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A Light's Gone Out, But the Fire Still Burns

A Light's Gone Out, But the Fire Still Burns

 

In 1978 I fell under the spell of a yoga teacher named Martyn Jackson. Martyn taught a kind of yoga that he’d learned in Pune, India from his teacher, B.K.S. Iyengar.He alleged that, in the sixties, he was one of few western students to study with Mr. Iyengar.
Martyn went to Pune from New Zealand to undertake one-to-one lessons with Mr. Iyengar. He had a story about arriving on Mr. […]

Yoga is for Everyone: Let's Prove It!

Yoga is for Everyone: Let's Prove It!

We yogis are a force worldwide. Those who practice yoga represent about 3% of the adult population in Australia. The numbers in the United States are likely to be even higher. We who do yoga can do good and we do.
It makes me happy that we yogis want to give back after having received so much from our practice. We join organisations with a social conscience like Yoga Off the Mat and Into the World and Care2Causes. […]

The Old and New of Yoga

The Old and New of Yoga

image via Pinterest
Yoga is elastic. It stretches to fit you now, and then, miraculously, it will give you a perfect fit in the future. All you have to do is jump on for the ride and stay on.
The best thing about yoga for me is the very way it is defined: union. And also that it so naturally cultivates community and connection.
Yesterday I had breakfast with three old students of mine. I don’t mean they are old. They are younger than I am. Actually, we’ve all grown older since we started on the yoga path. […]

Vive La Yoga Difference

Vive La Yoga Difference

In a world where yoga is practiced everywhere and at all times, global travelers who want to sample different schools and styles are fortunate to have countless classes at the tips of their fingers.
This last week I experienced an unimaginable contrast in the two yoga classes I attended, one in Boston, the other in New York City.
Jamaica Plain (Boston) is a lively neighborhood where ethnic assimilation is still going on. Eateries include African, Asian and European cuisines. […]

When Adjectives Flex Their Muscles

When Adjectives Flex Their Muscles

As a writer, I’ve attempted to follow the advice of Mark Twain: When you catch adjectives in your writing, kill them…. Well, not all, but most, so that any you use will be valuable.
But what’s a writer to do when she’s been part of a most remarkable and memorable week. I must remark and memorialize, and I fear I must even adopt a hyperbolic style. And so, here goes my account, no modifying words barred.
This last week I observed and participated in my niece Christa’s wedding. […]

The Yoga Therapy Vision

The Yoga Therapy Vision

I’ve just finished my stint of teaching in the Byron Bay Yoga Therapy Course, which will continue until next week.
My contribution to the course is in the area of “Working with the Older Client”, i.e., what are the complaints of the Aged and how can yoga help.
Even though the above photo of the group shows us behaving like silly mugs, these trainees are very inspiring. Yogis decide to train as teachers because of a huge love of yoga. […]

The Bliss of Hanging Out with the Goddesses

The Bliss of Hanging Out with the Goddesses

I’m a tribal person, an extrovert who likes being around people I like, many of whom are women.
For the last eight years, I’ve lived with my husband and two other couples in a co-housing situation. This means that I am blessed to have two other women at my fingertips, who offer female fun, understanding and life skills.
Over 34 years of directing yoga schools, teaching classes, and training teachers, women have formed the majority of my students. That’s yoga for you. I asked a male swami one time why he thought yoga attracted more women than men. […]

What If We All Pull Together?

What If We All Pull Together?

More than 25 years ago, I saw a movie that crystallised a deep longing I’d held perhaps all my life. You might remember the film – Witness? If you don’t remember the film, you might remember a relatively young Harrison Ford playing a cop who has to hide out in an Amish community. He’s deemed an outsider but the community takes him in anyway and protects him.
One particular scene did me in. The Harrison Ford character participates with the Amish people in a ‘barn raising’. […]

Yoga Outreach – Good for You and Me and All of Us

Yoga Outreach – Good for You and Me and All of Us

via pinterest

The definition of yoga is union. Everyone knows that. Yoga is about cultivating a feeling, a being with, all that is – sentient beings, the planet and the universe. But, let’s face it, in our busy lives, we don’t always practice this aim of yoga.

