This page contains a (partial) archive of weekly emails I used to send out, called "Yoga Thoughts." Although I no longer send these out, I hope you
will enjoy the archived notes here.
Thought Into Action 6.12.07
Sometimes I'll have something on my mental "to-do"
list for so long... and every time I think of it I get
a big wave of "Oh, I HAVE to do that!" Well, lately
I've been embracing the joy of just seizing the moment
and DOING it. And then my mind has one less piece of
flotsam floating around in it.
It's interesting for me to think about the ability to
take thought into action. For many years, I was much
more of a thinker than an actor. I may have had many
nice ideas, but never enough energy or will to
actually act upon them.
This is definitely still my tendency... but I feel the
tide slowly shifting. I sometimes see people who are
chronically unable to act on their thoughts, and how
those thoughts can cycle around and around in the mind
like vultures - driving one crazy and creating even
stronger habits of inaction. I see myself in that
cycle, and I'm grateful for the movement of energy and
will that has been gradually ignited through the yoga
practice. Just as we learn to do one more pose, even
when the mind and the body are tired and would prefer
to quit, we can learn to grab those thoughts out of
our mind, and either do something about them or get
rid of them for good.
Sometimes these nagging thoughts or chores can really
take up a lot of space in our minds - space that could
be used for so many more uplifting things! We can
either decide to just do the thing, and get it off our
list, or we can decide to change our thinking
altogether and simply erase that thought.
Either way, let this email message serve us all as a
reminder to look at something that has been taking up
space in our minds... decide now whether you'll do
something about it or do something about the mental
habits that put it there in the first place. Now is
the time! Along with your spring cleaning, clean out
your mind and make room for something new!
Lessons From The Future 5.21.07
Last weekend I had the wonderful opportunity to spend
four days visiting with my great aunt. She will be 92
next month, and is still overflowing with life spirit.
Our lovely visit has me reflecting on a few
My Great Aunt is experiencing the process of aging
with so much love and grace, humor and honesty. It's
truly awe-inspiring. In her company, I realized how
honesty and joy go hand in hand. The ability to face
things as they are, without being dominated by fear or
denial, leaves room in the heart for joy and humor. A
lesson for us all!
We spent our days together talking, visiting, telling
stories, eating simple meals, looking at the birds and
the river outside her house... What a rare opportunity
to really be with someone - with out the distractions
and masks of television or errands or "to-do" lists. I
was struck by how rarely we have the opportunity to
really be and connect with someone like that.
I feel so grateful to know such a special person, and
to have learned so much from the simple lesson of her
Grateful For The Little Things 4.30.07
Tonight I have a friend and a relative who are both
in the hospital - and even a few other friends with
various maladies and illnesses. I think (and hope!)
they'll both recover and bounce back to being healthy
and vibrant... but it's a powerful reminder of how
fragile life can be. It's sobering and humbling.
It also reminds me to be grateful for the days when I
am healthy, and the loved ones in my life who are
healthy. It's so easy to only notice our health or
happiness or relationships once they leave us.
When I was growing up, we had a cat who was a bit hard
to love. She was noisy, threw up a lot, had lots of
skin trouble... things like that. She was never my
dad's favorite, and he was usually a bit
inconvenienced by her. But then, one day she had a
near-death episode of food poisoning that was very
scary and terrifying to witness. After that, my dad
loved that little cat for the rest of her years with
us. Nearly losing her was an opening into his heart.
I was thinking of that today, when I was thinking of
how hard it is to appreciate what we already have.
Yoga practice is a ready example of this phenomena. So
often when we are practicing yoga, our attention turns
toward the abilities we don't yet have - we perceive
our weaknesses rather than our strengths. We
experience critique rather than celebration. Yoga is
very much an opportunity to enrich ourselves, so that
we experience more love and connection to life. And
even more so, yoga is an opportunity to fortify
ourselves so that we can help love and support others
So, instead of taking our it all for granted, let us
all give thanks and celebrate the health and love we
have in our lives. And, then, let's offer the strength
of that abundance to those in need of healing and a
little more love than usual.
