I decided to write about both of these topics at the same time today. Most of my friends and readers are expecting me to write and post photos of my new baby girl! This I will discuss. Many of my piers and students are expecting me to write something about Larry Schultz; my guru, my friend, my inspiration and the greatest lose I have ever had in my life. At 30 years old I found myself lucky to have not lost many friends. This one came way too soon and on the same day my daughter was born. This is the cycle of life.
The birth of my baby girl "Lua Nox Kyle-Sallaberry" was @ 7:58pm on February 26th, 2011. She weighed 8lbs and 15oz, but the feeling of weight lifted off my shoulders was like the world disappeared completely. I had been informed of Larry's condition a few days before. My heart and hope was strong that Larry would recover. I knew he would recover for sure. I could feel that he would be fine. Around 7:00pm on the same night my daughter was born, I received a call from the cell phone of Larry's wife... I declined the call at that moment...I knew what the call was for and could not shift my attention from the crown of my child's head as my wife pushed through the final phase of birth. I wanted Larry to be the Godfather of Baby Lua. I had purchased this outfit for her to share with Larry... I know he is loving it right now!
|The "Rocket Baby" It was a surprise for you Larry!|
I want to see this as a day of birth and celebration for rest of my life. Larry must have know this. This must be why this day was chosen. This day marked a re-birth of my guru Larry Schultz. "Maha Samadhi" as some would say.
Two very special things happened on 02/26/2011. In the past I would never hold any of my friends babies. Because of this I was 30 years old before holding a baby and it was my baby girl. I cried at that moment. I feel deeply in love with her immediately.
I was also told on that day that my worst fear had manifested itself. My beloved teacher was being released from life support and would be left to smoothly and naturally transition into his next stage. I have never had anyone extremely close to me die before. 30 years old and I cried again for the first time over the death of a loved one.
Larry taught me many lessons that run so much deeper than how to touch my toes... who can really teach someone that anyway. We learn asana through our own efforts. But lessons on life and how to react to things that leave you confused; how to reach for things you don't even know exisist... this is the job of the guru. This is what Larry Schultz taught me. He told me to write. Many things I write will never go further than my mind and a hidden page. He told me to share. For now on I promise you Larry.... this I will share. All that I write.
Lawrence Schultz (1950 -2011) was a great teacher to who refused to let anyone look further than themselves to find all the right questions.. .answers come and go... Answers change. But the core questions in life stay the same. These questions will lead us in the right direction. Like a true Great Master he has encourage a revolution in the yoga world. Everyone knows him unless they are blind or clearly lack knowledge of the modern yoga world. Vinyasa was Larry's canvas and as a masterful artist he established many of the foundations of the practice as it is viewed by the westerner today. His practice merged the traditional and Neo-yoga worlds causing many students to be turned on to both at the same time. He was a gateway to the individuals sense of self discovery.
Larry created the system and philosophy of It's Yoga. This is a clear guidance to a particular lifestyle that is supported by the practice and sharing of Ashtanga Yoga. Those of us that are deeply emerged into this lifestyle run It's Yoga studios around the world. Larry facilitated the opening of 15+ yoga studios in the last 20 years. Many are still open today. This would definitely cut him short to stop there. Many more studios are considered associates to the It's Yoga system this means they use the It's Yoga system for their classes or sometimes they use the It's Yoga teacher training system for developing effective and professional yoga teachers in the Ashtanga Yoga lineage. Larry has easily influence the opening of over 100 yoga studios either directly or indirectly. Hes has trained 1000's of yoga teachers and it would be impossible to count how many students/teachers have passed through his classes in San Francisco. Larry was a teacher like no other. He did not travel the world to gain popularity... he stayed in his studio and taught and practiced everyday for over 17 years! I personally was there to witness this amazing show of strength and determination that does not come around to just any one. This was a special man. If you wanted what he had to offer; you had to be willing to search for it.
Over the past 9 years I have been assisting Larry to spread his vision. One quote he loved to say was "One Million Yoga Teachers To Cure The World!" He really wanted this. Larry wanted to cure the world by spreading the message and practice of yoga. This is also something I promise to Larry. I will help to spread this message of yoga. I will continue to spread his lessons that have so deeply impacted my life like so many others. People will not be able to deny the purity and empowerment that is created by Larry Schultz Yoga. Purity and empowerment for both the students who practice and the teachers who use it to facilitate their inner being. Thank you Larry... I could not say those three words enough.
|The eyes are the gateway to the soul|
The amount of inspiration that poured from this fountain of youth was enough to stir movement in the souls of thousands of us when we heard the news of Larry's passing..transition .. re-birth. As I'm sure many of us have cried... we have also laughed in the past few days... and when all is said and done.. Laughter will be the thought that stands out the most. Those of us who know Larry... know Larry had a very particular laugh. You can hear it now. He had nicknames for us all. He knew how to enjoy a good class of wine and always had San Francisco's finest medical marijuana. Whether it was from his own garden or a gift of sacred herbal sacrament.
|Larry in a "sea of green"|
We all love Larry. Because he allowed us to be who we are. We could all see ourselves in Larry. I know I should keep my thoughts more to what I have gained from my days with Larry... i cant help but cry because of what I have lost.
My daughter is going to be influence by this man as well. Again, I feel the closeness of these two events are too much for me to ignore. There is a strong lesson in this. Larry love children. Larry will be my baby girls protector. There are many more to teach on the other side. Larry will become the "Guru of the Dead" Not just because he taught the Grateful Dead, but because he will continue to be the guru in this new realm of existence. I feel good with this image in my head. Seems like a new job has been given to the soul we call Larry Schultz. He must have completed his mission here earlier than we ready. But will any of us ever truly be ready for death? With the practice of yoga.. we will. We will be ready to surrender and accept the transition to a higher place. I know Larry was ready. I know he assisted my wife and baby girl into their transition. A mother and father was born on that day as well. Inside Elizabeth and myself a new life began. I will never forget the sight of her taking her first few breaths. The beauty and desperation. Must be the same way for death.
|Larry knew how to live life and this is what he taught.|
This is a process that will take time. Even as a yogi who searches for the ever present moment. Time has me confined to its one-way linear pattern. I wonder what kind of ticket you would get for driving the wrong way on this road? Just real quick so I could say a few things... but not right now.
As Larry once said with his famous lines on yoga practice that really reflects the meaning of life....
"Everybody is trying to take the bind and hold on.... just let go..."
with love and gratitude