Having danced and flirted with spirituality pretty much of my adult life and finally fully stepping into it five years ago, this year probably goes down as one where I integrate all my knowing and knowhow. The seeds I planted and garden I dedicatedly tended to blossomed. From teaching soulful yoga classes and leading women’s circles to bringing my multidimensional healing approach to special children and being in a space that offers insights and answers to a broken education system that consequently create disconnected adults.
If I could sum up 2021 with images, it would be a teacher training that wrapped up an illuminating year of deepening into The Work I am called to do. This is how I live my one precious life and this is how I believe we can raise conscious children.
This is the year I fully grasp we are spiritual beings living out a human experience.
In this training, we were asked to pick an object from a nearby park. We were to share a short story with our findings from nature. I returned to classroom with a lone flower from under a majestic tree. She was radiant in her shapely red petals, not unlike a joyful dancer wearing a wide-brimmed hat and alluring dress. This is her [life] story:
Far far away, long long ago, there lived a little good girl. She did what she was told. She lived up to other people’s expectations. One day, a wise woman asked her, what would you do if you only had a day to live? Indeed, what would she do? She put on her favorite hat and crimson dress that billowed beautifully in the wind. Outfits she saved for special occasions. In the woods where she felt most at home in, she danced like no one was watching. She sang like she did not care how she sounded. She was free to be who she wanted to be.
What would you do if you only had a day to live? This is a powerful question that clarifies, and may I add, horrifies.
In the new year, may we birth a life that is longing to live through us. May we show up every darned day with honesty and authenticity. May we embrace every part of us wholeheartedly. This is the best gift we can give ourselves.
I caught my first light of the day in many years. It was a cloudy morning with the spectacular aura of the sun casting an otherworldly glow on quiet waters. I watched the waves lapping onto shore, so gently and softly, with nary a care for the whirlwind of ominous news outside. It is a poignant moment to be alive. Never have I felt so much gratitude for good health, mine and those around me. We are navigating turbulent dark times before the dawn of the New Golden Age. Have you noticed? Light shines brightest where it is darkest.
As birthday season rolls my way, I am tending to ask big, open questions about turning my vision of my best life into one inspired real life I want to rise to every morning; about staying on this soulful path with vigor and lightness of the heart with every breath I take. The sun in the boundless sky spoke with her incredible aura that early morning. Planet earth needs our light more than ever. Every one of us is a lamp holder.
It was my first sunrise out of doors in many years only because the early morns’ are sacred bhakti time. I light an incense at the altar, say my prayers, then sit in silence, in a still-dark room lit by the soft light of a selenite lamp. The ambrosial hour is the time I devote myself to a practice that has seen me through storms, heartaches and back to my center. The yogic lifestyle I chose now holds me steady as I root deeper into my work with little children in a school that has all that I ask and stand for. Who knew one day I can integrate all my practices and tools, gifts and talents in a manner I never imagined.
Every morning, I rise purposefully to show up for myself and the children at a space that understands and embraces spirituality like how I live my multidimensional and multifaceted life. Every day, I harness my practices and tools, and my gift of spiritual sight. I deepen my understanding of fate and destiny, karma and dharma as I live out my own and hold up high the lamp for sentient beings of our future. Our souls have chosen one another, to walk together, into a new dawn.
The thing is, like many people, I did not know what was going to happen. Or what life will throw at me next. The truth is, I need tools and support like you do. As recent as last year, I was knocking on doors that shut on me. His Holiness the Dalai Lama famously said not getting what you want is sometimes a very good thing. Who knew the planets conspired to walk me through a serpentine path to the perfect door that is for my highest evolution. I have realized, more than ever, what comes is always right and perfect for me. I was unprepared yet fully prepared for this work.
Somewhere in this vast wide world, there is a school for young minds that tends to the body, mind, heart and spirit with ancient teachings and wisdom that I am no stranger to. At where I teach, education is the training ground to living a fulfilled life led by a heart-brain. It is the heart-brain, where faith and trust are located, that allows the transformation of impossible relationships into heartfelt ones. The ego is always fearful, the heart only knows love. The last nine months shadowing a special child and witnessing her grounding into her physical body has lent many precious insights.
