I am only one perspective. I encourage anyone to find the truth for themselves.  Don’t accept what’s being shoveled.

Are You Willing?

As yogis, as autonomous thinking people, we need to take care of our own licensing and regulation, without Yoga Alliance.

We need to do the work ourselves. The only reason YA, or any other yoga entity, wants to make it mandatory for Yoga Teachers and studios to be registered and licensed is for their own financial security and future, and the teachers.

Once you realize that YA‘s motivations are all about hiding the obvious and arbitrary double-speak, financially misleading information and future based securities that are printed on meaningless framed paper – you should be inspired to go to the next step.

Yoga Alliance suggested to both Virginia and New York Gov officials about potential tax revenue for state governments through vocational taxation of YTT’s.

FACT: Yoga Alliance suggested to both Virginia and New York Government officials about potential tax revenue for state governments through vocational taxation of yoga teacher trainings.

FACT: Yoga Alliance abandoned yoga and their entire subscriber base while they chased the dream of mandatory Yoga Alliances 200/500 hour RYT Licensing in every state across the nation.

FACT: Yoga Alliance negligently abandoned NY, VA, TX, MO, WI, MI, LA, and WA – as well as every teacher and practitioner that ever trusted them.

It all depends on you. And for the record, you can depend on the flimsy 200/500 hours all you want, it doesn’t mean anything except that a person paid $250 for a slip of paper that holds no value.

Who am I

I am the person who will see the reign of Yoga Alliance come to an end. I am the person that will see yoga teachers and yoga studios across the world come together to agree that we can take an active role in our own future without corporations or misguided non-profits farming us out like sheep.

I may not lead it, I may not own it, but I am the person the end began with.

There is a better way that exists, and I believe you want it – with or without me.

The only question for you to ask yourself is, as a yoga teacher, are you ready to leave the decisions of your future to a group of individual Yoga Alliance Board members who continue to abuse your trust.

TAGS: yoga regulation, Yoganomics, Indie Yoga, independent Yoga, yoga teachers, yoga teacher trainers, yoga studios, yoga teachers, yoga teacher trainers, Licensing Yoga, Licensing Yoga Teachers, Yoga Licensing Standards, Yoga Alliance