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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

  • Mindful Living: Just This Task

    Mindful Living:  Being Present in Your Daily Life

    Mindfulness has become a buzzword in the yoga world. I read a lot about mindful living, mindfulness practice. In fact I've practiced mindfulness over the past 27 years. Sometimes it’s been a challenge to make time in my schedule to do formal practice, although in recently years I’ve committed to getting up early to fit in at least 30 minutes of sitting practice, and more if I can.

    The go…continue reading

  • Why Practicing Yoga is Like Swimming Upstream

    Why Practicing Yoga is Like Swimming Upstream

    In 1988, I attended my second 10-day silent Vipassana (Insight) Meditation retreat. The retreat began on December 26, 1988 and ended on January 6, 1989. One of my clearest memories of that retreat was a revelation that took place on New Year’s Eve. In my days as a party girl at Indiana University and in the ensuing years, like most people I considered New Year’s Eve to be a great excuse to find a p…continue reading

  • Why There’s No Substitute for a Good Yoga Teacher

    Why There’s No Substitute for a Good Yoga Teacher

    I have a confession to make:  I am a yoga teacher who has no yoga teacher. I can attend classes, watch videos or participate in online practices, but I do not have a main yoga teacher with whom I practice.

    Frequently students or friends ask me for recommendations of videos or online classes to take if they are unable to make it to a studio or gym for in person practices. I usually suggest on…continue reading

  • Yoga Poetry - Do You Know Where You’re From?

    Yoga Poetry
    Do You Know Where You’re From?

    Blue falling off its ledge

    the expanse collapsing into

    pale rain or nothing but sun.

    Do you know where you’re from?


    The sea-shaped gullies break or gap.

    The herd lost in the woods that should

    be in the field. The scalloped rises formed

    by wind or its absence. Do you know where

    the motion originates in a field of big bluestem,

    the single point where the fire began?


    All along the interstate belting the hills f…continue reading

  • Silent Yoga Mind - Equanimity in Chaos

    Silent Yoga Mind - Equanimity in Chaos

    I just returned from 10 days of silence on an Insight (Vipassana) Meditation retreat at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. This is not the first time I’ve done such a radical thing. In fact, it was the 15th time I've sat in silence for anywhere from a week to a month since I stepped onto this path in 1988.

    There are so many things to write about following an experience such as this, but not because I’m aching …continue reading

  • Starting a Meditation Practice: Rituals Work!

    Starting a Meditation Practice:  Rituals Work!

    I’ve never been much for formality. It’s a familial thing. My parents’ spiritual proclivities—if they had them—were very much their own personal business. Even though I haven’t gone in for institutionalized rituals, if I’m honest with myself, I realize that I’ve formed my own personal rituals around all kinds of things—my morning routine, my bedtime routine, and my meditation pr…continue reading

  • Yoga for Everybody: The Language of Bodies

    Yoga for Everybody:  The Language of Bodies

    Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I use words to describe bodies of various sizes and shapes, thinking catalyzed by excellent questions posed as part of the Curvy Yoga certification I’m doing with Anna Guest-Jelly. I realized that when it comes to bodies that don’t look at those regularly seen on the cover of yoga magazines, I'm wandering through a language minefield:

  • Yoga Selfies - What Do You Think?

    Yoga Selfies - What Do You Think?

    Last week the New York Times published an article about the recent wave of yogis that are posting photos of themselves using apps such as Instagram. To say that the article has raised both ire and defenses is an understatement. Proponents and fans of the yoga “selfies” are putting up their dukes to proclaim they are wonderful, inspirational and encouraging others to get on the mats.  Conversely, those tha…continue reading

  • Please Don't Denigrate Gentle Yoga

    Gentle Yoga Leads us to the Heart of Practice

    Throughout the past few years of the yoga boom, as I’ve become more familiar with the yoga blogosphere, I’ve been dismayed by some of the common, recurring themes. These include “yoga for weight loss” claims, the almost poetic praise of expensive yoga pants, the popularity contests among yoga stars, and especially, the pervasive belief that sweaty, fast-paced routines are for “serious…continue reading

  • Bhujangasana - Cobra Pose: The Yogic Snake Dance

    Cobra Pose - The Yogic Snake Dance

    Few members of the animal kingdom elicit more passionate reactions than snakes. Mostly known for their stealthy, slithery sinews and the venomous bites of some species, snakes have largely gotten a bad rap over the centuries.

    The truth is, as snake-a-holic David E. Jensen pointed out in the June Catalyst (“Confessions of a snake-a-holic”), most snakes are harmless. Snakes are stealthy and swift, despite t…continue reading

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