My friend Alexandra has recently started a great blog called I Love Yogis. I Love Yogis is a site dedicated to showcasing and celebrating the global community of yoga teachers. The founding intention of the I Love Yogis project is to glorify all the hard-working, big-hearted teachers in the world who have the best interests of others at the center of their life’s work. While not everyone’s dharma is to act as a yoga teacher, we can all certainly cultivate yogic qualities and appreciate those who live their lives in service of those qualities. The belief is that the more we converse around these traits and the people who embody them, the better to aid the shift in global consciousness and keep the snowball of love rolling.
I am honored that she asked me to participate in this project. As each new interview unfolds, I am constantly awed by the different answers and perspectives, and all of the ways we find our Selves in the practice of yoga. If you are interested in reading my interview, I thank you for taking the time to if you choose and welcome your comments, as always.
Here I am in the very middle of the life that I’ve always known, and the life I’m about to begin as new mom. I am sitting on the fence and seeing both sides, but not comfortably grounded in either. It’s a very unsettling feeling and a very unsettling time, even though there is so much good to look forward to.
There are so many different forms of this in between place, existing in greater forms such as becoming a new parent, or lesser forms such as right after a yoga practice… you have just spent an hour or so breathing into your body, and that place – right as savasana ends and you are cued to rise up again into a comfortable seat and an aware mind. You are in between that quiet and still space you’ve just created after practicing, and the space before the rest of your day quickly kicks in.
We are so lucky that we even have these subtle yet important moments. As yoga practitioners, and as aware beings living through life, we sometimes get caught up in the moments. After all, we are human. Hopefully we have the ability to then realize we are caught up, and then take a step back and reassess.
Today I have reassessed where I currently am. I have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of my first child, a baby boy, who is comfortably nestled in my womb at this time. I don’t blame him, as I’m sure the safety and warmth that the womb provides is the best place on earth. So in letting my anxiety get the best of me in certain moments, and while trying to stay busy and keep things moving, I am the farthest thing from relaxed. Even though I am engaging in “relaxing” activities such as acupuncture, reflexology, walking, etc… This imminent birth and life changing experience that is looming overhead is way more palpable than any of the relaxation I am trying to embody.
Today I took myself onto my mat. I played music loud, closed my eyes and allowed my body to move into shapes that it was thirsty for. What a humbling experience it is to be a pregnant body as someone who is “so in touch” with what the body thinks it needs. Sometimes we over calculate what we “should be” or “could be” doing during these times of in between, when really all we “need” to be doing is listening with intense ears, not by trying to control outcomes we will never be able to.
The mat took me back into my body and my breath and transcended me into a place of peace… the first real time I’ve felt peaceful in a while. I lost myself in the beats in the background and breathed into the backs of my legs… my shoulders and arms. It felt amazing. I felt inspired enough to put some thoughts together in the form of this blog and figured I’d share, as it’s not that often that our awareness is palpable enough to articulate.
Yu – Ishq
Muladhara – Vive
Weather Storm – Massive Attack
Chopping the Woods – East Forest
Song 2 – DJ Krush
Apana – East Forest
My Angel Rocks Back and Forth – Four Tet
Launch – Rocket Empire
Bhakti – Ishq
Walk the Walk – East Forest
Uno – Ludovico Einaudi
Energia – Ishq
A New Life – Ishq
Enjoy the latest and greatest music compilation for yoga and more!
A Fuoco – Ludovico Einaudi
Die Junge Nonne – Antony Peebles
Dorval – Julia Kent
Composure – Bernhard Fleischmann
Sel – Smadj
Carnivores Unite – Blockhead
Grito Nocturno – El Percal
Summer Haze – Shapeshifter
Within – Daft Punk
My Sweet Lord – Joel Harrison
The Light – Album Leaf
Meditation, Transformation – Various Artists
Breathing In – Shaman’s Dream & Craig Kohland
The Mouthchew, Stars of the Lid
Twenty Two Fourteen, The Album Leaf
Nothing Thought, Sonnymoon
Beatific, East Forest
Subterranean Sanctuary, Desert Dwellers
Cantamilla, Tranquility Bass
Grandmothersphere, East Forest
Come To Me, Björk
Breath, Helen Jane Long
Mirror, Helen Jane Long
Samadhi, Shaman’s Dream Project
1/1, Brian Eno
You Don’t Know What You Mean to Me – Booka Shade
Peaceful Air (Album Mix) – Desert Dwellers
Four-Day Interval – Tortoise
Sel – Smadj
Days Gone By – Eastern Sun & John Kelley
The Nomad – Niraj Chag
Send and Receive – Tycho
Cosmo-Bali-tan – Prem Joshua
Computer Love – Techmaster P.E.B
Feeling Good – My Brightest Diamond
Roads – Portishead
To the Evening Child – Stephan Micus
Morning Meditation – Ali Akbar Khan
I created a new playlist today, and I’m more inspired to share it right away after chatting with wonderful students from tonight’s class! I’m glad that people notice and enjoy the playlists I love putting together. Enjoy this one! xo
Wish U Were Here (Acapella) / Desert Moon – Bliss / Dubtribe Sound System
Alucidnation – Skygazer (3002 Remix)
