Honest Work

Honest Work

Heather and I waived our early morning yoga session yesterday morning in favour of a recovery program in the garden.
That is, we were recovering from a very pleasant dinner at our neighbours’: champagne, appetisers, mains, sweets and that odd dessert wine that I believe is related to botox (called “noble rot wine”).
So, armed with mattock, shovels, trowels and mallet, Heather and I installed edging in the Hollingworth’s garden. Heather knew because she’d done this job in another part of our garden how hard it was going to be. […]

Big, Not Better

Yesterday I was shopping in our nearest town, Taree,  and was shocked to see so many obese people around, mainly women. In one store there was a party of three overweight shoppers accompanied by a child who was already seriously chubby.
I don’t remember seeing huge numbers of fat people in Sydney, but as the distance increases from the city, I think the “avoir du pois” does too. New Yorkers living in Manhattan are toned and lithe because they walk everywhere. Even Mayor Bloomberg walks and uses the subway. But rural areas are another story.
Don’t get me wrong. […]

Yoga &Humour

Yoga &Humour

Amazing what you can do when you are given completely new hips. (Only kidding.)
I’ve always thought that yoga poses are inherently funny. Sometimes I look around a class of students who have voluntarily submitted to being put into Kurmasana or Yoginidrasana or Simhasana and think we are raving mad. Or, how about the studios where ropes dangle from walls or the beams with students hanging upside-down like flying foxes in Sirsasna. […]

Yearning

Yearning

Here’s a quote I came across yesterday (apparently it’s the star that Julian Assange steers by). I like it very much and thought you might too:
If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the seas. […]

If we want it….

I’ve been blessed this year by having been included in a group of local people who like to sing. Since it’s The Season, we will be performing carols tomorrow evening at the Mitchells Island Hall. (If you’re in the neighbourhood, do drop in. There will be a bar-b-cue, too.)
We singers ran up against a problem with one of the songs in our repertoire because the Anglican Board who are organising the carolling took offence with it. […]

De-cluttering

De-cluttering

Believe it or not, I do try to weave in a yoga theme in each of my posts. Sometimes this is such a weak or oblique attempt that I seem to never get around to even mentioning the Y word. You might well wonder what de-cluttering and yoga have to do with each other. I would say, quite a lot. For one thing, clutter accumulating around us, tends to clutter up our minds. It adds to the citta vrtti. We look at our messy desks (which I just did. […]

Smarty-pants

Recently I’ve been in the throes of a new writing project. I was swept along in the early days by enthusiasm and euphoria. But today I noticed that I have a mountain of work ahead of me, and I started to procrastinate and figuratively shuffle papers.
A decade and a half ago, I wrote on the topic of developing the discipline to do regular yoga practice. I glibly said things like it’s not really that hard  to do; it’s just that your mind trips you up. […]

The Practice of Giving

The Practice of Giving

It takes time to practice generosity, but being generous is the best use of our time. Thich Nhat Hanh
The giving season is fast approaching. Perhaps the only time in the year (apart from birthdays) when we rev up to give. […]

Six-six

Six-six

Who would have thought? I am 66 yrs. old today. Twenty-three years older than my father when he passed away, and thirteen years older than my mother when she passed on. It may be that their relatively young demises led me to seek out the youth-ifying benefits of yoga. I can’t say for sure.
The first enjoyable thing I did on this beautiful balmy, summery day was head for the Yoga Shed…not to do yoga but to do weights. […]

So Useful

So Useful

Are we meant to think of yoga as utilitarian?
Probably not, if you think of Classical Yoga, Patanjali’s yoga. He seems to recommend that we give ourselves to yoga to uncover our true selves.
That’s very different than me stumbling out to the Yoga Shed and doing yesterday’s Fatigue-fighting sequence so that I could feel energised afterwards. Or, as in this morning’s practice, doing abdominal strengthening yoga movements to tone my middle section. Which, unfortunately, following on the heels of The Amazing Meeting conference of last weekend,  has  increased slightly in girth  even as it lost muscularity. […]

This Morning's Practice

I stumbled out to the Yoga Shed this morning having had fewer hours sleep than I wanted. The reason? I was up late racing to finish “Nomad”, this month’s selection of our book club, which was scheduled to meet this afternoon. I have to admit I didn’t finish the book in time. However, I highly recommend it, mainly because of the courage of the author, Ayaan Hirsi Ali. She’s a feminist, writer, lecturer and fearless critic of Islam. I will finish the book as a vote of support.
Fortunately I had a Fatigue-fighting Yoga Sequence up my sleeve. […]

Teach Yourself Yoga

Teach Yourself Yoga

In 1997 Simon and Schuster published a book I wrote called, “Teach Yourself Yoga”. It took me 5 months to write it, in between teaching classes. I was really chuffed that I could pull this off, being a first time book writer and all. I remember getting a note from my editor after I sent her the first chapter of the book and she wrote back saying, “You’ve hit the exact market we’re aiming for. Keep on keeping on.” I delivered the completed manuscript on the day it was due. […]