Happy 4th of July!
I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.
I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—
I, too, am America.
"Less Stress" Has Launched
I've been working on this book for almost 3 years, and was pretty gung-ho about it until my son Sam died unexpectedly. His tragic death really threw me for a loop, and 2 years later, I still have some seriously bad moments. But thanks to my yoga practice, I survived, got stronger, and was able to get back to work on the book. During the last six months of working on the manuscript,
National Poetry Month
have gay pom-poms.
There is not a spot or a stain
on their satin toes or their sides.
All night they lie together
under her bed’s edge.
Shivering I catch sight of them
and smile, in the morning.
Later I watch them
descending the stair,
hurrying through the doors
and round the table,
with a shake of their gay pom-poms!
And I talk to them
in my secret mind
out of pure happiness.
I wanted to share this wonderful poem today, since it's the last day of National Poetry Month. I was going to write a poem, but his is better.
Do you ever use poetry or journaling to express the inexpressible? I am a compulsive journal writer, which I've been doing for over 50 years. I find it helps me to access thoughts and emotions that I am not clearly aware of. It helps inspire me with new perspectives. Answers to problems present themselves, as if by magic!
Take a moment to write something. Maybe choose 3 words to get you started--how about
Or choose some words of your own. See what comes up. It's your meditation tool for the day!
Buddha Body Yoga
Big Yoga for Less Stress
I finally have reviewed the final revisions for my new book, Big Yoga for Less Stress. As with any important endeavour, this book has taken a long time to come to fruition. In the midst of it all, my darling son Sam died unexpectedly, and there I was, having tomarshall all my Yoga techniques and practices to upift me, to help me get through the heartbreaking work of grieving the loss of a loved one.
There really isn't anything quite so gut-wrenching as losing a child. I hope it never happens to you. But it seems it's in my blood--my mother lost my sister before her 40th birthday, my grandmother lost her daughter at a young age. In fact, my great grand-mother had lost ALL her family by the time she left the body--she had outlived them all. She was a very spiritual woman, and took solace in prayer and poetry. I hope to share her strength and endurance.
You don't have to twist yourself into a pretzel to get the benefits of Yoga. The new book offers the most benign of stretches, some simple breathing practices, and meditations that can help you navigate the horrors of whatever life throws at you. Take some time for yourself. Stretch out, breathe a little. Meditation will begin to happen if you give yourself the opportunity to sit quietly.
This is Yoga. Yoga isn't about standing onyour head or assuming the position of a pretzel. It's about learning to accept life on life's terms, with love and grace. I pray for that grace every day, as I come to the 2nd anniversary of Sam's death. It's not an easy path, but it's simple. It's about surrendering--accepting--whatever comes. I'm a little shakey with this at the moment, but everything changes, and tomorrow, or the next day, I'll get caught up again the the joys and blessings of the Yogic lifestyle, and I'll rejoice once again.
Let me know if you've suffered from something similar--let's cry together
28 Days of Sun Salutations
I hope to keep it up all throughout February, but I'm realizing what a big responsibility it is! 28 different versions of the Salute to the Sun is a challenge to my imagination and my expertise! Of course, I originally thought I was providing this for you, my students and fans, but now I realize I'm the one getting all the benefit!
It's so inspiring! It's only been a week, but I'm feeling stronger every day. even though it's taking a big chunk out of my morning, I'm loving it. Because...once I finish with the sun salutations, I just naturally want to get on the mat and do an inversion, or a twist, or
5 Clues You're in the Wrong Yoga Class
February 11, 2014
Have you ever regretted a yoga class? It's not a nice feeling. Here's some tips to help you avoid the "icks".
1. You feel out of place
This one's a no-brainer. If the yoga teacher looks at you funny, or says something mean, like "Come back after you've lost weight", then RUN! Or, if the vibe says you're a freak, you'll feel it. Don't stay for that class. The room should ooze warmth, compassion and acceptance.
2. You're the only person over 30
Younger folks can do a more vigorous, faster-paced practice. Unless you're already in tip-top shape, look for classes with folks your own age.
3. It costs over $15.00
Well, maybe in New York or LA classes are over $15.00, but don't choose a yoga class just because it's pricey. Sometimes the best yoga teachers are the ones teaching in the trenches--instead of a fancy Yoga studio, they teach at the Y or a church where overhead is low. Those teachers need your support too!
Managing Stress With Yoga Buddies—Sangha
Isolation is a tragedy of modern life. We’re so often on our computers, the only people we connect wiare our barista, the check-out guy, and our car mechanic. This social isolation impairs immune function and causes inflammation in the body—think arthritis, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes.
Yoga for Empowerment
This resonates with me so profoundly. When I first started taking pictures of my plump, menopausal body for the first Big Yoga DVD, I was taking a similar stance. Yes, I got fat. Did that prevent me from doing yoga? NO! Did it prevent me from having a healthy relationship to my body? NO WAY! Because I just felt so damn good.
Yoga and Body Image
Yoga and Body Image is a collection of essays written by yoga teachers and practicioners, compiled by Yoga teacher, Anna Guest-Jelley, creator of Curvy Yoga, and her pal, Melanie Klein, a professor of Sociology and Women's Studies. The stories they have collected are personal. They are honest and brave. They are about loving your body, even when your body doesn't look like the teacher's body, or a model's body, or some ideal of a woman's body that doesn't have curves, or lumps, or bosoms. I am loving this book and feel tremendous respect for the sometimes heartbreaking, often revealing, and always insightful stories.