New Classes and Workshops!

 

New Classes

Vinyasa Flow appropriate for all levels and all bodies.  Drop-ins welcome

Wednesdays @ 5:00pm at Issaquah Dance Theatre:

Upcoming Workshops

Loving Your Sun: How to get the most out of your sun salutations and learn the fun-damentals of the individual asanas and how to transition safely between them.  Perfect for building your home practice and deepening your awareness.

Sunday September 23, 1:00 – 3:30 – Village Green Yoga

Take the time to Meditate:  This is a wonderful workshop for anyone who has ever wanted to try meditation and also for those who have enjoyed a meditation practice in the past.This two-hour workshop will include asanas to settle the body, pranayama (breathwork) to focus the mind, chanting and guided meditation.

Sunday, September 30, 1:00 – 3:00pm   Village Green Yoga

 

Facebook – What’s the Point?

 

Warning this may not seem to have anything to do with yoga.  And then again, if yoga is all about being present and aware of everything we do, and how we do it, and if we are trying to live on the eightfold path…. then this has everything to do with yoga.

Did you notice that I have not been on Facebook for a while?  It’s true, sometime back in July, I decided to give a give Facebook a wide berth.

Perhaps it was due to spending some time with my friend Gail Hand, author of the recently published guidebook to Facebook entitled: Are You SURE You Want to Post That? This is a great little book, providing essential guidelines on what is appropriate to post on line.

Her book got me thinking about what I was posting on Facebook and why.  I had begun to notice that Facebook had become a repository for self-marketing, self-aggrandizement, basic to-do lists and/or manifestations of discontent:  “Buy my product, pat my back, I did so many errands today, I won X, or my work is killing me and politics are crazy.”

And before I knew it, I couldn’t think of a single reason to post anything to Facebook.  I mean, did folks really want to see my pictures of summer hikes, my gorgeous children, or the 22 pounds of berries I picked and made into jam? Was it necessary for me to clog up the pages of Facebook with announcements of my upcoming classes and workshops.  Or was anyone really interested in knowing where I went or reading my thoughts on reality, consciousness or esoteric musings on the nature of the planet?

And so I gave up Facebook.  Didn’t even open that tab for close to two months.  And I am sorry to say I didn’t miss it.  Nope, no withdrawals symptoms here. Periodically it did cross my mind to anti-up and use the FB to do a bit of marketing (self-aggrandizement), but that seemed selfish, so I kept the tab closed.  And then there were those moments when I wanted to know how my kids were doing, but that struck me as voyeuristic, so I picked up the phone and called them instead.

Did I save time? Probably, because once you check your status, and all your friends’ statuses and look at everyone’s pictures, an hour (or two) can easily pass you by.  I did notice that the amount of time I spent in front of my computer screen decreased, which I think is a good thing. Did I miss reading everyone’s posts?  Surprisingly, I did not.  I don’t know if I missed anything really important, but the world seems to have gone on just fine without me. Did I feel better/more superior for not “doing” Facebook?  Thankfully, No. Did anyone notice that I wasn’t posting or responding to post on FB? – I don’t know, and I kinda sorta doubt it.

So not only could I not find a reason to post, I also could not find a reason to read, scan, peruse, or sleuth about in the bowels of Facebook.  The longer I stayed away, the harder it was to consider going back. But as you can see, this is all written in past tense, so go back, I must have.

It was at the beginning of this week.  I don’t know how it happened.  But somehow, the tab popped open and I stayed to look.  The good news, the fantastic news, is that the first thing I saw was a lovely comment on the beauty of the planet, then an inspirational picture of my good friend and fellow yogi, followed by an announcement/invitation to a cause I really care about. Facebook showed me beauty, gave me inspiration and made me smile.

Unfortunately, I have yet to find a reason to contribute a post that would not fall into the category of bragging, marketing or kevetching.  I still can’t answer the question “why post?” without the answer boiling down to “come see the cool things I am doing or thinking about” and that still sounds like showing off or bragging to me.  But maybe that is ok.

In this busy busy world where computers and cell phones are a way of life, Facebook is now an important marketing tool and a social connector.  Yes, it can be a vehicle for simply sharing the tedium of one’s life, or it can be a vehicle of inspiration and change.  As with all things, the choice will be our own.  And it will be up to each of us to answer the question: what am I posting and why does it matter?

I welcome your thoughts on this.  How do you “use” Facebook?  Why do you use Facebook? How much time do you spend on Facebook?  And anything else you think is important to consider when choosing to go to or post to the big FB.

