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Shiva's Blog

Autumn Equinox - United Nations Peace Day

Friday, September 23, 2011
Dear Friends,


Today, United Nations Peace Day, always is on the Autumn Equinox - the time of equal balance and the gateway into the "dark half of the year" until the Spring Equinox when the seeds that are planted for the New Year emerge and give life again. Today is one of the great fire festivals of the Druid-Celtic tradition, the beginning of the Eleusian Mysteries in Ancient Greece when Persephone goes into the underworld and the time before the new moon which begins the great sadhana periods of Navaratri and the Jewish High holidays.
Originally, Thanksgiving was on October 3rd until Abraham Lincoln and then FDR moved the holiday back to stimulate the economy!

Let us give thanks for the harvest of life and all that has sustained your body, home, family, community, your heart, inspiration and passion.

I give thanks for you all and the fire I see in your spirit, heart and eyes, your support for yoga energy activism (our last public outreach week) and the Global Mala Project and for the breath we have shared together. This is the time of wisdom and gathering your energy and affirming the power of community.  If you're interested in learning more about Global Mala and hosting your own event, please visit www.globalmala.org.  

May the power of your intentions and fire-keeping throughout the year continue to thrive.
Bring on the persimmons and squash, gold, red and orange leaves, crisp air and warm heart.
Let the season begin!


May there be peace in the North, South, East and West, above, below and in the center of our hearts.

Love all ways

Join YEA 2011

Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Dear Friends,


I'm back in Venice this week, starting the fall flow, returning from Burning and the magnificent Bhakti Festivals.  These are the last two weeks of Yoga Energy Activism outreach for the week of September 18th - 25th.

We're dedicating our next two weeks to spreading the word of YEA - please extend an invitation to your communities to participate taking an energy fast-Sabbath for a day.  Our main goals are to reduce consumption, reduce waste, and increase awareness in our homes and in our communities.  These YEA regeneration days are days to take a technology fast, create meals that produce no waste, use alternative energy sources, and celebrate the abundance of natural energy and resources all around us with our friends and family.

Please sign up on Facebook - GROUP Name: Yoga Energy Activism - Help spread the word!
 

Love all ways

Headed to the Playa

Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Dear Friends,


Heading to the Burning Man and radiating out to you everyday starting today around 4-6 pst from rituals on the playa.  I am blown away again and again by the irrepressible creative human spirit. I have spent the week preparing for a Burning Man gathering this Thursday on the Playa researching the origins of rhythm from the ancient firekeepers to the little dancers to those who are banned from dancing. We have an incredible spirit living inside each cell.

So many amazing festivals coming up from Burning Man, Bhakti Fest, Yoga Journal, EarthDance, Global Mala Project and YEA Energy Sabbath - join us!


Keep tending your sacred fire!  Jai Ganesh!

Love all ways

Lotus Feed

Friday, August 05, 2011
Dear Friends on the Path,

Please join us for the Lotus Feed - an amazing energy regeneration day with the Full Moon in natural light, with amazing food straight from Jenay's farm with the one and only Greek southern Grand dame of culinary arts - Cat Cora. She is a yogini and is coming for the day of fun from morning till night in Sonoma, CA. Jenay has made a clay pizza oven and many sacred places on the land for an epic evening for our Northern California friends or anyone who is in the area for a truly magical full moon. I think there are only a few spaces left but we wanted to highlight the amazing work Jenay has done.

We will be initiating the Movers and Shakers Project there (see below) as a way to encourage people to step up to the Green Energy plate. It is fun, wonderful, double reverse activism - do nothing to do something - unplug, tune in and recharge. We will be going for zero waste and living in natural light on Jenay's farm for the full moon. Please join us wherever you are and sign up for Yoga Energy Activism support in your studio for Sept. 21st and Dec. 21st.

Summer Blessings

Monday, July 18, 2011
Namaskaram and Summer Blessings!

