Yoga Suits Her
Photo by: Julie Slavin Photography, Old Bar
Here is the Hindu God, Ganesha, still sporting the beanie he wore at Christmas. His post is at the entrance to the Yoga Shed at Mitchells Island. He signals a friendly welcome to all students. As you can see, Ganesha has mastered the art of relaxation. He has the look of someone who has transcended the need to do physical yoga postures, or any exercise at all.
In his role as the harbinger of new beginnings, I can imagine that Ganesha is also welcoming us into the New Year. By all accounts, many of us are pinning our hopes on a simpler, more certain, healthier, less restricted new year. Ganesha can help with this too, as he is known to be the remover of obstacles. We can invoke help from this deity in eliciting inventiveness and creativity in squaring off with uncertain times.
By extension, we could probably adopt Ganesha as the Muse for our New Year’s resolutions. If, for instance, we are planning on beginning a year of regular yoga practice, healthy eating or being kinder to ourselves and others.
If you are a student of yoga philosophy, the first of January equals the ‘now’ part of Patanjali’s first sutra, “Atha Yoga-Anusasanam”. The word ‘atha’ announces, ‘Now. Let’s get down to business – let’s begin.’
The truth is that every moment is a fresh start. A new opportunity to share your goodwill. To cultivate loving kindness. To stop by the roadside and admire a sunset. To ring a friend who you’ve been thinking about. To finally get the good china out just for you. To learn some circus skills. To read ‘Lord of the Rings’ (again). To walk on the beach in the rain. Or sun. Or wind. To be a little less fearless.
I wish you happy beginnings, Ganesha’s blessings, on whatever you choose to make of this precious day and year!
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The Previous 3 Posts
Donald was so beloved by his students, yogis who had followed him for years. I was fortunate to be given a place in what turned our to be essentially an Iyengar-type class. However, Donald’s approach was inquiry based: ‘How does it feel to do the pose this way? Where does your effort come from? Might you do the pose in a way better-suited to your body?’
At the beginning of 2020, I took on a powerful resolution: I would do a daily loving kindness meditation. I love this practice as a way of healing not just me, but all beings and the planet too. It’s a way of expanding the field of love and kindness on the planet. Never was it a more necessary practice than right now.
I wish I could tell you what is so attractive about our women’s reunions. As they say, you’d have to be there. And be there over years and years as layers of trust and love are built. I can describe how our meetings make me feel: like a swim in the gentle and warm waters of a tiny sheltered bay. The reunions feel healthy and refreshing. Together we women create a pool of energy that we continue to dip into long after the reunion has finished or the ‘leave meeting’ button has been pushed.
I know, I know. Yoga teachers all want to teach remotely. I’ve been no exception. Here are some video and audio productions that I’ve made. Not many – it’s something that I alway mean to get around to.
No, I’m not selling yoga mats or clothing. I don’t even have a t-shirt… yet. But from time to time I find myself with something that someone may want. Have a look, I’m never sure what you’ll find.