Have a great week

Shalom & Namaste,

Diana Bonyhadi

Appreciating the Labors of Living

Hello Everyone,

This weekend marks the official end of summer. Folks are bounding out for their final fling; boating, hiking, beaching, capturing live music. I hope that this weekend you will find some time to celebrate and honor the labors that you have put forth this year.

Often times we find ourselves running from one thing on our “to-do” list to the next. We wonder if we will ever get it all done. By the time we are half way through that list, we are already building the next list. It is this busy-ness of living that wears us down. Without taking time out to appreciate all that we have done, we will forever feel like the mouse on the wheel; spinning and spinning, yet going no where.

This is, I think one of the true gifts of meditation. We set aside time to be in stillness. We give ourselves permission to step off the spinning wheel of the doing and busy-ness of living. This is really hard to do, believe me, I know. I really like my lists. I am a doer of the highest order. And while we may stop our physical activities, the mind is still trying to keep it all going. It takes time for the mind to slow down, and stop making lists and telling stories. But if we get in the habit of sitting, every day, if even for a just a little bit, our bodies and our minds begin to look forward to this time of not doing, to this time of being. If you are new to meditation, or are looking for a refresher class, I will be hosting a meditation workshop September 22 at Village Green Yoga.

So, I am grateful for Labor Day Weekend. I am grateful I have the time to pause and reflect on all that I have done this year. I am grateful to all the workers – that would be all of us – who make this life possible. So a big shout out to farmers, truckers, engineers, laborers, office workers, cooks, writers, yogis, scientists, teachers, all of you who put your time and energy into making a living and making a life. Thank you for your labors of living.

Have a great weekend. Step with ease into the Fall. Lots of interesting things will be happening in the Seattle yoga community. My contributions include a couple of workshops and a meditation circle to begin in October, after I return from a meditation trip to India. A brief summary of my schedule is listed below, more details available through the links.

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

Upcoming Events:

Loving Your Sun – A workshop exploring the fun-damentals of the sun salutation series

Intro to Meditation – A workshop offering tips and tools to help your meditation practice.

Class Schedule

Day                       Time                   Style                                     Location

Monday         9:30 – 11:00         Hatha Integration        Village Green Yoga

Tuesday         Noon – 1:00        Hatha Integration        Swedish Hospital

Tuesday         5:30 – 6:45          Vinyasa Flow                 Village Green Yoga

Wednesday    9:30 – 11:00        Hatha Integration         Village Green Yoga

Thursday        Noon – 1:00        Hatha Integration          Swedish Hospital

Thursday        5:30 – 6:45          Vinyasa Flow                  Village Green Yoga

Sunday           9:30 – 11:00        Sunday Salutations        Village Green Yoga

The wisdom of having a spiritual practice

Hi Everyone,

Hope you have been having an awesome, amazing and abundant summer.  How did you do on that Pacific Northwest checklist of fun?  Let’s see, just this week, I logged:

  • Blueberry picking
  • Camping
  • Visited the San Juan Islands
  • Watched the Orcas swim by
  • Jumped and played in three separate lakes
  • Danced to Pink Martinis at Zoo Tunes
  • Meditated – lots and in some really cool places
  • Finished a couple of books

Whatever you decide to do these next few weeks make sure it nourishes your soul.  So often we forget about that in the hustle and bustle of living, and then I wonder if we really are living.  Find Joy & Embrace it.

Next month (September) I will be hosting two workshops at Village Green Yoga.  More info to follow shortly, but mark your calendars now.

  • Loving Your Sun – learning the fun-damentals of the Sun Salutation Sequence
    Sunday, September 23, 1:00 – 3:30
  • Taking the Time to Meditate – opening to the heart of a meditation practice.
    Sunday, September 30, 1:00 – 2:30

And here it is, the reason for the title of this posting.  This is an excerpt from a letter from my rabbi on this week’s Torah portion.   The whole of his writing is powerful, but this short bit says it all.  Enjoy!

 

When we make spirituality an essential part of our existence, however, what we are able to see is radically different. Because our spiritual path serves to reconnect us to Source, it expands our awareness beyond the tunnel vision of the ego. In removing our blinders and opening our eyes it also opens our heart. As we become spiritually aware, we are able to see the essential goodness of the world, the miracle of life, the unfathomable gift of our own birth, and the preciousness of relationship. We are able to hold the pain and suffering, the struggling and the fear with acceptance, understanding and compassion. The existence of love brings up feelings of gratitude, the wonder of aliveness, feelings of pure joy. In such awareness the other is no longer seen as a means to satisfy one’s needs; one is able to leave the past in the past, welcome the future with an open heart, and be fully present to one’s experience in every moment, just as it is. When awareness transcends the ego, one can’t help but see abundance and love.

