The Yoga Suits Her Blog
I’ve been blogging for 15 years now. At first, I was quite nervous about publishing my thoughts. Because I was shy about writing, my old posts were almost exclusively photos of the view from our bedroom in our Tambourine Bay house.
Remarkably, my original Ville Blog still exists. Does anything on the internet ever go away? It ran from November 05, 2006 to January 12, 2010 and it’s still just where I left it. If you’d like to have a look, the address is http://thevilleblog.blogspot.com.au/.
These days, because there are way too many YSH posts to browse through-over 1200-I’ve put some major themes together in The Vault. I hope this makes it easier to find exactly what you want.
Ever heard of the Shedders? If you really knew me, you would know I’m a community junkie. I’ve created several yoga communities over the almost 40 years that I've been teaching yoga. I’m part of the Manning Valley singing community and perform with the Wingsong Choir....
Climate Yoga: Opportunity for Participation I did it! I stepped out! Even though I'm neither a scientist or activist, I facilitated a talk at the Ekam Festival recently on Climate Yoga. This post is a follow-up so for those of you who weren't at the festival....
Probably like you, I’ve been giving much thought to climate change. So much so that I put my hand up to facilitate a presentation at the Ekam Festival on Climate Yoga.
Sometimes I think there’s something wrong with me. I get anxious about what’s happening in the world.
I enjoy watching dystopian TV shows, such as, ‘The Handmaids Tale’. Many of my friends won’t go near this series, saying it’s too dark and violent. Too reminiscent of what’s happening in the increasingly right-wing world we live in.
I’ve always been like this.
Perimenopause, menopause and post-menopause are life transitions that for many women are considered dilemmas.
For example, I scrolled through Pinterest looking for an image. In the same way that it’s hard to find a positive 70-year old birthday card, it’s nearly impossible to find an optimistic spin on menopause.
Yet, isn’t menopause just a natural part of a woman biology? Albeit one that comes with some difficult symptoms.
Grief is likely to be present for us at the end of life. But before then, we experience so many other losses. Some of them are small, no more than transitions: moving house, changing schools, different working hours or conditions. Some are major, as in the death of a spouse or child, a divorce or a bankruptcy. No matter big or small, for the most part, we don’t fully experience these losses. Our lives are so busy and grief is potentially so painful.
I hope you escape any illnesses this year, but just in case you don’t, keep looking for the breaks in the cloud cover that let the sun in.
And, I’m sure you’ll appreciate your accidental good health so much more when the lurgy fog lifts.
I was privileged to meet Swami Satyadharma Saraswati while attending the Divine Feminine Conference. She spoke cogently and passionately on some aspects of yoga that might ordinarily be deemed esoteric. In her manner of explaining, abstract concepts became alive for me and accessible.
I didn’t realise it would be so hard being in Qld for the federal election. Daniel and I pre-voted in Winton, not knowing where we were going to be on the day. We’ve been traveling the Outback and most recently Central Queensland for the last two months.
Then, on the night, we were in Rubyvale Caravan Park (The Gemfields). Remarkably there was a tv room with a satellite connection. We shared the viewing space with a couple from the Blue Mountains who voted Lib, and a tough old Queenslander who did too.
Daniel and I were crestfallen as we watched the results come in, especially with what was happening in Qld. The results were bought, as we’ve heard, by Clive Palmer. His big election spend on advertising, he said, was designed to ‘polarise the electorate’. The opposition took risks, creating policies to support us into the future. And, taking strong actions in addressing the climate crisis.
Bolstering Our Immune Systems
Does anyone need to be told that we are well into the cold and flu season?
We are approaching the shortest day of the year. But we’re fooling ourselves if we don’t see that the Aussie winter is just beginning to settle in.
As smart yogis, we can bunker down, take care and look after our immune systems so as not to succumb to colds and flues.
For optimum health, all of us know to eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables, Vitamin D and lean protein. […]
I do wonder, looking back, why I did push myself in all these activities. Why did I do poses like Ekapada Raja Kapotasana (pigeon pose) or Astavakrasana (8 angle pose) or Ekapada Sirsasana (leg behind the head pose)?Was I testing myself! Showing off? Competing with other yoga teachers? Probably a mix of all three.Another way
I’ve started to realise how important it is, vital even, to get away and see the world. To shake off the cobwebs and get far away from the perfect flat white you order at your favourite cafe.There’s a great opportunity coming up this winter for all you yoga teachers and trainees to give yourself a complete break. You can retreat to the little hamlet of Stroud, NSW.
Don’t assume that what happens was not meant to happen. Don’t think that things were meant to turn out differently than they did. Suffering comes from the expectation of a different outcome and not accepting things are the way they are.I don’t think this view means I will end up being resigned to the sadness of the world, maybe only that I will have a little more perspective and contentment in myself.
It’s nearly autumn in Australia. Here on the East Coast we’ve experienced the hottest summer in many a year. Fortunately, the weather has become cooler recently, but still exceedingly humid.No matter what the weather is like this time of year, Australians are beginning to dream about setting off in their vans for northern coasts, inland lakes and The Outback.
Judith Lasater, author of Relax and Renew, says that it takes courage to rest and relax. It’s means you go oppose the protestant work ethic. But you are complying with the practical Buddhist idea:”When you are hungry, eat. When you are thirsty, drink, and when you are tired, sleep.”
Most people know that meditation is good for them. But that doesn’t mean it’s at all easy to develop the meditation muscle.I’ve had a patchy history as a meditator. I’m now getting more regular as I see I need it. Savasana, the yoga relaxation, has been a key to open the door to meditation for me.In an effort to make peace with my overactive mind, I did Vipassana meditation courses in the 1980’s.Have you ever done one of these ten-day courses? They are conducted in complete silence. You do sitting meditation, alternating with walking meditation. This makes it less onerous for those of us who like to be physically active.I didn’t think that the sitting would be challenging for me. My attitude was, hey, I’m a yogi. How hard can sitting for an hour at a time be? Apparently, very hard!
I’m worried and ready to declare myself a Climate Yogini. I’m not sure exactly what that means at this stage. So far, it’s business as normal. We go about doing our laundry, planting vegetables, walking on the beach with very little threat that the weather will spoil our activities. But it seems to me that the times they are a-changin’, and not that slowly, and not just in Australia. You can google ‘global warming hotspots’ and you’ll see the areas that are most at risk.
There are countless events that can interrupt a disciplined routine. Extended holidays will do it. Being laid low with an illness, or suffering an emotional upset. Moving house and even changing jobs are other meddlesome events.
I tell myself that after taking a long trip, I will to get back into my practice as soon as I’m on home ground. Yet, it doesn’t always happen that way. As the folks of Westeros are prone to say, ‘Words are wind.’
All that matters in the end is that you take action. Getting right back on the mat and into a regular routine.
By making sure you practice a gentle, restorative yoga practice when you bleed, rather than a more dynamic practice, you’re supporting the healthy balance of your whole menstrual cycle. And by taking some quiet, rest time during menstruation, you’re putting ‘money’ into your ‘energy bank’ for later in your cycle, This will boost your overall health, energy and vitality.
From perimenopause, I made it through to menopause, the inevitable next stage. At this point, I made a conscious decision. No matter how I’d been conditioned as a women to resist menopause, I would open up to it. After all, it’s not a medical condition. It isn’t a personal insult. It’s a natural, organic stage of a women’s life.