What is yoga? The ever-elusive question that themes many of my conversations lately. Yoga is a tool to discover internal strength. A strength that comes through recognizing our vulnerability, our limitations, our humility. And okay, sometimes having those moments where we experience the feeling of a posture that we never thought we could do – all thanks to practice, patience and perseverance. The real wonderment here, I believe, comes from understanding the experience of the pose, rather than what we think we look like. Continue reading “update on practice”
Sometimes we need to challenge ourselves in new ways. In fact, I believe we need to constantly be doing this. Even after moving to a new country, and living in three different apartments in the span of a few months (I was house and dog sitting in between) and getting worn out from all the changes, I still felt a little stagnant once things just began to get settled.
Some might call this restlessness, except I have experienced restlessness and there was a different quality to my motions of life this time. Continue reading “a new studio”
I am not going to try to tell you what yoga is or what it should be. It has come to be understood in many different ways – both by non-practitioners and practitioners – and has come to have many different expressions, endless even, whether from the variety of lineages or the spread of them into different contexts, places, times and adaptions outside of their place of origin.
I can only speak from my own practice, from my own experience, from my opinions and insights, and from what my teachers teach me. Continue reading “art in motion”
I’ve never met as hospitable people as the Turkish. I’ve been here for a week now and have yet to stay in a hostel. I’ve been provided meals, more than luxourish assistance figuring out transport, time and friendship. Even the shop man wouldn’t let me pay for an electrical adapter after he saw that I so stupidly burnt mine to a crisp. This kindness is so unique to the Turkish because they act this way out of genuine joy, rather than feelings of obligation.
Warm evenings, sitting outdoors by a fire, with the company of good friends, and yummy food. Drinking cider, and herbal teas, discussing shamanism, and other things.
What more can you ask for from a summer?
At ease, among the garden plants, the chairs digging in soil. At peace. Legs bare, skirt of a Cambodian dress rests lightly, air breezes across all my skin. It’s midnight, in Ireland, and I’m warm. A neighbour plays a rattle in the near distance.
Lost in the stars and dark skies spotted with greyish-white clouds from the moon’s reflection along the house-top horizon. I’ve always loved the skies as I’ve travelled. They are a sight in themselves.
Unique to each place. Ever captivating.
“Like a shaman’s drum, the rattle is used to aid in achieving the “altered state of consciousness,” that brainwave frequency measured between 7-8 Hz which is the threshold to journey work, reportedly in the Theta/Alpha range. That is roughly the same as the Earth’s natural frequency, known as part of the “Schumann Frequency” range…”
Quote taken from here.
I hid away in a hostel coffee shop on Anguier street, Dublin 2, with a European latte in a wide rimmed white mug and an egg sandwich on a toasted bagel. I nourished myself with food and with space as I kept sheltered away from the rain outside. Like Cambodia, it is sometimes so obvious how the spontaneity of life revolves around the weather and how much of a blessing it can be. I went with Nature. Allowed it to gently encourage me to break away from my structured plans for the day, take time to eat, and a have a few moments to appreciate exactly where I am.
I looked beyond the large, wall to wall to windows directly ahead of me. A sign, pointing directions to Temple Bar, Dublin Castle, and the Chester Beatty Library, had a glossy glow as raindrops dripped down and onto the grey pavement. All of these places had a significance to me now. And I indulged in appreciation of being on the road again. I’ve been living in Ireland for four months, yet it still feels like I am outside my comfort zone, unaware of what to expect next, entering into unknown surroundings and happenings, and into the mentalities that naturally exist within them. In this sense, I am still travelling. Life is a pilgrimage. An experience to keep us constantly confronting ourselves and pushing our boundaries. Otherwise, what would living really mean?
Sipping up the creamy milky froth, I remembered to breathe. Every act in the string of events that brought me to this moment was fate unfolding through my own intentions. The simplest of intentions cultivated everyday from the heart. In the big picture, everything feels perfect. The busy-ness of my mind that puts boundaries and limitations on me in the every day movements of life are simply distractions. Live through the heart and allow life to flow. Then accept whatever the world brings to us. Because everything that comes to us in life is a creative manifestation of our own doing.
You are what your deep, driving desire is.
As your desire is, so is your will.
As your will is, so is your deed.
As your deed is, so is your destiny.
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad IV 4.5
“the north irish winds blow the trees and bang the walls of my wooden tent. i cuddle in the covers for warmth, that radiates off me from a heart opening to the subtle beauty and raw abruptness of Dublin”
It’s been one full month since I arrived in Dublin, Ireland. I’ve fluctuated a few times between trying to make my experience here fit into my standards and expectations (which I believe happens the more you grow older), and then letting all of that go to allow whatever this city has to offer come to me. Everything we need comes to us anyways, if only we recognized what we already have is providing for us and become clear on what our intentions are.
As I came to Dublin, I found myself walking into a healing centre and living in a garden. The Harvest Moon Centre (http://harvestmoon.ie/), a holistic healing centre running for 17 years in Dublin, was my first destination to set up a work exchange with the owner for a place to live. Since I found a job here really quickly, I haven’t been able to help much around the house, but nevertheless I’ve been welcomed into the home by my three housemates, Peter, Amy and Rahaja, who are each beautifully unique beings that I have the fortune to be blessed with by their company. They’ve been generous, have introduced me to conscious-minded spaces in the city, and have been supportive friends.
The house is adorned with paintings all over the walls, in no standard order, and small artifacts or dishes line any free space one could come across. The vibe is eclectic and busy for the mind, yet the energy in the space is comforting and grounding. My space is the back shed, otherwise known as the chalet, where I’ve created a safe and warm haven for myself in the midst of a foreign and physically cold place. The unused garden patch surrounds the chalet in a bit of an L shape. It’s a treasure of potential for growth – both for food and for myself.
I don’t really know what brought me to Dublin, except for the ease in which I found myself here. It sort of just happened. An intuition from the heart. Sure enough, I’ve found myself among people and opportunities that support my own healing process and contribute to my personal growth. And I didn’t have to ‘try’ to do any of it.