Friday, March 20, 2009

Balance Is Not a Static State - Spring Equinox

MARCH 20 - Today is Spring Equinox which carries with it many symbolic meanings besides being a day where the amount of daylight and night time are equal.
The theme of balance is one I often use in my practice of teaching. My experience of balance has been deepened in my studies with Shiva Rea, my teacher, who weaves in primarily ayurvedic concepts.
As western creatures with many expectations and endless desires, I contend that we have been conditioned to find the magic bullet or the instant solution. Yoga, however, teaches us that balance is not a static state and varies depending on our current state when we got onto our mat or meditation cushion.
So on this Spring Equinox, allow your inner teacher to speak and tailor your practice to find inner and outer balance.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

There Is So Much Magnificence

The title comes from a song on Shiva Rea's most recent compilation Yoga Sol.

I was in Tulum, Mexico last week co-leading a retreat from Sunday, February 22 to Saturday, February 28 with my friend Deborah Spielman.

Retreats are a great way to drop into a state of relaxation as you get separated from your daily life (wherever that is) and usually stay in comfortable accomodations with food prepared for you.

We mostly had picture perfect days with warm temperatures in the 80 degrees Fahrenheit though it did get windy in the afternoons.

Teaching and practicing yoga in a retreat environment is ideal because it takes less effort to let go of stress and truly enter a meditative state whether it is sitting in meditation or is practicting asana.

I contend that it is in this state that we get to experience expansive qualities that is a contrast to the sometimes contractive qualities of daily living with its challenges.

My current explorations in Kashmir Saivism remind me of Shiva's dual, non-dual quality of expansion and contraction, and revealment and concealment. I consider myself still a student of Kashmir Saivism, thus my wisdom is not at a state to articulately express this idea further, but I return to the title "There Is So Much Magnificence."

I do know that to be true and it's just a matter of continuing to practice (whether it's meditation or asana or both), then you truly believe from the inside-out.