June 2011

Please Explain

I heard someone say years ago (maybe it was in a personal development course) that people are meaning-creating machines. If I say something to you, you are going to want to make it mean something, perhaps more, or less, or even different than I meant. In any situation I’m in, I’ll assign it a meaning, give it a flavour, sum it up as enjoyable or tragic or irksome.
So, today my husband sent me a link to an article called, “The Least 5 Romantic Keys to a Happy Relationship.” This arrived in my email with no preamble. […]

Everyday Miracles

Everyday Miracles

Mitchells Island, where I live, is tucked right into Nature’s lap. Because of the island being set down between the ocean, the Manning River and big old Scotts Creek, it’s both blessed and cursed. The floods two weeks ago wreaked havoc locally, not the least with the potholes left behind – big enough to drive your car into their jaws.
The lovely birds of our forests were enlivened and emboldened by sunny, warm days that followed the deluge, and on the hunt for food. […]

The Watcher

The Watcher

I’m not a meditator, I’m slightly embarrassed to admit. Or, am I?
The ancient sage Patanjali – a pivotal proponent of the art of meditation – collected all sorts of wisdom of the times, compressed it into 196 pithy sayings, and gave them to us as a system of meditation.
I’ve read Patanjali’s Sutra from cover to cover, in the 7 or 8 books of interpretations I own. This is nothing against those many dedicated yogis who have learned Sanskrit to commit to memory and be able to chant all 196 Sutra. […]

Driving Lesson

Do you remember when you learned to drive? I can remember it just like yesterday because I was so worried about crashing. The driving inspector kept telling me to behave like I was “master of my ship”, even though I felt like a a navvy. At 16 yrs old I got my license and a week later crashed my mother’s car.
Today I had my first go at driving our ride-on mower. Daniel and Rick had made mowing look so simple. […]

From Sleep Deprived to Sweet Dreams

From Sleep Deprived to Sweet Dreams

I had the good fortune to meet a number of great yogis while teaching recently in Byron Bay, NSW. One of them, Jenny Beer, put me on to an “affirmation” she uses for nights when sleep is elusive or broken. I love the words and intent of this affirmation. It reminds me of some of the yoga teaching “mission statements”  that the trainees I instructed at Nature Care College in Sydney wrote to help steer them in their new careers. […]

A Tidy Desk

I learned something a couple of years ago that I’ve applied pretty well since then: you will never finish everything you need to do.
I put this sort of learning in the category of Really Important Stuff We Should Have Learned in School. Like how to change the oil in your car (well maybe you did learn this but probably not at school). Or, how not to get in arguments with your significant other about differences in driving styles while confined to your car. […]

Clear Thinking

Clear Thinking

Yoga practitioners and teachers are not always known for questioning dogma and beliefs. For instance, as a new yogi, you might take in unreservedly all that your teacher says in class, even though it may be somewhat esoteric to you. A commonly repeated phrase is “do your poses with effortless effort”. […]

Yoga Works!

Yoga Works!

The bad news is my immune system is a little low at the moment and I’m slightly snivelling with nasal congestion. Dare I say “cold”? Nah. The symptoms I’m experiencing are so mild as to be impossible of invoking any sort of sympathy.
The good news is that this morning I did a sequence I use for fighting colds and my sinuses drained almost completely. I felt so much better afterwards. You might have collected it from 24/2/11, but it’s repeated here without the drawings:Colds SequenceUttanasana, 2 min. […]

"Excellence is not a skill: it is an attitude."*

"Excellence is not a skill: it is an attitude."*

This morning when I was doing backbends in my yoga practice, I was reminded of how important attitude is in doing yoga. Working the body too hard makes it feel brittle, especially on a cold winter’s morning. Being slack feels like not showing up for the event. I thought of a few attitudinal things that I could communicate when I taught my class this evening.
1. Yoga works to unite the body and the mind through involving the whole person: we are meant to focus our mind meditatively on each movement. […]

Sunday – A Rest Day

Sunday – A Rest Day

When I worked through the week in the city, I had the weekend for “home work”. You know what I mean – doing wash loads, gardening, grocery shopping, catching up on correspondence, cleaning. Maybe there was a little time left over for sparking friendships that may have needed rekindling, or being a culture vulture. […]

The Exciting Life of a Yoga Teacher on an Island

When we first bought our rural property, mid-north coast was in drought. Typically for Australia, that went on for a few years. Then, about the same time our builders broke ground for building our home, the drought broke too. How many “rain days” were there? Too many, but I still felt wistful enough about The Wet that I could still enjoy it.
La Nina settled in cozily for the long haul and at times she’s been a veritable pussy cat of a weather pattern. But not this week. […]

Sharing from The Shed

For any of you non-native Australian people out there, a Shed (with a capital “S”) is an Aussie institution. More often than not, it is the place that a bloke can get away from his missus and the kids for a bit of peace and mind.In my case, I’ve appropriated our tin shed for a yoga space which could get up the noses of certain men. […]