Eve Grzybowski

Yoga Suits Her

I’ve been teaching yoga since 1980.  A lot of my identity is tied up with being a yoga teacher.  What does that mean?  What should that mean? On this site I explore my personal journey and provide commentary on the state of yoga in the twenty-first century. I invite you to have a look and see what may be here for you.

Photo by: Julie Slavin Photography, Old Bar

Current Post

The Flower of Meditation is Resilience

Purple flowers growing up through cracks in concrete.

It seems timely to republish and repurpose this post as the Silly Season takes its toll. Not only on me, but perhaps on you, too.

Resilience shattered

The terrifying storm of last week took out our power for three days. We have lovely friends who donated freezer space for Christmas dinner items that we’d shopped for early. For instance, prawns! We ended up borrowing a generator from a neighbour who didn’t need it. It seems to me that emergencies in Australia bring out the best in people. Despite these kindnesses, I still felt very inconvenienced.

I didn’t do well going without my comforts. Reading with camping headlights at night, watching the laundry stack up, washing dishes by hand and, sorry to admit, no Netflix. I do know that all these are first world problems. Especially when weighed against the recent devastating Indonesian tsunami, for instance.

But if I had prided myself on being an evolved being, it was clear that I needed to step down from my pedestal. I was grumpy and upset simply by the impact of the loss of electricity. I even felt envy as others on our island had their power restored.

Ageing can erode resilience

Just when I’ve needed it the most, I’ve neglected my meditation practice.

I am an elder but that does not always make me wise. One of my goals in doing regular meditation is to develop the quality of resilience. To be able to get myself out of a heavy mood in a reasonable timeframe. To get up off the floor when I feel like I’ve been run over by a Mack truck. The Japanese have a saying, “Fall down 7 times, get up 8.”

The problem with getting older is that ageing can erode your resilience. Things that used to work well don’t anymore. Reading requires close-up glasses. Driving requires distance glasses. Dining out requires a sound-friendly restaurant. Weight creeps up and patience wears down. Fools can no longer be suffered.

The flower of mediation

Meditation offers practice in pausing and breathing. It has let me extrapolate from the peace of my practice to the way I deal with situations in the ‘real world.’ I’ve been able to practice creating a parenthesis around knee-jerk reactions. A buffer between hearing and seeing, and reacting.

The mechanism for how this happens is that meditation ultimately exposes the Self, that part that is aware and capable of watching.

Meditator, Peter Bregman of the Harvard Business Review says:

Unless you find solid footing in your consistent, unshakable Self, you’ll be thrown off balance and lose your way. You’ll change your mind at the first resistance. You’ll become overconfident when praise abounds. And you’ll make poor decisions, just to feel better.

Connecting with your Self is the key to maintaining your equanimity, your peace, your clarity, and your judgment, even in the face of changing circumstances and pressures.

Resilience gives you the space to recover yourself, your best self, your higher self. You get to bounce back.

I was amazed that I bounced back so quickly after our energy company turned our power back on. Yet, I’ve decided I need to recommit to my regular meditation practice. Maybe you’d like to consider such a resolve for yourself, too.

It’s been out of print for 15 or more years but now it’s back.  It’s available as a paperback as well as a range of digital formats for different devices.  The design of this edition is modelled as closely as possible on the original release from 1997.

Electronic versions:

Paperback version:

Any bookshop, whether online or bricks and mortar, can order copies of Teach Yourself Yoga.  Just ask and quote ISBN: 978-0-6487945-0-9.

Please send me feedback about the book.  I’d love to hear about any errors or problems with eBooks on various devices.  And please review the book wherever you get it.  Reviews will help more people discover the book.

The Previous 3 Posts

Five Minute Poses: Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

Five Minute Poses: Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana: Low Back First Aid
I find Setu Bandha Sarvangasana an invaluable pose for the way it helps counteract low back compression. In my world, lower back ache is a result of gardening, long drives or sitting at my computer.
Part of why the pose is so good for my lower back and sacrum is because it stretches the abdomen, a part of my body that tenses when my back is tight. […]

read more
Five Minute Poses: Supta Baddha Konasana

Five Minute Poses: Supta Baddha Konasana

Supta Baddha Konasana: An All-Rounder
Years ago I did a 10-day Vipassana meditation retreat. The only yoga pose I did during the course was Supta Baddha Konasana. It helped balance many hours spent in sitting and walking meditation. When my meditation energy was flagging, Supta Baddha Konasana served to make me feel cradled and deeply nourished.
How to Do It
Props you will need: a bolster and a 3-fold blanket. The reason for using props is that you can let them do the work. […]

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Five Minute Poses: Supported Child's Pose

Five Minute Poses: Supported Child's Pose

For years, I wondered why this posture is called Child’s Pose. Sometimes babies and young children will end up in this posture and even sleep in it. But more to the point, children appear to be at their sweetest and quietest when they’re asleep. And, perhaps never more so than in Child’s Pose.

read more

Classes and Workshops

I’m currently teaching two weekly classes on the Mid-North Coast of New South Wales where I live. I also lead workshops here and in other parts of Australia.

Visit the Vault!

I’ve been regularly contributing to this blog since 2009.  There are now over 1250 posts about a very wide range of topics. Click here to explore.

Yoga Resources

Books, videos, teachers, websites, places to buy really hot yoga clothes (kidding), and generally anything I find that I think others might find useful.

A Bit About Eve

I’ve been teaching since I was 35. I’m now 73. In that time there have been a few changes. Click here if you want to find out a bit about my life.

Media

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.

Shop

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.