Matthew Remski is a writer, researcher, yoga therapist, Ayurvedic consultant, activist, father and ever evolving human, who advocates for inquiry and exploration in yogic culture, practice, and life in general. With over 20 years of experience and immersion in studying and teaching yoga and meditation, Matthew’s present work focuses on the philosophical and social psychological aspects of the practice. His work is controversial, yet thorough, and recent conversations and publications shine an important light on sensitive, systemic, provocative and destructive issues that underscore modern postural yoga.
SENSITIVE CONTENT/TRIGGER WARNING
Kathryn and Matthew have known each other for many years. This interview is not like any other we’ve done, in which occasionally Matthew turns the mic on Kathryn, looking in on aspects of her trajectory through life and yoga. The conversation is comfortable and candid between friends following the reminiscence of early days of yoga and community building in Toronto, Matthew’s work with Kathryn’s mom Diane – including the WAWADIA project on yoga injuries, an exploration into the dynamics of pain/pleasure, crisis/healing and more. They also discuss the modern virtues and values of trauma awareness and strength building emerging in practice today, then take a deep dive into the history of modern postural yoga (ironically popularized in India in efforts to rebel colonialism), cult analysis, disillusionment, and abuse within the yoga practice and adjacent systems. Matthew explains how we got where we are today and suggests what can become of the knowledge we have if we can continue to expose, bring awareness to and acknowledge the inherent problems within.
This episode contains discussion on sensitive and triggering subject matter including: cult-analysis, rape culture, sexual abuse, and abuse within the Ashtanga yoga community specifically.
Find links to Matthew’s article in The Walrus, his other works, and references mentioned in this episode below.
In this episode…
Matthew Remski \\ matthewremski.com
- Yoga’s Culture of Sexual Abuse: Nine Women Tell Their Stories –The Walrus
- WAWADIA: What Are We Actually Doing In Asana ; Prospectus
- Karen Rain’s video interview with Matthew
Karen Rain \\ Ashtanga Yoga and Me Too
Norman Blair \\ Essay: Ashtanga Yoga Stories
Anneke Lucas \\ annekelucas.com
Mark Singleton \\ Modern Yoga Research
Sarai Harvey-Smith \\ Article
- The Sexual Misconduct of Pattabhi Jois: My Thoughts, Accountability, and 5 Changes to Pledge my Support for the Victims
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