Happily, at the same time yoga popularity has swept the globe, outreach programs are proliferating, too, as a way of practising connection with others. Witness Sean Corn’s extraordinary activism work with ‘Yoga Off the Mat Into the World’ and B.K.S. […]

How Can I Know What I Think Till I See What I Say?*

How Can I Know What I Think Till I See What I Say?*

Photo by Julie Slavin
On January 1st of 2010, I launched the “Yoga Suits Her” blog. That was 999 posts ago and lots of writing practice under the bridge.
Writing has parallels with yoga practice. Do enough of it and something changes. It may that your technique improves, or you will get more life experience which gets poured back onto the page or into what you do on your mat. Writing or practising yoga over a long time will change you, you can be sure. […]

Sight Reading 101

Sight Reading 101

I’ve just completed a two and a half day workshop in northern New South Wales. For a change, the workshop wasn’t about yoga or relationships; it was entitled ‘ Reading Music For Singers’.
I’m proud of myself that I enrolled for and participated in a seminar for which I had virtually no background knowledge. Granted I sing once a week in a community choir and have done so for three years. But what I was learning this weekend was music theory, a field in which I’m a raw beginner. […]

Inspiring Each Other

Inspiring Each Other

“From just one spark we can create one fire. And from one fire we can create one light. From that one light, we create vision and that vision is how we share just one spark. […]

Singly or Ensemble, Yoga is Good

Singly or Ensemble, Yoga is Good

I was practising yoga in the Yoga Shed early on Monday with my friend and student, Julie. It was a pleasure to share the experience of doing yoga practice with Julie which I often get to do with others from our household. We’re fortunate to have our own yoga studio a few steps from the house, so I can just roll out of bed and onto the mat, even while I’m still in my pyjamas.
Some mornings, I practice on my own, single-mindedly, silently, and happily. When I have company, we might enjoy a chat about things non-yogic. […]

Yoga = Art

Yoga = Art

 

Years ago I had the bright idea of doing a yoga demonstration at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. I think that asana practice is a beautiful art form and people enjoy viewing it. I was too shy to pull off this caper on my own, so I talked Annie Cocksedge of Centennial Yoga into joining me.
Off we trundled on a sunny but chilly spring day with our yoga mats. I wish I had a photo of us from back then, but here’s a pic of the Art Gallery. […]

Making Yoga a Life Partner

Making Yoga a Life Partner

I read a great article this week in which the author asserted that yoga teachers should be teaching their students to do personal practice – not encouraging them to come classes on-goingly.
That notion resonated with me so completely that it stopped me in my tracks. Despite the fact that I agree with the idea that students should practice yoga outside of classes, I haven’t been teaching them to do this. I’ve been in a state of resignation.
I’ve been teaching in the Yoga Shed on Mitchells Island for over three years now. […]

Winter's Here: May As Well Put Out the Welcome Mat

Winter's Here: May As Well Put Out the Welcome Mat

It’s so much more satisfying to have the luxury of a whole weekend to spend with friends instead of trying to fit in a meal together in the city. City people should probably be having more sleep-overs.
I thought that, since Daniel and I didn’t have a winter holiday planned this year, we would be feeling the weight of the winter season – and a wet one at that. But no… […]

Make Every Day Count

Make Every Day Count

I came across a great post on The Elephant Journal entitled: “Exercise & Opportunity: Why You Should Throw Away Your Bucket List & Stop Wasting Your Life” by Jennifer S. White.
The author reminded me of two things that people of a certain age like me should consider – get plenty of exercise. The Victorian Government Better Health Channel says:
“Only 1 in 10 Australians over 50 exercises enough to gain any cardiovascular benefit. […]

Yoga in A Good 'Ole Aussie Shed

Yoga in A Good 'Ole Aussie Shed

For any of you non-native Australian people out there, a Shed (with a capital “S”) is an Aussie institution. In the country, Sheds act as primary residences for people until they can afford the time, energy and money to build a house. If all of those things don’t fall in place, living in a shed might be a long-term proposition.
More often than not, the Shed is the place that a bloke can get away from his missus and the kids for a bit of peace and mind. […]

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