29 June 2010

Sometimes I miss New Jersey

Especially in the summer! Strollo's Italian ice is awesome. They do red, white and blue for the holiday but my all time fave is root beer ice with vanilla icecream - just like a root beer float! You can buy it at the Light House in Red Bank right at the end of the bridge, and Long Branch near the boardwalk and skate park. What does Italian ice have to do with yoga? Moderation. I am a firm believer that everything is ok as long as you appreciate it, savor it, and don't overdo it. Life's too short. Use the 80/20 principle and I really think you'll be ok.
Another thing I miss is KaBoom fireworks in Red Bank. This display is awesome. People come from all over to view it and it drives the town wild. Extra trains run to bring people in and it is crazy - 15,000 oohs and aahs along the banks of the Navesink River. I was born on the Navesink, so I feel very proud of this celebration.
And how can I write about NJ without mentioning BRUCE! While I'm not a big fan, his success is something we all claim - I am proud of him. This photo was passed along to me - this was my Springsteen era. The last time I saw him was at the Count Basie Theater, probably in 1976. And my dad used to work at Brookdale so more memories exist in this shot.
The Jersey Shore boasts some fab yoga studios - two favorites are Dancing Foot Yoga run by Robin Candrea and Emily Heretsky in Red Bank.  Brahma Yoga Spa is located right across the street from Sea Bright beach and offers spa services in addition to yoga classes. I've taught at both places and feel a pang of homesickness just thinking about it. And where else are you going to find Summa Love Surf Camp combining yoga and surf instruction on the beach?! Forget what you've heard about Jersey Shore. This part of New Jersey is beautiful, friendly, has great pizza and tons to do.

Have a safe and happy 4th of July! We have so much to celebrate.

27 June 2010

Teaching yoga is not really like t.v.

I saw Martha Stewart and Trudy Styler doing yoga on television. Elizabeth Gilbert is talking about her yoga practice to anyone who will listen. A bunch of people waited in line for hours to do yoga in Central Park with 10,000 other people but when a regular class is too crowded they complain. Every uber hip, super chic woman (and some men) of a certain age seems to be doing yoga. I don't see very many regular folks - unfit, scared, a little messy. I work in marketing, I understand this. I don't like that it bothers me.

Don't get me wrong. It think it's great that people are flocking to yoga. It must create some big positive energy. But I can't help wondering who they all are and where they came from, and why it's so important what they wear. I saw a video of a model demonstrating eka pada rajakapotasana on a bed. She was pretty and thin. But why was she demonstrating a posture in bed in a boutique hotel? Yes, yes - I know why. I need to meditate more.

Once a week, I leave the city. About 20 miles out of town, I turn down a long dirt road lined with cedar trees and fields of soy beans and corn. I stop in the middle of 400 secluded acres at an historic brick house that is now a residential gambling and alcohol addiction treatment facility. There's an old family cemetery, a railroad caboose that's been turned into a therapy office, lots of birds and frogs and magnolia trees.

It's a safe place to rest, reflect, and reconsider your choices. It's not like rehab on t.v. and I know I'll never get famous teaching here, but it sure feels good. Maybe I'm jealous. I don't really think so. I need to meditate more, have I said that?

Hari Om Tat Sat
Shanti, Shanti, Shanti

01 June 2010

Swami Niranjananda Discourse on Meditation

Paramahansa Niranjananda Saraswati is Swami Satyananda's successor.

This discourse mentions ajapa japa and antar mouna.

Our days are long and filled with light. It's tempting to stay up later, become more busy. Remember your meditation practice!