Special children and the different – LGBTQ – incarnate to teach the world inclusion and oneness. More than anything, they teach us what it takes to be human. The soul is genderless, colorless and beyond polar differences. There is no separation at a soul level. The perfect version of us already exists beyond the limitations of the physical body. It is the heart, the bridge between body and spirit that can bring compassionate consciousness to create harmony. The higher dimension heart-brain is far more superior than the logical head-brain. The higher our existence, the more we should be led by the heart-brain.
The other thing is, we have to consciously choose our choices and walk through it, sometimes with gritted teeth. Bidding farewell to a way of life or habits that keep us stuck can be intimidating and nerve-wrecking. It can be scary as hell to be deeply honest with ourselves. It is too easy to turn back, numb out, dumb down and return to old ways of being because comfort zone is, well, familiar, comfortable and ultimately debilitating. It is not at all easy to tear down false walls and strip down masks that have a knack of adhering like a second skin. Change is the darnedest thing. For some, even taking a different route to work is unthinkable. Do you feel the whole world is against you when you are, for the first time, heeding the call of your soul and mustered enough courage to show up like you never did before.
Dear ones, standing up for your beliefs may feel like the loneliest thing you have ever done. It feels downright awkward and inconvenient, and you may suspect you have gotten it all wrong. What price then is the easy way out?
In ancient times, our nervous system was built to protect us from predators in a treacherous jungle. Fast forward hundreds of years later, living our most authentic selves in an urban jungle may be wrought with all manner of risks. Fighting with and fleeing from our fears and truth wreaks roller-coaster havoc on all the systems that run the body temple.
You see, the strength of the nervous system goes far beyond the tricky manipulations of the head-brain. Great courage and great strength lie in the realm of the nervous system. It takes more than sheer brute strength to defy the expectations of others. Science has shown us by improving the vagal tone, we can find greater ease in leveling up and standing up for this one unique you. The good news is, we can cultivate these qualities on the yoga mat. And we have to consciously choose to live the yoga – union of the mind, body and spirit – off the mat.
It is all in our hands. This one holy life that is wholly ours is in our hands. We are the master of our joy. In the end, it is really only just between us and God.
You have to do differently if you want to live differently. I am right here to support you with a one-to-one program that builds the foundation to navigate the change you long to live. Ask me about the program that integrates breath and movement, energy healing and coaching at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information on the work I do and am so in love with is available here.
I am so thrilled to be able to offer one-to-one movement, on top of energy medicine, for the special child. Send me an email to enquire about my compassionately conscious multidimensional approach to working with special children.
Your heart is the size of an ocean. Go find yourself in its hidden depths. – Rumi
How is it going in your part of the world?
I have been back in the studio, teaching “live” at a lovely riverside space. After teaching Yoga for Nervous System virtually for a year, I have almost forgotten how wonderful it is to connect in person. You know what, the mandatory face mask and social distancing do not separate us. We are connected like the web of life that binds us all. I love what Edward Lorenz so poetically wrote, a butterfly flaps its wings in the Amazonian jungle and a storm subsequently brews in northern Europe.
More than 18 months on, there are ever-changing dos and don’ts, and restrictions are abound around the ups and downs of a viral outbreak that is still wreaking havoc globally. Covid is the reason we consciously and conscientiously live our best lives simply because there is so much life has to offer.
The recent passing of a prominent figure in the Kundalini Yoga community has gotten me contemplating the close shave with death a few people near and dear to me had in the last year. What and who have I lived for? Are there longings and regrets I want to tend to? What are my last thoughts and words when I exhale for the final time? There are big questions with little immediate answers. The immensity of life simply demands an introspection just as proportionately profound.
When Grim Reaper is a hair’s breadth away, there is an urgency to spend more time doing things that truly matter, with people I want to walk to the end of the world with.
