In a pracaraka’s path, it is common to have many challenges, joys, and even shocks. It is that way in Tantra — when one light comes on, another needs to be changed.
The trajectory of Jayadevi (Germana Lucena), who comes from the capital of Paraíba, Brazil, has also been marked by restlessness, searches, tumbles and flights. Before graduating in physical therapy, while still in college she was not satisfied with what traditional health care offered: negotiation with insurance health plans, limitations on the number of sessions and focus on removing pain and inflammation. “I wanted to work with body awareness, to see the whole person, beyond the pain, the protagonist of one’s own self,” she tells us.
In the pursuit of a parallel training, Jayadevi found hatha yoga and also met Buddhism. But it was when she heard Baba nam kevalam for the first time, 15 years ago, that the angels breathed into her ears a sense of peace and bliss. “The kiirtan touched me deeply,” she recalls. At the time, she met Avadhutika Ananda Sutapa Acarya and Avadhutika Ananda Mitra Acarya, who invited her to participate in the program called Stress a seu favor (Stress in your favor, free translation) . “The scientific and integrative format of redirecting stress interested me a lot, connected with my professional search.”
Within a few months, Jayadevi joined the intensive course on Biopsychology, offered by Didi Ananda Mitra, in rural São Paulo state. “It was my first contact with Tantra and Baba. On my way home a week later, my friends were impressed how different I was,” she recalls. Some time later, she was already doing some courses and practicing dharmachakra in Paraíba. She then guided the anatomy content in the training of yoga instructors.
In parallel, she met Feldenkrais, a method of approaching experiential anatomy in a practical way, using body awareness. The method is known for its unusual strategies and gentle movements to improve posture, flexibility, coordination, and balance. In joining it with Tantra, Jayadevi says she has arrived “in the formula that united my professional work to the spiritual”.
Love it or leave it
She began to immerse herself in the philosophy of Ananda Marga, as a visitor to the Instituto Visão Futuro, when a new challenge was presented: to become a vegetarian. Living in the northeast, she grew in the midst of a strong tradition of eating seafood at home and on the beach. It was abrupt: either to become a vegetarian or not to be a facilitator of tantra yoga. “I did not see myself moving in another direction, so I spent 2 years saying: just for today, I will not eat meat.” And there goes 15 years.
But the challenges did not stop there. In a meeting with a Thai didi, passing through Brazil, Jayadevi opened again to her concerns. “My master is Jesus, so it is very strange to say that it is Baba,” she told the nun. “She did not want to hear it, as they say here in the Northeast. Instead, she taught me a meditation lesson, I meditated, I got involved, feeling a single energy, the Supreme Consciousness, and then I launched myself. The inner conflict was resolved,” she tells us.
To Jayadevi, this experience was a watershed moment and brought her stillness. She could even fly to other spiritual and therapeutic places, but she had found a solid ground, a landing place. “I was free to live other experiences; after all, the cosmic energy is one, but the main line is tantra and my relationship with Baba is the way.”
Autonomy of will
At one point in her journey, Jayadevi felt a need to expand her creative autonomy in her craft and align herself more and more with Yama and Niyama, principles of yoga in harmony with others and with herself. That was when she disconnected from the work she was developing in Visão Futuro. She ended up finding a new base and satsanga in the workshop she had been developing, at the invitation of Dada Vishuarupananada, the monk and university professor Peter Sage: the training in Yogatherapy, in Japaratinga, Alagoas (read the article about the yogatherapy course here). Along with other professionals, a collective work was created, a spiritual egregore that nourishes and gives feedback.
Jayadevi also created, in partnership with Susmita (Silvia Fuller), a spiritual sister and actress, the Meditar é possivel (Meditate is possible, free translation) an online program, which, through the lessons of the Feldenkrais method, prepares the aspirant’s body and attention for meditative practice. “Most people meditate less than they would like because the body bothers them and they feel pain. The lessons are a moving meditation, focusing on mantra, breathing, the ideation of cosmic love and the divine manifestation in everything. When it ends, the person is in a transformed mental state, and the body is organized for movement and pause,” she explains.
Today, her pracar, which has reached hundreds of people in Brazil, is the result of the use of her wisdom in an autonomous way. “When you fall, you immediately want to look for an external reference, a model, an organization.” But her great challenge was precisely to learn to no longer do her work in response to the demand of an organization. “It is my inner conviction to offer my service and to enable others to live an experience that transcends the ordinary through the body and health, having Tantra Yoga and the Ananda Marga philosophy as the mainstay.”