Live Music at Gratitude Workshop

Dear Seattle Yogis,

Are you ready for an amazing workshop, guaranteed to open your heart to the abundance of the Holiday Season?  I can’t wait for this Sunday.  I just got off the phone with our musicians and I am so psyched.  We are going to move and chant and be moved by their incredible voices and rhythms.

See you soon.

Diana Bonyhadi

A Practice of Gratitude
Sunday, November 24th
1:00 – 4:00pm

Welcome the Holidays with this Essential Heart Opening practice featuring live music by Tova Ramer and Steve Grant.

Steve has been singing Kirtan for years and has performed with his Bhakti Bliss Band as well as studied with Jai Uttal and Gina Sala. Tova has been singing for years in Jewish, interfaith and folk rock groups in the Seattle area.  She’s inspired by Snatam Kaur, Gina Sala and Deva Premal.

This workshop features heart-opening asanas such as backbends to help you open more fully to the experience of the holidays and digestive asanas to help with you process the physical and emotional  abundance of the season.

Our flow will be beautiful and deep and enhanced by the sweet sounds of live kirtan.

Open to students of all levels.

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

$40/student, pre-registration strongly recommended.
Workshop limited to 15 students

Contact Diana Bonyhadi to sign up
425-765-3173
Diana@KharmaBellaYoga.com

 

A Practice of Gratitude

Dear Seattle Yogis,

Seriously, how can Thanksgiving and Chanukah be in two weeks?  That’s not possible.  Okay, maybe it is, because they have a bunch of Turkeys, Christmas stuff, and even a Chanukah gift basket for sale at  CostCo, and there have been numerous articles saying that this won’t happen again for another 70,000 years. If you want more details on why this is so, click here.  Anyway, I doubt I will be around in 70,000 years, so I had better make this year’s co-joined feasts both phenomenal and memorable.  And so, I find myself thinking of turkey and stuffing and latkes and pie and family logistics.  I notice that I am already feeling full and maybe a bit overwhelmed.  Anybody else out there feeling this way too?

The good news is that I will be offering a new and  inspirational workshop next Sunday at River Tree Yoga. This one is specifically designed to help you get ready for the holidays. Come to this workshop so you can be truly open and present for the bounty you are sure to consume, both physically and emotionally.

A Practice of Gratitude
November 24th
1:00 – 4:00pm

Welcome the Holidays with this Essential Heart Opening practice featuring live music by Tova Ramer and Friends.

This workshop features heart-opening asanas such as backbends to help you open more fully to the experience of the holidays and digestive asanas to help with you process the physical and emotional  abundance of the season.

Our flow will be beautiful and deep and enhanced by the sweet sounds of live kirtan.

Open to students of all levels.

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

$40/student, pre-registration strongly recommended.
Workshop limited to 15 students

Contact Diana Bonyhadi to sign up
425-765-3173
Diana@KharmaBellaYoga.com

Yoga on Haloween? You Bet!

jackolantern_omHello Yogis,

Hasn’t October been a wonderful splash of color here in the Pacific Northwest?  I know it happens every year, but honestly, the beauty of Fall never fails to inspire me.  I have managed to tromp through the woods several times in the past two weeks, and have even found a few more mushrooms for supper, yum!

In case you were wondering, I am indeed teaching on Thursday evening, which just happens to be Halloween.  Seems to me, being strong and flexible and open is a good idea on the night when spirits come out to play.  And if you are planning on nibbling on that Halloween candy, then you had better come get your practice on beforehand to help stimulate you digestive system.

Classes are going great, both at River Tree Yoga and at Village Green Yoga.  Each studio is dedicated to the wellness of our bodies and our souls and our communities.  This is a mighty combination, leading to healing and inspiration for all of us.  So whether you want to do your yoga in the city or in the woods, drop in for a class or sign up for a series.  It will change your life for the better.  And be sure to mark your calendar for my next workshop at River Tree Yoga: 

A Practice of Gratitude

November 24, 1:00 – 4:00Pm

featuring live music with

Tova Ramer & Friends

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

 

Thanksgiving Greetings from your Favorite Yogi

My in-box has been overflowing with reminders of gratitude practices.  It has also been overflowing with opportunities to shop, shop, shop. Personally, I like the former much better.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  Family and friends come together for no other reason than to share gratitude and food.

