About Matt Gluck
It’s not what you know,
It’s how you love that counts
is the remedy for
our Global Soul.
As life is the message
Love is its messenger
Live in Joy
and find Peace
The Infinite Space
Within any Moment
Hi. I was born in 1967 and live in Hertfordshire. These are labels, which when I associate too closely with, restrict me.
Life teaches me in the now. I am not this body, this flesh which dissolves and renews itself without my asking. I am not the 'Yoga teacher' dude that I would like to think that I am. Neither am I that which you think that I am. I know that you aren't what I think that you are. You have proven this to me on so many occasions.
All of these thoughts are projections.They are the masterpiece being set down on the canvas, yet they are not the whole picture; they don't include the borders or beyond, the painter and the labrynth of his infinite empty mind. These thoughts can only be of his past and future which he continually refers to in order to project his ill-usive self. There can be no thought in the now, as by the end of each word, we are in the past
Life brought me to a place of knowing that truth and the way emanate from the presence within, which truly is my real self. The less I try the more I achieve. The less attached I am to my names and labels, the less I associate myself to be my sensitve, proud and arrogant ego. I don’t take my personality so seriously anymore and enjoy laughing at myself. This all brings me to the stillness. I can hear all the noise or silence around and within me and I can see the madness in the world that abounds, yet my cellular breath has taught me that she controls things and that to listen to her is to be in tune with my Self. She fades away and the nothingness remains. I often find myself catapulted back out by a surge of joy or laughter.
In order to walk my path steadily, I have needed to wonder wayward many times. Lose the self to find the self, forget the self to reveal the self. I have always believed ‘the cure is in the pain’ and have realised that it was my asthma that revealed to me the subtleties of stillness and meditation and not all the books and teachers’ add-vice along the way.
My mother introduced me to yoga when I was five, in the hope that it would cure my asthma. She taught me pranayama breathing exercises and showed me how she meditated, focusing her energy inwards towards her spirit. I practiced postures sporadically as I found them painful and difficult. I enjoyed sitting to meditate and realised this to be a natural process which I discovered through years of sleepless nights and breathing problems.
Whenever I was sick, I was aware of the divine presence, which presented itself to me in the form of visions and dreams or the love of my family and close friends. This love always dissolved my troubles.
When I was nine my neighbour sexually abused me for a about three years. This was naturally somewhat of a shock to my system, which although not totally pure, was certainly fragile and innocent. These events had a lasting effect on my life and have over the years helped to teach me the meaning of non-duality - the cultivation of an indescriminating mind - above which I remember to rise into and as Space itself - unlimited and ever Blissful :)
When I was fifteen my father contracted terminal cancer. My life adopted a new meaning and only that which encompassed and transcended the physical seemed to be real to me. Looking back, I see that I wanted my father to be proud of me and all of my actions today are in celebration and thanks to my parents for splitting their atoms together.
The news of my father's ails, plus the pressures of school, led my creative and inquiring self away from the classroom and out in to the wooded wilderness. Having taken drugs to alleviate asthma since very small, I had always been intrigued by their effects on both mind and body. I became a bit of a connoisseur, first experimenting with LSD at 15 years of age. After this trip to the Eternal Self, around the Universe and back again within 12 hours, I couldn't really see the point in school any more.
Continuing experimentation eventually took its toll on my schoolwork and attendance. My soul yearned to be here on earth, but the pain in being so was more than I knew I could handle. It seemed that running away was easier.
I left Haberdashers' Aske's at the end of the first sixth form, heading for college and more mind expanding practices. It took me more than 25 years to get over this and finally with thanks to yoga and God's grace, I now fully embrace my path - this path - there was never any other :)
I also experimented with Judo and Karate when I was much younger and in 1985 when I was seventeen and thanks to my brother Maurice’s quest to better himself, I discovered Shaolin Kung Fu; ‘The Monk’s Art’. We had both been captivated by the TV series “Kung Fu” a decade earlier and when I saw my first teacher, Sifu Jeffrey Guishard, demonstrating his art, I was then and to this day still am, bewildered by his grace and power.
