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Archive for February, 2012

HOW TO GET INJURED IN YOGA

Part way through Richard explains that injury comes from misalignement. Of Breath. So beautifully put. Misalignment of breath – misalignment of pose. He also explains that people get focused on the esoteric quality of the phsyical pose. If the breath is not balanced, neither is the practice. Could it be any simpler.

You could get three different schools of yoga master teachers explaining the PROPER alignment of Warrior I but it makes NO difference if you are not tuning into the subtle energies of the pose. I have seen people in physically beautiful poses with no breath and it looks kind of scarey and I have seen people just sitting and breathing and they become luminous and bright.

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NOT IN MY CLASS

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/28/health/nutrition/yoga-fans-sexual-flames-and-predictably-plenty-of-scandal.html?pagewanted=all%3Fsrc%3Dtp&smid=fb-share

This guy won’t shut up. I am NOT buying this book. I am not putting on my Kindle. This guy will say anything to make a buck and THAT is the problem with politics, I mean YOGA. Sex and money is where it is at.

I just ANOTHER article about Anusara. Sex and money. He got caught so now wants his money back and turned Anusara over to some senior teachers. Some of them had quit and came back. I am kind of at the point with this where I totally respect those who left. Those who stayed or came back, not so much.

As much as has been written about Tantra not being about sex I won’t touch on that any more. Like I said, not in my class. Tantra is such a beautiful practice too. Too bad there is so much TAINT on it.

I have been studying myself up on Patabhi Jois and the teachings of Krishamacharya. How they became householders and brought this out to the WORLD. Also I was reading an article about Eddie Stern and how Jois told him NOT to promote and market the hell out of what he knew. He said if his teaching was pure it would speak for itself. So beautiful. Jois didn’t seek the West. The West saught him.

And there is something to be said about yoga in the cave. I am regarding my practice right now as yoga in the cave. My living room. I love community, but right now, it doesn’t offer me what I need in my practice.

I will post later this week on a book review.

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QUIET MIND QUIET BLOG

I have been busy with the usual, yoga, work and every day stress. That being said, I have wondered if my blog is just a vehicle for excess chitta.

I have really worked on turning my practice into a full on meditative process. It makes me feel, well, positively pensive.

Also, since I have made an almost pure SHIFT to Ashtanga, I am working out how to teach in POWER FLOW. So I am kind of tricking myself, but it is a process.

Also I am reading this book on Guruji and all his great students who first went to Mysore and amazingly enough, even though these people got through Advanced series, they value the practice MOST for the meditative/pranayama aspect.

But it took them years to DETACH from being ABSORBED and OBSESSED with the physical component of asana.

Truely the experience of yoga though, once you detach from what you are absorbed in, it all kind of happens. I don’t think you can even TEACH that.

I think you sort of teach it, because yoga students probably listen to about five percent of what you say and somehow you plant the seed.

I am also practicing this Ashtanga Rishi practice I learned from Grimmly. Awesome stuff and I can definitely throw that in to my classes for the asana freaks.

Of course, I am obsessed with my hip rotators.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/elena-brower/john-friend-controversy_b_1285538.html

Elena has very slowly opened up about her complicity and how what she was taught to teach did not align with her life. I wish her healing on the way.

We might start seeing some finger pointing as these teachers part ways. She very clearly divides those who knew from those who didn’t know. Maybe naming names will start from here.

Will post later on home practice and maybe some tips on finding your teacher/teachers.

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The Lesson of Third Series: On Burning Through Ego & Pride..

Love this article by Kino McGregor on the third series. I just ordered that dvd. I have Swenson’s and am wondering if hers is the full thing or if she just does the standing series in the first series. I am obviously nowhere near ready for it but I can do a lot of the poses. My intermediate series is not even close to six days a week for five years. I am at about two times a week now and the first series once. My focus this week was mostly Forrest to stay in my arms the way I need to. My biggest hurdle in Ashtanga is jump through to sitting and back, some of the hip openers, and I get frustrated easily.

Here is a good video of jump throughs by Lucas:

I still use blocks but whatever. I practice a lot of Lol and Tol asanas every day and am working towards longer holds.

