Saturday, July 24, 2010

"Making sexy with yoga!"

Selamat pagi! (good morning in Indonesian)

a rainy day in Ubud so we didn't go to the elephant park today. And I am off from yoga as well. Alex and I are enjoying the beauty and serenity of this enchanting island. I love waking early to the busy activities of the surrounding rice fields ( right now buzzing with biannual rice planting ). My son and I walk into the village and I sneak in an refreshing practice of sun salutations on my terrace. Yesterday we visited the bird and reptile parks.

A funny little story from yesterday: a motor bike taxi dropped me part way to the yoga studio in Sayan village. I told the driver that I was going to walk to yoga. He smiled and said, "making sexy with yoga!!" w
pretty catchy, huh? Could be my new marketing slogan. : )

I'm looking forward to more yoga, pranayama and meditation in the morning o
verlooking the Ayung River valley with my beloved teachers.

Love to all from Bali! Amy

Sneaky Ego...

At some point, we get to a place in our practice or our lives that makes us terribly uncomfortable.
What does it mean to be uncomfortable? Especially within that moment specifically? It must mean that we have SOME sort of expectation about our present moment.

could that be one of the seven deadly yogi sins if there were such a thing? I imagine many enlightened beings would call "expectation" the perfect example of the PAST EXERTING ITSELF ON THE PRESENT.

So what would it mean to let go of an expectation? Woah man, that could be a big deal...
Because it's not as if we can't and shouldn't learn from the past, right? We figure out that if we lean a little too far we might fall over, lean a little to hard on someone else, and they might fall over.
So again...if we let go of expectation, how does that mean we live?
In every next moment as if it were an entirely new experience? I don't know. Maybe exploring how expectations are created within ourselves will help answer the question -

This is how I broke down my formula for expectation:

LAST TIME, "A" happened. And it was AWESOME...or CRAPPY.

but check out these words for a second...
"Awesome" and "Crappy" are judgements - but who's judging?
"I believe," and "it should" - whoa whoa whoa- who's talking here???

ahh...and so the ego shows herself...

She's sneaky.

If we lived without discomfort, would our egos ever be challenged?
If ego were never challenged, she would rule our minds and keep us unconscious forever.

SO. As we move into challenge and possible discomfort in our lives/practice, notice WHO is uncomfortable. Is it that sneaky, saucy ego?
Name it
Release it
Recycle it
It has no hold on you.
It can only teach you.


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Sweet Summer Quote

. . . you know the sprout is hidden inside the seed.

We are all struggling; none of us has gone far.

Let your arrogance go, and look around inside.

The blue sky opens out farther and farther,

the daily sense of failure goes away,

the damage I have done to myself fades,

a million suns come forward with light,

when I sit firmly in that world.

translated by Robert Bly

enjoy! Amy

Island Time

I got back last night from two days on Orcas Island: just one of the beautiful islands I've visited this year. In a week and a half, I'll be off to the fabulous island of Bali. Although these islands are very different, they both allow a visitor to slow down to island time. Whether it's the Caribbean, Hawaii, Asia or somewhere closer to home; island locals around the world seem to live at their own relaxed pace (ok, I have to wonder if it has something to with the geography. Maybe we can sense the finite borders of islands which facilitates that "nowhere to go" feeling?) The first few days on island time can be an adjustment as well as an invitation to leave our agendas at the door. I might find myself impatiently wondering when the food will arrive at a restaurant or wanting the car ahead to speed up (for Pete's sake!). What perfect opportunities to witness the hurried speed with which I usually move through my day and start to slow down! This morning in class, I invited students to practice on "island time": no hurry, no agenda. On our little yoga islands (mats) we opened to pausing, softening and breathing even through the most challenging postures. Even when moving; we can access the spaciousness of our beings, quiet our wild-horse minds and rest into the parasympathetic nervous system. Why not be on island time ALL THE TIME?

~ ALOHA! Love, Amy

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Freedom Starts Within

Freedom quotes a plenty!

Only in the state of love will the beautiful, fragrant flower of freedom and supreme bliss unfold its petals and bloom. - Ammachi

Freedom is never out of fear; freedom is out of great awareness. - Osho

Give me freedom to sing without an echo. Give me freedom to fly without a shadow and to love without leaving traces. - Irina Tweedle

Freedom does not mean being able to say or do anything you want. You experience real freedom and happiness when you are no longer enslaved to those charms, attractions and temptations that conflict with your inner wisdom and bring you pain. - Leonard Pernulter