Thursday, April 10, 2008

At Ease

I recently had the wonderful experience of spending two days in a Judith Lasater workshop. She is one of my favorite yoga teachers ( and I love the way she combines a physical yoga practice with her insights on yoga and life. One of the days, we thought about the Yoga Sutra 11.46, "Steady in your intention, you'll be steady in your posture. Asana can come naturally." (from the book, Yoga, Power, and Spirit by Alberto Villoldo. She had us think about that sutra as we did our practice and she talked with us about how we can take the meaning of this sutra off of our mats. She encouraged us to think about those things that make us uneasy throughout our day and try to understand why we are feeling uneasy. I have been trying this over the past few days and it is amazing how often I start to feel that sensation that starts in my belly and moves up to my brain--anxiety, anger, frustration, defensiveness. It may be while driving, waiting in line at the grocery store, during a conversation with my husband, or during a meeting at work. Just bringing my awareness to the feeling is the first step in letting it go and will often cause the feeling to dissipate. When it doesn't, I try to shift my thoughts, feeling compassion for the root of my uneasiness (the other driver, the clerk in the store, the person in the meeting, my husband)--but....that's another blog! Namaste

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

SEE The View

I find looking at mountains, like those in this picture of the Flatiron mountains in Boulder, Colorado, a way to find energy and inspiration. To actually be there in person is ideal, but I also find it is possible to get some of those same feelings by looking at a picture of the Flatirons. I think the key to this is taking the time to really look at the picture, not a brief glance, but stopping whatever else I am doing, taking a deep breath in with a long slow exhalation and bringing myself to the present moment. I look at the picture and allow myself to let those feelings of peace and calmness wash over me. To do this, I need to let go of the other things in my mind, including my mental definition of a mountain--looking at the beautiful details of the things in the picture.

My mountain picture is my "reminder" but it can be anything that works for you. Think of something that evokes a feeling of inspiration and calm. A feeling that "everything is right with the world." It may be a picture of your children, a lake or maybe it is a fresh flower on your desk. Look at it with fresh eyes--as if you are seeing it for the first time. Namaste