We had an amazing full moon here with the Teacher Trainees on top of the mountain as the red-orange full moon rose just after sunset.  This was part of the Guru Purnima celebrations which included Darshan with H.H. Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswati on Inner Freedom.  Everyone was so grateful for Pujya Swami and Sadhvi Bhagavati's presence and teachings.  Inner freedom is found in our response to life which is not rocked by empty or full, ups or downs, in beauty or addressing eco-waste such as Pujya Swami's project to keep Ma Ganga clean or our upcoming Yoga Energy Activism campaign for Sept. 21st.

I am grateful to the extraordinary teachers in my life in all forms and for the many wonderful teachers-students-artists-musicians that come together during festivals. Bhakti fest is an amazing place for all Bhaktas to gather together from every different lineage including the Bhakti yoga tradition of Chaitanya through Radhanath Swami. I will be announcing more about Bhakti Fest and 2012 festivals and special programs.

See you all at Wanderlust, the Lotus Feed (Jenay Martin's Sonoma Farm Retreat), Bhaktifest and Yoga Journal Estes Park or in our special Embodying the Flow public classes this week.

Keep offering the fruits of summer to your beloveds.

Summer Solstice Blessings

Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Dear Friends,


As you look at the sun these days around the Summer Solstice, imagine a point exactly on the other side of sun – that is where you will be six months from now at the Winter Solstice on Dec. 21st. These two points of vision one at the point of greatest darkness and the other at the zenith of light are markers in our extraordinary journey of the year and are central to the guiding the flow of creation, manifestation in many cultures including the roots of yoga in India. The Summer Solstice marks the beginning of the Dakshinaya period where for 6 months the earth moves in the southern or “dakshina” orbit towards the Winter Solstice.  In the next few days, there is a potent opportunity to the align yourself with this astronomical shift that as so huge for our ancestors that they built temples such as Callinish in Scotland, Konarak in Egypt, Multan Sun Temple in Pakistan, Mayan Sun Temples, Dakshinaarka Temple in Bihar, Suryanarayana Temple at Arasavilli, Surya Pahar Temple in Assam, and the great Solstice site – Stonehenge.

We reserved a private access for Stonehenge a year ago on the last day before it closes for the over 35,000 people who go there as a collective celebration. It was the full moon and lunar eclipse – which despite the typical English clouds – created a palpable charge – I mean literally. In all my life I have never had such an experience with a sacred space and reconnection with my ancestors. By a series of mysterious connections, we were able to have a beekeeping, earthen hut-living local Druid from the Avebury area, Chris Park, join us.
We entered the stone circle through the West gate as Chris blessed each one of us with the shaking of his rattle passed down through another Druid.  The rattle is in the shape of bull balls – and was never to be photographed nor was our inner circle ceremony.

As I close my eyes, I can still see and feel, the depth radiance of power that surrounded our circle with such an extraordinary living presence of an unbroken continuity of energetic awakening. The center point where the light shines through a crack from the east to the west and west to east is visualized as passing through our own hearts. This grounding and activation, depth time of all the accumulated ceremony and the charge that is now circulating inside us as a new energy initiated for the coming cycles is something that we can all attune ourselves too at the zenith of the Solstice.

My prayers for us all as we now make the journey from the fruits of the summer into the harvest and point of greatest darkness is that we will once again be renewed at the turning point of the Winter Solstice.
May we listen at the core level, remember our ancestors and connect to the solar fire in the center within and without. Find a sacred place to take in that light today. Place some water outside to catch the sunlight if you can to drink in that power. Offer your prayers, intentions, solar bijas, mantras, gayatri with the setting and rising sun this week to bring in the next cycle.

Yoga Mala Solstice Ritual ~
Create a Yoga Mala for yourself with Surya Namaskar and the Bija mantras for the sun.  You may also choose to offer a mala of the Gayatri mantra.  For a mala, you can choose any variation of 9-18-27-54-108 rounds.  

