Today's blog post is brought to you by Danielle Preissing.
“Self-knowledge or knowledge of truth is not had by resorting to a guru (preceptor) nor by the study of scripture, nor by good works: it is attained only by means of inquiry inspired by wise teachers. One's inner light alone is the means, naught else. When this inner light is kept alive, it is not affected by the darkness of inertia.” Sage Vasishtha
To some, yoga can seem like this mystical, unknown practice. For others, it is a way of life. A yogi can be a person who is able to put their foot behind their head while standing on their hands. A yogi can also be someone sitting in silence in a far away land for days on end. Many times, a yogi is someone who quietly attempts to be kind, compassionate, and caring on a daily basis as their practice. Yoga is simply the practice of self-exploration and connection with a divine source, and this manifests very different for each person. There is no right or wrong way. There is only your way. It’s truly as simple and beautiful as that.
Yoga is an ever-changing and evolving exploration into the self that has managed to enrich my personal life in many ways. It is a vehicle to help me quiet my mind. Plain and simple, I practice yoga to feel good in my body. I practice meditation to feel good in my mind. These two practices sustain me and nourish me so I can move through life more relaxed. They also help me gain clarity as to how to realize my full potential in this life. Yoga and Meditation make me stop and listen.
These are just my thoughts, my interpretations of yoga. Every student, every teacher, every guru can and should have a different understanding of yoga. That is a beautiful thing. Just because I feel something in my practice, doesn’t mean you will. Just because you experience a moment of zen during a backbend, doesn’t mean I’ll follow you there. And that is okay. There is something truly glorious about this individual freedom within yoga. Yoga just feels like the wheels that can take us on this journey through the self.
I find it disappointing that many feel the need to judge the path other’s are on. Ultimately, we are (hopefully) all doing the best we can. We are all on this individual journey that has no map. I know in my practice, as in life, I make plenty of mistakes. So who am I to think I know what’s best for you? Who are you to judge the person next to you in crow? All I am really qualified to do is celebrate your effort and journey through love and kindness. I hope you will do the same. Think about the power in the simple act of practicing love and kindness to others.
Smile, love, give, serve, show up fully, be present, speak with truth, find your light and let it shine.
Many Blessings and Much Love!
Today's blog post is brought to you by Charlie Chase, yoga instructor and personal trainer.
Grounding aka. Earthing
Below is a summary from an article recently posted by Dr. Mercola.
Earthing, a.k.a Grounding
Also look for the documentary Grounded
Earthing, aka Grounding, which can be achieved by walking barefoot on the Earth, transfers free electrons from the Earth’s surface into your body that spread throughout your tissues.
The effect is sufficient to maintain your body at the same negatively charged electrical potential as the Earth. This simple process called 'grounding,' and its effect is one of the most potent antioxidants we know of. Grounding has been shown to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, improve sleep, enhance well-being and much, much more.
Poking holes in the soles of your shoes and inserting a grounding rod can allow you to stay grounded, as can special grounding shoes that are now available (sporadically).
Leather-soled shoes will also allow you to stay grounded with the Earth.
Walking barefoot is one of the easiest and best ways to stay grounded, but you’ll need to do so on the proper surface. Good grounding surfaces include:
· Sand (beach)
· Grass (preferably moist)
· Bare soil
· Concrete and brick (as long as it's not painted or sealed)
· Ceramic tile
The following surfaces will NOT ground you:
· Rubber and plastic
· Tar or tarmac
In today's world, this is more important than ever, yet fewer people than ever actually connect with the Earth in this way anymore. Free radical stress from exposure to mercury pollution, cigarettes, insecticides, pesticides, trans fats, and radiation, just to name a few, continually deplete your body of electrons.
Simply by getting outside, barefoot, touching the Earth, and allowing the excess charge in your body to discharge into the Earth, you can alleviate some of the stress continually put on your system by electromagnetic fields and other types of radiation from cell phones, computers and Wi-Fi.
As mentioned above, grounding is one of the best antioxidants known, which in turn reduces inflammation, among other things. This in itself is groundbreaking, since inflammation is at the root of most diseases, including heart disease. Dr. Stephen Sinatra is a prominent cardiologist featured in Grounded.
According to Dr. Sinatra, inflammation thrives when your blood is thick and you have a lot of free radical stress, and a lot of positive charges in your body. Grounding effectively alleviates inflammation because it thins your blood and infuses you with negatively charged ions through the soles of your feet.
Grounding helps thin your blood by improving its zeta potential, which means it improves the energy between your red blood cells. Research has demonstrated it takes about 80 minutes for the free electrons from the earth to reach your bloodstream and transform your blood.
Hypercoagulable (thick, slow-moving) blood contributes to chronic inflammation, because when your blood does not flow well, oxygen can't get to your tissues. Grounding's effect on blood thinning is so profound that if you are taking blood thinners you must work with your health care provider to lower your dose otherwise you may overdose on the medication. You can see an example of grounding’s effect on blood cells in Grounded, as well.
However a newer theory is that grounding may actually facilitate the formation of structured water in your body. (Dr. Gerald Pollock). Dr. Sinatra agrees that it made sense and was going to revise his theory on how grounding actually works.
Grounding is supported and backed by other prominent medical doctors and scientists including Dr. David Suzuki, NASA astronauts, and, of course, it was used by ancient civilizations who placed strong value on their relationship to the Earth.
