Our goal with Yoga Unify is to do more than simply identify the issues our community faces, but to take action. As our Governing Councils work to identify and present the procedures and by-laws of our organization, we are continually keeping in mind six action priorities that serve as a foundation for all we’re building and offering. We call them “action priorities” because they’re more than guidelines—they’re active goals that we’re working to. Conversations and identifying issues is important, but developing an action plan to address them is even more so. Here’s what we’re working on, and why.
If you have ideas or questions around these priorities, we want to hear from you! Join us in the Founding Circle for an opportunity to help create what we’re building. We believe that we can create an organization of yogis for yogis, that truly serves the community and elevates the profession of yoga. Click here to learn more and join us.
By creating an organization of yogis by yogis, we’re empowering the community to not only address its own issues, but solve its own problems. We’re in the process of creating a new Governing Council on chapters, which will empower regions to create structure and organization that specifically speaks to their endemic needs. What may feel empowering to the community in Texas, for example, may not serve the community in London. We recognize the need for self-determination in our community, and Yoga Unify will serve as an umbrella large enough to cover us all.
One major unintended consequence of yoga’s exploding popularity is the degradation of the profession as a realistic job. Yoga teachers and professionals often need to hustle to make ends meet, and studios pump out new teachers at an alarming rate in order to keep the doors open. By placing emphasis on qualification instead of certification (we believe that independent study and education can cultivate the tools to be a teacher as well as—if not better—than X number of certification hours), we are helping to elevate the profession of yoga teaching.
We’re not a top-down directorate. When we say we want to hear from the community, we mean it! That’s why all our Governing Councils are comprised of rotating positions, so that anyone who wants the opportunity to serve may do so. We know that holding space for diverse voices and perspectives is the only way to truly create a collaborative organization, and we’re committed to being that container.
Part of our mission is to preserve the tradition of the practice. When it came to passing down yoga knowledge, the emphasis was traditionally on transmission, not transaction. As yoga has become commodified and commercialized, it’s no wonder that this imperative has flipped. Our Governing Councils are outlining how mentorship will play a role in the community go-forward. All members will have access to this program, so that even independent studies may be guided.
There isn’t currently an organization that provides as many workable structures as what Yoga Unify is building. In order to create something that truly serves all aspects of the community, there needs to be an umbrella organization under which all paths cross. No matter your tradition, school, or lineage, there’s a place for you at Yoga Unify.
This priority is multi-faceted. By emphasis on qualification over certification, we’re honoring and creating structure for yoga professionals. By creating a system through which bad or toxic behavior may be reported and investigated, we’re honoring the sanctity of transmission, and honoring the safe space yoga can provide for people to do deep personal work. Through community investment that originates as deep listening, we’re honoring the unique and individual needs of different yoga communities across the world.
If you have ideas on how to integrate these priorities, we really do want to hear from you! Become a Founding Circle Member to join the conversation, and become a part of yoga history.