My mind felt it had remembered something significant about why my soul had returned to the earth. I trained under Sifu (Master) Guishard’s instruction for three years, receiving his open hearted care and counsel. He was my root, my foundation, out of which I began to grow.
In 1988 I then began to train with Master (Lai Khee Choong) Christopher Lai, My Sifu’s Master and founder of the Shaolin System Nam Pai Chuan. Master Lai is a descendant of Master Quek Heng Choon, himself a student of the great Seh Koh San, a revered buddhist Shaolin monk from China who taught buddhist practices (spiritual/physical healing and 'Buddhist Boxing') to the general public.
I attended larger classes at Master Lai's centre and was exposed to a broader view of the System. I saw ways that I could involve myself within it and so expand through it. Sifu Lai demonstrated true understanding of Chinese Martial Arts and the philosophy that underpins them. His wisdom and will power shone like the sunlight blessing a tender plant. I love him like a father, although when the day arrived in 2000, I knew it was time for me to move on. I sought the healing powers of internal cultivation which I knew meant spreading my roots wider and then deeper.
I also realised how lucky I was to have received personal wisdom and expertise from Sifu Guishard and his ‘kung-fu brothers and sisters ’ (my Seniors), Sifus; Keith Edwards, Arthur and Donna Nichols, Eddie Baron and Norman Morrison, Adrian and Karen Brown. Their Chi drives me on to this day. I love you all like my family and thank you for your kindness, compassion and truth.
I took part in many events within the System, learning the need for equanimity in loss or gain, and found myself close to most of my peers and seniors, who always guided and supported me in anything that I did.
In 1988 my father died. Following his five year battle, he finally found peace in the light. Everything changed. Six months after he died, I contracted a temporary paralysis known as Guillain Barre Syndrome, which put me out of action for six months. I continued my own research into Healing, Hypnotherapy and the workings of the mind and became interested in the healing powers of Taiji through Peter, a Blood Plasma Specialist at the Hospital for Nervous Diseases near Russell Square in London. I lay completely paralysed for a month, shocked by the loss of my dad.
I experienced much pain and discomfort and through this experienced the opportunity to sit and be. I saw that my mind was not my thoughts and my body was transient. I realised that my time here in this Nama (name) and Rupa (form) is limited and that I am here to make the most of it.
With grace, I recovered fully from Guillain Barre. I trained for the next few years with Master Lai, while making my living as a financial director within the travel, electrical and printing industries. Life kept ticking away until 1995 when my mother told me that she had also contracted cancer. Within two weeks of hearing this news, we spent our last evening together in hospital. That evening, before sunset, the room brightened, charged with light, as the sky’s eye welcomed her through. My mum left her body in peace. This is one of the most beautiful moments of my life and confirmed for me that death is only a portal from dense physical matter to a 'higher light' vibration.
Her death left me feeling isolated, detached and angry. Life seemed to be evading me and I was losing my grip of 'Self' and worldly reality. My partner left me, mirroring my not being 'present' with her. I loved my brother and friends very much, but chose to be alone most of the time. I looked to the bridges that had led me astray and turned back to burn them. I turned to the one thing which brought me true peace, the internal arts of Hatha, Taoist and Buddhist Yoga.
I established a work schedule that met with the needs of a broad section of the private and public sectors. I have been teaching professionally as a self employed Buddhist and Taoist Yoga Instructor since 1996. I have run courses and workshops in Shaolin Kung Fu, Taiji, Qi-Gong (Energy/Breath Work), Movement Therapy, and various forms of Hatha Yoga, including pranayama, the art of breath awareness.
I have always believed in God because he kept talking to me. I knew that he was the design on the cup and the colours on the carpet and not the vengeful ogre of my inherited religion. When I abandoned myself, he always stood silently reminding me of his patience and love. This divine grace drives me to serve all through my love for the Self in all. This is not really a choice, but rather Divine Mother's Nature.
