Sunday, January 15, 2012
mysore magic, the documentary
It was a happy Sunday/Shankranti yesterday, full of pongal and painted cows. Conference was canceled due to festivities but, for me at least, it felt quite ok to keep the afternoon free and easy. And as with everything to do with Mysore, the day was magical in that oh-so-subtle way.
Between beautiful opportunities of sharing between friends, from led class to a beautiful lunch cooked with love to just enjoying the simple pleasures like ice-cream and pizza, there was the sneak peek at the film Mysore Magic.
For the last few weeks, one might have noticed the guerilla-style film-making threesome--Alex Medin with film-makers/yoga practitioners Jim and Angie Kambeitz--taking in the various scenes around Gokulam. They seemed to be everywhere at one point, at the coconut stand, in conference, at led class and self-practice, as they worked to capture the special quality that draws us all here to Mysore, to practice at KPJAYI.
Yesterday, Alex arranged a preview and special Shankranti/thank you lunch for the participants of the documentary. We all packed into one of his apartment living rooms, dimmed for the occasion. A screen projector was set up to run the 21 minute docu, so aptly titled, Mysore Magic.
The film, driven by interviews with Sharath, Saraswathi, some prominent scholars of Mysore, and a sampling of long-time and newer shala students from around the world, showcased the different themes of life around the practice: the roots of this amazing system, the remarkable lineage, the draw of the practice and how it has the power to transform the lives of the people who embrace it.
In all, it is a beautiful representation of what happens at the shala here in Mysore. It captures the flavor of the area, which is steeped in yogic tradition. It illustrates the spirit of the practice in the faces of those whose lives have been changed because of it.
For me, particularly, it's an honor to take part, to share my thoughts about this extraordinary Mysore magic, which constantly awes/challenges/blesses me. And the film itself is like a time capsule of this special and, yes!, magical period of my life.
Well done to Alex, Jim and Angie! They produced this excellent work in record time without sacrificing the love for the project and their own practice.
The documentary Mysore Magic will be shown at next Sunday's conference and is supposed to be available for all to see--eventually--on the shala website.