Not that this seems much like news anymore, and instead feels rather like a bludgeon to the head with a chakra tiara, but we’re sharing the latest from camp John Friend because some have inquired about updates and after this crazy roller coaster year, doggone it, they deserve them. We’ll call it a form of closure, because J Fri seems to have found it himself, as detailed in his most recent post-Thanksgiving message to his new mailing list.
A quick breakdown: JF had a tough and “painfully Kali-like transformative” year. There was a lot of turmoil and damage to his professional reputation, and yet he “brightly returned” and has moved on. He’s thankful for Anusara students’ “astonishing openings” though he will having nothing to do with the brand now known as the Anusara School of Hatha Yoga, the “sole licensee of the Anusara yoga trademarks” (although, we know they will actually forward a percentage of teacher licensing fees to Anusara, Inc. of which John Friend is the owner). He feels blessed to have this opportunity, now “free to focus a lot more attention on my practices, studies, and writings.”
This return to teaching full time began just this fall with a string of workshops and he’s grateful to the Denver studio for kicking it off and providing the space for him to “rebirth myself into a higher form on all levels of my being.” As per his last correspondence, we take this to mean promoting a franchise-able 60 pose style called The Roots, writing a book about it and likely going on a world tour now that all is totally fine and forgotten.
Not for nothing, it’s great that he’s turning lemons into citrus light kombucha, but is it outrageous to say some might have been more accepting of this rebirth had JF gone through a Britney Spears-esque meltdown, with a Nick Nolte style mug shot and a stint on a reality intervention TV show? It certainly would have been more entertaining and maybe even more palatable. Everyone loves a good comeback story. Nevertheless, too soon or no, this email sent Monday, December 3, 2012 lays out where John Friend has been and where on earth he is planning to go.
Greetings [name removed],
This Thanksgiving 2012 was a very profound day of gratitude for me after a painfully Kali-like transformative year. After my personal scandal in the early part of the year blew up the Anusara yoga community and whirled my life into turmoil, I have been able to reemerge into public teaching at a new level within this same wild-ride Year of the Dragon. From the stunningly quick dissolution of my leadership of the Anusara yoga organization and the damage done to my professional reputation, I have brightly returned to teaching as an independent hatha yoga instructor still offering very powerful alignment technologies.
I have just completed 7 successful and very positive weekend workshops in a row (Denver, Park City, Santa Fe, Lake Tahoe, Winnipeg, Detroit, and Phoenix), and it felt so wonderful to share again my love of hatha yoga with many bright-hearted North American students. The yoga community at Vital Yoga in Denver was the first to host my successful return to public teaching this Fall with over 70 students per class. The Springer sisters, Micah and Desi, welcomed me to Vital and gave me a chance to begin a whole new professional presentation of myself and my teachings. Their integrity, inner strength, and disciplined life practices have provided a healing environment for me to rebirth myself into a higher form on all levels of my being.
The focus at Vital is triadic: whole foods nutrition, set-sequenced advanced asana practice, and daily meditation. Speaking from direct experience this year, committing to this disciplined life-style for weeks at a time can revolutionize your mind-body and get you into excellent shape. Eating out of the garden, practicing the Roots asana sequence and sitting meditation each day, and the loving support for in-depth study and writing has helped me tremendously to withstand the personal tumult of the last months and has helped to prepare me to start fresh with my teachings independent of the Anusara yoga community.
Synchronistically, as I just returned to full-time hatha yoga teaching, the new independent, teacher-owned and managed, global school of Anusara yoga was launched. It is being run by licensed Anusara yoga teachers representing 5 regions around the world: USA, Canada, Central & South America, Europe/Middle East and Asia/Pacific. This newly formed organization, the Anusara School of Hatha Yoga, will be the sole licensee of the Anusara yoga trademarks and will be the central global body to administrate curriculum and certification in these 5 regions. I am very happy that Anusara yoga will now continue to represent the highest standard in hatha yoga teaching and methodology, and I am confident that it will grow and flourish in many countries for many years to come.
My 15 years as the leader of the Anusara yoga community were filled with times of the greatest joy for me as beautiful-hearted students in dozen of countries had astonishing openings using the technologies of Anusara yoga. The Universal Principles of Alignment spread into hatha yoga classes in over 100 countries and influenced the teachings of hatha yoga systems worldwide. In its first 15 years, Anusara yoga became renowned as an elite hatha yoga system with the highest standard for teacher certification in the world. Although I will be independent of the administration and direction of the school now, I believe that in the years to come, Anusara yoga certification will again be highly valued in the marketplace.
Without having to manage the school of Anusara yoga, I am now free to focus a lot more attention on my practices, studies, and writings. Although it is painful for me to leave so many personal associations after many years, and to relinquish control of the organization that I founded, I feel blessed to have this opportunity to start fresh in my life.
Foundational to my own heart-mind-body transformation this year, has been my practice of the Roots, which has radically shifted my postural and energetic alignment in the most powerful way. From the discipline of regularly practicing the advanced Roots – 100+ poses in 90-minutes, I witnessed my steady progress physically, mentally, and spiritually over the last several months. On a mind-body level, the Roots, performed with alignment principles, balances and tones the neuro-glandular system more than any other asana sequence that I have ever practiced.
The Roots isn’t the end-all of yoga routines or the only asana routine to practice, but the way that it requires the practitioner to internally squeeze muscularly and physiologically while holding so many balancing poses in a row is uniquely transformative. The sequence is designed to open the hips and shoulders in any extraordinary way by aligning the lower and upper halves of the body in an integrated way using avant-garde biomechanical technology.
The core of the nervous system and the pranic channels of the mind-body get toned quickly with daily practice of the Roots while applying principles of tensegrity. An inner strength and mental lucidity are among some of the benefits of a toned and balanced nervous system. So, I am filled with a fresh enthusiasm about my teaching and practice right now as I am learning so much every day, which can be so helpful and particularly therapeutic to so many people worldwide!
I warmly invite you, [name removed], to come study with me again at any of my upcoming workshops. My 2013 tour is now listed on my new website www.johnfriend.com, with more dates to be added as they are set. Further information about each event is forth-coming as well. I have also added a blog to the site.
Blessings of Light to all as we celebrate the end of 2012,
But we won’t know everything’s really ok until he makes his return to twitter.
- Eccentric Antivirus Software King, John McAfee, Could Be Yoga’s Next Big Thing (Or He Could Be a Murderer)
- Meet the New Anusara School of Hatha Yoga, Sans John Friend, What’s Different? What’s the Same?
- Update: Sad Details of Kausthub Desikachar’s Psychopathic Abuse of Power, Sexual Misconduct and the Preserving of His Family’s Legacy
- John Friend Returns to Teaching, Introduces New ‘Roots’ Asana Sequence, Book Plans