About Karma Yoga and Service Opportunities
Yoga practice was created to realize the truth, the experience where the individual comes to identify their own spirit with that of the Supreme Universe, or God. Hence, the word "yoga" means to yoke, to unite, to connect, etc.
There have been four paths established to ultimately achieve this goal, whether in this lifetime or the next. They are Bhakti Yoga (the yoga of devotion), Jnana Yoga (the yoga of knowledge), Raja Yoga (the yoga of mind control), and Karma Yoga (the yoga of action / selfless service.) While Raja yoga includes the sub-path of Hatha yoga and is the one most practiced in the West as "yoga", there are other ways to take the journey to enlightenment that are just as powerful. In fact, they were not meant to be used as separate paths, but as ones used in conjunction with each other.
The path of a Karma yogi requires their actions to be offerings to God. They devote themselves to volunteering and helping others because they see God in all others, including animals, nature and the planet as a whole. The key principle is that their offerings come without thinking or acting for personal gain and that all of their work is truly selfless. When the results of actions are completely renounced, the capacity to love is expanded, and the ego will eventually be destroyed. With the ego gone, enlightenment can be realized.
Here at Shakti, we have our own Karma Yogis who volunteer their time to work and serve you the Shakti Community. At many yoga ashrams this is the norm, where visitors help out to keep everything running...from cooking in the kitchen, to gardening, to cleaning the studio. The Karma yogis at Shakti are Laurie, Milena and Jamie. If you would like to learn more about Karma yoga opportunities here at Shakti, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.