Our hearts have an infinite capacity for loving, healing, learning, and illuminating. When we’re angry, we can feel our hearts close, and when we forgive we can feel our entire bodies soften.
When we are in pain, we can let down the walls around our hearts and let others in. And, when we are afraid, we can open our hearts and let it swallow our fears, only to shine brighter after.
To fight pain, fear and anger is to give those things power, to deny part of ourselves. Instead, take those things into your heart where they are acknowledged, welcomed, accepted, comforted and transmuted.
As a yogini and a teacher, I always bring my practice back to opening the heart as a way to end suffering. Everyday, we may not even be consciously aware of what we’re doing to sabotage our own happiness. Things like attachment, aversion, and fear creep into our lives when we aren’t even looking.
Opening the heart happens off the mat and on through asana, spiritual practice, meditation, and nurturing our creativity. During my classes, I often end class by reading an excerpt from a meditation book I’m reading, or poem by Rumi or Hafiz, or something I’ve written myself that speaks to the moment. Continue reading →
According to Chinese tradition, 2012 is the year of the dragon. While most western myth depicts the dragon as a fire breathing beast to be feared, eastern traditions revered the creature. In fact, in Chinese culture, the dragon symbolizes power, wisdom and fortune and is regarded as a divine beast. I’ve always felt a connection with the mystical, winged, serpent. There’s an alluring freedom, strength, and creative spark that the awakened dragon flames to life.
I had the absolute pleasure of attending an intensive weekend yoga workshop by Sean Tebor of Dragon Tree Yoga Center in Santa Fe, entitled, “Waking the Dragon.” Through a series of non traditional asanas (poses) that harmonized yoga, creativity, and even some martial arts, we awakened our “dragonian” spines from the tips of our “tails” to our heart centers. Like a dragon born of fire, I emerged from the experience feeling supremely balanced. Fluid yet grounded. Energized, but relaxed. But, most of all I awakened with a renewed purity of mind and heart.