Sheel Seidler Talks Teaching Kundalini Yoga
Sheel Seidler was working as an attorney when she first discovered kundalini yoga. She was pregnant with her first child at the time and had some anxiety about transitioning to being a stay at home mom. Until that is, she had an experience in a meditation that guided her towards the awareness of how she should really be spending her time.
It didn't take long before her lawyer identity "just effortlessly fell away" and she soon found herself teaching the ancient yogic practice instead. After completing over 500 hours of kundalini yoga training and almost as much in hatha yoga, she now offers regular classes, both online and in person, with the intention of helping women to effortlessly enjoy their lives. We spoke about her classes as well as transitioning into her life as a teacher, part of which required redefining how she valued herself.
You had the fear of value presented itself to you in a strong way as your identity shifted. Was there a distinct moment that you felt like your perception of your value solidified or is it an ongoing process?
I think that I was trained and educated to believe that my identity was tied to my paycheck and reputation as an attorney. Outside of that, the other stuff that defined me, like my passion for yoga, were “frivolous.” Even though I had a daily meditation practice in place for years before I began kundalini, those beliefs persisted. It wasn’t until kundalini became my practice that my Soul Identity as a Yogi became undeniable and then yoga, breathwork, meditation and tending to Spirit became just what I do, and everything started emanating from there.
Tell me about your classes.
My classes in-person are usually an hour and fifteen minutes. Online I teach shorter and just as powerful experiences that clock in at 20-50 minutes. I work hard to establish a group energy and during that point in every kundalini experience that is called the “keep up exercise” where you have to do something a lot longer than you think you can, I try to build the energy and use music so the student has an experience of being carried across to the other side as though they were smoothly sailing through treacherous waters. By doing this, we all are planting seeds of faith, and will approach those same experiences in real life with grace and ease.
You market to women specifically, why is that?
I market to successful women. Women who have spent time figuring out how to create a successful career and figuring out who they are. I believe kundalini as it exists doesn’t have an easy access point for these women. There is a lot of dogma that permeates kundalini training that these women see through, and the classes are hard to find and not always offered at the most desirable times. I believe kundalini would absolutely help these women enjoy their lives. So I feel motivated to get it other to them, meeting them where they are.
Do most of the people who find you have a lot of past experience working with meditation and energy work?
Yes. Absolutely. My students have been around the block when it comes to healing, healers and all of the above. La Jolla has some of the most sophisticated yoga consumers on the planet.
What age should children start getting involved?
My children have been around my daily practice since birth. They know many of the mantras I chant and chant them during bath just as often as they would a song from music class. They both helped me at events held at my yoga studio. My five-year-old is on day 12 of a 40 breathwork commitment. I guess it’s never too young to start!
What would you suggest to people who are resistant to meditation or who have a challenging experience of doing the work because of the intensity of the stuff that comes up for them?
I would say start with the breathwork. It is different and you will notice you feel better immediately. Challenging things come up, but breathwork is powerful at allowing you to handle it and not be dragged down by the experience, versus just holding a pose and going deeper and deeper into a black hole. Also the other thing I like to say is if it is coming up, it is coming out. Wahe guru.
Some people experience physical changes when they start working with their kundalini energy, how do you suggest dealing with that?
In a good kundalini class, you should feel heat and cold energy. Pulses of energy. See colors when you close your eyes. Any or all of the above. Your true identity doesn’t rise up without a big show. Enjoy it!
Tell me about the gong bath and why that's a regular part of the practice.
The gong bath creates a golden chord, a vibrational relationship between the pituitary and pineal glands. When this happens the glandular system and nervous system abide and support Spirit Rising... and because this is happening usually at the end of a kriya or meditation, it seals in the experience and helps deliver the benefits into your body and your mind on a deeper level.
What inspires you?
I am inspired to share this secret technology of joy with stressed-out women so they can enjoy their incarnations!