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108 Sun Salutations Practice Dedications

I love nothing more than when my yogis ask me after class to share what I read or tell them more about what I talked about during class. My purpose as a yoga teacher has always been to share this practice as a way of life rather than just ego-boosting physical...

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Bring Darkness to the Altar of Light

A few days ago, after the winter solstice 108 sun salutations practice, a few of the first timers to this intense class told me that they felt off, disoriented and agitated afterward, although they also felt exalted and inspired. I assured them that this is a good...

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To Receive, Give

Recently, after teaching a class, I witnessed one of my yogis, a gorgeous woman in her late 20s, come up to one of my long-time students, a graceful and elegant woman in her 60s. “You’re so beautiful, it’s ridiculous!” said the younger one in a matter of fact but very...

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This Day, Our Daily Bread

What are you consuming emotionally, mentally, energetically and spiritually? Everywhere we turn, we seem to be bombarded with opportunities to distract ourselves from the root causes of our pain, sadness, frustration, anger and fear. Instead of a compassionate,...

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But Still, Like Dust, I’ll Rise

Several people came to me this week, saying the same thing, more or less: "I just feel so confused. I have no clarity right now." I didn't think I could possibly inspire or console anyone because I felt the same way. On Tuesday, I even doubted whether I should keep...

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A Prayer for This Day

I was hurt in the past. I have been betrayed. I made mistakes. Am I good enough? Am I worthy? Will I ever feel safe? Am I doing the right thing? The constant ping pong game of the I against what is. Exhaustion. Heavy heart. Nausea in my stomach. But then, a sight like...

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The Heart of a Lion

I started this painting shortly after my dad passed last November to work through my grief and also to remember him how I saw him, and not how he saw himself. He loved lions and was also a leo. Today would have been his 67th birthday. I wanted his lion to be wild,...

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In the Face of Fear Porn, Grow Stronger in Love

A week ago my FaceBook messenger inbox got blown up by one of those “must forward” messages, warning about a dangerous hacker who allegedly could destroy your profile and steal your information if you accepted his friend request. If you’re on FaceBook, I’m sure that...

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Your Hands Are Never Tied

The gist of our human experiences on this three-dimensional planet we call Earth can be summed up with one word, the same one John Steinbeck used to powerfully and eloquently convey his message in East of Eden: timshel, which is a Hebrew term that has been translated...

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Are You a Fool or an Artist?

In one of my yoga classes last week, I guided my students into a headstand. After about 15 minutes into the practice, that is. I guess I broke a whole bunch of yoga rules by doing that (and it wasn’t the first time, I confess). As every yoga teacher knows, we are...

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The Real Kind of Strong

Remember your first yoga class? Just holding downward facing dog, supposedly a resting pose, sapped all your strength in the first breath and resisting the urge to just collapse on the floor and cry suddenly became your only focus. Yoga requires physical strength,...

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Mainstream or Upstream?

It’s not what you think. I won’t ask you to become anti-mainstream by changing your behavior, your looks, your diet and whatever else happens to be trendy, and profess to the rest of the world how much of a rebel you are. All the while most other people you know are...

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Reinterpret Your Past

Most of us accept without question that what happened in the past is set in stone, but is it really? Having grown up and gone to school in three different countries, I remember being confused and at the same time fascinated by the stuff taught in history classes...

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Stand Your Ground

When I was a little kid, my brother, who’s five years older than me, told me once that I was actually adopted. He said I fell out of a gypsy wagon that came through town and our parents felt sorry for the lost gypsy baby so they took me in and raised me as their own...

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You Can Have Your Cake and Eat it Too

Have you noticed how nothing of this world can bring you lasting fulfillment and happiness? Simply because everything in the material world changes and dies eventually. Nothing stays the same for long. Even if you have the ideal relationship, job, social status, bank...

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Comfort or Truth?

Would you buy a shirt that says “dare to wake up?” I don’t usually wear messages on my clothes (especially the “spiritual” kind), but I had to think of this — and I laughed to myself in the middle of the store — when I recently saw a tank top with the writing “dare to...

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The Less We Can Stand, the Lower Our Level of Being

I seem to have developed an unfortunate ritual over the last several years: every time I visit my parents, and now it’s just my mom since my dad’s passing last year, I inevitably get sick when I come back home. And I’m one of those people who never get sick. Unless,...

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Wake Up!

This year has been intense so far, and it’s about to get even more intense. How do I know? I don’t know, but I just feel it. Although I love winter — if I could live in a world of fall and winter only, I would —I’ve been excited about the spring of 2017. And here we...

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Breaking Your Mold

When I look at the past 39 years of my life I feel like I’ve lived half a dozen lifetimes already. I used to envy people who got to be born, grow up and live in the same place — and I mean country or continent at least — because I saw the unsteadiness of my early...

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How’s Your Emotional Digestion?

Emotions are simply energies that are meant to be in motion. They are designed to move into our awareness and be felt in our bodies and at some point move out. They move in to teach us something about ourselves and they move out when we learn what we needed to learn....

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Chicken or Eagle?

