tumbling down the path to enlightenment


I’m in the middle of an intensive search for a paying job, selling my house, taking a programming course, I just took a volunteer job for an organization that, among many other things, needs to raise enough money to run a STEM summer camp in Mali this summer (iNERDE.org), and just started a relationship, actually my first relationship since my divorce 5 years ago. So I decided, of course, to spend the next month in yoga teacher training, and I decided to do it last week and have been frantically, finding, and then reading yoga books and not learning my asanas between job interviews, writing code, talking to realtors, strategizing on how to ignite STEM education in Africa, and relearning to relate to a person of the opposite sex.

Over the prior three years I worked for a large semiconductor company, inventing a new paradigm for parallel computing, an exciting project for a computer scientist at the peak of his career but I was working in an environment that was completely hostile to my creative energies, even while consuming the product of them, in a physical and psychological environment that was making me sick. I was practicing my yoga and it kept me going despite the adversity, but I felt my resistance crumbling a bit more every day. I was determined to stick it out until my creation was unveiled to the public and I did, and the unveiling was an extraordinary success. And then I couldn’t take it anymore. Without knowing what I would do next, I walked out.

path to enlightenment

The next day I signed up for a 60 day challenge at my Bikram yoga studio and completed 76 classes in 60 days. I continued through another 60 day challenge. Then I got on a plane to come to Atlanta for yoga teacher training.

I still don’t know what I am doing next, but I think whatever it is, I seem to be already doing it. Yoga is the path, not necessarily making a career as a yoga teacher, but living yoga in all its forms, of which mentoring, teaching, and inspiring others on their own yoga path is a central part.

I don’t know what to expect in teacher training; even though I have practiced yoga for many years I have throughout thought of myself as a techie, a “man of science” and took the benefits of yoga without bothering a lot about its underlying philosophy. The benefits have been immeasurable, yoga has saved my life, more than once. Will going deep change my fundamental outlook? I don’t know, but I hope so, because the place I am coming from became intolerable to me. I don’t know what to expect from myself, but I am interested to see. I think you might be interested too, so I am going to share in the coming weeks some of my experience in yoga teacher training. We’ll see what happens next.

Michael Leventhal


Michael has been practicing hot yoga for over ten years, coming to it initially to heal a body broken from endurance and extreme sports. While yoga continues to do that he has perhaps benefitted even more from its power to enhance focus, concentration, creativity, and calm, attributing two of his major inventions in the field of computing science to yoga energy. After 30 years of chasing fame and fortune in tech, Michael has recently reshaped his life goals toward expressing his gratitude for his spectacular life through Service, expanding his practice from hatha yoga to yoga in all its expressions.