The Laugh Bug is back in action after two months busy with many laughter events (Training new Certified Laughter Yoga Leaders in downtown Vancouver, leading Laughter Yoga with the federal government of Canada and World Laughter Day). Some grounding was in order and some of the greatest ‘get grounded’ energy I’ve found exists near Solomon who I got to hang out with and interview. Solomon is one of those old laughter souls, though he’s fairly new to Laughter Club, the components, people and laughter, are among his favorite things. Read on!
LB: How did you hear about Laughter Yoga?
S: I think I saw some film. I really liked a lot of “Fake it ’till you make it!” It’s so silly and yet at some level it makes sense.
LB: When did you go to your first Laughter Club?
S: In November of last year (2011), I went to the one in North Vancouver, it was interesting and I was lucky to see videos with Dr. Kataria, he’s such an original, hilarious. It’s unexpected to see a General Practitioner so with the holistic approach.
LB: What impact has doing Laughter Yoga had in your life?
S: I can tell you the profound impact Laughter Yoga has had on me, the results are phenomenal.
I went to Laughter Clubs, and it’s kind of like Tai Chi; when I go to the gym, I feel it in the muscles, from the outside. Laughter Yoga is like Tai Chi, I feel stronger from inside. I gotta tell you, the first couple of sessions were hard, it’s not easy, but I think showing up and giving it your all is important. Putting my judgments aside and just doing it – and I was richly rewarded.
LB: An example of Laughter Yoga in daily life?
S: I’ll give you an example: This morning, I hear the phone ring, I pick it up and it’s dead. It’s 9 AM and I’m an hour late. So I’m half asleep and boiling water spills everywhere while I’m making coffee, and then the dishcloth catches on fire from the stovetop burner, and instead of saying “$*&@!”…I laughed! Threw my head back and laughed. To have that happen in the morning when I’m grumpy and I need my coffee, and to be having a response like laughing it off is new to me, and it’s a direct result of Laughter Yoga. And the effect lingers for days. So that’s the impact of Laughter Yoga on my daily life.
LB: So it affects your ability to handle stress and to have a different perspective?
S: Totally. It’s a totally different perspective on life.
LB: Do you find most people think Laughter Yoga is silly?
S: Yes, there’s a resistance that is quite evident. Not everyone I asked came to Laughter Club!
LB: Do you think it would help people get past their judgments if they know about the medical science that’s gone into this?
S: I think we’re at an intersection of something very interesting because the way Laughter Yoga has engulfed us, all over the world, with its charm and we experience how it’s related to present-day reality, psychology, medicine; these intersections are phenomenal, and we don’t know as yet where it will go, so it’s very exciting
LB: So it’s evolving?
S: I would like to see some kind of retreat where there’s more of a philosophical discussion around the culture of Laughter Yoga, all these questions. Laughter Yoga is so profound it’s time to have to a conversation about it.