Clinton Joseph Murphy is one of them, and as with most people who live and work in this extraordinary little town, Yoga is certainly not the only thing Clint brings to the table, but it is the practice that enables him to stay grounded while he juggles a myriad of talents and responsibilities.
Clint began to do yoga in 1999 and found it to be a life-changing but short-lived practice. A decade later, he returned to yoga as a grounding practice in an uncertain time.
A certified kids yoga instructor, graduate of Bea Doyle’s Anusara Immersion, and Jeanie Manchester’s 200 hour Teacher Training, he combines a sense of playfulness with an absolute belief in the transformative, healing power of yoga.
Clint grew up in Oregon on a ranch. He was baling hay by the age of six and working on the ranch was a way of life throughout his childhood.
After school he moved first to Portland, a place he’d return to a couple of times as his journey into adulthood moved him onto the path his soul walked upon.
Seattle, San Francisco were other places where he touched down and explored, before meeting the woman who would become the mother of his two oldest children.
They originally planned to move to a small town in Colorado, “to escape the fast pace of city life,” he explains, but wound up moving to Boulder where she was from, upon discovering she was pregnant.
Clint remained in Boulder until the relationship ended and he took a job with the Forest Service and found himself posted in Taos.
“I haven’t been able to leave since,” he laughs. “I try but it won’t let me.”
That’s the way it is here. If the mountain likes you, you get to stay whether you like it or not and if it doesn’t, it’ll spit you out faster than you can blink.
Yoga became a way to deal with the changes and challenges life presented him with, and a means of making a living to support not only himself and his kids, but also his other love; writing.
A gifted story-teller, Clint has been writing all of his life. He frequently reads for SOMOS and in the past few years has produced an ongoing series at the TCA, showcasing other story tellers from Taos. Misfits, Malcontents and Mystics has been a huge success and is one more thing that keeps Clint here, despite the fact that his kids (he had two more with his second wife) live in far-flung places.
“I see the older ones all the time,” he tells me, ” the younger two live on the East Coast with their mother so unfortunately I only get to see them a couple of times a year, but we Skype weekly!”
A total Luddite, Clint writes long hand and uses the computer only for social media and Skyping his kids.
“There is something about writing long hand that keeps the flow going” he explains. “I’m a purist.”
An approach much like his yoga practice, I imagine.
All photographs c/o Clinton Murphy