Yoga Feed

Meditation : Meeting Your Spirit Guides ~ Work Your Magic!





I have met many of my own spirit guides over the years...through guided journeys such as this one, yoga and other moving meditations or quite spontaneously, such as the time in  the Grand Tetons when my husband and I were circled repeatedly by a pair of low flying eagles. St. Germain and Archangel Michael seem to be present alot and the lion has been with me since birth and never leaves. He is a constant source of strength, wisdom and comfort. (And periodically the inspiration behind my hair and wardrobe!)

So I invite you to sit back, relax and take a journey to find some of your own. What you see and who you meet may surprise you!  


Ecstatic Traditions: Yoga = Bliss



I love Yoga so much and I try to incorporate some poses into my life everyday because it's so very relaxing and yesterday was no exception. It had been a particularly tough day for me; a board that I run literally ripped me into emotional shreds for presenting an idea at a meeting that was too scary for them to see all of the possibilities. By the time I got home all that I could do was crawl into bed, pull the covers over my head and just cry. I was really taking it personally and letting it throw me out of balance.  

Jim called at about 5:00 and said ," I want to take you on a date tonight....lets go have some Italian food and a glass of wine, but first lets go to a Yoga class!" I really felt like I didn't want to even get out of bed but I trust him. He always knows how to make me feel better. So I grabbed my Yoga mat and  went out to the car.

As soon as we walked in and rolled out our mats I began to feel better. It was a basic class which was good because I didn't want to work hard, I just wanted to relax and enjoy myself. The instructor turned down the lights , led us through a series of simple stretches and then many relaxing poses. Halfway through the class I realized that I'd just let go of the worst of the day. We finished with a long Shivasana and several energy and color meditations and I walked back into the locker room where I was greeted by a very obese woman who I'd never met. We began to talk for a bit and she asked me why I looked so happy. "I see all of you go in and out of that class and you always come out smiling and relaxed. Is that what Yoga does?" I smiled and said" Well truth be told, YES! I had an awful day but I feel much better now!" "You'd never know it" she said."I d love to try it, but I'm embarassed about my size". 

What ensued was a conversation about standing in the possibility of your life and starting wherever you are to make the changes that you want. It was absolutely wonderful and a conversation that I couldn't have struck up if I hadn't gotten onto the mat. Before I walked in to class I was whining and feeling really sorry for myself, but as soon as I began to move I couldn't do anything but be present. The mornings meeting became a part of my past and as a result I was able to create my present to be the way that I like it...full of lively and affirming conversations where I'm able to make a difference. The woman that I was speaking to promised to meet me in class next week although she's terrified. Stretching and doing something wonderful for myself completely changed the dynamics of the day and put my spine and my heart back into alignment. 

If you've never tried Yoga I encourage you to do so. It's not necessary to turn yourself inside out like a pretzel to begin to experience the health giving benefits of this ancient and peaceful practice. Go to a studio and sign up for a basic class. Rent a mat and wear something comfortable. Get to know your body just a little bit better and relax...Breathe in and breathe out over and over again without worrying about what you look like. No one cares, they're not paying attention. The only rule is that you stay focused on your mat because this time is yours and yours alone. 

To get you started here are a couple of apps that might interest you!



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Photograph is used too widely over the www to know who to attribute it too. 


Yoga brings me such peace....

I love Yoga, I really do. I discovered my practice a couple of years ago when my son and his girlfriend at the time gave Jim and me several sessions each for Christmas. Since then I've studied with many wonderful teachers, studied several different forms and definitely fallen more in love with the peace and flexibility that it brings me everytime that I practice.

Tonight though , we enjoyed a really extraordinary class. We used to go to one of the many designer studios that are available in Cleveland, but for the last year we've been working out at the local JCC. We love it, we spend an evening on the treadmills and bike, play with the weights and then jump into the whirlpool together and relax after our day. Well, one day Jim looked at the schedule and said "Hey, we should try one of their Yoga classes. " I thought to myself..." can't possibly be as good". Boy was I about to be proven wrong.

To be sure, the practice room lacks the spiritual accoutrements of the boutique studios, but that's not where the heart of Yoga is. In walked our Yogi Eleanor, who quietly dimmed the lights and then led us through a series of movements that she designed specifically in honor of Earth Day, using all natural forms like the Tree and the cobra, but for the evening eschewing the bridge and wheel boat, nothing that wasn't animal ,vegetable or mineral. I was really blown away by the grounding nature of the series that she had designed. By the end of the class I was so grounded and so relaxed I was amazed. She ended of course in the traditional Shavasana, by placing us in corpse pose, which is just so incredibly relaxing, but although I've been practicing for several years now, tonight was the first time that I truly understood the deeper nature of this pose. Corpse pose is practiced by lying on the ground with your hands at your sides and your body literally falling into the deepest repose possible, through simple breathing and gravity.

Tonight though , Eleanor talked about her teacher and how he had always told her that "we practice relaxing into the corpse pose so that when the time comes we can really relax into the corpse pose". I was blown away by the simplicity of this statement. We spend our years and our lives literally running away from death and here someone was sweetly teaching me to prepare for it. I thought of the many "deaths' that we as humans experience throughout our lives and the kicking and screaming and fighting and throashing that we do when we are confronting that in our lives which has ended. I thought of my darling pony Studley, who I will be putting to sleep in several days because his body can no longer support itself and how he will just fall gently to the earth from which he came without even thinking about it. I saw him fall to the earth from his mothers womb, now I will see his life come full circle as he travels back to the mother of us all. I have suffered and agonized over this decision for a week now  and yet in a moment of experiencing that deepest knowing I have realized just how much of a fight it doesn't have to be. Spending an evening practicing movements connected to the most primal life forces brought me closer to my pony in a way that I never thought was possible. I realized in an instant that it was alright, that his death wasn't my failure, but simply the next phase of a very long friendship. When you love someone or something, you will eventually have to let go...there's no avoiding that one pure truth. For a moment I just became him and as I lay melting into my mat and subsequently the earth below I knew in that moment that letting go would be easy for him, that all beings have their place and time to be in the world, that indeed all things have their season and that the Goddess would always hold him in her arms.  My horses have always been my greatest teachers. 

I am grateful....grateful indeed.