Lately I've been thinking about the sensations of
"feeling alive" or "feeling dead." What is the nature
of the experiences that leave us feeling alive? And
what are the unfortunate circumstances that cause us
to feel the absense of vitality?
When I think of "feeling alive" I think of times when
I am entirely present in the moment. Experiences in
which the senses are bright and alert, when my heart
and mind are completely lost in the moment, and when
there is a feeling of being wholly integrated - bright
When I think of "feeling dead," I think of experiences
in which the various aspects of myself feel divided
and distanced from each other. Times in which the
heart is separated from my actions... Usually this
would have to go on for a long period of time before
we would resort to using an expression like "feeling
So, what can we do to foster the experience of life
and reduce the likelihood of feeling dull and
lifeless? Well, the first thing that comes to mind -
more yoga! At its core yoga is a practice of
integrating ourselves... taking all these disparate
pieces and bringing them back together into the
present moment. The yoga practice is not always flashy
or exhilarating, but it is an experience of being
alive and whole for which I am so grateful.
Courage & Humility 4.6.07
In the last week or so, I've had the opportunity to
take classes with some wonderful teachers - all of
whom guided me to try things I'd never tried before.
It has been exhilarating!
Trying new poses, or new transistions between poses,
is a fun physical adventure - but it also helps open
our minds and hearts to the realm of new
possibilities. It reminds us that change is possible,
and that growth is possible! New experiences are a
direct demonstration that we are not static, but that
we are dynamic beings.
It's so exciting to try something new - even when it's
still too hard or inaccesible for us. It provides a
sense of motivation, a goal to practice toward. If you
don't quite make it... the experience is a reminder of
humility and effort. And, if you do make it, the
experience gives a burst of courage. So, either way,
you can't lose!
It's hard sometimes to embrace the experiences that
are unfamiliar and challenging... they make us a bit
uncomfortable, and we might be afraid of falling
short. On the other hand, if we can just embrace that
playful spirit of possibility & go for it - we might
be pleasantly suprised!
Yesterday and today I was walking my two dogs at the
beach, and both days we were lucky enough to see some
sea critters enjoying the low tide - a mother and baby
sea otter frolicking together, and some harbor seals
popping their silvery heads out of the water to look
around at the surfers.
There is something so magical about seeing animals in
nature... It's a reminder that we aren't alone on this
earth. It feels like a privilege to witness their
mysterious lives, taking place right alongside ours -
sharing the air, the earth, the water... and yet still
so unknown to us. It reminds me that there are
entirely foriegn perspectives on this moment in time -
just as I am curious to look at the harbor seal, he
looks equally curious looking back at me!
One common definition of the word "yoga" is "union" -
and when I spotted these sea friends today I was
overcome with a sense of union. Sharing the day with
the other people on the beach, the dogs playing in the
sand, surfers in the water, the sea stars on the
undersides of the rocks, the sea anenomes in the tide
pools, the sea birds, the otters, the harbor seals ...
filled me with an awareness of being part of the
global community - intimately connected to all these
beings. What a joyful understanding of yoga!
What a blessing it is to be in nature, and to
re-connect with the world we live in!
First Day of Spring 3.20.07
Today is the first day of Spring! The vernal equinox
will be at 4:07pm today (west coast time). The vernal
equinox announces the arrival of Spring, and also
means that for today the day and night are of the same
length. It's a day of great balance - the elements of
the sun/light balanced against the elements of the
Hatha yoga is largely a practice of balance itself -
there are so many forces in our lives that are
constantly shifting into and out of balance:
intuition - discipline
exertion - absorption
effort - release
external - internal
(just to name a few)
Even in the body itself, there are so many elements
constantly at play for balance:
upward extension - downward extension
expansion - contraction
left - right
inner awareness - external awareness
front - back
Even if you don't have an extensive home practice,
take a couple minutes today to do a balancing posture
or two. Connect your own quest for physical and
spiritual balance with the natural balance of the
equinox... and see where it leads you.
