This site is dedicated to the teaching and research of yoga pioneers Gregor Maehle and Monica Gauci. After over 30 years of yoga practice in the city we decided to take the injunction of many yoga scriptures, ‘let the yogi move to a remote place surrounded by beautiful nature and let him practice there in solitude’, literally and we now live on a mountain top surrounded by enchanting ancient rain forest overlooking the Pacific ocean.
Against this dramatic backdrop we spend many hours per day practicing the various yogic limbs, with more hours devoted to research, study and writing. On this site you will find our books with audio and video downloads to come. Once per year we offer our 200 and 300 hour Immersions in Bali and on our land on the Australian east coast. We also offer part-time teacher trainings in Perth and Melbourne and retreats and workshops in various places across the world. You can use our blog page to ask all questions pertaining to yoga. Also please browse through our blog archive to find a lot of interesting information on yoga and answers to many previous questions.
Chintamani means ‘transcendental jewel of consciousness’. It is the Indian name for the philosopher’s stone, which transforms our base nature by activating our highest potential. It provides the elixir of life symbolizing divine perfection, ecstasy, truth, beauty, love and spiritual freedom. While many alchemists pursued a futile search to look for the ‘stone’, ‘treasures’ and ‘immortality’ outside in the world, the true identity of the stone can easily be deducted from its Sanskrit name.
Directly translated chintamani means ‘thought jewel’, indicating that the jewel is nothing but the mind. The mind will deliver to you what you think into it. If your mind is what Patanjali, the ancient author of the Yoga Sutra, calls sattvic, then your life will be truthful and expressing wisdom. Or as the Bhagavad Gita says, Yo yac chraddhah sa eva sah, “that what a man thinks with great conviction that verily he becomes (Gita 17.3)”.
About Gregor and Monica
Gregor Maehle began his practice of Raja Yoga in 1978 and added Hatha Yoga a few years later. In the mid-1980s he commenced annual travels to India, where he studied with various yogic and tantric masters, traditional Indian sadhus and ascetics. After practising with BKS Iyengar he spent fourteen months in Mysore, and in 1997 was authorised to teach Ashtanga Yoga by K. Pattabhi Jois*. Since then he has branched out into researching the anatomical alignment of postures and the higher limbs of yoga. He gained his anatomical knowledge through a Health Practitioner degree and has also studied history, philosophy and comparative religion.
In India Gregor also received eight months of mostly one-on-one instruction in scripture and the higher limbs of Yoga through B.N.S. Iyengar, a student of T. Krishnamacharya, and he studied Sanskrit under Professor Narayanachar and Dr Chandrasekhar. He lived for several years as a recluse, studying Sanskrit and yogic scripture and practising yogic techniques. Together with his wife, Monica, in 1996 they founded 8 Limbs in Perth, Australia, which they co-directed for 21 years. They now live in a rain forest in the hinterland of Byron Bay where they conduct occasional Teacher Training Immersions.
Gregor’s internationally acclaimed textbook series consisting of Ashtanga Yoga: Practice and Philosophy, Ashtanga Yoga: The Intermediate Series, Pranayama: The Breath of Yoga, Yoga Meditation: Through Mantra, Chakras and Kundalini to Spiritual Freedom and Samadhi The Great Freedom – have sold more than 75,000 copies worldwide and have been translated into seven foreign languages. Further volumes are in progress. He has been invited to many countries to teach and has contributed to and been interviewed by numerous yoga magazines.
Today he teaches an anatomically sophisticated interpretation of traditional vinyasa yoga, integrated into the practice of the higher limbs in the spirit of Patanjali and T. Krishnamacharya. His zany sense of humour, his manifold personal experiences, and his vast and deep knowledge of scripture, Indian philosophies and yogic techniques combine to make his teachings applicable, relevant and easily accessible to all his students. Apart from offering with Monica Teacher Trainings and Immersions in Melbourne, Perth, Tokyo, Byron Bay and Bali, Gregor also teaches retreats and workshops in various locations around the world.
Dr Monica Gauci
BSc., BChiro (hons), yoga therapist
Monica has studied and practiced Yoga since 1978. She is dedicated Yogi, a compulsive Educator, a registered Yoga Therapist and a rehabilitative Doctor of Chiropractic!
In 1996 Monica was authorized by K. Pattabhi Jois* to teach Ashtanga Yoga. She is registered at the highest level with both Yoga Alliance (ERYT 500) and Yoga Australia (Level 3 Membership).
Since the age of 24 years, Monica has studied many disciplines of the Healing Arts, including Reiki, Australian Bush Flower Essences, Applied Kinesiology, Lomi Lomi massage and emotional release techniques. In 2008 Monica graduated with 1st class honour as a Doctor of Chiropractic. Additionally, she received numerous awards for Academic Excellence.
Monica has published ‘Ashtanga Yoga Beginners Course Manual for Teachers‘ which is a step-by-step guide on how to teach Ashtanga Yoga safely and effectively to beginners. She is also a contributing author to Ashtanga Yoga, Practice and Philosophy and Ashtanga Yoga, The Intermediate Series in the areas of asana, anatomy, injury prevention and rehabilitation.
In 1996 Monica co-founded 8 Limbs Yoga in Perth, Australia, which they co-directed for 21 years. They now live in a rain forest in the hinterland of Byron Bay where they conduct occasional Immersions. Together offer yoga teacher trainings, retreats and workshops in many locations around the globe. Monica loves to write articles on helping people to heal themselves. She is available for workshops on a variety of topics as well as one-on-one Yoga Therapy consultations and private Yoga tuition.
Monica’s breadth of knowledge, her insight, her calm manner and playful personality make learning from her easy and enjoyable!
* In the wake of the MeToo movement information surfaced regarding KP Jois’ sexual assault and abuse. Please read Gregor’s statement here, Monica’s statement here, and Matthew Remski’s article about the same subject here.