Sacred 108:
The diameter of the Sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth. The distance from the Sun to the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Sun. The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Moon.
The average number of breaths per day at 21,600, of which 10,800 are solar energy, and 10,800 are lunar energy.



Blessings in all directions as we continue our journey around the Solar light that purifies and nourishes us all!

Yoga Energy Activism Ignites - April 2011

Wednesday, April 06, 2011
Dear Friends and Firekeepers,

Please join us for a simple, practical and positive response to our current energy crisis - yoga energy activism. From my heart I am inviting you to become a YEA - Yoga Energy Ambassador or just Energy Ambassador or just be involved for one day - Earth Day - and if you are inspired, to continue on for the next 6 months till Sept. 21st. (See video)

In the US, we waste more energy than we create,  we throw away more food than we eat and are fueling 95% of our life from sources that are limited and polluting when it would only take .02% of the sun's energy everyday  to power the world's current energy needs.

So let's restore energy!  Create your own Energy Regeneration Day - a retreat that includes
* unplugging and going solar or candlelight  (all electricity except your refrigerator) and accounting for your carbon footprint by retreating or supporting Global Green's carbon offset program
* tuning in (regenerating your energy in your own way through the yoga, being with your loved ones, resting, creating, playing)
* clearing up -  fasting (from food and-or technology), feasting (with eco-positive vegan food) and trying to go for Zero Waste.

Our goal is for 1,008 people or more to sign-up for  the YEA challenge around Earth Day-Easter weekend - April 22-24th.

What's it take?
3 simple actions and then your ability to do nothing but regenerate and create.

1) sign-in (takes 1 min) so that you can be counted among the 1,008 and more. Use any part of the YEA Energy Regeneration Invite to spread the word (on facebook or newsletter) and on April 21st before Earth Day
Facebook Group: Yoga Energy Activism

2) unplug and tune-in - creating an energy regeneration day of your own design for April 22-24th. On your retreat day, experience a rest from facebook and show solidarity for using our energy wisely.

3) an option to post your experience on the facebook group including what you learned-experienced about yourself, inspiration for changes. Continue with the eco-challenges that you will received every 2 weeks including info about the next Energy Regeneration Day on the Beltane Weekend (May 1st) and more that will continue through Sept. 21st.  Stay connected by tuning into YEA (www.globalmala.org) & Global Green's carbon offsetting efforts (www.globalgreen.org)

Here are some suggestions for your Energy Regeneration Retreat Day
* Committ to 3 hours, 12 hours half-day (sunset to sunrise)  24 hour day
* Turn off and unplug all electronics and appliances (except the refrigerator)
* Take a technology fast - a healthy break from computer, cell phones, tv, games
* Rest, be with lovers,  family, friends,  read, reflect, create, play, be quiet, be festive
* Use ghee lamps, soy or beeswax candles or solar charged lamps for necessary light
* Create light from natural sources
* Gather with friends and family and celebrate using as little energy as possible to create meals
(Cook the day before or foods not-requiring energy to prepare)
* Go for zero or as little waste as possible by composting and recycling
* Any meals are created with food that has minimal or no packaging and are vegetarian or vegan (which creates the least carbon footprint possible)
* How few times can you flush
* What is your shortest reasonable shower or go greywater.
* Reduce water consumption: flush one less time / cut 2-6 minutes off your shower
* Use a bike or walk for transportation – if a car is necessary, try to reduce your travel to 1 gallon of gas (approx 25 miles) or use carbon off-set
* Replace TV and video games in your family with outdoor or other non-electronic activities

Personal Energy Regeneration:
* Unplugging from social media, computer, cell phone for a few hours to a whole day!
* Deepen all forms of meditation and  yoga practice from kirtan to hiking, massage to making love, resting to playing
* Fasting: eating once or twice a day, or juice fast, or fruit + vegetable fast

Now is the time to take responsibility for our inner and outer world so that we can wake-up from the inertia that is preventing positive change and realize the natural gifts of prana that are inherent in the elements of the sun, water, earth, and air that are being depleted and poisoned. We live in an abundance of renewable energy.