Following fifteen years with the Shaolin School, I left on sabbatical to India, Thailand and Nepal. I met many interesting folk along the way and arrived at my Guru’s home in South India in October 2000. I had heard of Sathya Sai Baba from a Hare Krishna devotee and friend, Oswald who lived at the Temple in Letchmore Heath. He told me of Baba’s miracles and so I decided to go and see this phenomenon for my Self.
I went to his ashram in Puttaparthi. On my first afternoon's darshan, a 'small man in orange robes' appeared in front of me - Sri Sai Baba. I left his town after three mentally disturbing days. ‘White girls in Sarees!’ ringing in my ears. Many sadhus, scriptures, astrologers and a handshake with the Dalai Lama later, I made my way to Rishikesh, Varanasi and then into Nepal towards Mount Everest. Wherever I went, this man appeared in front of my inner-eye; Sathya Sai Baba. As a teenager I had worshipped David Bowie and had seen God again in the guise of my Kung Fu Masters. Now I found myself in Kathmandu one chilled morning, having always known that one day I would be there. To my surprise as I drove in a taxi past a shop with a picture of Baba in the window. My heart melted and I began to cry and my mind spoke "Oh My God!" Unlike anything I had ever known before, I realised that Baba is pure love. I realised he had been the organiser of my trip as well as the colours in the clay lamp at which I used to stare in my mother’s room all those years ago, as I lay on her floor in Savasana.
Sathya Sai Baba (Sathya = Truth or True, Sai =Mother, Baba = Father) gave me everything. I cannot describe my experiences with him as they transcend both words and mind.I enjoyed many mystical experiences and visions while staying in Baba's three Ashrams over three separate trips totalling about four months, all to bring me back down to earth and simply be here now.
My life before Sai Baba was interesting; there was much joy and unlimited suffering. Life after Baba meant the beginnings of the end for my former 'personalities' and the awakening of kundalini shakti. Previously in my life, I sought to escape through outer body experiences, whereas now, spirit descended into my heart and grounded me with the grace to accept my path until I meet this world's crossing and move on to the next.
Baba is completely divine. I have received his darshan as Krisna, Shiva, Kali and Jesus Christ amongst other forms. He is my life and my heart and it is to him that I return today, tomorrow and always. He is the light of my soul. Jai Sai Ram!
Before I left for this year's trip away, I met with Taoist Kris Deva North from the Healing Tao School in London and following a week’s retreat under his tutelage, decided to seek his master in Thailand; Mantak Chia. I spent eight months working as an editor and writer for Master Chia at the beautiful Tao Garden near Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand. This enabled me to further understand my own nature and align myself with being true to this, while enjoyng much free time to practice internal culitvation and enjoy wonderful Thai food and weather!
I returned to the UK a changed man, drawing energy from the universe, rather than giving it away in worry and fear. I was ready to live the message of the sages and continue my path in 'being' one with them, whether in this life or another. I have returned to India twice more, spending more time in retreat, mostly solitary and always look forward to having the luxury to return again.
Knowing and being true to myself are the primary concepts for my monkey mind.
We are not this body
this mind or sea of emotions
Yet these are the shadows which we have cast around ourselves.
In that moment of stillness and silence
When we are free of care
We are THAT
It's now 2014 and I have realised after many years that something was missing from this page....
Thank you to beautiful Dorna
For loving me when I couldn't
For reminding me what true love and friendship is
For supporting me in whatever I have done over the years
And helping me to ground my work
So that others may enjoy it as much as us :)x
Thank you to all of the Students
Who have come to my classes since 1996
You are my Gu Ru
Each and every one of you
Reflecting my light
Revealing my darkness
Allowing me to follow
This Yellow Brick Tao
Path of the Eternal now
Aum Sai Ram - With Love and Joy ~ Matt
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