The Tarahumara people of northwestern Mexico are one of the few modern-day cultures that still embrace barefoot living and, famously, barefoot running. The tribes are among the most skilled runners in the world, running up to 200 miles over a two-day period. Notably, they run barefoot and this has been suggested as the reason for their remarkable athletic prowess.
But even if that doesn’t impress you, the anecdotal accounts of residents of Haines, Alaska featured in the filmGrounded are hard to ignore.
The beneficial impacts on their pain levels, sleep, stress and more were near miraculous. One woman even gave her grounding kit back because she didn’t want to get too well and then lose her disability benefits! And at one of the town’s motels – the first in the US to offer a grounded room to guests – travelers keep coming back because their pain significantly improved after spending just one night in the grounded room.
Grounding also calms your sympathetic nervous system, which supports your heart rate variability. And, when you support heart rate variability, this promotes homeostasis, or balance, in your autonomic nervous system. This is important because anytime you improve your heart rate variability, you're improving your entire body and all its functions.
"In other words, we're there -- we're in a health mode, as opposed to disease mode. Grounding does that," Dr. Sinatra explains.
Did ancient cultures know something about this that we don’t? It appears so, as many Gothic cathedrals are built on energy hotspots on the Earth, and are actually designed to channel Earth’s energy to flow strategically through them.
Exercising barefoot outdoors is one of the most wonderful, inexpensive and powerful ways of incorporating grounding into your daily life. You can also simply take off your shoes as much as you can when you’re outdoors to take advantage of these natural grounding opportunities.
When indoors, using a grounding pad or sheet is an excellent way to stay grounded while you’re working, sleeping, or even flying. By the way, One little trick from Dr. Sinatra is to remove a shoe when flying and put your foot (bare or with a sock) on the metal support frame on the seat in front of me. Doing this will ground you to the airplane frame and help mitigate damage from radiation at 35,000 feet.
So…go outside…Barefoot…and enjoy!!
Celebrate the Earth and get Grounded with Earthing Yoga!
Combine the healing powers of Yoga & Mother Earth in this new practice developed here in Steamboat!
Non-grounded humans (the majority of us) have an excess of positive charges in the body due to an influx of free radical stress in our daily environment and interactions with the world. New research suggests this excessive positive charge could be one of the root causes of pain stemming from inflammation and other bodily imbalances such as hypertension and hypercoagulation of the blood.
The solution is simple, get Grounded! The surface of the Earth naturally carries a negative charge that is one of the most powerful forces in neutralizing the excessive positive charge in our bodies. Research shows that the skin of the Earth, the soil, is like one giant anti-inflammatory, sleep booster, and energizer all in one! In short, Earthing restores and maintains the human bodies most natural electrical state, which in turn promotes optimum health and functioning in daily life.
By combing the simple act of grounding yourself to the Earth with the pervasive healing powers of Yoga, the potential for results skyrockets! Come get grounded and discover how Earthing Yoga can benefit you.Come with an open mind, mats are optional, hope to see you there!
A free introductory Earthing Yoga class will be held at a park near you. Time and location to be announced soon! Contact Charlie Chase or Allie Andrews for more information.
Today's blog post is brought to you by Sundance instructor Susan Meads.
A bit over a year ago, one of my favorite yoga teachers, Jill Barker, told me about Kristen Rockford, a brave soul starting a new yoga studio called Sundance Studio. Would I be interested in teaching there? Heck, yes--a beautiful setting with lots of options (including outdoors in the summer) with reasonable rent options? Kristen and Sundance have been a blessing to both the yoga community and the community at large in a multitude of ways and I feel privileged to teach Essentrics and sub for yoga teachers as needed.
You can find out more about Susan and Essentrics, the class she teaches at Sundance, via her website: http://susanemead.com
Today's blog post is brought to you by Ellie Mcatee, yoga instructor at Sundance.
As Winter gives way to Spring ~ a period connected to transition ~ a reconnecting to the revitalization of energy through the flow of Shakti (from the composting of winter into the new life cycle). A time to plant seeds, an opportunity for change, for growth, for adventure this is the initial spark of ignition.
Spring is a time for cleaning, for celebrating the old and looking toward the new ~ an opportunity to cleanse the world around you. Whether that means a re-evaluation of your social circle, cleaning the car, deleting emails, going through the closet make sure to be thorough and ruthless ~ the practice of non-attachment (Aparigraha) and the concept of non-possessiveness or non-greediness in Yoga traditions. This often means to limit possessions to what is necessary or important.
This cleansing ritual allows a review of need/want/desire and a reflection of Dharma ~ is something serving your highest purpose? With everyone and every situation comes to us a lesson ~ if we are paying attention we can discern when the lesson is learnt and that as humans we have the capacity to move forward and to move on ~ with gratitude for the experience but without remorse or regret for what we have watched transform.
When Spring Cleaning ~ maybe ask yourself:
- How is my home ~ does the energy flow, is it comfortable and inviting, am I inspired?
-How is my work space ~ is creativity being fostered, am I at ease?
Your relationships are a reflection of where you are in life~ Pay attention to whom you’ve been attracting into your orbit lately. For better or for worse take an honest look at. If you are being held back, have the courage to say goodbye if their purpose no longer sits in line with your own!