Illumina is a community of real people doing deep shit. It’s not about who you are or what you wear, but that you want to dive in and explore. We are seekers held together by different modalities from different cultures, different strengths and unified with the desire to live from the heart and explore the authentic self.
Our doors are open to all and to practice here is to embrace diversity, embodiment, heart. Here you will feel safe and supported while exploring the deeper questions that life poses and yoga supports.
Our teachers are highly skilled, and relate to more than one modality of practice. They bring in their own experiences and truths to inform a unique class experience in the full spectrum of the yogic path.
Illumina teachers are able to ask students important questions during practice to encourage self reflection and personal empowerment. They are able to hold space powerfully and humbly with the ability to apply compassion and neutrality to all interactions.
Johanna’s yoga journey started when she was a wee tot, dancing to express the things that had no words, writing to find the images that evoke… These loves carried her through years of training as a classical ballet dancer, a degree in theatre with an emphasis on literature and a successful career as an actor, singer, dancer, choreographer in New York and on the road. Her dabbling into yoga turned serious when she discovered Sonic and the expressive joyful, forgiving energy of the space. She graduated from the 200-hour program under the guidance of Lauren Hanna and Jonathan Fields and soon realized that the teachings made sense of everything she ever believed in and brought all her separate pieces together. She’s never looked back…becoming teacher and manager of the 2nd Sonic Space in Westchester almost immediately…guiding that studio through it’s transition to Quest Yoga Arts, Joining The Sonic Training Faculty and ultimately stepping into her home base in NYC as Co-Director in 2009, serving Sonic and all its training programs in that capacity until 2014. In the midst of all that, she was blessed with a 500-hour certificate under the guidance of the incomparable Sri Dharma Mittra and has continued to be inspired through the lineage of Shiva Rea, the wisdom of the Tantra, the Pneuma System and ancient Shamanic wisdom. She is a Reiki Healer and has studied under Guru Dharam Khalsa for her certificate in Kundalini Yoga Therapy. She is married to the most magical man and fellow Yogi, Jim Bell. They reside with their daughter Lucia in Carmel, NY.
As a teacher and the director of Illumina East, my priority isn’t to get you excited about me, or our space, but for you to be excited about you. To help you experience the prosperity of your integrity, fearlessness, and truth so that you can serve your heart, your relationships, your authenticity, and your life’s mission, in the most elevated, empowered, and ‘bad-ass” way possible.
What you can expect from practicing with me: Expect the unexpected. You will learn how to direct your energy in the most potent way possible, and how to show up for yourself with sensitivity and strength. Expect to explore your blindspots, and gain deeper awareness of how your mind operates and how the body responds. How your humanness and struggle and heart are all an asset to your growth and success.
There is only one body type made for the practice of yoga; the human body. So if you happen to possess one of these, the only thing that's needed to allow yourself to opportunity to experience your own radiance is simply choosing to show up.
I decided to stop believing the myth that feeling terrible was my fate. I didn’t want to walk around with a smile on my face while my body was in pain. I wanted to OWN my body and my health. I wanted to take care of myself.
I believe that great health is a holistic matter: when your body, mind or emotions are out of alignment, it throws the whole system off. However, the more you come into balance, the greater your magnetic potential, purpose, meaning, and love in life.
This quote by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, holds a special resonance in my heart. Spirituality to me is a conversation about our experiences as human but also as limitless soul. To me it is not limited nor confined to rituals and practices, rather it is staying in true alignment with my Spirit and my true essence. It is expressing my ever eternal Ruh (Soul) through the precious presence of my human self. And so, as we shift powerfully (sometimes painfully) from old paradigm and knowing of the Earth to a New Paradigm, I sense it is time for us to simplify our journey, our practices and the rhythm of our lives.