How Your Practice Serves You 3.9.07
A little while back, I came across a lovely quote from
"Do not worry about how well you do your yoga
practice. Focus on what the yoga practice does for
When I look back on my modest years of yoga practice,
I can see that for many years I practiced yoga in such
a way that I was robbing myself of the joy and freedom
that yoga has to offer. Instead of accepting the
limits of my body and my situation and exploring those
realities, I would attempt the poses with the fantasy
of an alternate reality.
Rather than investigating the situation in which I
would find myself, I would slip into the mindset that
I wasn't quite "there yet." Once I "got there" THEN
I'd be doing yoga...
It's so easy to be concerned about how our poses look,
or how we're doing compared to other people in
class... but the truth is that we're doing our own
yoga. We do yoga for ourselves so that we may serve
others. In its truest form, the yogic life can bring
us closer to ourselves and others. When the internal
dialogue is one of competition, comparison, judgment,
and impatience we serve neither ourselves nor others.
So, I loved this reminder from Krishnamacharya - next
time you practice, notice how the practice is serving
you. What feelings and responses is it generating in
your mind, your heart, your energy level? How do you
feel after practice? How do you behave after practice?
Think about what you discover in answer to these
questions... how is your yoga practice serving you?
Spring and Sprout 3.2.07
Out here in Santa Cruz, Spring is poking its head out
early. The hills are full of green, tender grass. My
yard is full of verdant weeds. And even after a big
long freeze, all the dormant branches in the garden
are starting to bud out with tiny leaves and shoots.
A few weeks ago, inspired by the anticipation of
Spring as well as by my own internal dawning, I
started growing sprouts. I just looked in my cupboard
for anything that would sprout, and started growing
They started with these tiny tails and tiny leaves...
which have grown into masses of tangled roots and long
green stems with little leaves. From a hard, grey
lentil to a green, watery plant!
These buds on the dormant branches, and these
plants-from-lentils, are really reminders of what I
would wish for myself and for all of us: to crack open
our protective exteriors and allow something tender
and new to emerge.
Ode To A Yoga Buddy11.9.06
One often hears that having a friend to meet at the
gym helps people get fit, or having a dog helps people
go for a walk every day... well, in my case, having a
cat helps me be a more dedicated yogini...
Each morning, as I get ready to head into my yoga room
for my practice, I am accompanied by my cat Yummers.
Yummers loves our special time together (the dogs
aren't allowed to join us), and is often quite
impatient when I have something to do in the morning
before our practice.
One more than one occassion I have found myself
feeling groggy or uninspired to practice... and just
when I am about to talk myself into skipping practice,
Yummers will come and lure me into the studio.
This made me realize how often it is easier to do
something for someone else than it is to do something
for myself. When I am motivated by my love and
appreciation for Yummers, I don't question the
importance of my daily practice. I feel so nourished
and inspired by my love for Yummers, and - wonderfully
- at the same time that this movitation feeds my
spirits, it encourages me to give more of myself. Even
if you don't have a cat as your yoga buddy, consider
the practice of dedicating your time and effort toward
someone that you love... someone for whom you would
readily make an effort even when it's hard to make
that effort for yourself.
This is such a special time of year, with the final
harvests coming in, plants slowing down for the
arrival of winter, and - of course - the evenings
getting dark an hour earlier.
Working in my garden this weekend, I harvested all the
butternut squash and sunflower seeds, and ripped out
the fading tomato plants. It reminded me that that
this has long been a time of the year when people all
around the world begin to celebrate nature's need to
turn in and rest and prepare for the winter. I let
some old tomatoes and a few sunflower seeds spill into
the dirt, in hopes that maybe next year a few plants
will pop up on their own time schedule. It's just
amazing that a tiny seed can hang out in the dirt all
winter, waiting for the right time and the right
conditions to begin growing.