 

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

Summer Schedule Changes

I find it hard to believe we are half way through summer.  But I know it must be true, because I just sent my daughter off to Camp Nor’Wester for a month, and she won’t be back till the end of August.  That means there are only 6 weeks left of summer.

Earlier in the month I wrote a post about what to do in Seattle in the summer.  How are you all doing with that?  So far I have been to the beach, hiked in the woods and gone berry picking & made some raspberry jam.  I have a lot to do in the next 4 weeks.  Next month, I will cram in all the rest – summer concerts, Shakespeare in the Park, Paddleboard Yoga and a trip to the San Juans, to name a few.  Did I mention I want to go on a food cart junket?

I missed Wanderlust at Whistler (the 3-day outdoor yoga & music festival) – Did any of you go?  How was it?

As you may have noticed there are some changes to my teaching schedule this summer.  New Summer hours:

Yoga at Swedish Hospital:
Tuesday & Thursday     Noon – 1:00    Hatha Integration/Therapeutic Alignment

Village Green Yoga:
Monday & Wednesday Mornings:

9:30 – 10:45     Hatha Integration – Alignment/Anusara Inspired

Tuesday & Thursday Evenings:

5:30 – 7:00    Vinyasa Flow

The Meditation Circle will restart in the Fall.

Speaking of meditation, if you have ever dreamed of going to India to study meditation and/or yoga, there is still time to sign up for Journey to the Source – a 2 week life changing trip to India in October. Travel with Ajayan Borys (Effortless Mind Meditation)and myself to the Majestic Himalayan Mountains and the source of the Ganges River and explore the roots of Yoga and Mediation.  For more information and to sign up, click here.  As the date draws nearer I am getting more and more excited.  Two weeks of meditation and yoga right in the very birth place of the tradition. Ajayan spent many years in this very location deep in meditation, so not will we be traveling to an amazing location, but we will be traveling with an amazing and dedicated teacher. Join us as we reach deeper into the very heart of our practice.

Have an adventuresome August.

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

I Do Not Live Here Alone

I came across this poem today, and since its been so long since I’ve done a post I thought I would keep it short and sweet.   I do believe that everything we do is interconnected. That every action is significant, and that every person is important and perfect.

I Do Not Live Here Alone

Each breath I take affects the air all around me


Each word I utter falls on someone else’s ears.

That which I touch is felt by another
.

That which I do will certainly affect another
.

That which I do not, will also affect another.

We never know how far-reaching something we say or do 
really is, until it returns to us.

And it always does.

All things in life form a circle
.

Whether or or not we see the circle.

I do not live here alone.

The Freedom of Summer is Good for Your Soul

I love summer time!

School is out for almost everyone.  The kids are off to summer jobs or enjoying the luxury of sleeping in.  Mornings are slow and calm.  This parent has a lot less driving to do and a lot less nagging.  No more homework, no more projects, no more school related meetings.  The sun has even popped out once or twice this month, and I went to my second outdoor summer concert this week.

Summer is the time to slow down, refuel and reconnect.  Almost everyone will take some form of vacation, whether it is a weekend of camping, a trip to the beach or maybe even something longer and more adventurous.

Many of us will have a bit more time to be with friends and families enjoying picnics, sightseeing, concerts, camp-outs, barbeques, and bonfires,(with marshmallows and dark chocolate of course).

Taking time off from our regular routine not only allows us respite but it also provides us the opportunity to reconnect with our deeper selves.  We get the extra moment for reflection, we get the extra moment for play, we get the extra moment for love.

I wish we could have summer all year-long.  It’s not that I am lazy (I might be, but that’s not the point), it’s just that I think people would be healthier and happier if we all embraced the value of summer throughout the year.

So, to all my friends and yogis, I wish you a summer full of:

  • rest
  • music
  • dancing
  • sunshine
  • friendship
  • good books
  • fresh berries
  • corn on the cob
  • walks in the moonlight
  • strolling along the beach
  • hiking in the woods
  • family
  • bonfires
  • meditation
  • YOGA

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

 

Brain Research Confirms Yoga Lessons

V.S. Ramachandran is one of my heroes. He manages put into simple and clear language the most revolutionary ideas in neurology and brain research. In the video below, he may have just provided us with scientific proof that indeed we are all connected.

As I go deeper into my studies of Yoga, I continue to be amazed that the yogis of so many hundreds and hundreds of years past were already exploring these areas.

Questions to Ponder:

  • What is consciousness?
  • What is self and not-self?
  • How am I connected to you and everyone?
  • How do I deepen my awareness in each and every moment?
  • How does knowing a bit more about brain chemistry and function make a difference to my awareness of self and my yoga practice?

