The night of the event there was electricity in the air, and prana everywhere. It felt like a concert and everyone was excited to be there for such an auspicious occasion. The place was still rough and in the raw, but had been cleaned out and decorated for the night. Over 145 people showed up and the entire place was filled with yoga mats and chatter.
I will never forget the first time that I had acupuncture. Upon walking into the quaint and peaceful clinic in NW Portland, I was skeptical but open. A few of my trusted friends had had good experiences and some even life changing, so I figured I had nothing to lose. This exploration into the unknown began…
“Bhukti” means enjoyment or worldly fulfillment. “Mukti” means spiritual liberation. Tantra is the bridge between bhukti and mukti. It is a way of reconciling the apparent opposition of spiritual and worldly fulfillment. The message here is that in the tantric practices it is possible to enjoy a “worldly” existence and discover full spiritual liberation in this life.
And, so on Friday, April 12th I embarked on a yearlong journey with Sianna and a few dozen others on the yogic path of Self discovery.
Only through committing do we build the consistency necessary to support growth for ourselves and others. Just as the bark of a tree forms layer upon layer, each passing year reinforces the promises of our past and we grow stronger, more dependable, and more capable of holding up life and love. This is a rebirthing of our purpose in life.
People get busted even if they’ve surrounded themselves with an insulated bubble of believers, money, and power. The truth has a way of revealing itself. That is grace. Sometimes it’s really not pretty and people often get caught in the crossfire and that’s tragic. This is true of website – J.F. Exposed
I love Anusara Yoga. Learning it has expanded my asana practice, yoga teaching, physical body, and willingness to finally and fully inhabit this world as ME. I have met John Friend a few times, even got the chance to interview him at last year’s Wanderlust Festival. He was gracious with his time, energy, and thoughts. While…
I’m working on softening my yoga practice and it’s not easy. A lot of us guys struggle with muscles that get in the way. Big shoulders, tight hip flexors, football quads. Not only does this make the physical practice of asana challenging, the mental side is not tipped in our favor either. Many of us grew up in an athletic culture that values pushing your self to extremes to maximize physical ability, capture a league title, or make an all-star team. Digging into yoga philosophy over the past seven years has exposed me to very different values.
I recently found myself caught in this contradiction while driving to the Wanderllust Festival for ten days of yoga bliss in Squaw Valley, Northern California. We left a day early in an attempt to reduce potential stressors– two tweens and an eighteen-month-old baby were sure to provide enough of that. In spite of our efforts, however, a drive that map-quested at 11.5 hours and started out as a conscious act of tranquility ended 38 blood-boiling hours later.
For those who aspire to stick handstand in the middle of the room, this sight can be misleading. In my early years of yoga I would look around and think, “Most of these people don’t look like tremendous athletes. Why can they do it and I can’t?” After several years of consistent practice, my answer is that a successful asana practice can come from following the three A’s of Anusara Yoga.
July 23rd is coming up fast- have you been practicing your dance moves in anticipation of Yoga Union’s first ever Yoga Groove?
July brings us a new pose of the month- Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, or, Bridge Pose (setu = dam, dike or bridge, bandha = lock). This is a great pose for yogis in all stages of practice, and the benefits are extensive. The pose can alleviate stress, improve digestion and rejuvenate tired legs.
Happy 4th of July weekend fellow Yogis! Do you have plans to BBQ, enjoy the sunshine or watch the fireworks? In case you’re still wondering what to do with all this nice weather, here are some holiday happenings in the Portland area:
Chris has been practicing yoga for the past six years and has recently begun teaching in Portland, Oregon. He has been listening to music since Poison overtook his heart at age 12. Yoga and music, yoga and music, yoga and music! Jai!
Have you had a chance to check out the statue, or “Murti”, in the front of the bamboo room at Yoga Union? Perhaps you’re like me and you’ve used it as your focal point during a difficult balance sequence but don’t know much about it. In order to appreciate more than just the beauty of the murti itself, I asked Todd to answer a few questions about the dancing deity he chose for his studio.
Summer in Portland is… unbeatable. When the sun comes out, the streets fill with smiles, exposed flesh and the smell of backyard BBQs. An open patio seat is hard to find and bodies lay strewn about in parks- victims of the Vitamin D assault. We even seem to forget the 8 months of incessant rain that only just stopped yesterday. It’s on these glorious days that it can sometimes be a challenge to take our bodies out of the sun and into the studio. So instead of compromising one for the other, why not take your practice outside? Yoga is, after all, about unity. When it’s practiced in nature, your connection to the universe may feel more readily available and your sense of awareness will have room to grow and evolve.
If you frequent the Yoga Union studio, then there’s a fair chance you’ve passed by a large van bearing the name “Flying Fish Co.” on the corner of 50th and Hawthorne. But have you stopped to peek inside and see what that van is all about, and who’s actually driving that thing around Portland?
As many of you know, June’s pose of the month is Siddhasana, also known as the “perfect pose”. Already in class I’ve heard students joke about the irony of this choice, “We do this one everyday!” or, “More like pose of the year!” And it’s true! We do find ourselves in Siddhasana more often than many…
Are you tired of schlepping your yoga clothes all over town in your purse? Does your mat fall out of your backback while you’re cruising down Burnside on your bike? Do you wear the same t-shirt to class, regardless of if it made it in the wash or not? Have you neglected to treat yourself to…
How old were you when you began your yoga practice? Do you ever wish you had found yoga at an earlier age? Many parents in cities across the country are encouraging their children to explore yoga and its teachings earlier, and classes taught for kids are becoming increasingly more popular.