Richard Register's rendering. I wish I could live in his head for a day. He is one man that is allowed to eliminate "simple" from his vocabulary.

I should be doing my work right now (office, school, or yoga homework–reader’s choice) but I simply dont feel like it. Instead, I’ve been browsing through the Huffington Post and looking at Planetizen articles (how nerdy does that sound? good job, laurie). Prompted by a recent assignment to design (in words as well as a creative rendering of our choice–I chose a Crayon based medium that is reminiscent of a 4 year old Kandinsky. It wasn’t pretty) our vision for a sustainable-looking community, I have found myself at the beginning of a battle without end. Most likely, the battle is all inside this little head of mine, but, nonetheless, it is apparent. A sustainable Community? OK– Transit Oriented Design. Mixed Use Development. Compact Land Use. Renewable Energy Use. Recycled and Reclaimed Resources. Permaculture. Low Albedo. Permeable Surfaces. Ah, the list, like my heart (cue Celine Dion), goes on! Read the rest of this entry »

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I do not judge people. That’s a stretch but I try my hardest to reserve judgement in every sense possible. Please let me preface: it is easy to fall off track. In this modern day, we are conditioned to judge in hopes of preserving our own character, our own ego, and building individual confidence. We judge to displace any concerns that we, ourselves, manifest in our own practices, behavior, and abilities. Harboring and igniting our own inner light of consciousness and self-awareness will release any doubts and judgements from our mind’s palette.

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“OM

Namah Shivaya Gurave

Saccidananda Murtaye

Nisprapancaya Shantaya

Niralambaya Tejase

OM”

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The Dharmacakra Mudra represents the wheel of life. In this representation there are two circles standing for reincarnation in the Hindu tradition. The left handed circle faces your heart-space representative of the individual. Joined by the middle finger which symbolizes the transition, the right circle stands for the universal. Only when there is balance between the two is there harmony. Harmony with the self aligning to the Universal.

It seems extremely apt today that my class will center around the idea of harmony and balance. When I instruct, I instruct from experience alone. That is the only truth in which I know–that which I experience. I, to say the least, am reaching an imbalance. My school, work, and teacher training are coming at me in a fast flurry leaving personal relationships at the wayside. My dear friend Katie needs my love and energy, a father and mother wish to hear from and see their daughter, and a friend– I have not been to those around me. I need balance. That is why I have been meditating and playing with the Dharmacakra mudra as of late. This hand gesture is a symbol for the wheel of life; the transition and balance from individual world into the universal world. Harmony is sought to create this unique, delicate balance between the two. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m well aware of my weaknesses. But balanced are the scales of the libra, I’m equally as aware of my strengths. Some may say “overly” aware. =) I know that when I used to do Pilates with the D-line in college, that my instructor told me I was tighter than some of the most lethargic, boulder-resembling football players at Cal. My hips- those little babies are so stubborn, I tell you. BUT in light of my darkness, I accept this, breathe into my hips at any chance I can get and let…it…go. Lo! my strengths…I have massive guns. I mean, I have canons. I can hold a forearm stand (peacock or Mayurasana) for an entire day while sipping my chai latte. Impressive, I know. Read the rest of this entry »

I wish every morning was like this...holy moly!

I’m incredibly happy right now. Blissful. Grateful. In a haze that I wish would last for days! Yoga has not changed from day one for me– I still feel this high, this glow after practice. This state is ever-present after a session like I just had. Sunrise yoga at 6AM…in downtown San Diego…on the 34th floor of the Copley Symphony Hall. Does it get much better, I ask? Costa Rica on the wooden deck of a tropical retreat center overlooking the ocean? The floor of my home with my Buddha gazing right back at me? My dear little yoga hut in Santa Catalina, Panama perched on top of a cliff overlooking the Pacific? Another mask, but the same sensation. Post Savasana in Sunrise yoga is like waking up all over again. Reborn to the day to set a clear intention, direction, and focus for your day. I think I’ll marinate (thank you, Alex, for that verbiage) in this state for a while now… ♥ ∞ ♥

Just recently in training, the group was discussing the differences between schools of thought within the yogic realm that support either a dualistic or nondualistic practice. The goal (if you can even call it that- more later) is to align body with breath to attain enlightenment, or liberation–liberation from suffering. In short, the root of dukkha (or suffering) is traced back to that which we seek to attain or acquire that will bring us happiness (or free us from dukkha)–money, “sound” relationships, health, sex, etc. Dualistic approaches separate spirit and matter in saying that with matter (relationships, money, sex, etc) there cannot be spirit or enlightenment. Dualistic schools of thought play off of the natural human tendency to obsess, crave, and play into the addiction of seeking pleasure. Nondualistic approaches do not distinguish between the two, saying that, in moderation, a material life (one that does not renounce the simple pleasures of life) does not impede enlightenment which is the ultimate yogi’s intention.

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“Lokah Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu”.

May all beings, everywhere, be happy and free and may the thoughts and actions of our lives contribute to that happiness and freedom for all.

-Indian Mantra

Flying Babies

Yosemite Crafts- Wawona

 

Here are a few ditties from my last 10 day camping adventure. Pictures are not in order AT ALL! Though we didnt camp in the Grand Canyon, I put in a shot from there looking out to the Shiva Temple. Also, my lovies from High School and I spent a wonderful morning over at the Meditation Gardens and the “lovey” picture was just so hard not to display. Im so very lucky to have been able to visit these California (and Arizona) gems. Meditation Gardens, the Grand Canyon, Joshua Tree, Red Rock Canyon, Lake Isabella, Sequoia National Park, Lake Millerton, Yosemite, Big Sur. Bliss. Read the rest of this entry »

Laurie L. Gartrell

Laurie L. Gartrell

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