I haven’t taught much this week which has been a nice break. I have no clue what I am doing with my Intermediates and Advanced folks. I am trying to focus on my own practice so I can do my workshops with Richard Freeman later this year and next year so focus will be on Ashtanga. I also started doing a pranayama practice every day. I am up to about 20 minutes. I have one word to say about that. Abs.

No one does them like that. Usually the students I see are just moving from the neck and straining a lot. Whatever. I give up on that argument. Pump and crunch away folks.

Burning through ego and pride. Really is the lesson of asana practice. Tejas.

Or stepping down from your own organization when everyone jumps ship. I am still reading a lot of comments on different blogs and articles. It seems as though a lot of people feel they are over it already. I know in my community, where there isn’t a lot of Anusara, it probably isn’t even noticed. The reason I have followed this is because of the lesson for all of us in the community of worshipping a teacher for one thing. Or being too attached to our practice. Leaving for them will perhaps one point become liberating and that IS what yoga is about. Freedom and liberation. Even being bound totally to a good thing is inhibiting. Enjoy the message but don’t get attached to the messenger and you will be open and free for continued growth.

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FRIEND’S LEAVE OF ABSENCE

Dear Friends,

The last two weeks have been intensely heartbreaking for me.

I am deeply sorry for choices I made, which have caused such a firestorm of pain and suffering in our community.

I have profound grief for the damage done to our Anusara yoga community: teachers, students, and friends.

Presently, I am completing my current event in Miami, which I felt too irresponsible to cancel.

On Monday, I will be stepping down and taking a leave of absence for self-reflection, therapy, and personal retreat in order to take care of myself, and consider the next best step for myself and Anusara. Professional counselors and advisors will help me to determine the duration of my sabbatical.

Within the next 10 days, I will make a full public statement that will transparently address the entirety of this situation, and present a detailed outline of the reorganization of Anusara yoga. Also, I will be able to finally write and call individually so many friends who have been reaching out to me.

This devastating experience has profoundly impacted my heart and soul, and will serve to guide all my future actions with integrity.

Humbly,

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NEWS AND MY STUFF

The latest rumor is that the Anusara offices are laying people off. I have watching web sites where Anusara teachers were scheduled for Anusara workshops. Some have changed the name of the workshop already. A few are cancelled. I would guess that people are no longer interested in the training. That must be tough for people part way through since they have invested a LOT of money. That is where it reminds me of Scientology. There is a LAYERING going on. The more you spend, the more spiritually enlightened you become? I wasn’t aware of the tithing. That would be it for me.

The following article claims the yoga rage is over anyways:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stewart-j-lawrence/anusara-yoga-scandal_b_1272471.html

Last night I watched the February 14 broadcast of the Colbert Report and he interviewed William Broad, the author of the newly controversial The Science of Yoga: The Risks and Rewards. It was a normal Colbert interview, funny and Broad brought up the cervical spine injury that could result from too much headstand and shoulderstand. I have to believe there is more to the book than this, but this issue keeps coming up. One thing that Broad said that I don’t agree with is that yoga started 4000 years ago as a sexual practice. Do we have to have the Tantra discussion again? Thank you Sting for bringing that up 20 years ago. Tantra was first, and then some groups incorporated sexual practices. I actually had a teacher trainee ask where Tantric Sex fits into yoga. It doesn’t in my practice but go right ahead…..

Also, no more John Friend mat on Manduka.

Since I am a blogger, I can pretty much say what I want so I will go out on a line here. I think Anusara is over as an organization. JF might have had a chance if he had turned it over to his senior teachers but in the long run they are going to be better off and I wish them continued success. I don’t see where JF can redeem himself.

A couple of cool things happened the last few days. Valentines Day and my anniversary plus a shipment from Robert Modovi. We visited the Mondovi winery in Napa in November.

Also yesterday for my 55th birthday I practiced all the arm balances I know. My arms are sore today but it sounds like a good birthday tradition. I also went to my gym during a busy Senior Citizen time. It felt good to be the young chick somewhere.
Also tonight I am going to a workshop with Simon Park. I think it is a long vinayasa class. Bring it on Simon:

Also I found a real cool blogger who does almost all of his Ashtanga practice at home.

So if Friend goes down, and all the other Hot Shot teachers and HP is right, yoga is OVER, I am not over it. I have a practice for life. Love to see others embrace home practice.

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