Every so often, I take my own classes. Either by tape recording, reading notes, or videos. What I have noticed is true progress. Not the kind of progress measured by getting better at what I do, but progress measured by my ability to let go and enjoy who I was then and who I am now. Everyone has heard that we are our own worst critic. We sometimes hear that that is what drives people to accomplish goals. I can see that. But what I miss from that type of drive is the belief that what I share matters. All too often, I find that my critiques for myself need more gratitude, because they take away from my feelings of credibility. How many more people would openly share their heart song if they did not worry about the little details that MIGHT be taking away from their works? Centering my intentions on equanimity while I reflect on my works brings a sense of honor to my experience for where I was, regardless of how unpolished it may have been. When considering the duality of enjoying the journey and constructive criticisms~ I will continue to look at my "mistakes" with more ease. I don't want to look blindly towards progress if it makes me miss out on who I was and the authenticity of the moment. We can set goals to direct our energies effectively, but never really own many parts of our future. The future is a gift that we may or may not receive in this human experience. How can one truly appreciate the rawness of the human experience without loving the original form that we have polished ourselves from? What I have gained in the last seven years is not knowledge. It is the experience of appreciation and deeper humbleness for the sacredness of everything whether originally seen as good or bad. I will learn to find compassion for myself, so that I can give it wholeheartedly to others. ॐ Namaste dear friends and pat yourself on the back for... yourself. It is good to be you!
My words may fail me sometimes, but my heart has not. This online class is a blast from the past, that I visited on my mat and in my mind today.
I recently had a friend ask this:
Sarah, can u tell me the origin behind yoga? like ugh I want to start it and I was telling my friend and she had a fit told me yoga was a worshiping of deities... It was my understanding yoga was centering your core?
I bet lots of us have the same question!!! Here is my reply.
Yoga is not Dogmatic in nature. Attached is an article for further reading. Yoga is anything you want it to be or not be from centering, exercise, lifestyle, moral code, and so much more. There are so many different styles of yoga, but few of them that are available in the US are teaching worship of Hindu deities... however there may be Hindu figure statues in the studio to symbolize the studios core values. Also, something that throws people off, is the use of chanting OM or telling each other Namaste. Both of which are simple and beautiful mantras aka intentions that are totally worth googeling their meaning.
Is Yoga a Religion?
Yoga article: Four prominent yogis discuss religion and yoga.
We are studying the first and second chapter of the Bhagavad Gita this week. These chapters are about our distractions against evolved consciousness or being, and how yoga can be used as a tool to let go of false realities and discover our essential nature. The translation of this yogic text that I suggest for you to read is Eknath Eswaran's.
Some questions to consider today after reading:
1. Why should you study life's questions?
2. What is the war within?
3. How do your senses affect your perspective?
4. In the search for freedom are we accountable to others?
5. How does the path of yoga bring clarity into our life's?
Theme for yoga practice: Let go and welcome. All you have is this moment so enjoy it as it is... Let go of the desire to change, stop, or keep anything. Just experience now without creating a story around it... When you are caught up in self indulging pleasures you are controlled and unsettled by your desires and aversions. Yoga (in this case pratyahara) is a tool we use to create evenness of the mind and shed light on our essential nature. Here is my diagram of the war we experience within, via our senses, between our perspective and our essential nature.
Salt Lake's sweetest and most vivacious hula hoop vixens are going to light their hoops on fire at the Element 11 festival this Summer!
Sarah Squared (Lux and Lotus) have the pleasure of directing a hoop dance piece in the Utah Fire Conclaves Ascension Effigy Burn. Our bit is about the Manipura/ Solar Plexus Chakra.
Chakras are part of an integrated wellness system that helps us understand our humanity. Work with the solar plexus chakra is symbolic of our will.
All human beings are born with the ability to do many things in their life but as we are raised we become domesticated in a sense that we have cravings and become jealous, shameful, and scared. We can be foolish and sad because we are unsatisfied and brainwashed to be locked into our physicality. This causes stress and is harmful to health and well being. Imbalance in this area of your life will leave you depleted, insecure, and scared.
I have deeply enjoyed my recent work with this chakra. It is concerned with the physical body and how we perceive the world with our senses. Working with these energy's have made me realize a happy, loving, and confident nature. Our mission statement became I choose, I intend, I will in the dance group. What can you choose today that you have control of? What is your will? Is it for the greatest good?
Work with what you have and notice that what you can do becomes bigger and bigger. Open more doors. You can do anything if you stay with the problem long enough to recognize and honer what it takes.
Together this summer we can gain mastery over our body, our dreams, and enter into the true spirit of our lives with these practices!
More on the solar plexus chakra
Pantanjali says that through control of Manipura mastery of the body is achieved. This is important to prepare your body to be a temple for the spirit.
It connects us to the sun
The seed Mantra is RAM. Say it loud and proud three times RRRAAAAMMMMM :)
It rules digestion
You must surrender to reality as it is in order to experience your personal power fully.
This chakra prepares you for the work of the heart!~
Power over others is the dark side of this chakra.
It's element is fire, color is yellow.
overcome addictions to help you ascend
Yoga poses to balance:
Forward folds, cow face pose, twists, camel, crow
Emphasis; drawing the navel in and up
WHEVERE YOU GO, THERE YOU ARE!
Mindfulness is the opposite of taking life for granted. It's is realizing that the ordinary moments in life are actually extraordinary moments that should be honored.
This last month I have been focusing on becoming more aware of my roles in life and the need to create a system to organize my happenings and portfolio. It inspired me as I saw pieces to the puzzle of my life create one, harmonious, changing vision on a website.
How do you show reverence to your influence? How do you communicate with others? Do you speak even if your voice quivers?
Here is a good place to start...
Take a moment today to treat yourself to your to favorite drink. Try to eliminate distractions.
Find somewhere that is quiet and uncluttered, maybe outside on a porch...
Don't take a sip quite yet...
Sit up straight, close your eyes, take three deep breaths...
Now take a moment to hold in your awareness feelings of gratitude for all the things that made this moment possible....
Imagine that this is THE FINEST version of that particular drink ever.... Imagine the smell, taste, and texture....
How was it made? What exactly went on to get that drink here?
Stick your nose in the cup and inhale through the nose deeply... Note anything that comes to mind.
hold the inhale
and take a tiny sip. Just enough to swish around the whole tongue...
How does the drink affect your tongue? What parts feel stimulated? What is the temperature? How do your gums, esophagus, and nose feel? Is it bitter, sweet, savory, or salty?
Swallow and Exhale through the nose completely...
Simply notice what there is to notice what there is to notice...the temperature... The smell....How did that sip make you feel? Can you figure out what ingredients are in it and how they were prepared?
Return your awareness to your breath... as you continue to focus on the experience of that drink..
Either Repeat this with a fuller size sip as many times as you would like or bring your awareness back to the area around you....
Become used to giving your attention completely over to what you are doing each moment. Devote yourself to the art of consuming it... The art of drinking, making, the art of listening, etc... I challenge you to do this with at least three of your normal tasks this week! Eating, Grooming, and Listening. Write down reminders in those areas that you normally do these things if possable.