Born and raised in the heart of India, New Delhi, my yogic practices started early in life. As a young child, I used to practice Hatha & Ashtang style of yogasan, during the earliest moments of dawn for years, under the guidance of a temple priest/ my Guruji. This discipline supported me to channelize the excited energies of a child, and helped me to become a life-long student of Yogic studies and mystics of life. It was also this foundation that grounded me and made me feel home during a phase of my life when I felt lost, this time as an adult. I was on a path of a linear corporate career which I survived for close to a decade and yet there was always a deep yearning for more. Even though I my years at the corporate world were very satisfying and successful, I felt limiting to fully express my intuitive abilities- a part of me that has always been the dominant one. And that yearning lead me to return to my mat and my meditative practices. It also took me on a journey to explore and discover the Yogic lineage of my great grandfather, who was a deeply loved and followed Yogic teacher & philosopher during the Pre-partitioned India. I rekindled my intuitive, spiritual and creative self. One step to another in this direction, led me to deepen my Yogic practices and to the doors of Sonic Yoga NYC, where under the guidance of Johanna and Lauren, I took an inner journey through the formal 200 Hour teacher training. During my 200 Hour YTT, I explored Vinyasa style that nourished and allowed my energies to flow. I have always sensed energies, vibrations and the working of subtle energy body, and with the intense, yet soulful vinyasa flows during my teacher training, supported me to deepen my understanding of the beautiful unison of our physical and energetic body. It opened new doors within me and creative juices started flowing through me. I started to experience life in reawakened ways. I became mindful to the patterns and rhythm of life and nature. Colors, symbols, shapes, signs, words, food, and every routine part of life became more alive, spirit (ual) alike and ritualistic. Later, I took another deeply enriching and transformational journey of 500 Hour YTT under the guidance of Johanna and the other enlightened teachers of Illumina Yoga, NY. When I am not on the mat, I knot & string handmade Jaap (Japa) Malas, infused with pure intentions and love and I support & guide my ever-expanding tribe to strengthen the lost connection with their very own beautiful Ruh (Soul) and deepen their Inner Journey.
Yoga supports me to give voice to my inspirations and intuitive downloads. For me, Yoga is a discipline and a ritual and so I sacredly practice Yoga on & off the mat. To me, it is a moving meditation that takes me into deeper realms to explore. I truly believe that Yoga creates a State of Limitless, a vast spaciousness that one can choose to fill with as many spectrums, as much joy and as much love one can hold and spread. Yoga and mindful rituals are tools to connect into an inner space with much awareness and tap into the limitless treasures and creative energies that’s deeply rooted in our Higher Consciousness. These sacred practices provide us a space to listen and pay attention to the inner communication around what triggers us and what excites us, what grounds us or irritates us and why, where we feel stuck or feel liberated, where are we navigating towards, what truth are we expressing or holding back?
Through my offerings, I bring together a soulful flow of postures (aasan), breath work (pranayam), rhythmic pulsating actions (kriyas), meditations (dhyan), mudras (hand gestures), sacred symbols & shapes, and seal each practice with a grounding relaxation (savasan/yog nidra). I encourage my students to experience a deep awareness of the postures, the flow & movements of the body and the powerful connection of the breath. While also staying in a receiving mode, for each student to connect to their own ‘In-Spirations’ and intuitive messages that might find a clear psychic way to flow through them and to them. I also like to create relaxation and centeredness within, while having enough space for everyone to challenge themselves, and evolve & grow- physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Being a certified Reiki Master and certified Kundalini Reiki Teacher helps me to hold the space for everyone’s energies and create a beautiful common energy in room.
I truly believe that we are here on Earth realm to celebrate our presence, our evolution, and also the deep connections we experience and share with other Beings. And so, the spiritual and mindful practices then serve as tools and our support system for us to enrich our journeys, while not taking ourselves too seriously. I am honored and excited to practice together through Illumina Online Portal and look forward to witness my journey to evolve as a teacher, a human, and a limitless soul.
With over a decade long career as an actress, dancer and choreographer, Tanya have come to find her voice as an artist and creative. Blurring the lines of performance she have found a deep reciprocal connection between artist and audience, teacher and student, being and environment. Finding the true collaborative approach to creating change within the self as well as our communities as a whole.
Throughout her life, she have always heard the inquisitive voice of her 7 year old self. From a young age she have been passionate about asking questions and digging deeper into her own human potential. Through this work with SoHumanity, she is channelling her inner child who sees being creative as an opportunity to shift social consciousness and change the world through seeing the joint humanity in us all. As a mother of a preschooler and a certified scuba diver, she is obviously gusty and up for a challenge!