I think that Autumn is a beautiful time for practicing
yoga, because it possesses a shared momentum of
transition, bounty, and beginning to turn inward. When
the nature all around us is changing, it invites us to
also be open to change. When the farmers market has
the last few tomatos of the year, it reminds us to be
grateful for the bounty that we have. And when the
plants begin slowing down and the evenings getting
darker, we are given an opportunity to slow ourselves
down too... and look inside to see what we find.
Travelling & Coming Home 10.13.06
I hope you're all doing well. Some of you may be
wondering what happened to your weekly emails... I
forgot to tell you that I was off on vacation for a
month in the Balkans. Between jet lag and a
welcome-home cold, it's taken me a little while to
recharge my inspiration batteries!
By the time I got home, I couldn't even remember what
my teaching schedule was or what activities I was
working on before I left. This was such a nice
opportunity to re-evaluate my commitments and my
routine. It was even nice to arrive home with jet lag
and a cold, because it kept me moving slowly through
the day, tackling just one activity at a time. I found
that I really enjoyed the simplicity and purity of
doing fewer things, particularly since I was able to
do each activity with more attention than if were
trying to do many things at once. Even though I felt
under the weather, I was enjoying the quietude that I
was feeling. There was no sense of rushing.
Generally, I think most of us can get pretty caught up
in our schedule of activities and responsibilities...
without leaving any space in the day for refelction.
It seems to me that the yoga practice really sets an
example for us in this way. At its best, yoga provides
us with a sense of connection to the world around us,
and removes us from the pressures of our calendar.
Ideally, each pose is an opportunity to explore, to
be quiet and observant, and to sit with the passage of
time. If we are still able to make time for our
practice on a busy day, we are setting an example for
ourselves. We re-confirm to ourselves that setting
aside time for reflection is important.
I do think it's possible to approach yoga in a way
that doesn't add to a sense of quietude. Yoga can
become another "thing to do", something we feel guilty
for not doing, or something that we do with force or
aggression (to be skinnier, to be stronger, to be more
flexible...). Even the idea of "doing" yoga implies
that it is something to be done and then finished.
Instead, it's nice to remember that yoga is something
we practice, explore and experience.
So hopefully, we can remember the power of simplicity
without having to travel halfway around the world or
catch a cold!
Lately, I've been thinking about the word "Reliable"
... and how this quality manifests in the postures. It
seems that one of the things we are looking for in
asana practice is the ability to rely on ourselves...
To create strength and stability and stamina inside
ourselves, such that our more timid and reluctant
aspects feel supported to emerge.
When we can create a steady environment with those
assets that we do have, our nascent talents and traits
can experiment with expressing themselves. When there
is support, there is also an opening to freedom and
ease. When certain bones and muscles are working hard
to provide stability, the other parts of the body are
able to release and surrender. And when we find those
brief moments of surrender, all the quiet little parts
of ourselves that are trying to grow feel safe and
invited to emerge into that quiet space...
The Value of Actually Practicing 8.15.06
This summer I decided to be a bit more organized about
my home practice... and I made a list of poses I
wanted to be sure to work on. These poses are ones
that are really hard for me (ie. nearly impossible!),
but that we work on in class from time to time. I had
realized that since they were so hard for me, I didn't
practice them very often. In truth, it seemed almost
ridiculous to bother with practicing them - that's how
hard they felt.
Well, I decided to practice them anyway. And to my
utter amazement, I've found out a thing or two. I've
only begun to see the tip of the iceberg, but in just
a couple months, these "impossible" poses have begun
to find their way into my practice and into my body.
I've discovered ways to feel lighter, calmer,
optimistic, patient... even in the face of such big
It's almost embarrassing how much this amazed me, but
it's a wonderful reminder to me about the power of
practicing - no matter how fruitless it seems like it
might be! Keep plugging away with patience and
persistence, and doors slowly open.
I've been reading "Wherever You Go, There You Are" by
John Kabat-Zinn for our next Yoga Book Club meeting...
and really enjoying it.
Something I read this week reminded me of a great
insight that my boyfriend once shared with me.
