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Convergence Retreat

with Michael and Chrissie

Upcoming Events

    Michael and Chrissie are so looking forward to welcoming you to The Inner Guidance Retreat Centre - a beautiful, quiet space on the outskirts of the beautiful town of Lavenham where we will wrap ourselves in days and nights filled with Yoga, Pranayama, Meditation, Mantras, Kirtan and of course, sumptuous food, laughter and most importantly an opportunity to be YOU. Their paths first crossed in 2003 when fate took them both to the island of Skyros on a holistic retreat. Since then as well as being close friends, they have organised and ran retreats together and are so excited to be sharing their mutual love of yoga with you all. Retreats are a special time to let go and open up to all the possibilities that exist within ourselves. So, come and join us on this magical journey and see what unfolds…

    Full Details

    Michael J Stewart (Shanta Vira Yoga)


    Michael J. Stewart is a teacher, nomad and creator of Shanta Vira Yoga. Born in

    Karachi to an Assamese mother and a Scottish-Irish father, he developed an early interest

    in a broad sense of humanity. His first initiation in to spirituality and esoteric practices

    came from his maternal grandmother, a healer who was deeply connected to her Hindu

    roots and as much, a counter-cultural rebel. Being raised by his athletic and disciplinarian

    father, he spent his youth building a relationship with the physical body through boxing,

    competitive powerlifting and bodybuilding. Michael has since lived, studied and travelled in over 30 countries.


    While in theatre school in Chicago, he was introduced to Yoga as a way of calming the

    mind and exploring subtle aspects of expression. Once this deep, familiar acquaintance

    was made, his life took a turn away from theatre and fully toward his life as a yogi,

    seeking and deeply delving in to all aspects of spiritual life.

    In New York City, Michael went first to Jivamukti Yoga and Astanga Yoga for regular

    classes and a crucial stay at the Sivananda Ashram in the Bahamas where inspiration

    fortified his understandings. He went further afield to study the precision of Iyengar Yoga

    in India with Sharat Arora and Rajiv Chenchani.

    His religious studies during all of these explorations brought him as well to Buddhism,

    Christianity and Sufism. He developed a daily practice of Mindfulness and Mantra and

    lived for several years in intentional communities where humans focused on building

    healthy relationships – interpersonally and interiorly.

    Decades later, Michael met Dharma Mittra and through his presentation of Classical

    Yoga spurred a next level of inquiry in to the human condition, the Self and the

    possibilities that Yoga holds. At the peak of this questioning, Michael became aware of a

    lineage of South Indian Tantra called Rajanaka. These teachings of Saivism and Saktism,

    as offered by Dr. Douglas Brooks, responded clearly to his own soul’s desire.

    His journey continues on this path today. Michael is currently in a 5 year study of Shri

    Vidya with Ma Parvathi Nath.


    Alongside his profound constancy with a spiritual life of Yoga, Michael has been

    involved in civil disobedience protests and activism. He is touched when unheard voices

    of society find a platform to he heard. He is empowered when through unification,

    impossibilities become possible. He is blown away that even with the chance of loss,

    humans place themselves at risk in order to create change, growth and betterment.

    This life is from where Shanta Vira Yoga took root and grows.

    Michael J. Stewart offers workshops, trainings and retreats around the world for guiding

    people to make wellness, art and community.


    Michael will be offering


    For more information please visit his website here



    Chrissie Bond (Yoga Therapist)


    Chrissie believes that she was a Yogini before she knew about Yoga! As a child she was a competitive gymnast and swimmer and when she later moved to Cambridge, she took up dance as a way of continuing to ‘move her body’ Even then she realised how dance and movement not only kept her physically healthy but emotionally and mentally healthy.


    Chrissie was working as a social worker, specialising in mental health, when she met Michael on a Yoga Retreat…..and so her ‘real’ yoga journey truly began. In a moment of revelation, she realised that her whole life journey had led her to this point in time – gymnastics, swimming, dancing, social work, even here personal somewhat difficult life were all part of the jigsaw.  Michael became her teacher and mentor and guided her along the path to being a yoga teacher where all her previous journey underpinned and informed her teachings.


    Chrissie has also studied with British School of Yoga, with the mystic, Sadhguru, Shiva Rae, Asana Andiappan in Chennai (Yoga Therapy), and at the Buddhist Centre in Cambridge (meditation). Her travels and studies in India and Nepal and continued learning make her the teacher she is today. Just like Michael, Chrissie believes in the benefits of chanting as a way of calming the mind, taking part in satsangs with Krishna Das, Deva Premal, Miten and Manose and of course, Michael.


    Chrissie  offers Hatha Yoga, Meditation, Yoga Therapy and Yoga Workshops in villages around Newmarket in Suffolk, bringing yoga to the communities with group and private practices.  She believes that we are never too young or old to practice yoga and indeed, some of her students are under three and over eighty years old!

    Her Meditation practices offer ways of finding ways to reduce stress and manage the chatter of the mind.  She hopes that through practicing meditation we will find ways to live more joyful and content lives.


    Chrissie will be offering Morning Meditation, pastoral care and one to one Yoga Therapy (a holistic approach of supporting those with physical and/or mental health conditions)as part of the weekend retreat. Get in touch with Chrissie to find out more and to find out more and/or to arrange a time.


    For further information and to book your place please contact Chrissie on lilypondyoga@live.co.uk
    or click here to visit her website