What is the meaning of the name of our school – Gaia Yogashala?
In Greek mythology, Gaia (gay-ə, or gah-yə) is the ancestral mother of all life, the primal Earth Mother and personification of unconditional love, abundance, and wisdom. The connection with the energy of Gaia supports us in grounding ourselves and embodying our wisdom and gifts, as she brings about a sense of deep trust and connection.
In Vedic Sanskrit, Yoga (from the root Yuj) means “to add”, “to join”, and it can take on meanings such as “connection” or “union”.
Shala is a Sanskrit word which means “home”, “abode”. A Yoga Shala is a “home of yoga”. It is a gathering place for students to practice, share, experience and grow.
Gaia Yogashala is a space of growth, rest and connection – with ourselves and with other beings. It emphasizes the return to a more natural ways of living – it is a space that allows us to come closer to Nature. It symbolizes arriving back Home to our own true nature, to our Selves, with the support of a community where we all meet at eye level, walking our individual path within a group of like-minded souls.
Gaia Yogashala started as beautiful co-creation between Tal Swissa and Ajay Makhija in 2015. Tal and Ajay were two friends who shared a dream of creating a high-quality yoga studio on the magical isle of Koh Phangan. Or perhaps the island strived to create a beautiful energetic space of healing, and just used them to make it happen. Who knows how Life works, eh? 🙂
Gaia was born as a Yoga Centre on Bovy beach, Srithanu, with a beautiful, inspiring community of volunteers, students, and teachers offering yoga and other classes, such as dance, massage, meditation, Tantra, journeys, and workshops. The entire process of meeting, connecting, instantly, deciding to create this space, setting it up, and running it was a whirlwind of synchronicity, magic, and growth for both Tal and Ajay.
Tal was the heart and face of the school, curating the schedule of teachers and facilitators of the studio’s drop-in classes, teaching packed yoga classes daily, and leading the school’s Alignment Yoga Teacher Training programs – journeys of deep transformation and practical experience of yoga.
Along the way, Tal and Ajay’s paths diverged – with Ajay taking time to answer a deeper soul call to further explore his personal journey, and Tal birthing a new yoga school of her own in the form of Alignment Yoga and Yoga Therapy at the Luna Alignment Yoga School. Tal’s program is an excellent one, and we highly recommend it. For more information re Luna’s Alignment Yoga, please visit: https://www.lunaalignmentyoga.com/
Gaia Yogashala went through a cycle of hibernation, and is now being reformed as a new avatar with the unique offering of The Spirit of Yoga teacher training course.
" From the deepest parts of my soul, thank you for an experience that will stay with me for a lifetime. There are so many lessons that I will be reflecting on for the rest of my life. The Universe does not have enough space for the amount of gratitude I have for this journey with you'll. Keep spreading this unique energy here at Gaia! Love oozes out of every pore of this place."
"I can't thank you enough for giving me the opportunity to live in paradise for 4 weeks, advance my yoga practice, discover myself & most of all - to learn so much from you & develop the skills to be a great yoga teacher. From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU! This experience was life changing & i can say for sure that i'm leaving here as a better version of myself! You all inspire me to grow, practice yoga everyday and to be present always, but especially with my future students. I strive to be as passionate & inspirational as each of you when i teach."
"Wow! There are so many positive words to say about my experience at Gaia Yoga Shala! Prior to arrive at Gaia I was feeling out of sorts and I realized that this was not a great place to be in as a Yoga teacher! During the course I gained such a deep understanding of myself as a Yoga teacher and was able to let go and transform personally and professionally. I really appreciate the amazing teachers at Gaia. They taught me how to hold space and participate in Yoga with love and a therapeutic intention. They also held space so that I could heal. I highly recommend this TTC because it is challenging, therapeutic, and has the potential to change you from the inside out."
"The teachers were incredible. The space was beautiful and I loved the openness of the shala; the sight and sounds of the garden and jungle gave a magical feel. The curriculum covered everything I hoped to learn and more, physically, mentally and spiritually. Choosing Gaia was the best decision I made, I'd highly recommend this yoga training to anyone I love. Thank you!"
"It was a great experience, really design and teach with professionalism, love and truthfulness, was super easy to trust all of you and surrender to the teaching i fell full of knowledge after and you gave me the curiosity to go beyond all you teach even if i still have a lot to digest and process and still study about what you gave to us...just thank you from the bottom of my heart."
"I was so blessed to choose this course over others for many reasons: i) the quality of teaching was superior to all i've heard about TTCS ii) empathy, love and kindness are ever present iii) individually all the people of Gaia are always so wonderful, helpful and kind. I am grateful for all the lessons and wisdom i have gained. I feel ready to teach others and deepen my yoga practice and spiritual education."
"Coming to this TTC was one of the best decisions i have taken, the teachers, the school, the atmosphere, the contents of the course, it was just what i needed! Thank you everyone, you are all in my heart."