Senta Scarborough an award-winning journalist, emmy-nominated producer and incredible Kundalini Yoga teacher. She is the founder and creater of Every Body Elevated: an inclusive space to explore the diverse capabilities of all 10 bodies, love our authentic selve and activate our sovereign beings. This week, we sat down to with her to discover more of her journey to and through the art and practice of Kundalini Yoga.
- What is your mission with Every Body Elevated?
Every Body Elevated is meant to provide a fun, welcoming space for all shapes, sizes, capabilities, genders, sexual identities and humans on diverse spiritual journeys. It’s an uplifting, safe place for everyone to feel comfortable exploring and discovering their authentic, powerful, creative selves while connecting with other similarly-motivated beings.
- How did you create the concept of Every Body Elevated?
I don’t look like the perfect yoga teacher—I’m overweight and over 50 and I can’t do all the positions. I’m one of those people who would always compare myself, my life, my accomplishments or failings with everyone and everything else.
When I came to yoga class at first, I loved experiencing something I had been searching for my whole life. Then it became more of a habit. I started to lose all that wonderland newness and looked around with “regular eyes.” I still loved it. I still felt elevated and uplifted and an amazing transformation. But, sometimes, when holding the position got hard or I was waiting for class to start, I’d look around. It was Hollywood so, of course, I would see many beautiful people—in better shape, looking happier, skinnier, seemed to be floating through life. Did they have jobs?
Celebrities came to class—celebrities I thought were super cool growing up. There was a group of “it girls” who were super dedicated that sat right in front. Sometimes they would talk about their trips to India or doing something that seemed nearly impossible for me. Still, I kept showing up, putting my butt in the seat, or on my yoga mat, just like everyone else. But it got to me a little. I felt not good enough or daunted by what I couldn’t do. Even though I knew I was doing something good for myself—that made me feel better and think differently and helped me work through emotional stuff—I still felt less than.
One of the many great things about yoga for me is that we keep our eyes closed most of the time, keeping me from comparing myself to others. But sometimes I open my eyes for a minute and look around. One of these times changed everything for me. I really saw. I saw that sometimes the people who could do positions I couldn’t—and still can’t—were struggling. Sometimes they would give up on the positions I was strong in. Some things were hard for them and easy for me and vice versa.
I remember Tej making comments about bringing things down to their simplest element. The Rollings Stones are just a band. We are all humans just doing our thing. What seems so easy or cool or better isn’t always that way.
I finally realized I am on my own journey. By showing up daily I improved my endurance and got stronger. My mind stopped being negative by default. I also realized our bodies are amazing vehicles and temples capable of things I didn’t think possible and they change…some days things are easier or harder than other days. It’s okay. I learned and felt and understood what it mean to just do my best. To have balance. To push myself when I really could and not when I had real pain or it wasn’t best for me. I began to listen to myself, my intuition, about my body and trusted it.
Every Body Elevated is a simple concept born of my own experience to try every day with the body I have. It changes; I change; the world changes, but the practice and experience grows and evolves and elevates me and I hope to share that with everyone who just needs a place to keep becoming, evolving, and being authentic in every way possible.
- How did you discover Kundalini Yoga?
It all started with a near-fatal car crash in 2001. My broken right leg needed a titanium rod inserted. After surgery, I was placed in a long term facility for a few weeks to learn to use crutches and build upper body strength. At one point, the nurse thought I would have to learn to give myself shots at home. I always loathed getting shots and was scared at the thought of having to do this. She said she had a trick to help me. Long Deep Breathing. She told me to breathe deeply in as I stuck the needle and exhale as I released it. It worked. I wasn’t as nervous and it didn’t hurt as much. She told me that it was part of yoga and if she had more time she would teach me but this would help and I could always use it to help with pain or anything unpleasant.
When I began walking again, a friend suggested I attend Hatha yoga to regain my balance and it worked. I learned I could begin to trust myself and my body again. A few years later, I moved to Los Angeles and wanted to find another yoga class. I went to the San Marino YMCA and the woman at the front desk said they had several kinds of yoga, Hatha, Vinyasa, and she said there was another one, a weird one, something to do with strange breathing—Kundalini. She laughed and shook her head and I knew immediately that was the one I wanted.
I went to Jim’s class and finally understood what it meant that the body was a temple and a complete system of awareness and healing. I loved the diversity of the exercises—that I had no idea what was coming next or for how long—but I knew I loved how it made me feel in that moment and later. So I kept going and I kept experiencing the benefits that changed my life and I wanted to share that with others. Everyone should get a chance to learn the operating manual for their bodies and find the transformative experience for themselves.
- What are some of the ways you use Kundalini Yoga for success in everyday life?
It’s how I get through the day. It keeps me balanced and energized. Most importantly, it keeps my negativity from creeping back in and my positivity full-on. It increases my energy and my creativity. I feel good in my body and the yoga challenges me just enough.
I am now living in an isolated mountain town and the yoga community keeps me connected with others, myself and the infinite. It’s my daily teacher, reminding to keep me on my spiritual track
- What is your go-to meditation or Kryia?
Meditation to Conquer Self Animosity.
- What is one thing you hope someone in your class experiences?