Rolf’s words, selected from the transcript of his visit with Kaliji and TriYoga friends:
Yoga changed my life very, very deeply. When I started 17 years ago, it was at the end of my normal profession as a chemist. I was in India and I had my first lesson in yoga, directly on the ocean and I thought, “okay, yoga can be a new variety in my life.” When I came back I spoke with my daughter Sonja. She had started to practice yoga with Urvasi, and I thought, “Okay, what shall I do now?” Then I started to practice yoga but very, very soon I began to realize that you can practice yoga only when you have a deeper knowledge of yoga, more in the spiritual mind than in the physical mind. I thought that perhaps I had to begin a yoga education, and Nandi convinced me: she said, “Rolf I think you can be a good yoga teacher,” and I thought “Well okay, I’ll do it.”
The yoga course changed my life very very deeply, and I became a “new man” I guess you could say.
My friends told me, “Rolf, at your age (I was 64 when I started), you will begin a new education? Why?” And I thought, “Why not?” Now they say, “Okay, it was a good idea for you.” I’m very very happy to have had this time.
Unbelievable that I am here in your presence.
What can I tell you? This is here, my last station before I change my life from here to the next…to another form.
I’m a chemist. As a chemist I think about what will be changed with all my materials. I have the carbon, the nitrogen, the oxygen, what all is existing in my body. And then I think okay, the energy will leave the body and then I’m dead. But the material…for example, I organized my funeral and I will be burned. What will happen afterwards? All my molecules and atoms will be gone away, into the water, the air, and all of the people who are living on earth, as an individual I will go to the universe. That is a concept I can imagine and I can enjoy because I am not away. I’m still existing, with all the information in my molecules and atoms. And that is a very acceptable situation when you go from here to the universe. As a chemist, of course. There are a lot of other thoughts you can think, but you have to decide which for you is the right one.
But let me be very very relaxed, I hope you see me as relaxed.
The last five or ten years, I’ve talked with friends a lot about life and death and this is, for me, not a problem, because I have not been anxious.
In Greek mythology there is a picture of Death that is not the man who comes with the scythe and will cut your head, but Death as a loving man who will embrace you. This is my expectation. Okay, why not? Another kind of living. And I feel the Greek people have thought in the right manner.
When I can I see forward, when I can see what is expected of me, then I’m very, very relaxed; I can organize and I can decide what will happen. And I can show my children from life to death is one step. Could be a longer one or a shorter one, but it is a step that you don’t have be anxious for. You can do it very very quietly. And I think that yoga brought me in this direction—other things, too, but of course yoga, and especially you and all your speeches. I didn’t understand every word every time, but you had wonderful translations, from Urvasi and Eva Maria, and I remember the music from Mercury.
I understand Yoga now as a science of life…with all different aspects, you can imagine it is.
That’s what I also learned, Kaliji, from you: the intonation of yoga. I had an English teacher who said that the three most important things when you speak English are the intonation, the pronunciation, and the pauses. And with yoga it could be nearly the same. You have to intonate it very deeply, you have to make the pauses, the resting, and you have the pronunciation, what happens with your body, and with your mind when you practice yoga.
I remember you explaining that when you started TriYoga you felt in your fingers, in your hands, very exciting movements. I try to explain to [others] but they don’t understand it. It is not possible to understand it without knowing you. I wonder every time that I am so deeply involved with or touched by yoga, and then when I see you I think “Oh, there are people who have incorporated all these thoughts of yoga very, very deeply” and sometimes I think, “A little bit I have learned from it. A very little bit.”
I lived in Corbusierhaus near the Olympic Stadium. Until this year, this March, one year ago, I had a group of people who were interested in practicing yoga in my house. It’s a building with nearly 800 people living there. And I had some visitors every weekend because all the architecture students from all over the world want to visit the Corbusierhaus. So a lot of students come to Berlin to see it and one time they came to my flat and I was practicing yoga. They asked if I was a teacher, and I said yes. And then they asked me if I was able to teach a yoga course, and a quarter of a year later we started yoga in a great flat with 10-15 people and they were very, very impressed [as architects] because it was very, very exact.
[about a video that was once made of Rolf in TriYoga Flow]: This video I like it very much because I understood that I felt the flow. You can say, okay perhaps he could be not still alive, but the flow is still alive.
When people are visiting me, I feel what is with their behavior…three of my friends came here and we never could speak anything about these circumstances, death and life. “Oh I will have a voyage next week,” they go away from what is happening now. And that you feel very sensitive, more sensitive than before. It is my experience in the last weeks and months to see the differences from a lot of people to these situations, death and life.
When my son-in-law was dying, I told him, “You are in a very good situation, you are dying, but we have to accompany you and we are still alive while you are dead.” So i think the people who are surviving are in the worse position than those who are dying.
And to my children I feel the same. Because for all the children, the parents will die, but I hope they will learn how you can die. That’s my first thing, to show them that you can die in a very, very relaxed situation. Love—it can embrace you, say goodbye have a good life, I will say goodbye.
I will thank you very much, for coming here, for visiting with me, for seeing all your wonderful faces, and I will remark that this day, with your coming here, will be very, very deeply incorporated in my body and of course in my mind.
Thank you, thank you very much, now I will fulfill my circle and I’m very, very happy that you were here. It’s deeply conserved in my heart.