Posts

November 14

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This blog entry begins with two videos, one on the sound of "OM" and the other a witty but poignant video by JP Sears on being your authentic "weird" self.  Enjoy!

Why "OM"?
Journal Questions

What do you notice after you chant or hear "OM"?Is there any other word, sound that you feel something similar?
Get Weird! Journal Questions: How did you respond to this video?What can you do today to be your "weird" authentic self?

Breath
Humming (Brahmari) or Buzzing Bee Breath Benefits: Excellent for speeding up the healing of body tissuesAlleviates stress and tension, anger, anxiety, asthma, insomnia, and high blood pressureStrengthens the voice and relieves thyroid ailmentsBenefits are enhanced when practiced after Nadi ShodhanaBalance air and ether, especially in the vata Fall season (Ayurvedic)How To: 
Sit comfortably, with lips closed and teeth slightly opened. Make sure the jaw is relaxed.Raise the arms to the sides, bend the elbows, and bring the h…

November 7

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Yoga Sutra II.44 

" Sacred study of the Divine through scripture, nature, and introspection (Swadhaya) guides us to the Supreme Self."
There never seems to be a lack of opportunity to be introspective, that is for sure.  I am not assuming that you have all the time in the world to sit around and go deep into the layers of your being.  What I am suggesting is that there are numerous opportunities that present themselves in our lives that can be a perfect time for introspection, our study.  All too well, I know this from my own life.  My reactions and actions speak for themselves.  When I get a pit in my stomach from the way that I may have spoken to a loved one or the way that my left upper shoulder area aches when I take on too much, each signal to me how out of alignment I am with my self and my Self.

So what is the smaller self and what is the bigger Self?  At the time of our birth (wherever in the process you believe that is), we form our personality, the one that presents i…

October 24

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I sit here gazing out at my vegetable garden, contemplating my next few steps in transitioning it and then me, to the next season.  Much of the back breaking work out there would have been completed by now, but with the unseasonably warm weather, I held off. I was still getting tomatoes, peppers, kale and the odd bunch of broccoli until this week.  But as much as I hesitate to tear it all down, I know that I must move on.

To this I turn to Robert Frost in his poem, Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nature's first green is gold Her hardest hue to hold Her early leaf's a flower But only so an hour Then lead subsides to leaf So Eden sank to grief So dawn goes down to day Nothing gold can stay.


Belly Down Twist (on blankets)

Props: at least 4 blankets, neck roll
Benefits: chest and hip opener, massages the organs in twist, opens the side body. Comforting.


Fold 2-3 blankets in rectangle shape and stack one on top of each other in a step formation.  Place right hip at lower end of bolster and on an inhale, …

October 3 Restore

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October just snuck in, sneaky little month.  I find myself still putting September dates on things like checks, written correspondence and my calendar entries.  And each day whips by like the tilt-a-wheel at the amusement park.  If it wasn't for my restorative yoga practice, I would not be able to slow down long enough to enjoy what the day has to offer.  Restorative offers up the opportunity to be present with how my body feels in each moment, what my breath is doing and even how my thoughts are moving or not moving.  Remember the benefits and effects of Restorative Yoga are cumulative - the more that you practice, the easier it will be to settle into the poses and gain more benefits from it.

Ida Mudra  - Gesture of the Lunar Nadi


Source: LePage, Joseph, and Lillian, Mudras for Healing and Transformation. Integrative Yoga Therapy. 2014.

Breath
Breath of Joy - Conduct your own Joy
From standing mountain, inhale and bring arms out in front, continue to inhale as you swing arms horizonta…

September 26

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Advice from Ellen DeGeneres Brought to You by Tears

Ellen stopped by today (via an article in the Good Housekeeping Magazine, September 2017) to share some of her lessons on kindness.  This is resonating with me this week as I think about ways to help others locally and far away.  In my yoga classes, I've been sharing Metta Meditations on kindness and compassion.  If these meditations are all you feel that you can give at this time, that is still making a positive impact on others, as you carry them in your heart and throughout your day.

Ellen's Kindness Lessons
#1 Just Be Nice (Golden Rule)
#2 Stay True to Yourself
#3 Never Let Bullies Win
#4 Find a Way to Forgive
#5 Set a Good Example
#6 Make Time for Those You Love
#7 Live Your Passions
#8 Do What Scares You
#9 Love Who You Are

Metta Meditation
Here are a few versions of practicing loving kindness and gratitude to others.  Don't forget yourself as you repeat these affirmations. 

Waking this morning, I smile A brand new day is before me…

September 19

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Letting It Go (some advice from our Disney friends)
Source: Good Housekeeping, September 2017


Breath

Breath of Joy
From standing mountain, inhale and bring arms out in front, continue to inhale as you swing arms horizontally by your side, then continue with inhalation as you again swing arms out front, finally exhale as you forward fold and arms come down towards the floor. Repeat at least 6 times and on the final exhale, hang there limply enjoying the energy you just created through breath.  As with any breath, if you begin to feel lightheaded, return to a neutral position and your normal breath.

Poses

Surfboard

Props: blankets, including one for warmth, stuffed animals or eye bags for hands Benefits: gently stretches the lumbar spine and para spinal muscles, and gives a release in the diaphragm, quiets the mind and comforting. Gives a sense of security.  
2 bolster fold blanket placed lengthwise on mat on top of each other. Make one blanket roll at end of mat for ankle support. Rest of that b…

September 12

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There are so many inspiring people out there and so many inspiring stories.  I was driving to my first yoga class this morning and thinking about all the other people driving to wherever they had to be.  Which got me to thinking that many of them are also going to their place of work.  And as the thought process goes on, I was then struck by how many hardworking people there are out there, from the road construction worker to the nurse, to the teacher, and the massage therapist.  We are all making a contribution to this society.  What about the hand holding dear friend? What about the person on the other end of the phone line when you call Verizon?  We are all part of this great fabric of life, stitching in our own threads.  Some of the threads woven in have deeper seams and some are fragile, but together they form a connection which heals. 

People and their stories are stitched into this fabric. Each person has a story to share.  Stories can be of tribulation or sorrow but they are in…