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Teachings of Hart

What I got this weekend from Hart Lazer of Montreal, Canada…

1.  When an asana is not done right or does not feel right, GO BACK to the beginning!

2.  Discomfort is usually brought about by compression, find ways to relieve compression.

3.  Wide-legged child’s pose!

4.  From supine, ROLL OVER to your right and push up to sit.

5.  Supportive touch…directive touch…

Aside from these, there are others that I learned but most of all…

He made me reflect on my yoga practice, on my skills and desire to teach yoga and on how possible it is to merge my professional discipline to this practice.

Thank you Hart!



The year that was…

The highlights for this year…


I went on a yoga trip!


I finished a difficult administrative temporary post!


I started school!


I received not so good news about my hubby’s health…he is ok for now.

Family…friends…nadi shodahna…Fluffy…


Looking forward to next year!

Savasana with Eyes Wide Open!

Savasana has always been a challenge to me.  I can keep focused when doing most of the asanas and take my time with them, but as soon as I get into savasana, my thoughts gravitate towards work and other things that await my attention.  As a result, savasana is shortened.

But I have been working on it and getting more mileage from it.  One of the fun things that I’ve been doing is opening my eyes while in savasana!Image

I start by getting into the pose with my eyes closed.  I work on feeling my different body parts softening and relaxing — legs, arms, spine, head, face…I then start taking notice of my breathing — slowing down, evenly-spaced, quiet.  While in this quiet and relaxed state, I slowly open my eyes.  I look around, whatever my visual field can sense without turning my head. With my eyes open, I consciously become aware of my relaxed state — my body parts not moving, my breathing….then I close my eyes once more.  I stay this way for a few more breaths and then I start my “getting-out-of-the-pose” sequence for savasana.

Opening my eyes while in savasana gives me a concrete and actual experience of how I should be like when I am awake — calm, easy, soothing… Try it!



In celebration of life…

Lay your burdens down at the feet of the divine and feel the relief from your heart” – Madisyn Taylor, The Daily Om

In this past week I found myself facing my deepest fear.  These are the words of various people that helped me through it:

“Let us not waste emotional energy on what we do not know yet”

“Hang in there my friend”

It is during these trying times that we should make time to celebrate life”

“Friend, breathe in and out. Don’t let your monkey mind take over”

“Praying for strength and calmness”.

I am forever grateful for all those who supported us, prayed for us, crossed their fingers, exuded healing and positive energies…

“This event puts your life on hold”

One event brings about a new perspective on life…



An invitation to wellness…

ImageMy teacher and friend, Jonathan Cagas is in town for a very short while.  He is sharing with us his precious time on Thursday, July 19, 2012, 530 pm Room 202. Do not miss the chance to meet and learn yoga from him.

Bring a yoga mat, a small towel to wipe off sweat and a bottled water.  Wear comfortable exercise clothes, wear slippers and have a change of clothes (you will definitely sweat!). 


Gratitude, Compassion, Surrender



Karma, my worldview

Karma, according to Wikipedia, is the concept of “action” or “deed” in the Indian religions. 

It is understood to be the reason that causes the entire cycle of cause and effect.

As a young girl, I thought this word to be “bad” or negative.  I thought it was like a curse, when doing something negative or “wrong”, playmates would say, “You will get karma if you do that!”. It seems like a warning to veer away from wrongdoing.

At this point of in my life, I had learned to take the word and its meaning to steer me towards better thoughts, deeds and words.

It starts with being good to one’s self, to myself.  I learned how to value health and wellness.  I take time to build my strength and stamina through asana and pranayama practice.  Aside from the physiological outcome I get from this, it also gives me focus, clarity and steadiness of mind.  When I feel physically well, I feel happy and healthy.  It makes me want to share the good feelings to others.

I believe that it  reflects in my work; when discussing and dealing with others, preparing lectures and papers, treating patients and teaching students.  When I practice yoga, significant people in my life don’t worry about me getting sick — my hubby, my parents, my siblings and closest friends.  

Karma reminds you to always treat others well.  When you exude the energy of giving and openness when meeting and greeting people, they respond to you in the same manner.  In the past, I tend to be aloof (to cover my shyness) and closed to people, the responses I got were in the same manner.  And this applies to each person you talk to; the president of the University, the Dean of the College, the student, mother of patient, the shrimp vendor, the lobby guard…it applies to ALL!

Karma, helps me make choices.  Aside from the usual parameters in making decisions such as, “do I have the time?” or “am I capable of doing this?”, I usually think, “how can this help others?”, “how many will benefit, if i do this?”.  When I get the answer to the last two questions, deciding to do something becomes more meaningful and less stressful.  It also takes away from my mind of what will I get out of doing this activity.  The decision then is more of giving than receiving.  

Moral choices also become easier if one keeps in mind karma.  It reminds you of your childhood and your parents and always choosing to do what is right, even when no one is looking.  Karma reminds you that there is a higher being who “checks” on what you are doing.  

I am not a “saint” nor a perfect human being always doing good…I have met others who are at a higher plane in that aspect than I am.  I still do, say and think “things” that scares me of getting on the ‘negative’ side of that karmic cycle.  But I am trying each day.  And what helps me to shove me back to my senses or pinch me until it hurts, is the thought  of karma.  

Take each day to one at a time…to think, say and do good deeds…you don’t know what tomorrow might bring you.



Instrospection before urdhva dhanurasana (bow pose)


Introspection always happen during urdhva dhanurasana! I do several preparatory asanas and stretches before I get to do this pose. BTW, that is NOT me in the photo, I just took it! Anyway, as I go through the preps, the following thoughts linger in my mind…

what is weak? what needs strengthening? why can’t i get to do this asana?

why is it painful? why is it always painful? why is the pain lingering?

why do i want to do this asana anyway?

Weirdly, though I also answer the questions…(while working on the pose)

1.  I really need to work on the strength of my quadriceps and psoas.

2.  It is painful because I am not doing it right and my spine is not neutral; I need to open my chest more and stabilize by legs more.

3.  When teachers help me do this pose well, the feeling is liberating and exhilirating…that’s why I want to learn this asana.

If there is one thing I learned from ashtanga yoga, is that nothing is impossible with practice!