At a time when women are publicly calling out abusers as never before and expressing their collective rage—as well as taking to the streets (again) for the second Women’s March and running for office in record numbers—Guru Jagat’s focus right now is also all about action. Of a specific kind.
“There’s been a lot of raising awareness. Right it now it feels like: I’m aware now. Now what? I think that’s what 2018 is all about,” says Jagat, the influential yogi (whose celeb following includes Kate Hudson, Alicia Keys, and Moon Juice founder Amanda Chantal Bacon) making once-underground Kundalini teachings—a blend of movement, breathwork, and mantras—accessible to a young, wellness-savvy audience.
“So much [on social media] is reactive, angry, and against. Though that’s understandable, that is not how we fix the society.”
“So much [on social media] is reactive, angry, and against. Though that’s understandable, that is not how we fix the society,” she says. “My perspective is that women have to come together with the intention to clear out our own personal hurts, trauma, anger, and fear, and I don’t actually think that’s something you do with men. I think you do it in women’s community, and that’s why I’ve devoted my life to this kind of women’s training.”
Kundalini’s teachings place a particular focus on empowering women’s bodies. And to spread its message further, this modern yogi has gone multimedia—with RA MA TV and Jagat’s podcast, Reality Riffing—and she’s also expanding her RA MA Institute beyond its Venice, CA beginnings to Mallorca, Spain, and most recently New York City’s Lower East Side.
Jagat—who effortlessly conveys a traditional sensibility and seriousness of purpose (signified by Kundalini’s traditional all-white garb, with a turban) while also rattling off plugged-in references to everything from the Golden Globes to nootropics and HIIT workouts—has her eyes fixed on what’s happening on a global scale. “Women want a how, not just a what. Like: What can I do about it? What can I do about my anger? What can I do if I’ve been abused or harassed? Okay, #metoo. But what can I actually do about that and not just be in victim consciousness?”
Keep reading for 3 places to start turning anger into action, according to Jagat.
1. Start telling yourself a new message
Or better yet, get yourself a new mantra. “One of the ways we can neurohack our brain is we use a new sound current,” Jagat says. “If you want to be a part of a new movement, you have to have a new message for yourself. And that’s where mantra comes in.”
If you’ve ever practiced Kundalini yoga, you know that mantras (AKA the words you chant or speak during daily practices) are considered extremely powerful. Through her Aquarian Women’s Leadership Society, Jagat has been spreading one mantra in particular: Eka Mai, recorded by White Sun, which she says is meant to “deconstruct some of these pillars of patriarchal conditioning in us. The way we’re competitive with each other, the scarcity mindset, all of that.” (And it even has a hashtag: #youchantekamaimetoo.)
2. Become aware of the ways that you are being self-destructive
“We need to look at the most subtle to the most extreme self-abuses, because how can we have children who aren’t going to hate themselves or become addicts or become the tyrants we see in leadership all around the world if we don’t like ourselves?” Jagat says. That’s right: Self-care is essential, not an indulgence. “Try to take the self out of self-care, and what do you have? You have care. More care for yourself and also care for your environment. Having care is something that makes you such a different type of person,” she says.
3. Seek out perspectives that are different than your own
“I do feel like there’s something about really trying to diversify what you’re consuming and diversifying what you’re relating to. Diversifying the kinds of events or places you go. It’s so rich,” she says. Even in your media diet, Jagat says getting out of your own (Facebook-enabled) echo chamber can be spiritually nourishing as well. “People will say, oh, well that’s Fox News. Or, oh, it’s that other one, or this one. But every outlet has some shred of a truth that could give you a perspective that might change the way that you see things. If you really want to become a better woman, you need to diversify your perspectives.”
Want to hear more from Guru Jagat? Same. That’s why she’s a newly minted member of our Well+Good Council, sharing her insights directly with you soon. What should she write about? Send your questions and suggestions to [email protected].