Interview with Nisarga, co-founder of the Europen Institute of Body Oriented Healing Arts in Poland
How did you become a bodyworker?
My adventure with massage and bodywork began in 2002 when I met a Lomi Lomi masseur. I signed up for ten sessions with him – it was incredibly transforming for both my body and spirit. This was my first massage experience. At the time I practiced yoga, but this was dry and mechanical. Lomi opened me to sensing myself, to feel my emotions and my body. I was in! My masseur quickly became my teacher and introduced me to the secrets of the loving touch, the touch full of respect for the other human being, full of awareness and mindfulness. However, I was unable to start my own practice then…
What prevented you?
At that time I was graduating from Warsaw Polytechnics, Department of Production Engineering and later worked for a large international cosmetic corporation, first in Poland, then in England. So massage foremost was a therapy for me. I really needed loving touch – and I received a lot of the Lomi touch. In 2008, when I decided to go to India, I terminated my contract and left my job. Massage became the passion of my life. I could spend all my time and financial resources with learning. I met great teachers in India, Holland, Germany and in Poland. The years between 2008 and 2011 were fully dedicated to learning, working on myself, while going through various types of therapies and self-development workshops, and experiencing how to go deeper and deeper into myself.
I remember a moment after several months in India; I was meditating in the Himalayas and asked my higher self – what is my mission, goal and passion in my life? The reply was clear: bodywork, and working with people with the help of massage. From then on this insight always showed me the light in the tunnel. Despite doubts, lack of approval from society and acquaintances, I have always followed this light. It gave me strength to survive and follow through what my true calling is.
What made you go to India? And why India?
My first Lomi teacher inspired me; he showed me the photos he took in India. Suddenly I felt a deep interest in this country; India would be the place where I could develop in a spiritual way and go deeper into myself. Since I had questions like: what am I doing here? why am I here? what is my way? and what do I want to do in future? this was the country I chose to go to. India was a huge leap for me.
What changes did you experience?
What appeared in my life was peace and body awareness; I learned how to relax and began to feel abundance. I had times of incredible happiness. For me it was wonderful to sit in the forest and feel the bliss of simply being. I had a sense of freedom, independence, faith in myself, and a sense that I create my own life. The courage to follow my heart’s voice quickly sprouted within me.
What about your relationships? Often such life ‘purges’ also touch those who are around us.
Many of my friends have either turned away from me or I ceased being interested in keeping in touch with them. Following my own path and inner truth did not meet with much acceptance from society. I was accused of being sectarian, that I was being manipulated and influenced by others. Even my close family did not accept my choices. My decision to go to India, leave the corporation, and entering the path of massage and self-development was looked at sideways, and commented on rather negatively.
What gave you the strength to keep going?
It was meditation. In India I learned many techniques, from Vipassana to Osho’s active meditations. Thanks to them I learned to observe myself and see that what bothers me has nothing to do with being ‘here and now’, that these are the thoughts of the anxious ego and the programmes related to past or future.
When I arrived in India, I met an incredible woman and we married after two years. We have been together for six years now and she was of great support. We travel together, we often learn together; and she is there in times of crisis. My other resources have also been travels to countries close to the sea and sun.
How did you support yourself during these times?
During the four years I worked in the corporate world I saved enough money to travel and pay for all my courses. So I am very grateful that I could work there even if I couldn’t find satisfaction and joy of life there. Besides, in Asia, you don’t really need a lot of money to get by.… A lot of people say they would like to live like me, but they think that they don’t have the appropriate means. But I see that this is often only a matter of choice such as having – or not having – a house, a car, a new TV set or a trip somewhere. I chose the second option. If you really want you can live like that. All it takes is to make a decision; it is a matter of priorities.
Did you have any doubts before you left your old way of life?
