New Beginnings are happening in every moment. Some of them are monumental (like moving to a foreign country!) and some we barely even notice, like the initiation of every inhalation. Each beginning is accompanied by an ending, too, and the Universe plays itself out in this cycle or spanda, this pulsation of beginning, middle, and end, again and again and again.
To do yoga is to embrace all parts of the cycle, by aligning yourself in the flow of the Universal. Every time you step onto your mat, and you mindfully set a foundation, you are aligning yourself in the current of Grace- you are ready to receive whatever the Universe has in store for you in the moment. You are open to the experience. In many ways, it’s much easier to Open in your asana practice than it is in the rest of life, but each is practice for the other.
Most of you know that my husband Tim and I recently opened to a huge adventure, and moved to Thailand! Tim was offered a job in Bangkok, and we decided to take a leap of faith (just like Hanuman!) and explore where it might lead us. We have only been in Thailand for about a week now, and are starting to shake off the jet lag. I know it will be a while before it feels like home here, but we are already enjoying living in a big city, not having cars, buying our food fresh each day, and having a new perspective on what’s important. Before we left Florida, we sold our cars, sold our house, got rid of a good amount of our “stuff” (and put a bunch in storage….) It feels liberating to not be tied down to material objects. It gives us a chance to be mindful about what possessions we do want to acquire. While Tim is working at the office, I will continue to run Garden of the Heart Yoga, and I will also be diving deeper into my personal yoga practice and chanting practice. I’ve already made a few videos on Facebook, which you can check out on my profile page (Cheryl Chaffee.)
Even though I’m thousands of miles away, I marvel at how the technology keeps us close. I was able to Skype in on the Community Kirtan last Friday night. I’ve been chatting with some of you via Facebook and Skype. Please look me up, and stay connected. Feel free to message me or email me at any time (don’t worry about the time difference, I turn my devices to silent mode when I’m sleeping!) I really want to stay in touch.
This month at Garden of the Heart, all classes are working on hip-opening poses. Hip openers are a great category of poses- physically they help remove tightness in the hips and lower back, energetically they help you feel grounded, and emotionally they can help you let go of old mental baggage- of whatever is holding you back from embracing the new beginnings that are awaiting you.
We also have some workshops that will help you open to new possibilities: First is the Inversion Immersion with Jaye, that will open up the possibilities of turning your asana upside down. And later this month is Couples Yoga Date Night, where you can open to a deeper yogic connection with your partner. You can also look ahead to open your mind with Douglas Brooks in October, and get a huge heart and body opening when Todd Norian visits in December. (I’ll be assisting!) Check out our Workshops page for all the info on all of these great events, and more.
And while it’s not necessarily a new beginning, I would like to acknowledge the recent passing of a member of our community, Jenna DeLory. Her light will be missed deeply. Please take an opportunity this week to reach out to a friend, to let them know they are loved, or to do an act of kindness to a complete stranger. Let us not waste our precious time on the planet arguing, bullying, or feeling alone. Connection is so important, don’t wait for someone else to take the first step.
Cheryl Chaffee, E-RYT®500, YACEP®
Director, Garden of the Heart Yoga Center