Posts tagged ‘New England’

Community

Thanks to everyone who participated in the community class at Upper Valley Yoga last Sunday.  The occasion was my fortieth birthday, but that was just an excuse to gather and celebrate!

Michele George led a class that embodied so beautifully the themes she was teaching.  Part of the practice was a standard solo practice, with sun salutations, standing poses, balancing poses.  In this part of the practice, we embodied the qualities of steadfastness, directness, the firey passion required to remain dedicated to our practice, and in our everyday lives, true to our own heart.

Part of the practice was partner, trio work, and even whole group work on simple stretches, backbends, balances and handstands.  These embodied the quality of lila, the Sanskrit word for play.  We were reminded that part of what life requires of us is that sense of play, that sense of anything-can-happen kind of fun.

And of course, we saw that sometimes the help of our friends gets us further than we ever thought possible.

Thirty-five of us wedged ourselves into the studio at Upper Valley Yoga, and though the class was offered free of charge, we did collect over $200 for the UVY Karma Fund, a scholarship fund set up to help pay for classes for those who cannot afford them.

Though I think I’ll stick to having just one birthday a year, I hope we’ll gather again before next year to celebrate the community we all help to create.

Happy birthday to you, whichever day of this year it is (or was).  May all the desires of your heart come true, and may you hold the qualities of fire and fun fast within your heart!

September 23, 2010 at 7:00 am 2 comments

Making waves

Was lucky enough to be at the ocean a few days last week.

Took a class at Grace Yoga in North Kingstown, RI.  The space is beautiful–an old schoolhouse carefully remade into a yoga studio, with 12 over 12 windows, rich wood floors, the slates from the old chalkboards hung to create new spaces.

Nikki, my dear friend and fellow teacher, reminded us of many of the past uses of the building in her introduction to the class–not just a schoolhouse, but also a weaving studio, and a doctor’s office.  The imprint of learning, caring and creativity left in that space is part of what makes it so lovely.

As I teach this week, I carry that theme with me.  What is the imprint–the vibe, the resonance, the residue–we leave behind in our interactions with others, in our space, and in our own hearts?  I know in my own practice, I can sometimes work my body so hard that the resonance I feel the next day is not so pleasant–sore hamstrings, back, or just a general tiredness in the body.

We can choose the residue that we leave behind, the impression we make on another’s heart.  We can chose to tend our spaces carefully, to leave behind a vibe that is welcoming, rich and rings with creativity.  We can carry this same intention into our yoga practice on the mat–to work the body hard enough that we learn, and to do it mindfully enough that we leave behind in our own bodies, and our own hearts, a residue of sweetness.

As Nikki and I walked along the shore in Jamestown after class, we came upon a small area of wetlands that the unusually high tides of recent days had flooded.  We were first captivated by the color–several shades of green, at least one of which I am sure I’ve never seen before.  Then we noticed that the grasses were pushed up into a pattern that showed us the paths the waves had taken into and out of this little salt marsh.  The water had left its imprint in the grasses.

What are the waves I make as I move through my life?  What is the imprint I leave behind in the spaces I use, in the hearts of others, and in my own heart?  May I leave a wake of sweetness behind me.

photo by Nikki

August 17, 2010 at 9:10 am Leave a comment


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