Kaliji began her current 49-day tour with programs in Shenzhen, China from September 10-19. Highlights of the trip included the opening of the first TriYoga Center in China, Kaliji’s Devi Dance at the 3rd anniversary celebration of UYoga, chanting with Kaliji and tabla master Prasann from India, TriYoga programs and many visits to yoga studios.
TriYoga has experienced fantastic growth in China since Kaliji’s last visit nearly four years ago. There are over 100 TriYoga teachers in China, many certified in multiple levels and with hundreds of hours of teacher training experience. Many met Kaliji for the first time on this visit, and their excitement at meeting TriYoga’s founder after so much anticipation was wonderful to see!
Kaliji was invited to China by Grace, owner of Shenzhen yoga studio UYoga. UYoga has hosted TriYoga teacher training with John and Stephanie for the past two years, and will continue again this year beginning in November. For UYoga third anniversary celebration on September 11, Kaliji performed a Devi Dance, officially announced the new TriYoga Center in Shenzhen and peformed three chants accompanied by visiting Indian tabla master Prasann.
The audience crowded as closely as possible to have a good view of Kaliji and the Devi Dance.
Kaliji electrified the audience with Prasann providing tabla accompaniment, and Prasann added a dazzling solo performance.
Kaliji and Grace after announcing the new TriYoga Center.
Teachers Ajasha, Jenny, Deva, Lily, and Xixi performed a TriYoga demonstration.
Kaliji and Grace outside of the new Shenzhen TriYoga Center, the first TriYoga center in China. Kaliji officially inaugurated the center on September 15. The center is decorated with large photographs of Kaliji and scenes from TriYoga teacher training in Shenzhen.
As part of the inauguration, Kaliji gave a beautiful talk about the Flow of TriYoga’s expansion in China, and teachers John and Kiki gave a short demonstration of TriYoga Flows.
Over 60 students attended TriYoga programs with Kaliji in Shenzhen during the week. Each day featured TriYoga Flows, chanting and jnana. Kaliji’s opening talk was about the physical, spiritual and moral benefits of a vegan diet.
Senior teachers John and Stephanie assisted throughout Kaliji’s trip. They will begin Basics-Level 2 teacher training in Shenzhen on November 1.
Katia Ivchenko and Katya Skiba (both standing) traveled to China for Kaliji’s visit and provided invaluable assistance throughout. In May, Katia and Katya traveled to Hong Kong with Kaliji for the Asia Yoga Conference. They enjoyed their experience greatly and were eager to return to China.
Weekend programs were held at a beautiful hotel in OCT East, near Shenzhen. This is a seaside resort area for Shenzhen, and provided a wonderful setting for a weekend TriYoga retreat with Kaliji. Over 60 students attended the retreat, enjoying TriYoga Flows, chanting and talks by Kaliji, including another amazingly logical, informative and compassionate explanation for the importance of a plant-based diet.
Kaliji was interviewed by media during the retreat.
Level 3 TriYoga teacher Kiki (Xue Qi) translated all of Kaliji’s programs and provided superb assistance with every aspect of Kaliji’s visit. Kiki has translated John and Stephanie’s trainings for the past two years, participating in over 800 hours of teacher training. On this visit, Kiki became the first teacher in China authorized by Kaliji to conduct teacher trainings.
TriYoga students and supporters Arthur (right) and Angelo (far left) traveled from Beijing with a friend so they could spend an afternoon with Kaliji. Arthur and Angelo were the the first to invite Kaliji to China in 2006 and 2007, after Angelo met Kaliji at the Singapore Yoga Conference in 2005. Arthur and Angelo were also the first to invite John and Stef to China, resulting in John and Stef’s first visit in 2008 and the beginning of the teacher training program in 2009. John and Stef have been traveling and ever since.
Kaliji with Angelo (right) and Jini Chen (left) on the final evening of Kaliji’s visit. While at dinner, Kaliji spoke about the significance of having Angelo and Jini, responsible for introducing Kaliji in China and Taiwan, sitting on either side of Kaliji. Jini was instrumental in inviting Kaliji to Taiwan in 2004 for the OKIDO Yoga autumn seminar, and again to Taiwan in 2005. Jini now has her own yoga school in Taiwan, and had come to Shenzhen to teach classes on yoga sutras without knowing about Kaliji’s visit. It was a wonderful Flow that she was able to attend all of Kaliji’s programs!
Kaliji’s Shenzhen trip featured numerous visits to local yoga studios where TriYoga is being taught. These were wonderful opportunities for students and teachers to spend time with Kaliji, asking questions and sharing their experiences with TriYoga.
Kaliji’s first visit was to the home of teacher XiXi (Fang Xing Xia). Xixi attended all of the Basics-Level 3 teacher training with John and Stef in 2009, and subsequently transformed her home into a TriYoga studio. Upon entering Xixi’s home, one is greeted by a wall-sized photograph of Kaliji, and the studio is decorated with photos of Kaliji and pages from the TriYoga calendar. The first question asked was about vegan diet, and Kaliji used this opportunity to again explain the benefits of a compassionate, loving plant-based diet.
Kaliji’s next visit was to the studio where teachers Deva and Shanti offer many TriYoga classes each week. Deva and Shanti have attended many trainings in Shenzhen with Eva-Maria and with John and Stef, and have been very active in introducing new students to TriYoga and spreading TriYoga to new studios. This year they will attend all of John and Stef’s teacher training at UYoga, demonstrating great teaching integrity and dedication to the flow. During Kaliji’s visit, those in attendance took turns expressing their gratitude for Kaliji and TriYoga and the impact TriYoga has had on their lives.
Kaliji visited UYoga for the first time on this trip, and was greeted by many of the teachers trained at UYoga over the past two years. Kaliji’s visit included chanting with tabla accompaniment by Prasann and a media interview.
Kaliji’s final studio visit was to a local studio where TriYoga is growing. TriYoga teachers gave a beautiful demonstration of the flow for Kaliji, and were then treated with Kaliji’s own demonstration and talk on the art and science of TriYoga flow.
Kaliji with TriYoga teacher and organizer Jojo. During Kaliji’s visit, Jojo was in the Chinese city of Xi’an, teaching TriYoga at a large yoga conference. Jojo rushed back to Shenzhen in time to visit with Kaliji during the last hours of the trip. Jojo has hosted TriYoga trainings in her studio with Eva-Maria for the past two years, and will begin trainings again this year in November.
A group of five TriYoga teachers and students from Taiwan traveled to Shenzhen for Kaliji’s programs. Pictured here are Julia (left), Judy (next to Kaliji) and Peter. Julia (Lai Chiu Yu) was the secretary of OKIDO Yoga during Kaliji’s visits to Taiwan, and brought John and Stef to Taiwan in 2009 for the OKIDO Autumn Seminar. Level 3 teacher Judy (Lin Jing Lan) hosts ongoing teacher training in Taiwan with John and Stephanie.
Chinese TriYogis spent every moment possible with Kaliji, even following Kaliji to the edge of the Chinese border to wish Kaliji a final farewell!
The busy schedule still allowed time for sightseeing and walks.