Choosing heart-centered living means I show up for Me with a capital M, even if it sometimes means going against the expectations of others and societal conditioning. Allowing the heart-brain to lead is an extraordinary path of fulfiling the highest destiny in this finite human experience. We are gifted tools to navigate happiness and grief, love and loss, certainties and unknowns, synchronicities and inconveniences. There are sunshiney days filled with rainbows and unicorns, and stormy moments of fire and hailstones.
You know what I am coming to. Yoga is the answer. I write this as a seeker who sought the answers to equanimity pretty much all of my life. Yoga works. The ancient teachings of yoga makes even more sense in the current tumultuous world. The way I like to practice and teach yoga is how I live my life, cultivating a sensitivity of the sensory system so we are in touch with what it is to be living optimally physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
On my mat – and may I add in the school where I teach little children – there is freedom to make mistakes. In fact mistakes are very welcome. I like to invite the courage of curiosity. I welcome unknown answers in unknown realms. This is how we open the higher centers of intuition, by welcoming curiosity and fearlessness.
On my mat, we exhale, inhale, let go, let in. With every breath, we surrender more and more, trusting we are safe and lovingly held so we can journey deeper. With every breath, we breathe purposefully, listening in to the goings-on on the [yoga] mat, to the beatings of our little hearts. The heart that knows it all. We allow the unraveling and becoming in the quiet. We turn inside, connecting, integrating, aligning, one breath at a time.
This is how I intentionally rise every day. This is how I live light and be the light. There are no shortcuts living a life I want to call whole and holy.
How are you living the fiery heart of the bold and courageous lion this Leo season? How are you harnessing the fullness of this one precious life? What do you want to birth on this expansive 8/8 day so you can live your most potent life?
May this New Moon in Leo ignite your mojo and passion to live the life you always dreamt of. May the surge of light waves from our spiritual sun inspire you with courage and strength to follow the calling of your heart. May you know you are safe and protected as you pursue your highest existence, led by the brain in your heart. Sending you lots of big-hearted sparkly love. Roar!
Join me for in-person Yin + Crystals by Candlelight and Himalayan Sound Bath at The Wise Life Co. I am taking a pause from teaching Yoga for Nervous System virtually as I return to the little children in school at the end of summer break. It is all about carving out an even wider berth of breathing space to tend to Me. Spots for private classes and healing sessions are limited and by appointment.
“OK, so yoga is just… you breathe in and out like this, then you start doing slow karate.”
My yoga journey returned me to my memory of a young lady fresh out of school with disposable income to explore the vast wide world of spirituality. Books, workshops and yes, yoga. I did not get yoga. In fact, I did not like yoga at all. It was too slow, too long, too painful. The promise that wisdom and all of life’s answers can be found working-in, on the mat, was impossibly nuanced for a goal-getter who relished the adrenaline rush of a sprint uphill. More than 20 years ago, a walk in the jungle was a work-out counting the steps and beating a previous record.
Unsurprisingly it was the intensity of Ashtanga yoga that later reconnected me with the mat. The practice that took my breath away opened the world of svadhyahya, or self-study. Long story short, in the fervent search for The Teacher who did not exist, I left the practice that broke a shoulder and found much more. I have shown up dedicatedly on the yoga mat for 10 years now. Every morning I rise and sit on my magic carpet. I connect up and tune in. I pray, chant, move my body and sit in silence. Swathes of silence so I hear all that is going on inside, in my blood, veins and bones, and the incredible chatter in my head.
Have you heard this noise in your head? It is deafening in the quiet of the ambrosial hour. My magic carpet is a great illuminator. I create space in my body every darned day so I have room to step many steps back and breathe when the external world is fiery.