As some of you know, my boyfriend builds beautiful
handmade acoustic guitars. When he first decided that
this was his new career goal, he bought a book on
building guitars and got to work. On that first
guitar, he would mess something up, and just keep
trying and trying until it came out perfectly.
I was always just amazed that he didn't get frustrated
and throw in the towel. At some point, I said "I can't
believe how patient you are!" ... To which he
responded something like "It's not a matter of
patience when you're enjoying something. You only need
patience when you don't have it."
I guess he might look at me trying over and over at
the same yoga poses day after day and wonder how I
have so much patience! :)
It's interesting though, to notice when impatience
arises and if there is a way to enjoy the current
situation, such that it's not a matter of tolerating
the moment with "patience", but rather just enjoying
the moment for its own sake.
This week, I'd like to share some thoughts on the
importance of curiosity to a vibrant yoga practice.
Curiosity is such a magical and nourishing frame of
mind. When we are curious, there is a great sense of
openness & possibility... anything can happen!
When I was a kid, my friends and I were looking for
something fun to do in our neighborhood... and decided
to investigate the crawl space under their apartment
building. We found an old, barely functional radio
there... and we decided to investigate this mysterious
finding by dismantling it piece-by-piece. Each little
murmer of radio transmission seemed like a
communication from the Great Beyond. Each piece we
removed was a source of interest and awe. I'm sure we
were kept busy all afternoon.
When we grow up, and we have so many responsibilities
and such long to-do lists... it's hard to create the
mental space that such curiosity requires. Time is
always nipping at our heels, asking us to keep moving
things along. Unfortunately, as a result, the yoga
practice can become "just another thing to do"...
executed with a lifeless sense of rote obligation.
Ideally however, asana gives us an opportunity to
enter into a slowed-down sense of time... and revist
that curious, playful, and investigative nature that
resides in us all. By its very nature, curiosity
steers us away from living within the limits of our
current range of experience... and takes us into a
realm of new happenings, new understandings, and new
outcomes. So rejuvinating and so optimistic... it's an
important reminder that we always have choices,
including those that we have never before considered.
Perfect As We Are 7.7.06
A couple of years ago, I was lucky enough to be
enrolled in a workshop taught by Judith Lasater. She
is a really great teacher based up in the SF Bay Area,
and the author of one of my favorite books on Yoga
("Living Your Yoga").
During the workshop, Lasater was talking about the
seeming contradiction in yoga of the quest for
self-improvement with the concept of contentment. She
told us that even though yoga is a practice of
self-transformation, we are each already perfect as we
are. I must admit, I was pretty confused about this
idea. It stuck with me and has been rattling around in
my brain all this time.
Then, last week, I was - once again - gushing about
how wonderful and *perfect* our two little adopted
dogs are. Truth be told, our sweet dogs have any
numbers of arenas in which they could improve. One of
them could growl less often at children and other
dogs. The other could be much braver and more
socialable with people... And yet, here they are
before us, Perfect-As-They-Are.
We love them entirely, faults and all. We recognize
their room for improvement (so we take them to doggie
classes & such)... but through the lens of Love, we
also see them as already perfect beings.
And when I realized this, I realized that I had solved
the puzzle planted in my mind by Judith Lasater back
in that workshop. I can only suppose that though I am
flawed, I too am perfect as I am... That though you
are flawed, you are also perfect as you are... That
each one of us - despite the ability to refine &
improve - when seen through the lens of love, is
The River 7.2.06
Last weekend my partner and I went up to Northern
California to visit our god-daughters. My favorite
part of the drive is that we pass by so many beautiful
rivers... My most favorite part is when Highway 128
parallels the amazing Navarro River.
I was ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the river, and
expounding on why I loved it so much... when I
realized that I was essentially describing the goals
of a yogi:
The river is powerful yet peaceful, strong yet calm.
It flows with movement and yet it is imbued with a
sense of stillness.
It is clear and full of life.
It surges along, and through the power of movement,
brings renewal in its path.
