Authenticity and our Fifth Chakra

Published on Saturday, July 23rd, 2016

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This week I spent some time with a friend who is saying good-bye to her 30’s as she anticipates her 40’s. Interestingly, our conversation focused a lot on her feelings about being (or not being) authentic in her life. She was doing that life review, backward and forward, as many of us do when a “big” birthday is upon us. It was wonderful to listen to her as she evaluated where she is and where she thinks she wants to go. From career, to kids, to life passions, she wove her way thru her possibilities. And, what to keep and what to let go. The conversation kept circling back to being authentic in all life aspects and ways to accomplish this, sometimes terrifying task.

The privilege of being a couple of decades ahead of her is knowing that the road ahead is exciting and powerful and precious, and nothing to fear! Driving home, I had time to reflect about being at that same threshold and where I have journeyed since. It was amazing to me how the issue of authenticity was the persistent thread of our conversation.

In yoga, our fifth chakra, vishudha chakra, located at the base of our throat, is where we find our authentic voice. Tapping into that energy/power can be scary, especially for women. Much like any new skill we wish to develop, practicing speaking our truth in words or thru our bodies (in asana practice) is well worth the slow and steady stretching we do.

Please come and join us as we honor our authentic selves, stretch in ways that nurture our bodies and spirits on Monday Nite July 25 from 6:30-8pm at the UU Church of Fresno on Alluvial. Given our recent “warm up”, our practice will work on balance, stretching and strengthening. Come and explore!


Authentic, Open Hearts

Published on Saturday, July 16th, 2016

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I think this summer will go down in the books as one that was not for the faint of heart! I for one have had plenty of opportunity to practice the gifts of yoga. I am grateful for the foundation that I can return to with the announcement of each new tragedy and pain.

As we continue thru our summer, let’s look to these times as a time to keep our hearts open. It is no easy task, but may help us all find our way out of this sad, confusing time. Our practice time gives us the opportunity to be in community as we breath, focus and move. Those actions may not save the world, but may help us save ourselves and each other.

Join us for our yoga practice on July 18 from 6:30-8pm at the UU Church of Fresno. Bring your authentic self, however you feel. On the mat, we will explore where we are in the moment.


Practicing authenticity amid difficulty

Published on Saturday, July 9th, 2016

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I must admit that the events of this week have been a challenge for me to handle. It seems that the suffering is coming hard and fast. There is little time to adjust before we are faced with another sadness. Times like these call for quiet reflection, compassion and community. Each of us can respond as we always have, or we can choose a new response. In whatever way you choose to respond, let it come from your authentic self. Let it reflect your intention of compassion, understanding and healing.

When I was in high school, I was lucky enough to have teachers who were studied in classical literature, philosophy, Latin and Greek language. One of them, introduced me to the French philosopher Albert Camus. I was reminded of one of his quotes this week that I relied on during my early life. ” In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer”. This summer, I am cherishing that mantra as never before.

Our practice this week will be a Yin practice;quiet, reflective, inward. Maybe what you are needing right now? Come join us in community on Monday nite July 11 from 6:30-8pm at The UU Church of Fresno. Let’s journey together thru this winter to find our invincible summer.


No Class July 4th!

Published on Saturday, July 2nd, 2016

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Have a wonderful and safe holiday! See you next week, July 11 for a Yin practice!


Awaiting the path

Published on Saturday, June 25th, 2016

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This month has given me the opportunity to understand that one can feel a bit lost during life transitions. Having the topic of, “Exploration: the practice of getting lost” to work with over the last weeks, helped me put a name to the feelings I was having. Being able to “name it” has helped me be able to work with these feelings. Absolute resolution hasn’t occurred, but I feel like I will recognize the new directions that avail themselves to me. “”Acceptance(inhale), gratitude(exhale)” has been my meditation mantra.

Each of us go thru these developmental changes in our lives (think of one of the hardest, puberty!). After feeling lost, and maybe confused, our own light directs us on, and life moves forward. Having a yoga practice during these unsettling life transitions has been a powerful gift. A gift that only you can give yourself.

