Born in Moscow, Russia, Varvara is an 800 hours certified Jivamukti Yoga teacher. She moved to Paris, France, in 2004 to complete her degree in Fine Art and Design at Parsons School of Design. Although Varvara has been practicing Yoga since 2005, she found endless love and kindness in the Jivamukti Yoga method. She is grateful to Sharon and David’s contribution to the planet that has, and will continue to change the world for the better. Varvara is deeply humbled by the opportunity to pass on the ancient teachings of yoga through the lineage of the Jivamukti Yoga School.
She received her 300h Jivamukti Yoga method knowledge from David Life and Petros in Costa Rica. Later in New York City she was mentored for 500h by Jeanine Darconte, whose abundant knowledge of the Jivamukti Yoga method as well as her patience, love and guidance made Varvara a skilful teacher.
Varvara’s greatest accomplishment is her dedication to a strict vegan diet and zero alcohol lifestyle. When one realizes that animals are people, too, then yoga is possible. OM Shanti.
CORE PHILOSOPHY OF JIVAMUKTI YOGA
As a path to enlightenment through compassion for all beings, Jivamukti Yoga is grounded in the original meaning of the Sanskrit word asana as “seat, connection” – relationship to the Earth. Earth implies all of life. Citing Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, which states that asana should be sthira and sukham, Jivamukti Yoga maintains that one’s relationship to others (asana) should be mutually beneficial and come from a consistent (sthira) place of joy and happiness (sukham). This is a radical idea that, when put into practice, can dismantle our present culture, which is based on the notion that the Earth and all other animals exist for our benefit and to be exploited for our own selfish purposes. So the practice of asana becomes more than mere physical exercise to keep one’s body fit or to increase strength or flexibility; it becomes a way to improve one’s relationship to all others and thus lead to enlightenment – the dissolution of the sense of separateness, the realization of the oneness of being, the discovery of lasting happiness.
This core philosophy is expressed through five tenets which form the foundation of Jivamukti Yoga. Jivamukti teachers embody these tenets, so that they color all of his or her teachings, whether in Basic classes, Open classes, other classes, workshops, or even just interactions with others in the Jivamukti community. In classes other than Open classes, the teacher does not necessarily teach the five tenets explicitly or even state them out loud. In an Open class, however, the five tenets have a special role, because it is part of the teacher’s job to give the students an experience of all five tenets in each Open class, though again not necessarily by teaching them explicitly or even stating them out loud, but by allowing them to inform the class plan and teaching style. Each of the five tenets should be clearly identifiable in every Open class, even though the names of the tenets may not actually be spoken. By doing this, students learn not to see asana as separate from spiritual study or chanting or meditation, but rather to integrate all of the elements that make up Jivamukti Yoga into one unified practice. This provides for a well-rounded approach to our goal—enlightenment through compassion for all beings.
5 TENENTS OF JIVAMUKTI YOGA
A nonviolent, compassionate lifestyle extending to other animals, the environment and all living beings, emphasizing ethical vegetarianism (veganism) and animal rights.
Acknowledgment that God/Self-realization is the goal of all yoga practices; can be expressed through chanting, the setting of a high intention for the practice or other devotional practices.
Meditation: connecting to that eternal unchanging reality within.
The development of a sound body and mind through deep listening; can be incorporated in a class using recorded music, spoken word, silence or even the teacher’s voice.
Study of the ancient yogic teachings, including Sanskrit chanting, drawn from the Focus of the Month to the extent possible.
Varvara yoga and nutrition studies:
Varvara is an 800h Certified Jivamukti Teacher.
Certified Power Yoga Teacher
Student at Shri K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute in Mysore, India
Whole foods plant based nutrition coach.
“The single most important part of your yoga practice is the strict adherence to a vegetarian diet – a diet free of needless cruelty, harm, and injustice.” -Sharon Gannon
Healthy Plant Based Diet not only leads to healthier body, but also to clear and happy mind. All knowledge that I share with students about food comes from the greatest nutrition scientists C. Colin Campbell. His life’s work on nutrition proves that Whole Foods Plant Based Diet is the optimal way for humans to eat. I am happy to share the knowledge that I have received through his program at eCornell, with those who are interest in healthy lifestyle.