Devi Mohan is a multifaceted humanitarian and a role model for many women. She has been an integral member of the Mohanji Foundation, the international spiritual mission of her husband and spiritual guide Mohanji, since its formation in 2007.
She represents the Foundation as its Global Ambassador at various international events, initiatives, and forums: from interfaith dialogue and world peace-related forums such as the Parliament of World’s Religions, Living Peace Projects, and Unity Earth, to non-violence and women empowerment-related events and initiatives such as Vegan India Conference, Women Emerging and Festival of Womanhood. Through her inspirational talks, she aims to touch people’s hearts and serve the cause of peace and women’s empowerment through the active expression of love and expansion of consciousness.
Catch Women Fitness President Ms. Namita Nayyar in conversation with Devi Mohan, Global Ambassador for Mohanji Foundation, Global President of ACT Foundation, an internationally active charity, and Director & Senior Faculty (E-RYT 200) of the Himalayan School of Traditional Yoga (HSTY).
You are an international Yoga instructor and promote the traditional form of Yoga taught by the ancient sages and Masters and codified by Maharishi Patanjali. Please share your journey to becoming an internationally recognized yoga trainer.
My journey of being an instrument of the ancient science of yoga definitely extends beyond this lifetime (as was confirmed to me during a Past Life Regression done in Delhi in 2008 as well as a Nadi (palm leaf scrolls) reading done in Tamil Nadu in 2015). This is the only reasonable explanation as to why the depth and intensity of my connection with yoga took place within me the moment I started my yoga practice in a dedicated way.
After completing my Master’s Degree in Peace Studies in the USA, due to several profound and life-changing spiritual experiences, I did not pursue my worldly career in diplomacy but instead came to Dubai in 2005 to be closer to Mother India. My strategy was to get any job that would enable me to sustain myself while I study yoga and travel to India as much as possible. I completed my Yoga Teacher Training in two different ashrams in India in 2007 and 2008, as well as one in Europe in 2015, with Yoga Alliance certification. I chose these different yoga training in order to get to understand yoga from both angles, that of East and West.
Only when I met Mohanji and our own Himalayan School of Traditional Yoga (HSTY) got formed in 2016, did I commit myself to the spread of yogic teachings and wisdom, primarily by serving through my own example. I represented HSTY at various events such as Sedona Yoga Festival (in Arizona, USA) in 2017, during various retreats with Mohanji across the globe, etc.
During my own yoga journey, I noticed that true yogis, that is, the people who have mastered the mind not only the asanas, are usually simple, humble, and express themselves with clarity, without much elaboration. The famous Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are comprised of a series of aphorisms. They are so deep and layered, written from such a high level of consciousness that each one of those aphorisms could be developed into a doctoral dissertation. Yet, the point is not in the discussion and endless analysis, but in living those teachings.
To me, yoga is entirely simple. First of all, yoga teaches us to be natural. People who fail to live their truth and abandon their authentic expression simply because they are burdened by what other people may think of them, cannot be natural. Those who live in the lower frequency of violence, be it violence at the level of thought, word, action, or intentions, cannot be natural, because unconditional love indeed is our true nature. Pure love and higher consciousness exclude any form of violence, malice, revenge, jealousy, etc. Patanjali’s yamas and niyamas clearly reflect that.
In the Himalayan School of Traditional Yoga, which spontaneously blossomed within Mohanji’s spiritual platform in 2016 thanks to an amazing man and gold medalist in yoga – Sanjay Sir, we talk exactly about naturalness, simplicity, return to nature, and return to oneself. This is of crucial importance, especially nowadays. Yoga has taught me that in order to work on ourselves we need nothing more than the readiness to witness our own breath, emotions, and thoughts, to always await the inner confirmation before making any important decision, to live our truth, serve those who need our help and simply live in the mode of gratitude and acceptance.
The very act of directing one’s attention within during Yoga asanas, and redirecting the prana (subtle lifeforce energy) through the naadis (roughly translated as energy meridians) during pranayama, along with switching between challenging and relaxing asanas, pose and counterpose (thus loosening the grip of the pattern-driven mind), opening our heart to gratitude and unconditionality of love, accepting ourselves and our body as it is, surrendering the fruits of our actions to Divine (karma yoga), avoiding violence in any way, including food obtained through violence (meat and dairy products), etc – all of these aspects are crucial in developing a long-term yogic lifestyle which brings about the true rewards of the ancient science of yoga.
Unity of the individual consciousness with the universal consciousness is just a concept of the mind until one actually goes through deep inner experiences of endless silence and expansion in love and consciousness, experiences so vast they cannot be turned into words nor compared to anything. Mohanji, my greatest inspiration in life, usually says: “Let my presence speak louder than my words.” That is it. The one who is dissolved in consciousness and no longer functions from the level of ego radiates and lives the very unity that yoga represents. In the presence of such a person, love awakens in the heart, enormous grace descends upon us and a huge transformation takes place, especially when one consciously chooses to be of service to others and express love. Without that conscious choice of love over our own greed and slavery to seeming limitations reflected in attachment to comfort zones, there is no real opening to the higher consciousness.
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