Walking the path of yoga

This winding path of life is so beautiful. Just when you think you’re lost, you discover you’re standing exactly where you need to be. I became inspired to work in international development in 1994 when I first saw the news of the genocide in Rwanda. I was horrified that the world sat by and watched such a tragedy unfold, reporting that it was merely ‘ethnic violence’ and ancient ‘tribal rivalries’. The smallest amount of research and real journalism would have revealed the truth of the horrors and the political climate that lead to them…but no one seemed to care.

I was inspired to the path of Kriya yoga long before I became passionate about helping people in far off lands, thanks to my amazing karma of being born into a family of yogi’s in the heart of Ananda Village.

I never thought my two passions could unite… but an article in Yoga Journal, the inspiration of my dear friends Monique and Georgina, and one very dark day in September showed me a new possiblity.

That dark day was this Tuesday…it was just one of those days where you question every choice you’ve made and feel deep despair at your own unhappiness. Well that was the heavy feeling on my heart and I took it to my yoga class. Les twisted and stretched those emotions right outta me and I was left feeling drained, but open…

We need the darkness to seek the light! Sitting in the passanger seat, nearing tears as Craig assured me I should follow my heart, the memory of that yoga journal article came to my mind.

The article was about an organization called Project Air, founded in 2007, that provides yoga to survivors of rape in Rwanda during the genocide, especially targeting those who contracted HIV. What an idea! It’s the alignment of all the inner work that I value so highly and the outter work … it’s karma yoga.

You may be wondering, “is Gita about to jet off to Africa or what?!” Of course I would love to, but like I said, I’m in exactly the right place at the right time. I have work to do here at home, but my heart and mind are now open to a new possibility ~ a merging of my two great passions in life; helping others and deepening my practice of yoga.



Published by Gita Matlock

Gita is a writer, speaker, and nonprofit professional. She earned a bachelors degree in international studies from Pepperdine University and a masters degree in nonprofit administration from the University of San Francisco. She has traveled extensively and held leadership positions with national and international nonprofit organizations. She was born, raised, and now resides with her husband and two children at Ananda Village, the first of eight cooperative Kriya Yoga communities founded by Swami Kriyananda, a direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda.

One thought on “Walking the path of yoga

  1. The ability to question one's first principles (and choices) is the essence of maturity. I can't say there are no wrong choices but I can say that what makes them “wrong” or “right” is how we respond. To question is right. To bounce back with faith, hope, and charity is essence of our human potential for transcendence! Good work, keep going. It will never be perfect but victory is for those who keep going with faith.

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