Sure I did. The whole process lasted about two years. Unconsciously I already knew that the job I was doing was not for me, but I needed time… I struggled with my thoughts. Although I didn’t have a family at that time, no financial obligations and a hefty sum on my bank account, I was afraid! There was a lot of fear in me, fear connected to the past. The entire social system is organised in such a way that it is not easy to give up. There is a certain dependency in it, symbiosis and safety. What I chose was living on the edge for several years, with no insurance, no stable job and remuneration. This is when I noticed that life requires responsibility for our actions. I couldn’t blame anybody for what was happening. I took decisions and I took responsibility for them. This is why life in a corporation, with a fixed job, is in a way freeing people from responsibility. It is not an easy decision, and it is not a decision for everybody. The lifestyle I chose requires a lot of self-sacrifice; it creates a lot of challenges on the way.
What was the trigger to move from the role of a student to that of a teacher?
It was the moment when people started asking me to teach them what I was doing. At first I was not interested in teaching. I thought that I didn’t have enough knowledge or skill. But finally I decided to give a workshop in India – this was nearly three years ago. There were five people and it lasted five days. I liked it and felt confident in the role of a teacher. I was just myself. I felt for the first time in my life that I was doing something which I was not afraid of! I knew that I was in the right spot when I became aware that I could openly tell my students whenever I didn’t know something; and this is how a number of courses started. I now teach myofascial massage, tantra; I run workshops with Osho’s meditative therapies, trainings for biodynamic breathing and trauma release.
What does bodywork mean to you?
One of the most important moments for me was the time when I learned to open up to sadness, to crying, joy, anger (generally expression of emotions) and also sensing my body. Through working with the body and bodywork I got in touch with my soul. There is a self-healing force that flows from the wisdom of the body. Bodywork is also about freeing the body from pain, from stress and tension. Very often during sessions I don’t just work with the body, but also with the emotions; I am in a dialogue with the person lying on the table. Together we go on a journey, often liberating ourselves from very old issues.
You are using the name Nisarga. What does it mean and why did you choose it?
Nisarga means Nature. After leaving for India in 2008 I felt I was beginning a new life and wanted to start it with taking on a new name. The name then came to me when I stayed at the Osho Nisarga Meditation Centre near Dharamsala in the Himalayas. Its name vibrated within me and when I found out that it also means ‘godly nature’ I felt that this had to be my new name. Nature has always been very close to me since my childhood in Kielce when I spent a lot of time in the forest. So this is my spiritual name, which is as important as the name I received from my parents, although now when I introduce myself I tend to use mostly Nisarga.
Are you happy?
Yes! Every day when I wake up, I feel deep gratitude.
Do you see yourself as an intuitive person?
Yes, for me this is an important part and it is quite developed. A lot of things that happen in my life happen thanks to intuition. Very often when I make a decision I ask my heart and my body what they think about it. I try to prevent the mind from overshadowing intuition too much.
Do you manage to observe less pleasant moments or do you still get into old mechanisms?
Of course I have periods of lack of harmony and moments of doubts, but this is a natural sequence of things. There is diversity in nature as well. I try not to avoid those difficult moments, because they teach me a lot. Especially when tiredness, fear, anger or conflicts come in. But the fun continues nevertheless! Self-development is not a path for a certain period of time but a commitment for life. Recently I’ve been discovering more and more my sense of fun – humour – and detachment. The first few years were marked mainly by seriousness and pressure that I have to do this and that – to be more advanced spiritually… now I try to take my inner child to ice-cream parlours more and more often – and have fun!
How has Osho influenced your life?
Osho showed me the way, giving me many signs and messages. I lived for many years in communities created by him and with sannyasins. I learned his meditations and meditative therapies. The first years with Osho were a deep cleansing and learning, a liberation from the rebellious times and of letting go of the past. Often listening to his discourses I touch spaces of nothingness where my body, mind and soul meet. Osho is the master of great wisdom, with a big heart and a sharp mind. Thanks to Osho’s meditations, I now start to get a taste of liberation, where innocence and wisdom meet. Although I never met Osho while he was in his body I feel a deep connection to his teachings.
Based on an interview by Agnieszka Kawula, taken on Sept 2014 during a Lomi Lomi Nui training in Nieznanice, Poland