Unplug, Tune-in, Recharge. Take Back your Power.

Please sign-up (email privacy use is strict and is only for YEA project with Global Green). Support Global Green through Carbon off-sets. Create a day of energy regeneration and feel the positive ripple effect.

Om Shanti

Vasant Navaratri 2011

Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Namaskaram Firekeepers,

With the waning moon, I am on retreat this week heading to Colorado to be with root teacher Daniel Odier and then to make my own workshop offering to the Boulder-Denver community for this coming new moon, Sunday, April 3rd. This new moon will begin the Vasant Navaratri or the 9 nights dedicated to the triple aspect of Shakti as the dissolver of limitations (Durga Ma), the sustainer of vitality and abundance (Sri Lakshmi) and the creative energy of wisdom, knowledge and expression embodied as Sri Saraswati. Our Tending the Sacred Fire: Living Yoga Sadhana group is preparing to enter into this purifying and nourishing living retreat cycle through mantra, meditation, spring cleansing fasts, creative renewal, family & community bonding, and visionary manifestation. Our next session begins Wednesday April 13. Please see www.shivarea.com for more details coming this week!  I will be offering reflections on our facebook site as well as guiding our women's retreat at the end of the month in which we will gather live to initiate deeper Shakti Sadhana in our own personal way.

Demetri is on fire with creative staff (danda) flows in his work with men which will be offered at Exhale, Sonic Yoga, Kripalu and Wanderlust. At Exhale, I will also be including them in the women's retreat that is parallel to each other for a big Beltane weekend to celebrate the fertility of life, love and all things worth living for!

This week, I will be sending announcements for Yoga Energy Activism Earth day call and our Bhakti Fest collective class and immersion.

Please join us online, live at Exhale or in your on way to affirm life and positive creative actions in the spring.

Love to all!

Greetings from Rishikesh - March 1 2011

Tuesday, March 01, 2011
Namah Shivaya Firekeepers and Bhaktas!

Despite the long travel to get to Rishikesh, I awoke this morning - the day Shivratri will begin in India - with body flowing with the sublime Shakti current like the inner Ganga. India initiates spontaneous Shiva dreaming and awakening which fills me with gratitude to feel the inner heat of consciousness flowing again. Namah Shivaya.

Since 3:00 this morning there have been calls outside our window of Bom Bolenath! or Hara Hara Mahadev! from pilgrims walking by to cross the bridge. My internet connections are not happening via computer but this iphone is rocking it so I will be sending posts all day and night to you to share the Shivratri bhava to you my friends and family.

My next post will be from sadhana with the 102 year old Swami Yogananda then my sadhana offering for Shiva here at the International Yoga Festival of Parmath Niketan. Pujya Swami, Sadhvi, Bhavani and all participants are amazing!  So .... begin your mini-fast: vegetarian - only rice - fruits - whatever inspires you!

Celebrate the awakening of consciousness within you! Chant breathe dance Namah Shivaya!


Love to all!

Vasant Panchami Blessings

Tuesday, February 08, 2011
Dear Friends on the Path,

Today is  Vasant Pachami - dedicated to the first signs of spring in India by honoring Saraswati and the flow of creativity in your life as well as invoking Kamadeva (the Lord of Love) with his consort Rati - the Goddess of Desire. I am offering special sringara rasa classes at Exhale for invoking Kamadeva, the flow of love. We will be working with the Kamadevaya mantra and (this is chanted in India for 40 days until Holi)  to invoke the power of sacred union in your current partnerships or the love you are calling in.

So blessings to all artists and lovers everywhere until Sunday's pre-valentine love fest with special guests to be announced!



for the sublime flow that revives us all

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