Did you do your homework from
You probably already know
that there are many specific yoga breathing techniques — and you may have
noticed that I did not give you a specific instruction for how to breath. I just said, Keep Breathing!
Well, that actually is the first instruction.
Sit quietly with your spine
tall. Close your eyes and place
your attention on the movement of your breath, as it goes in and goes out. Breathe in and out through your nose,
not your mouth.
Notice the parts of your body
where it is easy to feel the flow of the breath and other parts where you can’t
feel it at all. Whatever you
notice is perfectly fine. This is
basic breath awareness and you can do it anywhere, for as long or as short as
you like. I do it on the subway
and airplanes, while waiting for the dentist or when I feel out of sorts and
out of balance.
I call this technique Taking
Refuge in Your Breath.
Using the breath a focal
point for the mind is a good because it is:
1. always available
3. the invisible bridge that connects mind and body
More breathing techniques are
coming but start with this.
Try practicing Taking Refuge
in Your Breath whenever you can remember and just notice how you feel. Does you feel a mental, emotional or
physical shift? All of the above? Anything? Nothing?
Welcome to my new blog, Yoga
Body Buddha Mind! Yoga and
Body and Buddha and Mind are all words that encompass a lot. If you don’t do
yoga and never plan to, you might still like to learn some methods for calming
your mind, or organizing your closet or getting the kinks out of your
shoulders. In fact, the word yoga
actually just means union. So we
can think of it as a way to be more integrated. The word Buddha means awakened and when I think of that it
reminds me to come out of my brain fog, stop looking at my iphone and instead
look around me, and in general, become a fuller participant in my own life.
One of the reasons that so
many people like practicing yoga postures is that it is a great way to feel
connected to your own life. It is
a completely hands-on activity. If
you’re anything like me, you probably spend a lot of time in your head and on
your computer. And although
that is fine and fun and pretty much a prerequisite for being functional in
today’s world, it lacks a sense of “felt” connection to the world
which yoga returns to us when we place our hands right on the floor, deepen our
breathing and get sweaty. But even
if you don’t do yoga, you can still reclaim an earthy, involved experience of
your own life in many ways and this blog will give you lots of ideas for doing
I will also give you some
exercises to cultivate alertness as well as spaciousness to balance out our
normal daily busyness. This blog
will offer tips on how to relax and de-stress as well as re-energize through
breathing, stretching and every day meditations.
But yoga and meditation are
not goals. It doesn’t ever matter if you get
“good” at them or not. They
are just really good methods or
ways of approaching life. So, with
the tools I’ve learned from decades of practice, I’m going to offer you ideas
for finding harmony, confidence, connection and peace in your day.
Tune in tomorrow for
details! In the meantime, keep