Today was another fun yoga class with my usual MW morning teacher. She’s a teacher that I didn’t immediately warm up to- but now I appreciate her for her levity, comic interjections and generally enjoyable and energetic yoga classes. Today I also got up into hand-stand for the first time! Okay, it was assisted- but still a first :). I also did my first head-stand without touching the wall- hurray for small victories before 9 am :). There is an old man who also comes to class every 7 am – he has the most youthful energy of any old man I’ve ever met. His name is Paul and he has the physique (tan) and energy of a 30 year old man – it’s amazing! He’s always plopping into random handstands during random vinyasas- talk about energy at the crack of dawn.
My intent during these past few weeks of yoga has been the same- a focus on the philosophy by which I live my life- Truth, Kindness (Goodness) & Beauty. These three core values reach far and wide, intersect, diverge and manifest in every single aspect of my life- the focus on these simple three values has changed my practice and thus the course of my day.
I’ve also taken to reading from a spiritual & meditation-based book each morning- to start my day nourishing my body as well as my mind with positive & uplifting energy. The book is called Meditations on the Mat by Rolf Gates and Katrina Kenison– it comes across as potentially cheesy, but to my surprise I’ve been enjoying it greatly so far. Today’s reading was on brahmacarya or moderation, with courage. Excerpt:
“Nothing is more debilitating than the dread associated with immoderation in any area of our lives. The state of active addiction is accompanied by an overwhelming sense of impending doom. Even in less extreme situations, that fear is profoundly destructive to our belief in ourselves. At the core of intemperance in any form is the mistaken belief that we are not OK as we are. Acting under the erroneous assumption that we are imperfect, we reach outside ourselves to create balance, to end our suffering. All our effort, all our striving, merely worsens our situation and deepens our conviction that we are somehow flawed. Caught up in this cycle of chronic suffering and misguided attempts to relieve our pain- we spend our days out of balance and in conflict with ourselves. The solution is twofold- we have to stop what it is we are doing that creates imbalance. The second step is to examine the beliefs that drive us to intemperance in the first place….there is power in non-doing. As we practice moderation, wind begins to fill our sails. We realize that our fear, which grew out of a specific behavior, had contaminated every aspect of our lives…we find that when we do right, we fear no man.”
Today’s greens were compliments of Juice Crafters– a fantastic juice bar right on San Vincente in Brentwood. My favorite juice bar- it’s like the Intelligentsia of juice bars and their baristas are all fantastic, energized & so friendly. Their juices are the most delicious- it really is head and shoulders above Pressed.
It has been foggy & cooler here in Santa Monica- and my walks, bike rides to the ocean have taken on a new gentle meditative quality. This summer is the most enjoyable summer I’ve had in a very very long time- and I’m savoring every moment :).