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Cory M. Bryant
Cory is a 2008 graduate of both the Flow Yoga Center (200 hour) and the Jivamukti Yoga School (350 hour) teacher training programs. He first experienced the transformational teachings of Sharon Gannon and David Life shortly after 9/11 while living in NYC. Life has not been the same since. Cory truly believes that yoga can and is changing the world in a positive way and aspires to live by the words of his beloved teacher, Sharonji, “together we can create a world which is not based on the old paradigm of our culture which tells us that ‘the earth belongs to us and exists for us to exploit’ --- to be political is to care for others who you live with. We have no problem with being labeled ‘political yogis’. We encourage our students to dare to care about others. As yoga practitioners, we cannot be content to live in our own little ‘I-me-mine’ bubble while the rest of the world deteriorates.” Along with Agatha Glowacki and visiting teachers Alanna Kaivalya and Jill Abelson, he hopes to impart the spirit of Jivamukti yoga to the Flow community. Cory has a PhD in food chemistry and works for the U.S. Food & Drug Administration's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. He is currently pursuing a Master's in Public Health through the University of Minnesota and hopes to begin the Jivamukti 500 hour apprenticeship program in 2009/2010.
Cory's Teaching Style: Jivamukti yoga is based on 5 tenets: (1) ahimsa - a nonviolent, compassionate lifestyle; (2) bhakti - acknowledgement that the realization of universal consciousness is the goal of yoga; (3) meditation - connecting to the eternal, unchanging reality that exists within all of us; (4) nada - development of sound body and mind through deep listening; and (5) scripture - study of the ancient yogic texts, including sanskrit and chant. Cory strives to adhere to these 5 tenets by infusing each class with chanting, motivating sound, spiritual activism, pranayama, meditation and vigorous asana. You will sweat!
Teacher Spotlight Cory Bryant
How do you find your flow? I am fortunate to have a room in our house for yoga --- a “yoga room”. Everyday I go into the yoga room, light some nag champa, roll out my mat, put on some music, and check in.
Why yoga? Because yoga is a lifelong practice that parallels one’s path in life and I find that excited as well as challenging --- and I like to be challenged. Also because yoga teaches us to work for the sake of work, not for the reward and this concept is changing my life and allowing me the space to serve.
What is your favorite Yoga Pose? That’s a tough one --- I love them all. Each asana has the potential to unfold differently each time it is practiced and each, if practiced with perfect alignment, holds the promise of enlightenment. I find this intriguing and it calls me to continue the spiritual, energetic exploration that is asana.; That said, so as not to evade the question, my favorite pose is headstand. Headstand allows one the opportunity to connect sahasrara chakra (the energetic center at the top of the head) to the earth and holds the potential to connect to God.
Aside from teaching yoga, what other activities fill your life? I’m blessed to have a wonderfully, phenomenal partner Richard Jenrette and 3 fantastic pups Lola, Spanky and Bodhi. Spending time with my family is quite fulfilling! Richard is a triathlete and I love to run (and dabble in biking), so we dedicate a significant amount of time to those pursuits. Plus I practice yoga daily and continue to study to become a better teacher so that I may serve the AMAZING Jivamukti students of Flow. And I am a professional student currently working on a Masters in Public Health to support my full-time job on the Emergency Coordination and Response Team at FDAs Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.
What are you most proud of? Two things: my relationship with Richard; and being a certified Jivamukti Yoga teacher.
Tell us something about yourself that your students may not know. I'm a bit of an open book. Maybe that I went to sheep shearing school when I was 13?
What is your personal mantra/motto? I have two: “Practice and all is coming” - Sri K. Pattabhi Jois; and this statement that my beloved guru David Life said once in a workshop that just stuck with me: Do what you don't feel like doing and DO it GOOD!
What do you most admire in others? Devotion, hard work and the ability to truly listen.
What is your idea of earthly happiness? Ahimsa: the end of violence in the world. And on a less lofty level: a great run, followed by a rockin’ yoga session, and chillin’ on the beach with Richard and the pups.