Wishing all of you peace, health and happiness.
The mantra of the Ashtangi is: In strange times, in all times, we practice. Always practice. That is the simplistic genius of our tradition and why it works. The daily practice of Ashtanga Yoga on and off the mat is of utmost importance during these strange times. As practitioners we are able to directly experience the calming, grounding effects of the practice. But this impact goes far beyond ourselves.
Living our practice is part of our mantra. During this time, the effects of its mind-centering grace will positively influence the field of collective consciousness. In simple terms: if our minds are controlled and calm others will follow suit. Peace will pervade instead of fear. This is our karmic duty as yogis.
While you self practice at home feel free to text or email me for guidance. If you feel exhausted by the anxiety from the communal energetic field, stick to primary or half primary series. Be sure to focus on your final deep breathing and add Nadi Shodhana, alternate nostril breathing for additional calming. In your final relaxation meditate on your breathing for at least five minutes. For those of you who find this difficult use the hamsa mantra; chanting ham as you inhale and sa as you exhale.
During the remaining hours of the day continue to stop intermittently and check in with your breath. Breathe deeply. Remember the mind conquering tools of the Tristana. Utilizing a soft breath of sound, direct the breath into your heart as you inhale and into the pelvic floor as you exhale. As you all know this brings the mind to now: presence. In presence you will find peace, faith, resilience, trust, compassion and healing.
I am deeply grateful for the gift of the Ashtanga yoga practice and my ability to share it with all of you. My wish in this lifetime is to inspire the deep love of daily Ashtanga practice within others. It is my deepest prayer that you all live mindfully using the tools of your practice to let your hearts guide you.
If you have any questions or need extra support please do not hesitate to reach out via email or text.
In love and gratitude,
Hi all Paramaguru Sharathiji, the carrier of our lineage, is coming to the US again. It is always my wish for you all to directly experience his teachings. He is truly an incredible teacher. To register please click here:
All application information can be found here:
Please take note of the 12.5 hour time difference when applying.
For January or January/February applications you apply on October 4th at 11:30am PWT.
For February or February/March applications you apply on October 31st at 11:30am PWT.
For March there is a 13.5 hour time difference because of daylight savings so you apply on November 31st at 10:30am PWT.
The full moon occurs on Thursday, September 19th in the nakshatra of Purva Bhadrapada, a set of two bright stars that exist within the constellation of the pegasus. This constellation is a culmination of Jupitarian energy. Jupiter is a benefic planet and is called the great Guru because he has the most moons or most disciples. He creates expansion on a deeply spiritual level while increasing wealth and philosophy.
Purva Bhadrapada in Sanskrit means the auspicious foot. It is symbolized by the two front legs of a funeral cot or bed, a sword and a two faced man.
The funeral cot or bed represents our exit from this material world. It is closely tied to the idea that sleep is a temporary form of death. Deep dreamless sleep grants us the ability to subconsciously see our true unitive selves. This concept is illistrated in the deep sleep state that exists in the third syllable of AUM which is called Prajna.
The sword is affiliated with the ability to cut things off, indicating that death is necessary for rebirth.
Purva Bhadrapada is also considered a two faced man. One face is serene and the other is full of rage. This represents how human nature can be two fold. We can put on a front of happiness even when our true character is strewn with demons.
Purva Bhadrapada is ruled by the diety Aja Ekapada, “the one footed goat”. He is part of the entourage of Rudra, The God of Storms. Rudra is one of the fiercest forms of Shiva and has a destructive nature. Thus Aja Ekapada is associated with black magic and card #15, the Devil, in the western Tarot pack. However, in the Vedic perspective the negative destruction that this nakshatra can create is eventually divinely ordained.
Aja Ekapada is a transport vehicle for Agni the God of fire. Agni helps transform what has fallen into decay into life and vitality. We also have the transformative energy of Yajamana Vdyamana Shakti on our side. This energy has the power to raise a spiritual person up in life.
Face your demons and burn them up to uplift humanity. This a time of great change. Embrace it. Remember we are all humans, but we need to strive to be better ones.
The full moon occurred late last night on Tuesday, August 20th 4 degrees in Aquarius and in the Nakshatra of Dhanishta. Dhanishta means “wealthy” or “famous” and is ruled by Mangala or Mars and the 8 Vasus or the Gods that rule natural phenomena. This lunar sign is symbolized by a flute or drum. Krishna orchestrates the world through his flute and Shiva manages the world through his Damru or drum. Therefore, Dhanishta is an instrument of God that unifies all beings. It gives us adaptability, strength and overall benevolence. The energy of Dhanishta and Aquarius gives us the confidence and drive to work together toward the greater good of humanity.
This particular full moon falls on the Hindu holiday of Raksha Bandhan. This day sisters honor their brothers by tying a Rakhi or silk thread around their wrists. The sacred thread reinforces the bond between siblings and represents unconditional love and protection. The Rakhi has been used throughout history to unify communities and ease social tensions. It is even said that Rajpat and Maratha Queens sent the Munghal Kings Rakhis to prevent them from invading their land.
Rasksha Bandhan and the planetary influence of Dhanishta is another reminder that we are integral pieces of a greater whole. Meaning that we all share energy in this world. That is why in our yoga practice it is important to remember that we don’t just practice for ourselves. The stability that the asana practice brings to our lives gives us the ability to be more tolerant, generous, loving and understanding people in the world. Unfortunately this message can get a little skewed in a modern day yoga world that advertises classes labeled as hot bootie, shredded ab, sculpt flow.
We need to remember that the real reason we stay disciplined and dedicated to our practice is because we need to move beyond the selfish ego and offer up our better selves to the world. In the practice of Ashtanga yoga we remind ourselves of this fact at the end of every practice by chanting the Mangala Mantra which ends with:
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
May all beings be happy and free and may our thoughts and actions contribute to that happiness and freedom for all.