You see, it took a loooong time before I arrived in this space of a soft, quiet life. The more I pour myself into the physical practice of yoga, the more I appreciate its subtleties. Yin yoga is more than an antidote to our masculine, task-oriented lifestyle, or prescription for “issues in the tissues”, so succinctly put by Bernie Clark. As a teacher and energy medicine practitioner who is passionate about self-empowerment and self-healing, the slow practice that eluded my youthful insolent self now returns as the perfect meditation tool to tune into the intricacies [Y]inside.
Yin yoga is the art of deep listening. How we navigate the sensations on the mat is how we listen to the stories inside that are longing to be heard. We want to cultivate this sensitivity on the mat so we can bring this refined awareness off the mat, into our lives.
You know what? I am not concerned with you touching your toes or attaining the perfect symmetry. I wish to know if you, blessed with this beautifully complex gift of a human body, can touch your core to find your way h[om]e, to your unique you.
Come join my new in-person classes at The Wise Life Co., to live a little lighter, a little more tenderly. Come own your magic:
Yin & Crystals by Candlelight
Tuesday, 7 – 8:15pm
Come join this 75-minute class where I will take you through the art of deep listening with nourishing long-held Yin poses paired with crystals. Does it sound magical? It is. The crystals speak to me and my hands are guided to place them on and around your body. It is all intuitive and curative. I want you to know my classes are never about nailing the perfect asana. I like that they are rooted in self-empowerment, with self-inquiry and self-understanding paving the way for courageous, heart-centered living. The way I like to practice Yin is gently, contemplatively, centered in the practice of surrendering with grace to find our way h[om]e. In a cozy, candlelit space supported by the vibrations of crystals, I will guide you to navigate sensations on the mat to listen in. Do know this relaxing secular practice is accessible to all levels of practitioners.
Saturday 5:30 – 6:30pm
I am also teaching self-healing techniques with the beautiful and gentle energy of Reiki. With Reiki, everyone can have the gift of healing hands. Did you know? Reiki, the most mainstream energy medicine today is a safe and simple way to self-heal. This universal energy is known to promote post-surgery recovery, induce a deep sense of calm and balance, and relieve conditions ranging from insomnia and anxiety to eczema and muscle tension. With consistent practice, Reiki heals beyond the physical and brings balance and harmony to every aspect of life. Reiki is the perfect foundation to deeper energy work.
In this guided class, I am going to show you how to connect and awaken the body’s innate ability to balance and restore itself with the energy of Reiki. This hands-on practical session empowers you to self-heal with your hands and leaves you relaxed and recharged. This gentle and soothing session is suitable for all ages.
I am right here waiting for you. All you have to do is to register here.
Yoga for Nervous System still happens online every Saturday morning. Personal Reiki workshops, Inner Child therapy, Akash and Angel meditations, and energy healing with Light beings and Tibetan singing bowls are by appointment.
There is nothing quite like a dip in the ocean to wash away the stuff that does not belong. Or an amble in the woods to leave behind a busy world. When traveling was unrestricted and easy, I traveled for pristine waters and spectacular mountainscapes. Oceans where I could swim with turtles. Mountains with cold misty air to wake up to. You know remote places to watch the moonrise and count the uncountable stars in a night sky lit only by celestial bodies. Those were soulful nights of silent commune with the stars. I remember those moments like yesterday. I hold them close and allow them to hold me right back.
If you could travel again, where would you go?
I long for the mountains in Nepal. There is magic in this Land of Mountains. When I spied the distant Himalayan mountain ranges from the little plane to Pokhara, I saw snow-capped peaks that have probably witnessed the tumultuous evolution of humanity. Those rocks must be older than present-day earth. You bet their shrubs weathered countless storms too. Perhaps reaching the peak is not about conquering the destination, like yoga is never about touching the toes. It is the journey of connecting with our Great Mother and remembering this precious human incarnation in our physical bodies to fulfill our longings.
Most of all, I remember my retreat at a mountaintop organic farm in Kathmandu.