San Francisco (Original Mix) – beGun
I Had a List and I Lost It – The Drift
Spring Vibes – Echophlekz
Trilogy Sonata: II Act III (from Satyagraha) – Floraleda Sacchi & Phillip Glass
Into Dust – Mazzy Star
Halving the Compass – Helios
Memoires de Futur – Rene Aubry
That Finger on Your Temple Is the Barrel of My Raygun – Stars of the Lid
Egon & Wally Embrace and Say Farewell – Rachel’s
December Hunting for Vegetarian Fuckface – Stars of the Lid
** Stars of the Lid has VERY strange names of songs! (Just realized as I was typing them out)!
Everyone loves music. Music is everywhere, it pervades our world. Everyone knows music has power and importance. But have you ever stopped to consider why? What it is about music that gives it so much power and importance?
Here are seven top reasons:
Music is a universal language. It inspires common human feelings and bridges gaps between cultures that spoken languages cannot. It brings people together and creates universal community.
Music inspires and evokes emotion in a healthy way. It touches our emotional being and evokes moods and feelings that are sometimes difficult to express. It can change a difficult mood and make it happy or excited; it can change a light mood and take it deeper and more profound.
Music enhances learning and makes it more enjoyable. It is scientifically proven that music enhances brain functioning. Playing music uses many brain functions simultaneously: motor control, imagination, hearing, sight, memory, etc.
Music creates ambiance. You can use music in any environment to enhance and augment what is already there. Consider the difference between a party with music and one without, or a sporting event, or a movie, or a romantic restaurant, or driving in your car…
Music is spiritual. Music is of the spirit and inspirational to the spirit. All religions use music to help express spiritual values, and all religions use music to uplift the spirit.
Music sparks the imagination. It invokes mental imagery and inner scenery that opens the mind to amazing insight and spans the distance between the stars.
Music is a simple pleasure. All it takes is your ears and your imagination.
I believe that at the center of the phenomenon of the magic that music creates is the spiritual aspect. Music is a gift from God, a sacred expression of the Universal Life Force Energy that creates us all.
As a NYC based yoga teacher and massage therapist, there are times when I feel lit up and on fire with my work and my place in the world… there are also other times that I don’t feel that way so much. It all comes back to the very basic principles of self acceptance, I believe. (So easy, right?) More like YEAH RIGHT… In my opinion, self acceptance and accepting where we are and when we are where we are, are some of the very basic but extremely hard tasks to take on.
How can we continue to find our passions in life? As some days do tend to feel more inspiring than others, what do you do on the days where you’re left feeling uninspired? Do you have places you can go or people you can see or even blogs to read if you’re needing a little bit more UUMPH?
I’ve come to realize over time, that sometimes it feels like a seasonal thing… while other times it might feel more personal based on what’s happening in life specifically during a given time, or maybe it might even feel hormonal… With all of the above being said, it’s hard to switch a feeling off when it comes around, whatever that feeling may be.
I have worked endlessly to try to understand how to avoid these feelings, but they are natural. It’s important that we have tools to access in our toolbox so that when emotions surface, we can learn to rise above or take ourselves out of whatever we’re feeling. After all, E-motions are just that – they are feelings that run through us. They don’t stay, and they are never the same from one minute to the next. That’s sort of the beauty of it all.
A few things I like to do when I’m feeling uninspired or like a need an extra jolt of something…
1. Search for new music – creating the perfect playlist for a class really gives me great pleasure. Music in general lifts me up when I am feeling down… so I put on a good song, play it loud enough to cover up the thoughts in my own mind and see how that works.
2. Read an inspiring quote or passage from a spiritual text or book I know will have the words I need.
3. Talk to a good friend about what’s going on. Sometimes just a listening ear, and to feel heard is enough to let whatever is passing through move on.
4. Listen to my body and my mood. I try not to force myself to change or do anything at all. I remind myself that this, too, shall pass and not to be too hard on myself.
We all do the best that we can on a daily basis. Trust that you are doing your best and don’t be so hard on yourself. It’s in the quieter, lighter moments in life that we can look back on the darker moments and remind ourselves that it’s no so bad.
“It will all be ok in the end. If it’s not ok, it’s not the end.”