About the name
It was a happy accident. A cow put on a mumu…
About cows: Cows are sacred in India and the reverence for the animal comes out of the a practice of non-violence (which we study in the yogic tradition as ahimsa). Gandhi was an advocate for cow veneration as a form of non-violence towards all beings.
About mumus: the mumu is a loosely-fitting, flowing dress that is comfortable, shapeless and can be worn by bodies of any size. It represents the idea that any body can do yoga in any kind of clothing and that yoga is for ordinary people with regular, beautifully imperfect bodies.
Also, Mo is Om backwards and Om is the sound for the infinite, a vibrational resonance of the universe expanding, a word for the Wordless—too big to define.
But none of those are the reasons for the name.
MumuMo is simply a word I really like to say. It’s fun. It’s playful. It has no original connotation. It doesn’t belong to a tradition, a moment in time, a group of people, or an ideology. It’s not “borrowed.” It’s not “full of meaning.” When I said it to my best friend, she came up with the incredible logo of the cow in the mumu. I love that cow. She is serene and peaceful and beautiful and yet still a cow.
She is to me all that I love about what teaching yoga can be: an offering to our ordinary selves, earthy and embodied, comfortable and attainable, present and playful, silly and deep.
I began teaching about twenty years ago. It was pretty much all I wanted to do. At one point I taught about 18 classes a week. I actually got tired of stretching my hamstrings. I did have a brief period of being disgusted at the thought of more yoga because I did so much. That was a great problem to have.
I graduated from Concord Academy, Smith College, Yale Divinity School, The New Seminary and The Kripalu School of Yoga. I have worked as an ordained minister most of my adult life, primarily independently in interfaith settings, but also in the Christian church. I still feel like a yoga class can be the perfect form of worship (and you never have to say God).
I have four children, my spiritual teachers, who really call me to a higher plane. Mothering is probably harder than anything else I do consistently.
Many of my close friends call me Sammie. My beloved sister in faith gave me my spiritual name, Premanjali. I think of her, Prema, as the part of my self always operating from the higher sense of things. She’s the yoga teacher, the minister, the all-loving mother, totally unconditionally accepting of herself and others. I love her. She’s great. It’s cool to hang out with her whenever she shows up 😉 When she’s not around, I deal with all my totally human feelings of judgment and striving and passion and desire.
I’ve practiced yoga for more than 33 years and it’s a homeland to me.
It’s a language I speak. It really is home for my spirit. I feel alive when I practice; I feel myself when I teach. My two main teachers gave me yoga and it changed my life.
I have many deep friendships and a sustaining community of friends. My students are beloved to me. The connection between a student and a teacher when it is one of the heart has no comparison. Being able to love people through yoga is an incredible privilege. It’s also just a super good time, doing some poses, taking some deep breaths, alive and moving and free.
Come for a class or a workshop.
I travel to studios, to companies, and for private group events. Hey, I can even marry you while teaching you yoga. And how many people can say that?