Halfway through December, already?

It’s a blustery day in the Seattle Area.  Its windy, its wet, and it’s surprisingly warm.  And I am still coming to grips with the fact that we are almost half-way through December.  Don’t get me wrong, the fact that Winter Solstice is only 10 days away makes me incredibly happy.  It’s just that I catch myself wondering…where did the time go?

I know I am not unique in this wondering.  All of us at some point or another are struck by the fact that while time may seem to move incredibly slowly at one moment, most of us often have the feeling that time just keeps slipping away.  Dates that seemed so far in the offing are suddenly upon us. Babies become children, children become adults, adults become seniors and each of us find ourselves wondering how did we end up here.

The focus of my classes this week have been on Svadhyaya, or self-study.  It is the 4th of the Niyamas, or individual practices identified by Pantanjali (400 CE). This is an integral aspect of our yoga practice. Beyond getting the right alignment for a pose, or moving just so with the breath in a pose, there are also so many questions about our everyday practice. Which poses do we like and not like. Which poses do we avoid? Which poses make us feel powerful? Which bring us healing in times of suffering? Which poses make us mad or make us feel like crying or make us feel triumphant?

Svadyaya is also about the deeper stuff.  Why do we feel a certain way in a pose? Do we always feel that way in that pose? What else is going on for us in that pose?  Are there poses in which we feel nothing?  How is it that putting our bodies in an asana can even elicit that emotional/intellectual response? Why do the asanas do that?  Are we even aware of our thoughts and emotions while in any given asana?  So, not only are we trying to become more aware of our breath and our movements on the mat, but we are also trying to engage more fully in the study of who we are in each moment, and in every breath.

And if you thought this was just about yoga… it’s not… or it is.  It is not just about yoga, if yoga is something that only happens for you on a mat, in a studio, for about an 90 minutes a day.  On the other hand, it is all about yoga if you have begun to notice that your yoga is moving with you beyond the mat.  It kinda has the habit of doing that. Check out this link from Richard Freeman called Yoga Ruins Your Life, in which he talks about the permeability of yoga, as well as showcasing some very nice asanas guaranteed to make you ooo and ah.

Then these questions, this work of self-study really gets deep.  On a daily basis, moment by moment, we begin to explore who we are, what makes us think and feel the way we do, and why.  This is, I believe what we call the examined life – a life of self-study.  This is a life that allows us to answer that question, Wow, how’d we get here?  with  something along the lines of ” I don’t quite know, but at least I was awake for some of it. ”  Through Svadhyaya, we participate in the most important dialogue of all time; the dialogue that begins with ourselves; the dialogue that enables us to be more fully present in each moment.

Happy Holidays everyone.  I hope the Season brings you much light and love.  May the questions you ask continue to deepen and expand.  Don’t let yourself get too attached to the answers, they will probably change (follow this link).  Enjoy the journey and stay full of wonder.

 

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

Thanksgiving Blessings

Wishing the very warmest wishes and heartfelt gratitude to all my yogis and friends and family.   Here is a poem by John O’Donohue.

I give thanks for arriving
Safely in a new dawn,
For the gift of eyes
To see the world,
The gift of mind
To feel at home
In my life,
The waves of possibility
Breaking on the shore of dawn,
The harvest of the past
That awaits my hunger,
And all the furtherings
This new day will bring.

Tonight my daughter comes home from college, and we will drive down to Portland to spend the holiday with family. So, I will not be teaching tomorrow, but I do have two very special classes planned for this weekend.  I hope you can join me for one if not both of them.

Saturday @ 9:15am  @ River Tree Yoga

Benefit Class for Yoga Behind Bars

You can you use your pass if you have one.  I will be donating all proceeds from the class to YBB.  This will be a class focused on gratitude, a heart opening practice designed to nourish and inspire.

Sunday @ 9:45 @ Village Green Yoga

A special class to help us unwind, detox and restore after a  long weekend of celebration.

Be Well

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

New data suggests yoga & meditation can help cure cancer

I am pleased to see more and more articles verifying the positive and healing impact of yoga and meditation on the human body.

This just in from Canada

Evidence to suggest that meditation alters cancer survivors’ cells

Sadashiva Pai, PhD, MBA Founder and CEO at Science Mission LLC

Researchers in Canada have found the first evidence to suggest that support groups that encourage meditation and yoga can actually alter the cellular activity of cancer survivors.