So here it is, another amazing video from the folks at TED Talks.

V.S. Ramachandran on the Brain Chemistry of Empathy

Please let me know what you think.

Shalom & Namaste,

Diana Bonyhadi

Meditation Blog – I will always be a beginner

So I have been meditating off and on for over 20 years.  That seems like a long time when I put it down on paper.  But in actuality, it feels like a short time.  Why?  Because I still feel like such a beginner.

This Fall I rededicated myself to my meditation practice.  I promised myself I would meditate at least twenty minutes a day every day of the week.  Twenty minutes isn’t that long.  Particularly if you think of what a small fraction it is of a twenty-four hour day.  But actually taking out twenty minutes from every day to meditate has been harder than you might think.

And it is not that I don’t want to meditate.  I do.  In fact, I love meditating. It’s just that I can find all sorts of reasons to procrastinate – too much going on around me, I might be interrupted, I just need to make that phone call, and return an email, I woke up late, I will get to it later….

The trick I have found is to either do it first thing in the morning, or at mid-day during my lunch break.  Getting to it in the evening never seems to work.

You can probably tell by all this that I haven’t always meditated every day, but I think that getting to it at least 5 days a week is a good start.

Now about those 20 years of practice.  I have learned/tried a lot of different styles of meditation.  Living in the Bay Area in the 1970’s, Transcendental Meditation (TM) was all the rage.  Since then I experimented with several other kinds of meditation, with varying degrees of satisfaction.

I can’t say there is one best way to do it.  I view all the different styles as useful paths to get to the same place.  Some are more rigid and demanding than others.  All offer tools and techniques to assist you in your journey.  The main thing I have found is that it takes patience and practice.

Here are few tools I have found to be very helpful this year.

  • Listen to Dharma Talks:  They are readily available on the internet.  Google Dharma talks and see where it takes you.  I have over the past year had the privilege to listen to so many wise teachers just by checking out their audio blogs online.  I have learned so much about myself and my practice, and the Dharma path.
  • Insight Meditation Timer:   This is a handy app available for both Droid and IPhone formats.  I turn my phone to silent mode, and choose a preset timer, and off I go.  I have created several presets, so that I can choose whether I will have a 10, 20 or 40 minute meditation.  I love the interval gongs and the ending gongs, and the journal and statistics options are helpful.   It is also nice to see who else around the world is meditating with you.
  • Find a Teacher:  Meditation is both hard and easy.  It is helpful to have someone you trust to whom you can direct your questions.  You will be amazed at what you discover about yourself and your mind while in meditation.  Having someone to talk to about your experiences and to guide you is nourishing.
  • Meditate with Others:  If you have a commitment to share meditation space with others it will help to ensure that you will actually practice on that day at that time.  This is the obvious benefit.  But there is also the amazing energy of being in the same room with other folks who are meditating.  Their energy will support your energy.  For all you know, they too could be wondering about the dust in their navel, but maybe, just maybe, they are deeply connected to the energies of the universe, and that is good mojo.
  • Give Yourself a Break:  Okay, so you skipped the meditation this morning.  The world won’t end.  Okay, so you spent your entire meditation doing your errands in your head.  That’s happens too.  Meditation is not about being perfect.  It is about learning; learning to  watch the mind, learning to calm the mind, learning to learn and learning to connect. Meditation is about everything else and nothing else, and so, it is about learning to give yourself a break.

Yes, after all these years I am still a beginner.  I don’t know what my meditation practice will yield on any given day.  I don’t know if I will be able to sit comfortably or not.  I don’t know if I will have one of those amazing moments of connection and stillness.  I may have none or a may feel transported for the entire session.  But I do know, that just by trying, my response to my world has gotten calmer, and for that I am grateful.

Shalom & Namaste
Diana Bonyhadi

 

 

Yoga Videos Worth Thinking About

Hi Everyone,

It has been a busy couple of weeks around here.  I have been on vacation with my children.  Driven from Seattle to San Francisco and back again.  Gone on a journey from Slavery to Freedom, eating the whole way, and have launched a meditation circle, just because folks seemed interested.

There has been  lot of interesting news out in the yoga world.  It amazes me how much one can learn about the yoga world by keeping their eyes on their computer.  But as you know, sitting in front of a computer is not one of my favorite things to do, so I do it in fits in spurts.  I admire all of you super active bloggers and yogis.

Anyway, I came across these videos over the past couple of days and they continue to tumble around in my head.

I haven’t decided if I really like the first one, or if it really bugs me.  The yoga is amazing, but there are a couple of other details about it that leave me wondering. What do you think?
.

And this next video is so simple and wonderful, I just had to share it.

Happy Weekend.

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi