Jun q’ilixik iwach! Hola a todos! Hello Everyone!
My name is Nathanael and I am a karma yogi volunteer here at the Mystical Yoga Farm. I committed to a six-month stay. It’s the perfect place for an extended quarantine! I am working on the website, teaching yoga, and gardening. My goal with this blog is to share the magic of this place with you. I hope you will get a better sense of why you are being called to visit here.
One of the unique aspects of this place is its proximity to the local Mayan community. I hear the local Mayan Tz’utujil language daily. Everyone can speak in Spanish to communicate in a common tongue, but amongst themselves, the Mayan staff speak their own language.
Since I arrived two weeks ago, I started picking up a few words of Tz’utujil here and there. I wanted to gain a better grasp of the language, so I had my first formal lesson with Silvio, one of the members of the staff. We reviewed the Tz’utujil alphabet and how to make glottal sounds at the back of the throat with the tonsils. In addition, we learned various greetings and useful phrases. For example, good morning is xisqera (shisqera, “sh-eese-kaera”).
Last week we had a celebration to commemorate the work the Tz’utujil staff have done to repair the roof of the water shala. It was fascinating to see the cross-cultural elements we each brought to the party. For example, we ate traditional corn tamales alongside soda and sheet cake. Several people, myself included, were dressed in collared shirts and hand-woven Mayan pants. And we spoke in three different languages, occasionally translating for one another. Jahendo, Miguel and Pablo spoke about the gratitude we have for one another in cooperating to make the farm function, especially in these uncertain times. We are all looking forward to when things “go back to normal” and we can have yoga courses and more guests once again.
The staff is currently on half-time employment due to coronavirus restrictions having largely put farm business on hold. The Mystical Yoga Farm has adapted to the situation and has earned enough income through selling pre-paid visitation packages to keep the native workers employed. There are many families depending on the income in their nearby town of Chacayá. If you are interested in future accommodations at the Mystical Yoga Farm, you can find out more information on our Be Our Guest page.