It was the longest, strangest and most drawn-out goodbye I’ve ever had. It was also the most beautiful. If you missed it, picture this: beloved friends with masked faces- some community members we’d not seen in years- standing in line along the sidewalk at blue to go in one last time and light a candle, pause in the space, touch bare feet to her floor, send a prayer to the heavens and drop a message into the fire. The hawk, the wild wind, the sudden storm. Beautiful souls, getting soaked in the pouring rain, singing. Where does this happen? Who does this?… Read the rest
A couple of weeks ago, a longtime student, fellow teacher and dear friend sent a note to see how I was doing. This is, of course, a bizarre and difficult question for any of us to answer these days. I fumbled through a reply, trying to be as transparent as possible, while acknowledging the wild roller coaster of emotions that I move through in an hour’s time makes a clear answer unwieldy at best. Her response to me was, “you’ll get through this with your usual grit and grace.” Yes, I thought. This is the answer to this most impossible quandary I’ve been faced with since March 16: How will I ever get through this?… Read the rest
I wish I were delivering this news in a room packed with every person who has contributed to and been transformed within the four walls in which we’ve made our home on N. West Street for over 13 years. But, as with so many other things right now, it’s just not going to be that way.
I started the process of renegotiating the lease for blue lotus back in February before leaving for India. A week after returning from that trip, we closed the door and shifted to a virtual platform. The negotiation process was never completed, and our lease will end on July 31.… Read the rest
“It’s about the process, not the product.” – Jen Davis
As many of you know, in addition to teaching yoga for adults and kids, Jen is a great artist. I have wanted to take classes with her for years- and she has offered to teach me many times. But the time was never right, or I never made it a priority, or my “I can’t paint” voice doused any spark of desire that may have existed to create for the fun of it and try something new. Enter: global pandemic.
In my first few weeks of classes, I have not been surprised with a discovery of latent artistic talent.… Read the rest
I was in a group conversation recently when someone piped in “I didn’t sign up for this!” While I know it was partly said with tongue in cheek, there was also a grain of truth in the statement, as the suppressed grief, fear and disappointment of a life upended welled up and spilled out. We didn’t, any of us, sign up for this. Or did we? Makes me think of dharma.
Dharma means “to support” or “right path of life” and at its essence speaks to the unity and interconnectedness of all things. It refers to that which is consistently in alignment with our highest and best, both collectively and personally and points to a way of being that honors that connectivity.… Read the rest
By the time you are reading this, I will be in India. It is my fourth visit to the subcontinent, and somewhat like the other trips, it just kind of happened. Over the course of several short weeks in the fall of 2018, I had a number of people ask- completely out of the blue- when I was taking a group to India, and that when I did, they were in. Clearly the plan was out there, I just hadn’t heard about it yet. Synchronicity, divine timing and spirit commingled, and I was again swept (with excitement and anxiety in equal measure) into a pilgrimage beyond my own making.… Read the rest
One month each year I get an easy out on trying to come up with something interesting, thought-provoking, or simply readable for the monthly newsletter. But it’s February again, which means it’s the blue’s birthday, or the 13th anniversary of this community we created in 2007. I’m never sure which one is right, but that doesn’t really matter. Let’s reminisce…
Each February, I think back to the first time I crossed the threshold of what is now blue lotus. The original Glenwood South neighborhood hardly resembles its current self. No The West condos, no Smoky Hollow. No Tiki Bar. No traffic.… Read the rest
Happy New Year! Or in the words of my friend Jonathan, “Welcome to twenty-twenty: The Year of Perfect Vision.” Wow. Now there’s a worthy resolution.
I hid myself away from the many humans for a couple of hours on December 31 to write away the last of the year. I try to do this annually- a summary of what stood out, what was gained, lost, learned. An inventory of sorts, of the preceding twelve months, that I might wrap up the past and truly start anew. In short, 2019 was not a banner year. Not at all. Perfect vision sounds like perfect timing and I’m all in.… Read the rest
’Tis the season of excess. In all the ways. Too much doing, rushing, eating, whirling, spending, running, shopping. Too much of too much. Seems to me it’s the perfect time to get back to basics and revisit the foundations of yoga, which set the stage for a shift of consciousness from chaos toward freedom.
The fifth yama listed in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras is aparigraha. Breaking the word into its parts, you have: a- a prefix that changes the meaning of what it precedes to the opposite; pari- “on all sides”; graha- “to grab. To grab on all sides (or in every direction) would be parigraha, and that, in a word, sums up how we tend to move through the holidays.… Read the rest
Me: “How did I get here AGAIN?”
Self: “Bad decisions?”
Me: “Very funny. I’m serious. I’ve already learned this lesson!”
Self: “Um, apparently not.”
Me: “But I did. I’ve already been through this.”
Self: “Let me put it to you this way. If you’d actually learned the lesson, you wouldn’t be here again. But you didn’t, so you are. We thought you’d like another chance!”
Does this sound familiar to you? While the specifics of your inner dialogue might be a little different, I have the feeling you know what I’m talking about. One morning you take a look around with that unsettling Groundhog Day feeling.… Read the rest