It was pretty darned magnificent to teach and practice Reiki and yoga in nature’s sweet embrace. The Kingdom of Heaven was above us, below us, inside us and all around us. Away from the hubbub of modern-day distractions, sacred moments were seen from the eyes of the heart. We city folks found ridiculous amount of thrill in harvesting perfectly ripened peaches and tucking into delicious farm-to-table produce. I tended to my dream of running my own retreats since my days as a travel and wellness writer. It was a dream a lifetime in the making. I cannot wait for the day I can return to lead Self-healing Journeys in the Himalayas. Will you consider joining me?
You know what were some of the best parts of Self-healing Journeys? It had all that I held dear to me, from yoga mats handwoven by disadvantaged women and assiduously planned nourishing plant-based meals to heartfelt connection with locals and seva for the underprivileged.
If you put your heart against the earth with me, in serving
every creature, our Beloved will enter you from our
sacred realm and we will be, we will be... so very, very happy.
You see, my heart always worked for something bigger than an identity defined by the multiple roles I play at home and at work. Not so long ago I ran a little Fairtrade shop working with impoverished communities in Cambodia and Laos. There is so much I want to offer to this world during my finite time on earth. When I breathe my last, I want to know I have been true to every part of me. I want to create, do and be what matters to me most.
I tend to my vision of teaching villages of little children in the Asia I am still very much in love with. I show up every day, living the best of me, in a school with a spiritual pedagogy that is in line with my own beliefs, esoteric practices and potent ancient teachings I was schooled in. The stars align, heart and soul journey deepens, and life purpose clarifies.
Just like this another summer solstice arrives. Rudolf Steiner likened the cycle of one earth year to the full respiration of a human. Solstice, meaning the standing still (stice) of the sun (sol), is akin to the pause between exhalation and inhalation. Without this breathing space, the threat of hyperventilation is real, literally and figuratively. Steiner also spoke of summer solstice as the union of the soul of the earth and the spirit of the sun. It was a time of enlightenment for the ancients, where in the attainment of cosmic heights they could receive the Light and meet their higher “I”.
Remember, Creator wants us to pay attention. We live in amazingly pivotal times. We have all the cosmic support we need to step into our highest evolution. We have potency to heal from our physical ailments, karmic patterns and what is holding us back from living a glorious life.
It is our birthright to shine like stars know how to shine.
If not now, when?
As we transit into the next half of 2021, I like to be intentional on living my higher “I”. With so much brilliance and light streaming onto earth, this is the perfect moment to pause and illumine a new season. I like to ask:
What is emerging from the seeds I have planted?
Where do I want to direct more of my energy to?
What do I want to walk away from?
How have I been moving on the yoga mat and consciously practicing yoga off it?
How am I observing my breath and wellbeing with awareness and curiosity?
How can I check in with my heart more ?
How can I carve more pauses into the daily grind?
What is on my not-to-do list?
I am reflecting and feeling a lot. These days, spending inordinate amount of time swimming in the sea turns out to be the perfect panacea for farsickness. I float on my back watching the clouds weave their poetry. Have you heard this lovely line from Thich Nhat Hanh?
A cloud never dies.
I watch the white puffs transmuting and transforming incessantly, completely open to possibilities. I watch the rush of water toward me and surrender to the crashing waves. It is beautifully peaceful when salty water washes over my head and I allow my body to be submerged in the serenity and quietude beneath the crest. There is a heart-opening sense of freedom when one stops resisting the waves and dives headlong into it. They say never turn your back to the waves for it will pull you deeper into scary, uncomfortable places. Trusting our hearts could be unfathomable when the mind demands control and surety. Yet not knowing how things will turn out is the only way anything comes out at all.
In the end, everything passes over. Nothing is permanent. Neither the waves. Nor the clouds. Or that debilitating fear that keeps one stuck. Emancipation is found when one drops the resistance and trust the waves to take you to unknown depths.
There is medicine in the deep. Can you trust it?
Yoga for Nervous System happens online every Saturday morning. Reiki workshops, Inner Child therapy, Akash meditation and energy healing with Light beings and Tibetan singing bowls are by appointment.