My family has already begun to arrive.  My children are all now home – which brings me so much joy.  The kitchen cupboards and fridge are full, and the scent of baking fills the air.  Actually my son is making risotto which smells almost as good as hot chocolate chip cookies.  More of my family arrives tomorrow and there will be  21 for dinner on Thanksgiving.  Now that will be a bountiful evening.

Here is the thing about the holidays.  Even if this is your favorite time of year, it is the time you are most likely to overdue and wear yourself out.  So instead of reminding you about all the things you have to be thankful for, I will take this moment to remind you to take care of yourself.

Steps to self-care during the holidays

Take time to be alone: Get up a few minutes early to have some time to yourself.  Perhaps you will meditate, or maybe enjoy that first cup of chai tea/coffee by yourself.  Whatever you do – don’t do anything that is on your to-do list.  Just be.

Do your practice:  Even if you don’t have time to come to the studio for classes, do take time to do a few down dogs and warriors, a baby back bend or two, a couple of twists for your digestion and don’t skip svasana.  You can do this all in 20 minutes or less, and you will feel much better for it. And if you can squeeze in a full practice, it will definitely help you to stay calm and cool and centered in the face of any family dynamics or undercooked turkeys.

Nourish your body:  I know you plan on eating lots of turkey, stuffing and pie, but don’t forget your greens, salads, and even a light soup to refresh your body.  Be sure to start your day with a healthy breakfast, my favorite is yogurt, granola and fresh fruit.  This will give you all the energy you need to face the rest of the day.

That’s it.  Have a great Thanksgiving holiday.  As you sit down with your friends and family, look around and smile.  Let your heart fill with gratitude and let everyone know how happy you are that they are there.  I found this blessing and thought you might like it.  Direct the prayer to whatever the divine means to you.

Thank you for the elements, which compose our bodies, all of nature and this food we will enjoy.
Thank you for our ancestors who sacrificed for us to be where we are today.
Thank you for the earth and its astounding beauty.
Thank you for love, family, friendship and community.

Shalom & Namaste

Diana Bonyhadi

Thanksgiving – Begining a Practice of Gratitude

Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  Our to-do lists are full, as are our shopping lists.  We will spend a significant amount of time this week cleaning and cooking, and preparing to welcome friends and family into our homes.  We may even travel to join our friends and families in near or distant locations.  This is the time of year when we as a culture sanction taking a few precious moments out of our busy schedules to open our hearts to gratitude.  And we do it in community.  Perhaps we all become yogis on Thanksgiving.

I believe that gratitude is the foundation of yoga.  We start our practice with intention setting and we finish it with gratitude for the practice and our teachers.  We strive to cultivate the niyama of santosa (contentment) on the mat by letting go into each of our asanas; accepting and rejoicing in each asana for the strength and energy it brings to us.  We seek to be present and content for each moment and for each breath during our practice. And finally, we bring our hands together in Namaste in recognition and gratitude for the divine spirit which lives and breaths in all of us.

But once we leave the studio, and move beyond the mat, shouldn’t we also seek to build a mindfulness practice of gratitude?  Medical studies from such esteemed institutions as the Harvard Medical Center note the health benefits of engaging in a practice of mindulness meditation.   Indeed, such practices have been shown to reduce the effects of stress related to chronic health concerns, and loss of loved ones.

The question then, is where and how to begin.  Why not this week with Thanksgiving?

As you prepare for the holiday, take time to note the beauty around you. Notice the red and yellow leaves as they fall to the ground.  Take a moment to be consciously grateful for friends and family. Remember those moments of joy shared with different family members.  Appreciate the bounty in the stores, the truckers who delivered it there and the farmers who brought it forth from the earth. Open your heart with gratitude for the artists who bring beauty to our eyes and ears; for the activists and foundations who provide shelter and services to those in need; and the for physicians who bring healing.  The list can go on and on.  Be thankful for each moment of life, the beauty that surrounds you and the kindnesses you experience.

Lest someone should accuse me of polyannaism, let me state that there is no denying that these are difficult times we’re living.  Challenges of hunger, poverty, racism, sexism, exploitation and yes death are a part of our daily existence.  The goal though, is not to descend into to pain of these experiences.  The understanding gained from practicing mindful gratitude keeps us from getting lost in the loss of freedoms and life.  So even when you are stuck in traffic, late for a meeting, low on blood sugar, or suffering from illness or the loss of a loved one, you can still allow gratitude to soften the moment.

Breath in, look around and remember many wonderful moments in your life and community.  Practice santosa and gratitude, both on the mat and beyond.
Happy Thanksgiving
Shalom & Namaste,

Diana Bonyhadi