Posts Tagged ‘Bihar School of Yoga’

The 80-minute guided meditation CD Breathe Fully Live Free: Meditations to Release Anxiety and Fear is now available at Whole Foods Princeton, Ridgewood, and most other Whole Foods stores in New Jersey, lower Connecticut, and Long Island. It is also on CD Baby, iTunes, and Amazon (see links on Mahasri Yoga). The CD includes some core personal teachings of Swami Buddhananda Saraswati who was a key, well-loved Australian teacher (especially for yoga nidras and kriya yoga!) at the Bihar School of Yoga. He is the author of Moola Bandha:The Master Key.

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Are winter blues or holiday pains building up? Family is a major source of stress everywhere and holidays mean dealing with these conflicted relationships. There are excellent free online resources that can be helpful and here are some. So much is shared and given by many, gifted with great generosity–as we receive these rich gifts it helps to give back as well in whatever way we can.

The New York Times Expert Column

To understand the emotional chemistry, math, and have good strategies for family conflicts and rifts The New York Times has an excellent Expert column “Negotiating Conflicts, Part: 1 Family Grudges” by Sheila Heen. Ms. Heen lectures at Harvard Law School and specializes in negotiations. Look out for the other parts, the next one is on holiday conflicts.

Mahasri Yoga Online Breathing and Meditation Tracks

For immediate as well as long-lasting emotional relief, breathing practices and guided meditations are very helpful. There are seven tracks for pranayama/breathing tracks on http://www.mahasriyoga.com/pranayama/tracks.html. The guided meditation practices on http://www.mahasriyoga.com/meditation/tracks.html are longer and include the popular Satyananda-based yoga nidras–there are five yoga nidras and “Role of Purpose and Beyond” can help us see ourselves as others see us as well enable us to see someone else’s point of view. These can complement the information in the Times column.

Yoga International

Taking the mind and awareness from the turmoil of the mind, the emotion of the heart, to the depth of the tranquil ocean of the abdominal and pelvic area provides relief from anxiety and stress. Try the easy asanas/yoga poses described in Yoga for Emotional and Physical Stability by Shari Friedrichsen in the May 2013 issue of Yoga International.

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The way we act and react to any situation or circumstance in life, the choice, is always ours. One of the first things I was taught by my mentor, the former Swami Buddhananda of the Bihar School of Yoga, was that a situation is neutral, our reaction to it is not and it is the reaction that causes suffering. Many of you have heard this from me over the years! As a young person in my 20s, this made no sense to me and I tried arguing that. I was told to go back and think about it, to reflect on it for several months. It took more than six months to accept that there might be some truth to it, that some change was necessary in my mental programming.

My earliest lessons in yoga were not in how to perform an asana. More than 30 years later, I dearly value that initial lesson and continue to reflect on it. My reactions and the seeds they sow (karma) cause more suffering to me than anything or anyone else. It actually makes perfect sense! Now it is for my boys, in their early 20s, to reflect on it. They are responsible for their reactions and the life they lead.

There are times when anger and bitterness seem to be overwhelmingly justified, peace seems to have no justification. Yet, we know if we remain calm and objective that the seeds of anger, violence, and bitterness are awful to those who sow them. It is incredibly challenging to remain peaceful in certain situations and those are the times we are tested the most–the strength of our individual strength and resolve. We fail and try, fail and try….The process makes us stronger if we do not give up.

Most of us need to be reminded of the importance of choosing wisely and we need inspiration. There are so many sources of universal inspirations and some are the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh, Goenka’s teachings on vipassana, St. Francis of Assisi, religious texts, and so on.

Inspiration can come from anywhere. This YouTube video, I Love Living Life: I Am Happy, is one man’s choice of happiness (peace) over anger, bitterness, and hopelessness toward living a life without any limbs. Nick Vujicic is funny, moving, amazing, and will lift you up.

Eventually, we choose peace for our own sake.

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