There are many reasons we practice yoga but they all ultimately funnel us toward the same destination: we’re learning to become who we already are. There are just as many or more reasons we chose to have this particular human experience but they too all point to the...

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You Don’t Have to be Your Mind’s Bitch

After a simple guided meditation, one of my students candidly and courageously admitted that her mind was as busy as ever and that she felt a sense of almost panic. I assured her that was a normal reaction of the ego and told her that “the mind is a bitch, but you...

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Do You Have Your Head Screwed on the Right Way?

After being hospitalized for pneumonia, which included being sedated for five days, my mom finally started recovering earlier this week. Physically, she was doing really well under the circumstances as soon as she woke up from sedation, but for the following few days,...

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Stillness is Your Center

When I’m going through a stressful situation, I often call to mind the image of the old fashioned wheel: as the wheel’s outer rim spins and its spokes rotate, the hub, the center of the wheel, stays still. The events in our life, including our thoughts and our...

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Reframe the Meaning of Detour

A few days ago I hiked with a friend in a wooded area, with snow covering the trail. On the way back, we suddenly realized that we were not on the trail anymore and couldn’t see where the trail was. Our tracks from a couple of hours ago were nowhere in sight. The fact...

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Drop Your Mind into Your Heart

Maybe the biggest delusion we humans subscribe to is that we have control over the thoughts we think. But, as I often say to my yoga students, if we had control over “our” thoughts, wouldn’t we be able to choose at will to think happy, pleasant and peaceful thoughts...

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Beauty in Chaos

I could never get into the styles of yoga that use specific poses in a specific order with specific rules about what goes and what doesn’t. I guess the idea of specific anything never appealed to me because so far, I haven’t found life to be very precise or...

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Return to Innocence

Last week during class I “threatened” to make a playlist of boyband songs and create a silly sequence so we can all forget for a moment to be so damn grown up. Because sometimes — and very often these days — grownups don’t display much more maturity than bratty two...

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Come Out of Hiding

My practice yesterday and the classes I taught focused on the spine (side bends, twists and backbends) and the intention was to come out of hiding. This was not an invitation to shout to the world what our opinions are and impose on others our version of right and...

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If you want to be happy, be!

Can you be happy for 100 days in a row? This challenge has been the latest buzz on social media, inviting people to notice (and share) their daily moments of happiness. Most people who joined the project failed to complete it, saying they didn't have time for it. This...

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Come Home to Yourself

If your goal is to wake up to the reality of who you truly are, stop waiting for an altered state of consciousness. You are in an altered state of consciousness  now, and you will stay there as long as you believe that you need something you don't have or have...

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ACIM Study Group Notes — Projection Makes Perception

Projection Makes Perception The belief that by seeing it outside you have excluded it from within is a complete distortion of the power of extension. (T-7.VIII.3) God knows only how to extend himself. (Please don't get hung up on the word "himself." Words only point...

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Allow Opposites to Coexist

All of our suffering is the result of not knowing who we really are. And because we don't know our true identity as a complete, perfect and untarnished extension of God, which is Love, we spend our days grasping for pleasure and avoiding pain. We see pleasure as...

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ACIM Study Group Notes — There is no Death

Death is the thought that you are separate from your Creator. (W-167) What seems to be the opposite of life is merely sleeping. (W-167) What happens when I die? Before considering anything else, ask yourself this: Who do you think you are? Who is the I that supposedly...

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It’s OK to be Self-Centered

Are you in a relationship right now that you'd rather not be in? Whether you thought of a family member, a friend, an acquaintance or the person you pay to mow your lawn, ask yourself this: Why am I still holding on to this relationship? We confuse being self-centered...

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Die before you die

In the winter, nature shows us with all her elegance what it means to die. The tree does not identify itself with its leaves and can therefore simply let them go. The tulip does not identify itself with its beautiful, luxurious flower and can therefore let the petals...

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There’s Grace in What’s Taking Place

It's easy to be happy, grateful and at peace when things of the world seem to work in your favor. But even if all the things of the world are working in your favor now, how long are they going to stay that way? Which means, how long will it be until you are no longer...

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Forgive Yourself for Being Human

We live in this physical world of opposites, yet somehow we expect that one day we will embody only the qualities we label as good, finally having cleansed ourselves of all the traits we label as bad. But as long as we are human, as long as we are spirit appearing in...

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Stop Shoulding on Yourself

The process of self-inquiry teaches us to notice when we are being judgmental and invites us to reinterpret our old views. But often, as we're learning not to judge our neighbors, we forget not to judge ourselves. We judge ourselves for what we see as our past...

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What am I using time for?

How often do we spend time reminiscing about the past or planning for the future? We think of time as something that exists independently of us; something so limited and precious that we better use it wisely. By constant planning, we are living in fear that we won't...

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My Only Function is to Love

In this world of form, we have created different kinds of love: we think that the love we feel for one person can be different from the love we feel for another. We think that there are different ways of loving different beings, and that there are degrees to love. But...

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Hostage to Ego or Host to God

An old Cherokee chief was teaching his grandson about life: "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy. "It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil - he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment,...

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