An inspiring afternoon with Lucy Roberts, who shares with us her what simple aspects bring her joy and enthusiasm for life...
RYB: How and when did you fall in love with yoga?
LR: I started Yoga at age 21 while dragging myself through the final semester of a Business Degree that I couldn’t stand, meanwhile working part-time and saving my pennies to get out of there. I’ve no idea what drew me to start other than destiny, as I didn’t really even know what Yoga was. The first classes I attended were very subtle - it was more body mind centring (BMC) than classical yoga and I loved the spaciousness I felt… I would go home and practice all the things I learned. There was a real innocence in those first years… not knowing the difference between this style or that, nor caring, but just doing and enjoying in the most natural way. It all felt very familiar to me.
RYB: How would you describe your yoga classes?
LR: My classes are usually very fluid, with an emphasis on finding ease in the postures. I am a lover of beauty and harmony and see this practice as a devotional art in many ways, where the body is the instrument and the movement and breath the sweet music it makes. What we offer up is both our love and our resistance. My intention first and foremost is to serve, however that should look on any given day. To the degree that I am able I try to just step aside, and see what love has in store for us all!
RYB: What is currently influencing your practice?
- Naturalness, or the natural state. Less pushing, less striving, less doing in general, and more resting in or remembrance of that which is already and always there - all-embracing, all-merciful presence.
- Mercy - a word brought to my attention by a book I’m reading by Stephen & Ondrea Levine. Mercy. The capacity to acknowledge and embrace absolutely whatever arises. It’s a practice of radical intimacy, self-love and forgiveness. Much harder than any asana I’ve ever done.
You are a part of the fabulous Yoga Arts team — leading genuine and authentic retreats and trainings across the globe…
RYB: What do you love most about teaching with Yoga Arts?
LR: Yoga Arts has become quite a surrogate family, as we’ve been hanging out for a lot of years now. I love that there is space within the curriculum for each of us to be exactly who we are, sharing our passion for Yoga in the ways most dear to us. While we each express the practice differently there is harmony with regard to what’s most important. We try never to contradict each other but present instead a varied palette of complimentary colours! I’d say that we all strive to remain ordinary, down-to-earth human beings - nobody is too precious or too trippy and I very much appreciate that.
RYB: How do you find balance with such a nomadic lifestyle?
LR: To be honest I’ve been finding it very hard to of late, which is why I’m giving myself this year to create more of a nest here in Byron Shire, Australia. Otherwise my methods are pretty simple - I set up my little altar, get some fresh flowers, light my lamp and ring some bells. Meditation is the home I carry with me… stillness is stillness wherever I am and is the way I find ground when there is none. Trying to cook for myself wherever and whenever I can is hugely grounding too.
RYB: What are the simple pleasures you indulge in when not teaching?
LR: Being able to buy beautiful fresh produce, cooking, walking on the beach, and occasionally staying up really late with a good book without worrying that I’ll be trashed when the alarm goes off at 5am.
RYB: One of your favorite places in the world you would recommend:
LR: Sri Narayani Peedam, Tamil Nadu, South India. A pretty extraordinary place of Devi worship. Although I had the hardest trip there last time that I’ve ever had, it is still an extraordinary realm of instant manifestation, joy, peace and love.
RYB: One of your most memorable yoga experiences?
LR: I can’t think of one in particular - there are so many little sublime Yoga moments in each and every day!
RYB: What quote inspires you in your practice?
LR: “The seeds of purification are within you, nurture those and you will awaken. The form helps, but it is the awareness that liberates” ~ Sayadaw U Pandita.
I’ve loved and remembered this quote since I first read it more than 10 years ago. For me it is profound. I wrap myself up in knots sometimes trying to figure out the ‘right’ way to move forward. This quote reminds me to trust the quieter voice inside that either already knows, or doesn’t need to. It reminds me that in the end love is all there is and all I’ll ever really need.
Lucy leads regular retreats and workshops in Bali, India, Japan, Australia and the Middle East, and has been part of the Yoga Arts team for more than 12 years, delivering 200 & 500hr Teacher Training Courses internationally. Her style is fluid, feminine, intuitive, and creative, inspired by a love of dance and free-style movement, and the stillness residing beneath. Lucy is a passionate writer & speaker, who delights in inspiring a deeper dive into the subtleties of both mind & heart. She’s been practicing Yoga for 19 years, and teaching for 14. She lives with her partner and baby girl in Byron Bay, Australia, writing, teaching, living, learning and embodying Yoga as best she can. Follow her here: www.lucyrobertsyoga.com