The Buddha said, “I am not enlightened, I am merely awake.” What does it mean to be awake? Most of us spend our lives in relative states of “un-consciousness.” Sometimes we undergo a big, dramatic, once-in-a-lifetime awakening—such as a near-death experience—or we can occasionally experience subtler awakenings, such as hearing a story that resonates deep in our beings and creates a shift in consciousness.
When I take a few moments in the beginning of the day for myself, it makes all the difference. Instead of spiraling into stress, I float forward with ease and a bit of enthusiasm. Contrary to popular belief, dedication to a yoga and self-care practice doesn’t need to take hours of your time. When you need it, a simple ten minutes can point you in the right direction. Approach your day with a smile and one or more of these practices:
France is my happy place. I don’t know if I can even describe it, but France just has a certain je ne sais quoi that makes me feel at home.
Today, more and more women are taking prenatal yoga classes for various reasons. Some start due to their doctors’ advice or hearing about it from a friend or loved one. Others are veteran yoginis continuing their practice and some simply want to stay fit while connecting with baby.
Of the many wonderful things I’ve learned through my yoga practice, some of the best have come from exploring poses and theories that scare me. For some of these poses, the fear has risen up and I’ve acknowledged it, without the need to delve deeper at that time. For others, I’ve moved past the fear with the desire to take up the challenge it presents.
More daylight means more time for yoga, right? We think so. That’s why, in celebration of the summer solstice and the International Day of Yoga, Gaiam is giving away our best-selling Yoga Studio App completely free. From June 19-21, just log on to the App Store on your iPhone or iPad and download Yoga Studio App, and that’s it. No subscriptions, no paying extra for more classes, just a couple of taps and you’ll have access to all 65 ready-made classes the app has to offer.
Yoga helps runners with flexibility, fitness, and focus. It can be restorative and enjoyable for diabetics. Cancer patients use yoga poses to fight nausea and fatigue. Veterans find it beneficial in decreasing PTSD symptoms. Many say yoga is good for the heart.
Yoga is such a gift to all those that have the opportunity to be touched by its unique and special gifts. Opportunity here is the keyword, as yoga is truly a privileged experience that isn’t available to all. There are many individuals and communities of people that, for various reasons, won’t ever be exposed to the healing potential of this practice. This past week, when teaching a yoga class to a group of at-risk, sixth-grade students at a low-income elementary school, I realized just how important it was to gift the experience of yoga to these kinds of groups.
You only live once, creating a model of not enough time — a poverty of time. With a sense of so little time, we become scattered, searching to always have the right answers, the right car, the right job, the right yoga practice, and the right pose.
Have you ever decided to do something momentous, and had no idea what you were jumping into: launching a career, getting married, having a baby, or—even writing a book?