So glad you want to find out more about me. And I am certain I will have an opportunity to find out more about you in the future.
In my native Indian tongue, Sunita means well-behaved. The irony is pretty clear.
I was pretty wild as a little girl and all the way to my teens. I used to jump off the 2nd story of a construction building just because my friends dared me too. I rode motorbikes around town when I was underage, and I slapped boys I simply did not like.
Nothing you would expect from an Indian girl.
But eventually I had to stop behaving like that. I grew up in the warrior caste system in India. And my
father was a role model whom everyone looked up to.
For a woman to act too wild could be damaging to his reputation. We were expected to uphold a respectable image in our society.
So I had to mold myself into that—study to get good grades, go to university, get a job and marry a reliable man. All the “sensible” things that that society grooms you for.
I played along.
At the age of 20, I got married (it was arranged). I was completing my Master’s degree at the time, and was in my 2nd year of university. And my husband was handsome, smart and supportive.
Wisdom of yoga has always help me to come back to inner peace. Yoga has given me so much and I truly believe my life’s purpose is to share my understanding of this wisdom of yoga.
I did my best to endure. But my self-confidence eventually shattered. I devolved from a human being to a zombie.
The Turning Point
Eventually, I was standing on the roadside, and the only thing between me and an unpleasant outer- body experience was a moving bus.
Correct. I wanted to kill myself.
Returning from an arduous day of work one evening, I wanted to to walk in front of a bus. The lights were shining, and it was moving at a killable speed. All I needed to do was step forward at the right time.
“Astral traveling here I come.”
That’s what I thought. But I wondered how it might impact the bus driver and his family. And I decided not to. Even when I needed to think about me, I was always still making decisions to please others.
But the act of compassion towards the driver changed something in me and reminded me of something sacred I knew all along. That is …
“All life is precious, including my own.”
I decided not to walk in front of the bus. The memories, love and teachings from my grandmother kept me alive. My grandmother instilled yoga philosophies and practices in me from a young age. She was my first guru.
They were communicated to me in story form. And the stories and their wisdom worked for and with me no matter what was going on in my life. More importantly, they came to light just in time.
So that night, I walked to a park, sat and meditated till I got the message. I asked myself …
“Why am I doing this and for whom? Why should I die?”
In the silence, the message came to me clearly.
“You don’t need to kill yourself for these people, your life is worth more than that.”
I realized, until I valued my life, nothing in my life was going to be of value. It was humbling. Instead of taking my life, it gave me life. I found the courage to leave and take control of things. I wanted to re- write my own narrative called Sunita’s life. One that was truer to the joy and freedom I had as a child.
So I left Mumbai and moved to Pune. My husband followed me. He didn’t realize what was going on at home at the time. Together, we were eventually blessed with our daughter. In the shadow there is always a light. For me, that was my daughter.
Meanwhile, I consciously kept Sangha (Sanskrit for the company of like-minded and like-hearted people). Being around my in-laws helped me recognize the importance of being around the right minds and the right hearts.
And because the yoga practices had done so much for me, I put more attention to practicing and sharing them with others—teaching classes and continuing my learning. I even furthered my yoga practice at the world renowned BKS Iyengar’s Ramani Yoga Institute in Pune.
The glow I had as a child started to return.
Eventually, we left to the US as my husband had a job there. But just when I thought things were getting better on this new adventure—I was hit with a big culture shock.
Everything in the US was excessive and over the top—food, cars, and consumerism. Though the economy was good, there was a pace to life that would run anyone ragged. I felt like a displaced specimen.
As a result, I suffered from allergies that seemed out of character for me. Again I had to take things into my own hands. I did a full yoga cleanse—detoxifying myself of poisonous thoughts and poisonous foods. No matter where in the US I was, I regularly meditated, practiced asana and kept my health in check. It was a big push to deepen and discipline my practice in yoga.
Just when you think you have come so far, you realize there is always more to learn.
Eventually, the sense of calm and peace I found within, became the calm and peace my friends and neighbors were searching for all their lives. They wanted to know my secret. And that is when I was called to teach holistic yoga in the USA.
Following my Guru Vishwatmak Janglidas Maharaj Om Gurudev’s advise, I honored the calling. And it was amazingly touching to see the way it has transformed people’s health, relationships and life as whole. I realized after some time, that life leads you through experiences to connect more deeply with your center. For me, this transformed my health, and enabled me to transform other peoples’ health too.
Eventually, my confidence as a teacher and lifestyle advisor snowballed. My path became clearer and clearer. After 7 years in the USA, I moved to Australia and committed to continue my personal and teaching practice.
To date, I have taught for over 17 years, facilitating yoga experiences and teachings for 1000’s of students. I also teach yoga teachers the deeper aspects of yoga philosophy—ones that transcend the physical practice of asana (physical poses), which is what modern society often mislabels as yoga itself.
But what I saw as missing, I took upon myself to fulfil.
So today, I dedicate myself to bridge the gap between the comprehensive yoga curriculum I was blessed to have, and the mainstream understanding of yoga. I am certain that the many dimensions of yoga philosophy and practices hold great potential for everyday living.
My wish is to bring the untainted version of this body of knowledge, so people can live a life of true happiness, freedom and fulfilment. If you feel called to explore them, I feel called to invite you too.