Building a Yoga Community Through Selfl ess Service
David Sunshine, director of Dallas Yoga Center (DYC), states, “In yoga, we learn self-care, acceptance and love, and this helps us to have the energy to see beyond ourselves and give back to the community in ways that reflect the ancient yoga principle of seva.”
Seva, the ancient yogic principle of selfless service, is a way to create the connection we feel after we practice yoga. “When we give to others regularly, whether by volunteering our time, money or efforts, we increase our own happiness exponentially,” says Sunshine. “Something we do for others, we do for ourselves and vice-versa; how we invest our time and energy impacts all our relationships. Studies on the science of generosity show that the greatest benefits are reaped through regular practice.”
The Dallas Yoga Center has been integrating seva as a component to their yoga community through giving back to local charities. Sunshine says, “At the core of yoga, we explore our relationship to the world around us and how one can align one’s actions and thoughts with open-heartedness and make the world a better place.”
The Dallas Yoga Center has also incorporated seva more informally over the past 26 years by creating opportunities for connection and service to the community through outreach such as local and international fundraisers for Tibetan monks, Yoga For Sight, medical issues, drug and alcohol recovery, and efforts to end human trafficking.
DYC recently launched Seva Socials, where members gather to connect, grow and give back. The fi rst of these socials brought members together to preview food from V-Eats, a soon-to-open all-vegan restaurant in Trinity Groves. The evening’s entertainment offered a chance for members to awaken their senses with guided pratyahara (focus on the senses) and sounds of singing bowls, allowing a deeper awareness of taste and texture while sampling artisan cheese and handcrafted chocolates, led by DYC sound healing instructor Lauren Margolies.
The evening of sensory experience, connection and conversation also benefi ted the most vulnerable population in Dallas: homeless children. The night’s beneficiary was Vogel Alcove, a local charity that provides education services and support for Dallas area homeless children from 6 weeks to 5 years old.
The Dallas Yoga Center is located at 4525 Lemmon Ave, Ste. 305, in Dallas. For more information about upcoming Seva Social events, call 214-443-9642 or visit DallasYogaCenter.com.