Aparigraha Playlist

For my final teach in YTT, my theme was aparigraha. So, the playlist revolved around the idea of grasping/coveting. The first half(ish) was about how it leads to suffering and the second half was about the decrease in suffering as we let go. By request, here is what was on it.

  • Man of Constant Sorrow (Instrumental)
  • Charlie Darwin (Low Anthem)
  • Where the Streets Have No Name (Earl Pickens and Family)
  • Ill With Want (The Avett Brothers)
  • Everybody Hurts (REM)
  • Timshel (Mumford & Sons)
  • When My Time Comes (Dawes)
  • Hang On (Dr. Dog)
  • Carries On (Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros)
  • Across the Universe (The Beatles)
  • Let It Grow (Eric Clapton)
  • What Light (Wilco)
  • Life is Wonderful (Jason Mraz)
  • Quiet (Paul Simon)
  • Be Here Now (Ray Lamontagne)
  • Om Mani Padme Hum (Jane Winther)
  • Watermark (Enya)

So, for what it’s worth, there it is!



Believe in the Process

Image by CatDancing on Flickr

Be like the bird that, passing on her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing that she hath wings.
~ Victor Hugo

Life is always going to throw you a few curve balls.  That’s the nature of being.  If you have a Type A leaning, and I do, you might find this a little difficult.  You might plan things to the Nth degree, attempting to calculate any possible difficulties and figure out how to deal with them – preparing in advance for any occurrence and getting all your ducks in a row.  And yet, at the end of the day, where the rubber meets the road (I think three metaphor cliches in a series might be all I can do), you can’t control how things unfold.  The world is populated with beings who take actions that ripple out and create changes that are unexpected in ways that are almost unimaginable.  In the end, you have to do your best and then trust the process.

Sometimes, this is easier than other times.  Those gut-clenching, nervous-energy-producing, cold-sweat-making events in life – those are a challenge.  They are a little bit different for everyone.  Many people would put public speaking in this category.  For others, it’s the job interview.  For some, it might be a cocktail party with the investors.  Maybe it’s meeting the in-laws-to-be for the first, or 40th, time.  It could be the big exam, the major race, or the opening night.  Regardless, all that can be done is to give your full effort – virya – to the process and then trust that how it unfolds is how it is meant to unfold – and remember that no effort is lost.

And now, I’m going to take my own advice, go run through my final teach a few more times, and then believe in the process.  It’s all I/we can do!



Wow! The Power of a Good Inversion Assist

In yoga teacher training today, we were working together on a variety of peak poses (including arm balances and inversions) that we might use for our final teachers.  In groups of four, one of us taught, one of us practiced, one did adjustments/assists, and one observed.  It was really so much fun and very revealing.

In assisting others into inversions, I noticed that I’m not that worried that I will get kicked in the face, but I am more concerned that I will pull the person practicing off balance or create a situation where he/she is not getting as much out of the inversion as he/she could, because I’m getting in the way.  However, doing the  practice of it definitely helped with that feeling, and made me feel more confident that I can be of assistance.

And then I practiced.  I got to be assisted in several poses, including adho mukha vrksasana (handstand), pinca myurasana (peacock tailfeather or forearm stand), and sirsasana (headstand).  Some of the adjustments were very informative, a tilt of the hipbones in pinca to create more length in the lower back, a lifting of the hips to ease the process into handstand, etc.  As I went into pinca myurasana, my assisting yogi, Yvonne, had her feet bracing my hands and her knees behind my shoulder blades.  Once I was in position up the wall, she encouraged me to push my shoulders into her knees and my lower back lengthened like crazy.  Neat!  Then later, in headstand, she had her feet outside of my elbows, keeping them from splaying out to the side.  Just that bit of extra help gave me some sort of oomph that I haven’t had ever before in the pose, and part way through I realized that my head was actually about 1/2 inch off the ground.  It was crazy and cool and crazy cool! (Have I mentioned how much I love inversions?)

We also did a little brainstorming of ideas for workshops or series.  Maybe it was all the blood that rushed to my head in the inversions, but I felt like there were so many great possibilities just running through my mind.  Sweet!

Yep, this is why I om.  😀