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One good habit
The long term effects of massage
Famous yoga teachers
Headstand and me
Teaching meditation to kids with malas

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We are all on a quest for meaning and alignment

One good habit

I read an article recently that discussed why yoga might be so beneficial for those who practice it.  Yoga practitioners will claim all sorts of health benefits, from increased longevity to improved mental acuity, to improvements in almost all markers of physical and emotional health.  Not to be a skeptic, but this does sometimes seem like more than some regular stretching and balancing and chanting a few Oms could really accomplish. But ask anyone with an established yoga practice and they will agree- and their lives will show- that yoga has profound benefits.

The long term effects of massage

Massage works very deeply and usually also slowly.  The muscles of the body are innervated by nerves that listen to them and also talk to them.  Massage works to get that system of muscles and nerves communicating more clearly- and more peacefully.  If we take this analogy a bit further, it could be said that pain in the body is loud. Massage clears up some discord and creates some space and opens up a dialogue in the body between some parts that have not been working well together.

Famous yoga teachers

I am headed to a weekend yoga study with a highly skilled, famous yoga teacher. A yoga teacher star. The class is in a few weeks and I am giddy to be going,  I have watched videos this teacher made and webinars.  I think I will learn a whole whole lot. 

But today I looked on the part of the description of the class that says "required reading". I noticed there was quite a bit of it. And then I noticed all the books were written by the teacher of the class. 

Okay.  So I looked on Amazon and found they were not for sale there.

Headstand and me

Teaching meditation to kids with malas

My cousin is a pastor in a progressive Baptist church in town. They have summer camp for the neighborhood kids where they learn to love reading. And there are some bible lessons.
And there are some creativity and skill classes, too. They asked me to teach the kids a short little lesson about meditation. I thought that would be lots of fun.

I decided immediately we should make mala beads.

Mala beads are from India.They are used in counted chants and meditation. In traditional malas, there will be 108 beads and then one special bead at the end that is not counted that marks the beginning and ending spot where you turn around.

Yoga Graduate School

Studying yoga at Asheville Yoga Center for several weekends over several years.  Sounds like a cool idea.  Okay.  I think I will. 

That was the thought a few years ago.  I had studied and got my yoga teacher certification. Now I wanted to get my advanced certification.

One of my fellow teachers introduced me in a class she was teaching by saying I was studying yoga in Asheville going to yoga graduate school.  I loved the way she put that.

So why would anyone go to yoga graduate school?

Does the mat make the yogi?

I had an injury last fall that made my yoga practice much more careful.  I could not land hard for months, so no jumping or falling.  It was a practice changer.  It opened me up to Restorative yoga and to Yin yoga.  I learned a great deal in the process.

But slowing down has its price, too.  I lost some momentum and started having a hard time motivating myself to get to class.  Also it was cold over the winter.  We humans seek comfort and I found myself reading about yoga more than going to class.

Helpfulness

I recently needed help.  I asked for it, which was hard.  And I got it.  Which was wonderful.

I was amazed at how the people I know who are helpful to others seem to be the happiest.  

I wonder why that is.

They are not the most successful or the most popular.  But they are the happiest.  Which is a pretty good sign of inward success. 

Restorative Yoga

This past weekend, I traveled to Asheville for a restorative yoga workshop.  Blankets and bolsters and straps and blocks and all sorts of props make restorative yoga very delightful.  It is easy to slip away and become altered and relaxed during such a class.  Intentional relaxation. 

So needless to say, I loved it.  As did everyone else in my class.  We all got younger and younger as the weekend progressed.  I felt my shoulder melt open and move more freely than it has in years after just laying around in these comfortable positions all weekend long.

Making a plan

Years ago, I read a book about making a plan and making it come to life.  It was a book about goal setting.  About manifestation.

I got that book after going through an old file in a drawer and finding a piece of paper dated seven years earlier (!) which stated my goal of becoming a certified yoga teacher.  It was still my goal and yet I had done really nothing to make it happen.

So I ordered the book.  It was called "Wishcraft" and it had a dreamy cover, having been printed in the early eighties, I think.
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