Their study, which was published in the journal Cancer, is one of the first to suggest that a mind-body connection really does exist.

The team found that the telomeres – the protein caps at the end of our chromosomes that determine how quickly a cell ages – stayed the same length in cancer survivors who meditated or took part in support groups over a three-month period.

On the other hand, the telomeres of cancer survivors who didn’t participate in these groups shortened during the three-month study.

Mindfulness-based cancer recovery and supportive-expressive therapy maintain telomere length… onlinelibrary.wiley.com

Mindfulness-based cancer recovery and supportive-expressive therapy maintain telomere length relative to controls in distressed breast cancer survivors – Carlson – 2014 – Cancer – Wiley Online Library

Sun Salutation Workshop – Rescheduled for November 2nd @ 1:30

Sun Salutation Workshop

Sunday, November 2nd

1:30 – 4:00pm

There are still a few spots left available for the Sun Salutation Workshop this weekend.  

Sign up now to reserve a place for your mat. 

River Tree Yoga
Tree House Point
6922 Preston-Fall City Road
Issaquah, WA 98027

Sun Salutation – Surya Namaskar  is nothing less than a prayer to the sun, the earth and all that is in between.  As we move through these poses we nourish the body and spirit in deep and powerful ways.

This sequence of 8-14 poses can be found in its entirety or separately in almost every yoga class.  If you have ever wondered how to step fully into and through each of these powerful poses, then now is the time to learn to own them, enjoy them and truly benefit from them.

This workshop will focus on the elements of alignment within the poses, techniques for transitioning between the poses and the role of the breath throughout the poses.

The workshop is suitable for all bodies and all levels.  Learn how to modify and adapt the poses to ensure safety, and enhance your practice.

$40
Call early to reserve a place for your mat.

425-765-3173

or email me,

Diana@kharmabellayoga.com

All the Better to Hear You With, My Dear

Greetings Yogis,

I told you earlier this month that Fall is the Season of Change.  And so it is for me.

My server doesn’t like handling my mailing list.  Sending out a regular newsletters was becoming oh so very cumbersome. And I was concerned that not everyone actually associated Kharma Bella Yoga with me, Diana Bonyhadi, the yoga teacher at several different studios.

So, I have decided to create a newsletter and an online presences as Diana Bonyhadi Yoga, and I will be using Mail Chimp for distribution.  I have done the research and have determined that it is a safe and respectful service and includes easy to opt-in and opt-out features which will allow you and other yogi friends to choose exactly how often you want to hear from me.

The newsletter will be short, keep you informed of upcoming workshops, changes to my teaching schedule, interesting local yoga events, thoughts on yoga, and perhaps some other  juicy yoga tidbits on anything from philosophy to fashion (?), to book reviews, asana, music, food, etc.

If you are not on my mailing list you can easily join by completing the form at the bottom.

The Blog/this website will continue as before.

Do let me know how you like the changes.  I look forward to hearing from you and seeing you on the mat or out and about.

 

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

 

 

 

Are You Getting All You Need From Your Yoga?

I keep hearing the same question:

What kind of yoga class should I go to?  How do I choose a teacher?  How do I choose a studio?

These are really important questions.  No doubt about it, good yoga is good for you.  But yoga that is not right for your body, your current state of health,  or your level  of practice can actually cause damage.  Don’t take my word for it.  I’m sure you know someone who has a story about going to “that” studio or attending “that” teacher’s class, only to walk out 75 minutes later wonder what had just happened to her/him and why they hurt all over.

Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be sharing with you some easy assessment techniques for discovering the right kind of yoga for you, in this moment.

Today’s offering is simple.  No matter where you are, or what class you are attending, your best teacher is you.  Listen to your body.  List to your breath.  Pay attention to yourself with compassion and awareness, and in doing so you will avoid injury.

To learn more or to talk with me directly about your yoga needs, I have included a quick form to ensure that we stay in touch.

Namaste & Be Well

Diana Bonyhadi

P.S.  Don’t forget the Sun Salutation Workshop this Saturday

1:00 – 4:00pm

River Tree Yoga at Tree House Point