About Durga Dasi
Trauma Informed Yoga, Kirtan, & Heart Healing
Jai Mā, my name is Durga Dasi. I'm passionate about many things: Mother Earth, equality, social justice, animal rights... and YOGA. Not just the acrobatic stuff we do on the mat (although that's where I started!) But, real yoga, which requires a deep dive into the depths of our souls to heal anything and everything that would keep us separate from it. Yoga is many things, and I've come to know it as union with our own innate Divinity... but to experience that union, we need all 8 limbs.
You see, yoga not only saved my life... it also made it worth living. I'm a survivor of complex childhood and adult trauma... and the chaos in my head drove me to attempt suicide. By the grace of Mā, I survived... and then I truly discovered yoga beyond asana.
What began as a treatment for PTSD evolved into the most profound journey of lifetimes. My time on the mat allowed the space to integrate felt sense and presence... to be at ease in my own skin for the first time in my life! I could BREATHE! As my practice grew deeper and I felt safer to travel more inward, I began to pick up my own pieces and experience Wholeness.
And I knew I had to share this very practical hope with other survivors of trauma and those seeking to know Self. I wanted to share the healing waters of mantra and the sacred dance of asana... to turn on a light for those of us left far too long in darkness.
And so, I became a yoga teacher (but I'll always be a student first)... in hopes that my life would be an instrument in the hands of the Divine Mother, my voice echoing Her own in calling each of us, as Her beloved children, Home.
Always at Her Feet,
Honoring my ancestors of the Chickasaw & Choctaw Nations, India, and Ireland.
Durga Dasi is a trauma conscious student and teacher of Yoga: asana (postures), meditation, kirtan and yogic philosophy; while also offering intuitive spiritual guidance, somatic counseling, and creative ways to explore the inner landscape of the heart. She has studied in India and the States; and is a shishya of her Siksha GuruJi: Swami Bhajanananda Saraswati at the Ramakrishna Theological Seminary at Kali Mandir. She's a faithful devotee of Sanatam Dharma (Hinduism) and bhakta (devotee) of Durga Mā (Kali).
These are the Beings who inspire and guide all that I do. It is by their Divine Grace and unconditional Love that I am on this sacred path of Bhakti Yoga. Jai Mā!
The Form of Divine Love that is my Ishta Devata (most Beloved). She is Mother. She is Devi. She is God. In all I do, I wish to serve Her and embody the Love that She is through me.
"Now and then, the Mother marks a bound soul as Her own. From then on, it's all Her Grace."
-Devadatta Kali, The Veiling Brilliance
"You are bound only by the illusion of bondage, for bondage and liberation belong to the mind alone. See them dissolving now."
-Durga Mā (Devi Mahatmya)
Om Sri Mata Durgayei Namah
Sri Anandamayi Mā
Ma is my beloved Sat Guru. Her love extends beyond all limits of space, time, fear... or anything else blocking our view of Divine Love.
“When by the flood of your tears
the inner and the outer have fused into one,
you will find Her whom you
sought with such anguish,
nearer than the nearest,
the very breath of life,
the very core of every heart.”
― Anandamayi Mā
Om Hridayavasinyai Anandamayai Gurubhyo Mata Namah
The Mother in Her fiercest form of Love, Kali refuses to leave us bound up by ego, shame, and fear. We must go beyond our fear of Her and into Her arms, into Her heart, in total surrender to the Love that She is.
She is Mother. What we love we cannot fear, and She takes us beyond all fear.
"Take refuge in me, let go of your fear, let me slay your illusion of smallness and separation, and you will merge into my infinite bliss."
-Kali Mā (Veiling Brilliance)
Om Sri Mata Kalikayei Namah
SwamiJi Bhajanananda Saraswati
My beloved Diksha/Siksha Guru, Head Swami at Kali Mandir, and Dean of Ramakrishna Seminary and Senior Instructor.
I am honored to sit at GuruJi's feet and receive his sound wisdom and instruction.
"Ma Kali’s name is Kali Herself, the Supreme Goddess, the divine Shakti that animates our lives and transforms us though Her love (kripa). But behind Her dynamic divine name and form, She exists as pure consciousness, the one transcendent ground of our very being—of every being."
-Rev Dr. Swami Bhajanananda Saraswati