As we mentioned in our interview with Guru Jagat, we’re fans (to say the least). Up until recently though, we had been watching and absorbing her wisdom over RA MA TV where her meditations and yoga classes are recorded and then added to her website.
That was until RA MA Institute New York opened, and now we have a home to practice the Kundalini magic with her and her team.
RA MA is located on Stanton Street in the Lower East Side, just near all the shops and busy restaurants. But once inside you would never know. The vibe is calm, but the energy is strong. The space is a simple, large room with a stage in the back. During class, you sit facing the stage, absorbing every last bit of the teachings and movements. You could be in Bali save the occasional siren driving by.
During the hour long yoga sessions, where you mainly just move your arms (which sounds easy, but it’s actually really, really hard), you’re taken to a new vibration and you leave operating with a new energy. The virtues of Kundalini are endless, but we love that you get a two for one with a workout for body and mind.
As an added bonus, they have a beautiful little shop up front where you can stock up on your spiritual wares. We grabbed some of the Surya Spa bread they had on hand that day, and a crystal ball, because that’s just what you do when you’re at RA MA.
In our interview with Guru Jagat, we asked her about the power of kundalini yoga and what it’s like to start your own business:
Laney: You speak a lot about the effects of our cortisol levels in your book, Invincible Living. Can you tell us more about that, how it affects our health, and how it steers RA MA?
Guru Jagat: I’m rolling out a whole program this year for hormonal rebalancing and weight loss and clearing stress hormones from the body for women. All of the fitness research we have for women in America, which is what fitness is based on in terms of the current trends in fitness and exercise, physiology and nutritional science. They’re all done on young, mostly white men. Women are realizing this doesn’t work for them or their body. It creates cortisol, you’re eating right, doing everything right but you’re still inflamed or not loosing weight the way they should be for what they’re eating and how they’re exercising. One of the most incredible things about kundalini yoga is that it’s a complete science that pulls the inflammation out of the body, moves the lymphatic system, and doesn’t create more cortisol. It clears cortisol from the body. It cleanses and detoxes the organs which helps with all the fat stores. It also tones the muscles but it tones the nervous system while toning the muscles which makes you stronger in a very holistic way. A lot of the time, I’ve seen people who have trained their body in one way come in to kundalini yoga and they feel so weak even though they can bench press or run and part of it is because their nervous systems have been depleted through their exercise regimen rather than strengthened.
Yogi Bhajan said it’s not the strength of the muscles, it’s the strength of the nerves behind the muscles, and then the muscles can become strong. If you think about all of the greatest athletes, great athletes have strong nervous systems. They can handle the pressures of being an athlete. They’re very connected. Also the hormonal balancing with all the extro-estrogen and toxins of the modern world, with the practicing of kundalini yoga, you really get this hormonal balancing and this metabolic boosting from the endocrine secretion through the meditation and the breathe-work. All of that creates a very holistic fitness approach where you get mind, body, and spirit all in one class.
I was just talking to someone else. I don’t have time to go to a meditation class and a fitness class, I just don’t have time. That’s one of the great things about kundalini yoga is you just get it all in one session. You sweat, you focus your mind, you get a connection in to spirit, it’s all of those things all in one so it’s very complete.
L: I love that about it too. It’s hard. When you talk about your intuition leading you to kundalini at the very beginning, can you talk about the intuition in to starting your own company?
GJ: My whole company was created out of a series of meditations, including RA MA TV, my digital platform, and everything I’ve done including opening in New York. That was a message from meditation that it was time to do this. I use my mediation practice, I call it my business meeting with the universe, to focus and direct my businesses decisions just like yourself. I’m a young woman entrepreneur. I don’t have BC’s behind me. This is all self made, self generated. I don’t come from a family that has a lot of money. I don’t have a trust fund. I’m not married. All of those are great but this has really been something I’ve created from nothing.
Now we’re a global business. I have about six businesses all under the RA MA brand. I’m very excited and we’re rolling a bunch more out this year in terms of more programs and more online experiences. It’s an amazing experience to be creative and for your art to be received by the world which is how I look at entrepreneurialism. It’s creating art. I really do all of it out of my meditative practice. Every decision I’ve ever made has been because of something I’ve heard or felt or saw in my meditation practice.
Pay A Visit
RA MA Institute
125 Stanton Street
New York, NY 10002
Special thanks to Guru Jagat
Photo via RA MA Institute