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Yoga Commentary

Yoga is in the news all the time these days. When we read opinion pieces online, we like to jump into the conversation. Feel free to jump in too!
  • Yoga Culture: Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?

    Yoga Culture: Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?

    In the past few days, I had the good fortune to attend the Parliament of the World’s Religions. I presented both a yoga class and a musical performance there, and attended quite a few panels and workshops.

    Leading panels and workshops were Catholics, Protestants, Mormons, Jews, Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims, Buddhists, Humanists, Agnostics and Atheists. The purpose of the Parliament was to bring people of…continue reading

  • Are Yoga and Western Medicine Incompatible?

    Supported Backbend
    When Yoga and Western Medicine Can Work Together

    In the past few days, an article by a yoga teacher named Hemalayaa has been making the Facebook rounds via bloggers such as it’s all yoga, baby, YogaDawg and Linda-Sama Karl, among others.

    The author of the article expresses shock and disappointment at the use of antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications by yoga teachers who, she opines, are just taking a “happy pill” rath…continue reading

  • Teaching Yoga: On Hip Joints and Humility

    Eka Pada Rajakapotasana—A Pose from the Distant Past
    Teaching Yoga: The Wisdom of Humility

    For the past two years I’ve had the privilege of attending retreats at Spirit Rock Meditation Center led by Joseph Goldstein. Co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society, Goldstein has written or co-written—with the likes of the Dalai Lama, among others—11 classic books on mindfulness practice.

    His voice has been a constant in my three decades of min…continue reading

  • Why Listening to Your Body Might Not Be Enough

    Listening to Your Body is Important, But So is An Experienced Teacher

    If you practice yoga, you’ve probably heard the entreaty, “Listen to your body.” It’s good, sound advice.

    When you embark on any physical practice, it’s important to know and respect your body’s limits. Those limits can change over time, of course, but tuning in and listening to your body and what it’s trying to communicate to you each time you practice is essential…continue reading

  • Why Bendy People Might Not Make the Best Yoga Teachers

    How the Struggle Teaches Yoga Teachers How to Teach

    Years ago, I heard a famous quote embellished in the film, Annie Hall. In the film Woody Allen said, “Those who can’t do, teach. Those who can’t teach, teach gym.” (Allen’s embellishment is the second sentence.) It was meant to diss teachers, especially gym teachers I guess, but in my three decades of yoga practice and teaching, I’ve come to understand this quote in a comp…continue reading

  • Another Way of Looking at Body Positive Yoga

    Body Positive Yoga - Why Yoga Really is All About the Body

    “It is through the body that everything comes to the mind. It is through and with your body that you have to reach realization of being a spark of divinity. How can we neglect the temple of the spirit?” — B.K.S. Iyengar (Sparks of Divinity, Rodmell Press)

    When I first read this quote years ago I interpreted this way: It is through our practice of asana, at those times when we lose the…continue reading

  • Body-Positive Yoga: The Aging Yoga Body

    Body-Positive Yoga: The Aging Yoga Body

    I found my first grey hair when I was 22. It wasn’t completely shocking. My mother’s hair was “brindled” grey-black for as long as I could remember before it transitioned to luminous white.

    I never thought seriously about dyeing it. I knew it was an option, of course. Many of my friends were coloring their hair by their mid-30s. I just didn’t want to put chemicals on my head and couldn’t think of …continue reading

  • In Praise of Older Yoga Teachers

    Why Older Yoga Teachers Have a Lot to Offer—If You Take the Time to See It

    Truth be told, this post has been brewing in me for a while. But today when author and yoga blogger extraordinaire Carol Horton posted this blog on Facebook, I finally decided it was time. (Please note that Carol didn’t write this blog; she found it and posted it for discussion.)

    Let me start with this disclaimer: I am an older yoga teacher. I’m 58 years old and have b…continue reading

  • Cheap Yoga Deals: How Does the Yoga Community Benefit from Them?

    Cheap Yoga Deals:  How Does the Yoga Community Benefit from Them?

    Everybody loves a deal—everybody. That includes me. I can easily be sucked into buying something I don’t need just because it’s deeply discounted. Who knows? I might actually need that discounted thing someday. Might as well get it now while it’s such a great price!

    About four years ago, the internet exploded with deals. Sites such as Groupon and LivingSocial, as well …continue reading

  • Got Emotion? Yoga Can Help — But Not in the Way You Think

    Got Emotion? Yoga Can Help — But Not in the Way You Think

    I feel fortunate. I got to grow up in a time and with a generation that has dominated Western culture since we were but wee sprouts. I’m part of the baby boom generation, and even though this vast swath of American culture is steadily and inexorably moving into senior status, I still feel very lucky. We had the Beatles and the cultural tsumani they unleashed. We were in eye of the civil…continue reading

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