Please join us on Monday nite, June 27 from 6:30-8pm at the UU Church of Fresno on Alluvial. Our practice will be a slow Ananda inspired practice. All are welcome!

No practice Monday July 4! See you back July 11!

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Exploring our backs

Published on Saturday, June 18th, 2016

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Its time for our quarterly back care class. In actuality, all yoga practices help keep our backs healthy. This particular class is based on 17 asanas that have been used in three or more medical studies looking at successful therapies for back pain. The postures are simple, making them very do-able at home. I have had several students with chronic back pain who have found this practice helpful at keeping the pain manageable. I will provide you with a copy of the practice and pictures of the poses.

Our practice with be on Monday June 20, the summer solstice. We will have a guided savasana. We meet from 6:30-8 pm at the UU Church of Fresno on Alluvial. All are welcomed!

Just a reminder that Tuesday, June 21 is the second International Day of Yoga. There will be a celebration at Regency Hall 1600 Willow Ave in Clovis from 6-8pm that evening. This is the second year of this celebration! Free classes with local teachers, raw, vegan faire and great networking! Maybe see you there?!

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Life imitating monthly theme?!

Published on Saturday, June 11th, 2016

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Imagine my surprise when I slowed myself down enough to figure out that this month’s theme- The practice of getting lost- was what I have been experiencing the last few weeks! Even a yoga teacher needs time to “stop, look and listen”. Going from an active life of work, teaching yoga, etc., to a state of career retirement, has been a surprising experience. I have been preparing for this time for years (the financial part), but only recently came to preparing for the emotional/spiritual aspects. The feelings I am having now remind me of my last son’s 16th birthday, when I realized he would be leaving in two short years. “Better get ready”, I advised myself. So I prepared the best I could, but still cried a river of tears when I dropped him off at college. So my lesson here has been prepare and then be open to the feelings that will engulf you anyway.

So what have I been practicing during this time? Lots of meditation,yoga postures, silence, reading, being in nature and listening. I can see that this transition will take time to fully embrace, but I am ready! I hope each of you can take some time this month, during our practice together or on your own, to listen to your inner guide. He/she may let you get lost a bit, but will also guide you back to your center.

Please join us for an Ananda inspired practice this Monday, June 13 from 6:30 to 8pm at the UU Church of Fresno. If we get lost in our practice, we’ll find our way back together!


A month of exploration

Published on Saturday, June 4th, 2016

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Welcome to June!This is a time of vacations,relaxing, exploring,retreating and just slowing down. Our theme this month is Exploration: The practice of getting lost. For our yoga practice, getting lost in ourselves for a brief time is part of our mini-vacation. We will begin our month of getting lost with a yin practice.

Please join us on Monday nite 6/6/16 at the UU Church of Fresno.Let’s see how getting lost, can bring us home to ourselves!


No Class on Memorial day!

Published on Sunday, May 29th, 2016

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I hope that you find that sacred space for yourself this holiday. See you next Monday, June 6, for a Yin practice. Blessings!


Gratitude affects healing?

Published on Saturday, May 21st, 2016

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Living a life of gratitude does affect healing, according to numerous social science and psychology studies. A mind that is focused on gratitude doesn’t have the space to ruminate on the negative of life. This positive outlook effects our physiology, reducing inflammation(and all its negative consequences) in our body.f Some folks say that gratitude is the parent virtue of all virtues. If putting gratitude forward in our life leaves little room for negativity, reducing our stress levels and increasing our happiness, our overall health and wellbeing will improve. Can we make gratitude as natural as breathing? I believe we can.

There are many ways to incorporate gratitude into our lives. As will all change we want to adopt, making a conscious habit of turning our minds toward gratitude takes some effort. There are many techniques: journaling, mantras, meditation, actions performed with gratitude. I hope we each can find a way to make this healing habit part of us in a way that we find meaningful.

This week’s yoga practice will focus on the healing power of gratitude. As we use our bodies in asana, we can use our mind and spirits to radiate open hearted gratitude. Come join us on Monday, May 23 from 6:30-8 pm at the UU Church of Fresno!

Next Monday, May 30, 2016 Memorial Day, there will be no class.