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Operating in the Present, Committing to Change

August 1, 2014 in Blog

Operating in the Present, Committing to Change

by Jill Sockman

I’ve heard over and over again from students, teachers, strangers, and the voices in my own head: it’s been a rough year. Whether it’s in the stars, in our karma, or in our minds, I believe there is something in the collective human experience driving us to make changes. Big changes.

We are out of alignment with the rhythms of nature, with the communities around us, and with the deepest callings of our own souls. If in fact the world outside is a reflection of what is inside of us, it’s no real surprise we’re in quite a mess.… Read the rest

Deadlines, Timelines & Processes

July 7, 2014 in Blog

Deadlines, Timelines & Processes

by Jill Sockman

I got some good advice a while back about timelines.  And I am not talking about work deadlines where others are relying on you to complete one part of a whole, but rather the self-imposed “I should be X by Y date/time/age.”

The advice was this: if YOU are the one making the timeline, then be sure you aren’t using it as a measuring stick to determine your worth as a human being.  Whether it’s sending out a newsletter, getting out of an unhealthy job situation, breaking or creating a habit — really anything that elicits the “I should be xxxxx by now” followed by feelings of remorse, regret, abject failure, whatever.… Read the rest

Refine your practice: understanding sthira and sukha

June 27, 2014 in Blog

Refine your practice: understanding sthira and sukha

by Kathleen Yount

Explore yoga’s “yin and yang” concept the next time you’re on the mat

One of the fundamental concepts behind good yoga practice comes from the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, a source text for many of today’s popular styles of yoga. In the Yoga Sutras, the sage Patanjali defines the physical postures of yoga (called yoga asana) this way: Sthira sukham asanam (2.46), which is commonly translated from Sanskrit to read “Asana is a steady, comfortable posture.

bl_mg_9527_reduced”In other words, every yoga pose should be done with the qualities of both steadiness (sthira) and comfort (sukha), effort and ease.… Read the rest

Get clear on why you are here

June 3, 2014 in Blog

Get clear on why you are here

by Jill Sockman

padma life vestLooking at a photo of Padma recently, I was reminded about how much time has passed so very quickly. (And I am wildly grateful that it isn’t a picture of me as I enjoy the compare-contrast.)  The Boo’s coat is lighter now, her face is mostly white, and the goofy puppy expression is something I only see from time to time instead of every day.  Where has the time gone?

I’m doing some new work these days around better understanding samskara (our patterns), recognizing where I am on the blueprint my soul arrived with, and making one active step closer to being in alignment with who I was meant to be.… Read the rest

When Yoga Works

May 12, 2014 in Blog

When Yoga Works

How content are you with things as they are?  If you’re at all like me, it depends very much on the day (and how connected I am to my practice). Generally speaking, I think I can say with confidence that the closer the external circumstances align with the internal “how things should be” compass, the happier we are, right?  Hmmm. So, what about the other 360 days of the year?

I have been both the recipient and sharer of this teaching on many occasions. The Yoga is working when we are content and at peace with life (on the inside and the outside) regardless of circumstance.  … Read the rest

Our one true constant – the breath

April 2, 2014 in Blog

Our one true constant – the breath

by Jill Sockman

I had a new experience this week as I tried my hand as human voodoo doll. I’m kidding (I think) but that’s a little bit what I felt like after my first breathesession of a technique (torture) called dry needling.

For the uninitiated, after the session, I described it this way: if you’ve ever had an acupuncturist hit an especially zing-y spot, multiply that sensation by 27 and then imagine her jabbing the spot over and over then carefully selecting a dozen more locations to do the same thing. Mid-treatment, I turned to my physical therapist and asked, rhetorically, how anyone could possibly tolerate this who didn’t know how to breathe.… Read the rest

Waiting is the hardest part

March 2, 2014 in Blog

Waiting is the hardest part

by Jill Sockman

The waiting is the hardest part. Or so the lyrics go. And oddly enough, even though I have more song lyrics than just about anything else stored in this brain of mine, those are the only words I know.

waiting

I’m in a hallway of sorts. It’s not a hall full of doors where I need to pick one and walk through it. It’s more like a transition area of some kind. It’s not unpleasant, and not terribly uncomfortable.

I feel clear on where I am.

But understanding this waiting time theoretically is not at all the same as abiding peacefully with the open space on a daily basis.… Read the rest

It begins

February 6, 2014 in Blog

It begins

My blue family,

At about this time every year, I silently (or not so silently) ask the question, “why do we do this?”  It’s usually followed by a short list of reasons why a fundraising event of this magnitude is really out of our scope and is, therefore, driving us out of our minds. But that small and whiny voice is always drowned out by the deeper, stronger, louder, and truer voice that answers, “we do this because we can.”

In the words of Albert Einstein,

“Every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.”

We are so very blessed, and it seems impossible to give back in that same measure.… Read the rest

Are you living? Really living?

February 4, 2014 in Blog

Are you living? Really living?

by Jill Sockman

I am dying.

Don’t be alarmed. So are you. Hopefully not today or tomorrow, but it’s happening. We don’t understand it and can’t plan it. And I have the feeling it is going to be just as magical as how we first came to be. Our exit is the greatest mystery of this life, and I’ve been thinking about it quite a lot lately.

No, I haven’t had a horrible diagnosis or anything like that. But I am getting some pretty consistent messages through my dreams and multiple other sources that time is a-tick-tick-ticking.… Read the rest

The Power of a Moment, or Saving the World Through the Transcendent Bliss of the Whoopee Cushion

January 24, 2014 in Blog

The Power of a Moment, or Saving the World Through the Transcendent Bliss of the Whoopee Cushion

by Kathleen Yount

It was one of those moments. Somehow, my eight-year-old niece got her hands on a whoopee cushion. (Yes, they do still make those things.) After a variety of attempts, she successfully slid it under her uncle as he sat down in his chair, and she lit up laughing as he landed.

Well, we were all laughing, but my niece’s face was completely transformed by delight. I’ve seen her in this state before, other too-rare moments where she’s in full-on joy mode (and to be clear, it’s not always related to passing gas).… Read the rest