HOW TO LET THE SUNSHINE INTO YOUR LIFE
Who is Tao Porchon-Lynch, this very special lady?
Tao Porchon Lynch is 98 and the oldest yogi on earth, an epitome of positivity and conviction that anything you wish is possible if you believe in it, regardless of your age.
Millions across the globe have been inspired by Tao.
Her grace, the spark in her eyes and child-like smile are immediately captivating. Beyond her lean frame, the strength in her body, mind and spirit is second to none.
She’s a tiny person, but joy constantly emanates from her smile, and her grace and charisma are creating a presence that’s gigantic.
Her mantra is: “There is nothing you cannot do!” if we harness the power within.
In May 2012, Guinness World Records recognized Tao as the world’s oldest yoga instructor at age 93.
Over her professional life, Tao was also a World World II activist, model for designers such as Jean Dessès and Coco Chanel, actress, film producer and distributor, wine connoisseur and a co-founder of the American Wine Society, and … ballroom dancer! Her ballroom dancing partner is 26-year-old!
She started dancing competitively in her 80s and has received almost 600 first place awards. In 2015, she appeared on Season 10 of America’s Got Talent.
She marched with Mahatma Gandhi twice and helped people escape the Nazis as a French Resistance fighter during World War II. She also participated in demonstrations with General Charles de Gaulle and Martin Luther King.
Tao, who was raised in India, now begins every day in New York rising at 5am to teach the benefits of Yoga to students of all ages.
Deepak Chopra said, “One of the most acclaimed yoga teachers of our century, Tao Porchon-Lynch… is a mentor to me who embodies the spirit of yoga and is an example of Ageless Body Timeless Mind. Like yoga, she teaches us to let go and to have exquisite awareness in every moment.”
What is the secret to her boundless energy, vitality and a fearless spirit?
Tao’s wisdom resonates in my mind everyday as I wake-up; here are a few of her most precious lessons and words:
Her spiritual morning routine: “When I wake up in the morning, I know that it’s going to be the best day of my life. I never think about what I can’t do. Make sure positive thoughts are the first ones you think in the morning. And never procrastinate.” “Leave your yawns behind you and feel the tiny new breeze of life lighting up inside of you.”
On age: “I never thought anything about age. I believed sincerely and still do, that there’s nothing I cannot do. I believe that all the power in the universe is right inside me.” “In my head I’m still in my 20’s, and I have no intention over ever growing up.”
On her active life as her secret for her energy and happiness: “I credit my active life, enjoying little luxuries I love, as well as my mindset, for my energy and happiness. What you put in your mind materializes, and I don’t put age and decay in my mind. I always look for the good and my next adventure.”
On positivity: “I never say goodbye, I say, “au-revoir.” Goodbye is so final. Au-revoir means I will see you again.”
On smiling: “Wake up with a smile on your face.”
On women being able to do the same as men: “When I was eight, I saw a group of boys performing crazy postures on a beach in India. My aunt told me that being a girl, yoga was not for me. But, I wanted to do it and I said, “If boys can do it, so can I.”
On Yoga: “Yoga is the joining of our mind, body and spirit. It is like nature, everything is always recycled and brought full circle. I find that I can heal myself if I do what nature does. It’s taken away stress and has helped me through crisis.” “I’m going to teach yoga until I can’t breathe anymore then I’ll just fly away to the next planet…”
On nature as an inspiration to live our life: “I watch the beauty of nature. It is telling me that even the trees get more beautiful as they age.” “One hundred year old trees still recycle themselves and come out with new flowers. Recycle yourself. Know that nature gives you the clues to living.” “Autumn is a reminder that while the leaves die and fall, there will always be Spring, a change to replenish and be born again. We all have the opportunity to replenish ourselves, to be reborn.”
On Meditation: Instead of sharing meditation techniques to help you sit in silence, Porchon-Lynch says things like, “My life is my meditation,” and talks about stopping to watch every time a flock of geese flies overhead.
On overcoming hurdles and challenges: “I’ve learned that if you face trials head on, you can find more strength. Don’t run away from what looks like a challenge. It may be an important part of your path. You have to be persistent and follow what you believe.”
On not judging others and seeing the best in everyone: “Don’t look down on anyone,” she says, relaying a story her uncle told of judging an illiterate farmer. “He may not know how to read, but he knows much more about the earth than you do. Know that you can learn from everyone.”
Don’t let your fears paralyze you: Tao believes you’re better off thinking about other aspects of your life. “Your mind gets in the way. It plagues you with all of the things that can go wrong,” she says. “I don’t let it get in my way.” “Don’t let it prevent you from wasting time experiencing the wonders of life.” One of the things that influenced that perspective, she says, was being around fighter pilots during World War II and seeing what it looks like when people “live totally without fear.”
On Breathing: “Breath is the power behind all things… I breathe in and know that good things will happen.”
Some great resources to discover more about the wonderful Tao:
Her Ted-X Talk
Dancing Light: The Spiritual Side of Being Through the Eyes of a Modern Yoga Master
This is Tao’s inspirational autobiography. It shows us what is possible and how we each can live to our Highest Potential by inhaling life and positivity, exhaling fears and dancing to our own rhythm. Through Tao’s reflections, we are given the gift of insights from almost a century of wisdom that can be applied to our modern day challenges. We learn her “secrets” to vitality and soulful stories of love and loss, hope and joy.
Her instagram @taoporchonlynch
A great interview of Tao
Photo credits: Tao Porchon-Lynch Website