It's amazing to me, when I remember it, how the cycles
and processes of yoga can be found in nature all
around us. Growth, rest, decay, renewal, clarity,
murkiness, movement, stillness... Somehow, looking at
that beautiful, timeless river reminded me that all
the phases of a yoga practice are just a broader part
of nature's cycles... including the part at the end
where ther river reaches the ocean, and its borders
broken open, merges seamlessly into the great wide
Thinking Into Action 6.19.06
Lately I have been thinking a lot about the process of
moving from thinking about doing something ... to
actually doing it! How does this happen & why does it
feel so good?
"Someone should take care of that." "Someone should do
something about that." "I should practice yoga at
home." "I should eat less junk food." "I should work
on that pose."
It's easy to daydream about how we should be spending
our time (differently than how we currently spend
it)... and it's also easy to daydream about how other
people should spend their time. And yet, there is a
critical turning point at which we simply take
responsbility and do what needs to be done.
It seems to me that this turning point can take many
forms - it can be a sudden realization or a gradual
process. In either case, gathering the momentum to
take action is very rewarding. There is a feeling of
strength, capability, power, and effectiveness. Even
is if it just a little household chore that always
catches your eye (but never gets done) - buckling down
and doing it clears the chore out of your mind, and
replaces it with a sense of ease and accomplishment.
At first it might take some needling and prodding...
and eventually it happens quite effortlessly.
In the case of larger projects - like working toward a
really hard pose, or developing a home yoga practice -
even small steps help us feel that there is movement
in the right direction... Just like a rolling snowball
gathers momentum and gets bigger and bigger, taking
small steps toward our goals helps them enlarge and
materialize... We become less taunted by our
infectious "you should do that" voice, and more
encouraged by our fruitful "I put in some effort"
voice. This naturally arising encouragment fosters
more and more energy in return... and soon enough we
are regularly working toward our goals.
So, let's all look around at the "that should happen"
lists that create clutter in our minds, and see if we
can find the fuel to get them done... with equanimity
So-Called Comfort Zone 6.9.06
This week, I was having a conversation with some
friends about the postures that we find the most
comforting & stabilizing. We were surprised to find
ourselves thinking again and again of postures that we
also find very demanding.
In fact, I think it's only when a posture IS very
demanding that it is able to command my attention, and
give me a break from my usual concerns. If a pose
isn't challenging enough, we'll just keep on thinking
in our same old patterns...
And this got me thinking about the expression "comfort
zone." Being in the "comfort zone" usually means
staying within one's realm of previous experiences -
whether it's not looking for more effort in a pose,
not challenging ourselves mentally, or sticking with
situations that are emotionally familiar.
But are we really so comfortable in the "comfort
zone"?? I don't think we are. If we were so
comfortable with our current status quo, we wouldn't
be doing yoga, we wouldn't be continually looking for
opportunities to grow and expand.
So, in the end, it makes perfect sense that we
actually feel the most comfortable when we are pushing
the boundaries of our comfort zones, and working as
hard as we can toward new growth. It can be
uncomfortable, but it is also fresh, real, and new...
And this gives us that true yogic experience of being
alive and in the moment!
Doing Our Own Work 6.2.06
Lately, I have been thinking about "how yoga works."
Obviously there are so many responses to this idea...
and on so many levels.
One thing that works about yoga is that each of us
must do it for ourselves. We can read as many books as
we want, but in the end, we are responsible for doing
the work of our own practice.
Each practitioner discovers the same truths - but they
discover them for themselves, in their own language,
in their own breath, in their own body, in their own
thoughts & metaphors. The ideas are the universal
truths, but the discoveries are intimate and
We become our own toolbox, and by our own inherent
wisdom, we learn at just the pace that we are capable
of. It works because it is optimistic, encouraging,
and rewarding... even when it's incredibly difficult
and uncomfortable and scary.
And with yoga's ability to foster optimism and reward,
even in the face of effort and exertion and courage, a
yogi is eager to do the work. And this is part of the
mystery of how yoga works.
