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Yoga Philosophy

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Best Yoga Retreat of 2020

People frequently ask me how to run a successful yoga retreat. It is a combination of many factors going the way you hope. Sometimes everything comes together in a way you hoped but couldn’t possibly anticipate. The 2020 Costa Rica Yin Retreat was precisely like that. Above all else, one thing is absolutely essential - your retreat partner. Niki Inglis is a skilled and experienced yoga educator, plant-based chef and retreat co-ordinator. We have worked together many times before and our skills are highly complementary. We have the utmost confidence in each other. We also have the same intention for Retreat, that students feel fully taken care of and safe in a learning environment. [caption id="attachment_4375" align="alignnone" width="300"] yoga-retreat-class-at-driftaway[/caption] Equally important are the students that you bring on Retreat. This is...

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How to Apply Skeletal Variation to Yoga Teaching

[caption id="attachment_4096" align="alignleft" width="300"] yoga-assist-cueing[/caption] Skeletal variation is a term popularized by Paul Grilley, the founder and developer of Yin Yoga. It means that every single person has a unique bone and joint structure, which in turn, can make some yoga, poses easier and some poses more difficult than others depending on one’s unique structure. Some poses will be non-accessible to certain bodies regardless of how much yoga they do. This does not mean we don’t try yoga, it means that some of us will find it easier. Understanding our body’s limitations informs us of the endpoint of our flexibility. When you understand how and where to sense the difference between bone-to-tissue (compression) versus the muscular resistance (tension), you will begin to know what the sensation in your body is...

yoga sutras

The First Sutra – Atha Yoga Anushasanam

Atha Yoga Anushasanam The first sutra of Patanjali yoga sutras is one the most essential pieces of knowledge. Niscala Joy Devi’s translation is: “With humility, an open heart and mind, we embrace the sacred study of yoga” This translation suggests that you are required to be open. If you think you have nothing to learn, then you will not gain the “aha” that comes with realizing knowledge. If you are closed in either your heart or your mind, the knowledge has nowhere to land, no space to be experienced. Being humble and open to what IS is key. I believe this is one of the reasons I experienced a higher state of consciousness, I was open, I was aware that I had a lot to learn. As my dad says, unless you’re...

A Deeper Understanding of the Yamas

The Yamas are typically translated as behavioral restraints to be practiced as part of attaining a state of Yoga, or Unity consciousness. However, Maharishi describes the Yamas as the quality of intelligence that governs a higher state of consciousness. According to Maharishi, the Yamas happen naturally as you attain greater awareness of the Self. The Yoga Sutras are not meant as steps to a higher state of consciousness, sometimes referred to as Yoga. They are characteristics of the state of Yoga that naturally and spontaneously develop as you practice. Let’s take a closer look. The 5 Yamas are: Satya, truth that never changes Ahimsa, non-harming Asteya, non-stealing Brahmacharya, living alone, living Brahm Aparigraha, non-accumulation I’ve heard many teachers describe Satya as a practice of speaking one’s Truth. Maharishi describes Truth as “That which never changes”....