Springs & Wells 5.27.06
While practicing this week, I was reflecting on the nature of springs and wells... Both are ways that we are able to get water from the earth - one in which water rises up to meet us on the surface, and the other in which we must dig down through rock & mud to reach the water.
Certain poses, certain days, the yoga practice rises up to meet us. There are days when I am overflowing with ideas and inspiration before I even roll out my mat. Or days when I am attentive and alert without any force or discipline. There are days when I face even the hardest posture with steadiness of mind and with steadiness of breath. These days are like Springs. The deepest source rises up and bubbles up and presents itself to the world.
Then, there are the days like Wells. There are days when I really need to remind myself that there is water somewhere down there - under the crust! And I need to break through the layers and keep digging and keep looking... and sometimes on those days I arrive at something powerful. Other times, I finish my practice and just plan on picking up the shovel again the next day!
If we only ever drank water when it burst through the floor of the kitchen, we would all die of thirst pretty quickly! And also, if we keep waiting to practice yoga, hoping that inspiration will materialize from the ether - we won't practice very often...
So it takes both sorts of days, both sorts of practices. The days when you discover that you can dig your own well are so empowering... and they also make us all more grateful for the miraculous days when the water comes to us.
This week I have been out working in the garden a
lot... planting lots of new plants and tending after
the plants we've already got. Outside my studio window
are some beautiful flowers, including some amazing big
purple iris blossoms. Each morning as I practice, I
watch the moment-by-moment unfolding... one day it's a
green bud, then a purple bud, then all of a sudden - a
giant blossom! There are starts and volunteer plants
popping up all over the yard - calla lillies, lobelia,
little oak trees...
All of this leads me back to one of the most powerful
and meaningful images in the yoga practice for me...
Seeds - sprouts - buds - blossoms - new spring growth!
Spring is an amazing and magical time of Realized
Potential. What could be more miraculous and
beautiful? What could be more inspirational? Now that
the sun is out - the plants aren't holding back. The
beauty and the potential that has been stored inside
the mysterious coding of each plant is exploding into
This is what I dream of for myself and for all of us!
That we can grow to realize our potential... to unlock
that coding which lies within us, to give it water and
sun, and to allow it to sprout and blossom.
This week I'd like to share one of my favorite
passages from the Bhagavad Gita:
"No effort on the path of yoga is ever lost, nor can
any obstacle hold one back forever. Even the smallest
progress can protect one from the greatest of fears."
I find this passage to be particularly relevant to the
home practice, when one often feels like one doesn't
have "enough time", or that one didn't work "hard
enough." Whenever I find myself unsure of a posture,
struggling with a posture, or struggling with an
injury/illness... I remind myself of this amazing
passage. For me, this verse shrinks obstacles back
down to their actual, tiny size and reminds me of my
greater, more infinite potential. And it reminds me to
be grateful for that which I can do... which is always
a lovely & welcome reminder.
This week I have been thinking about "resonance" a
lot... I've noticed it's a word I use often when
talking about yoga.
"Resonate" means, literally, "to cause to resound."
Something that sounds, and then sounds again.
When you pluck the strings of a guitar, the sound
continues to resonate for many seconds... the sound
waves bouncing around inside the hollow body of the
guitar. When I chant the sound "Om" I like to imagine
my lung cavity acting as a resonance chamber, allowing
the sound to bounce and rebounce around.
Also with ideas or experiences, certain themes
resonate in our lives. In order for an idea to truly
resonate with me, it seems to me that the idea must
have already been inside me - whether it was dormant
or active, conscious or unconscious. Like when we feel
that something really "hits home" or matches up with
our way of perceiving the world. In a sense the idea
is "causing to resound" something that was already
When I looked up the dictionary definition of
"resonance" I was reminded that in the realm of
physics, "resonance" is used when two forces of "equal
or very close frequency" are brought together, and as
a result are amplified. Amplified!
So, let us all look forward to the opportunity to
notice when something, someone, some idea, some
artwork, some yoga pose resonates with us - and let us
join forces with that force and amplify our efforts!
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