Earth Day and Yoga

The earth element is associated with the first chakra, Muladhara, or root chakra, and is located at the base of the spine. This element and chakra are associated with security, safety, and stability. When the earth element is balanced, we feel confident, grounded, flexible, safe, resilient, and strong. When it is imbalanced, we may experience feelings of anxiety, paranoia, fragility, moodiness, and forgetfulness. 

When we press our hands and feet into the ground during Downward-Facing Dog or when we ground ourselves into the earth with the triangle base of our feet during Mountain Pose, we are expressing and connecting to the earth element.

Ahimsa (non-violence; non-harming) is the first Yama in the 8 limbs of Yoga from the Yoga Sutras written by Patanjali. It invites us and reminds us to live in a way that is non-harming to ourselves, to others, and to the Earth.

Earth Day is the perfect opportunity to explore non-harming, as we look for ways to give back to our life-sustaining planet. Every moment we are nourished and blessed by the abundant gifts of the Earth, and today we have the opportunity to give gratitude back to the source. We have an occasion to develop lasting rituals in our yoga practice and in our lives that nurture an eco-friendly approach to everyday living - and that we can carry out throughout the year!

Look for ways to honor the Earth today in everything that you do, including your yoga practice.

  • The hips, legs, and feet are ruled by the Earth element, so invite your practice today to be grounding and connected to the earth.

  • The vibration of the Earth element is the slowest and it is the slowest of all the chakras, so focus on longer holds and moving at a slower pace (slow flow).

  • Include Ujjayi breathing in your practice today as it is considered a grounding breathing practice.

  • Honor Ahimsa as you practice your yoga and as you move through your day. What are ways you can practice non-harming today off your mat and continue these practices/behaviors throughout the year?

Consider incorporating the following asanas into your practice. Invite awareness to the hips, legs, and feet, the Muladhara chakra, and Ahimsa to honor EARTH DAY in your practice and life.

Parsvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch pose)
Utthan Pristhasana (Lizard pose)
Hanumanasana (Monkey pose)
Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (One legged King Pigeon Pose)
Vrksasana (Tree Pose)
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (Bridge pose)
Tadasana (Mountain)
Uttanasana (Standing Forward Fold)
Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle pose)
Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I)
Balasana (Child’s Pose)
Savasana (corpse pose)

Love & light

Jeanne Adams

Practice Your Yoga TODAY

I invite and encourage you to practice your yoga today. In some moment between the rising of the sun and the setting of the moon…

Pause and Forgive. Let go of the things you are holding in your body, in your mind, in your heart. Forgive yourself for mistakes, intentional behaviors that you now regret, and those things that rest deep within the shadows of who you used to be (even if you don’t know what they are). Then, forgive those around you for their transgressions from the depths of the sea within your being. Just as the sunrise sheds light on the surface and beneath the sea, let the light penetrate the layers of shadows. Let it Go.

Pause for Peace (shanti). A heartfelt call for peace is a powerful means of restoring order and purpose. It calms agitation, strengthens inner resolve, and nurtures the sense of ease. Send peace to yourself. Send peace to family. Send peace to friends. Send peace to all beings. This is a day to remember who you are, to be the love and light that rests within you, and to share your joy and compassion with those who walk in your world with sorrow, grief, hate, abusive behaviors, illness, pain, and suffering. Let it Be.

Share Your Joy. Do something unexpected for someone else: drop off an Easter Basket to someone who may not receive any Easter remembrance this year; take time for a conversation with family, friends, or someone new to you; meet someone where they are and let them share their love and light with you; take a walk or hike in a quiet place so you can recharge among other living beings - the trees, flowers, plants, rocks, and animals that live in nature. Breathe deeply and feel the interchange between you and nature. Notice being nurtured. Let it Shine.

Just as the ocean ebbs and flows, observe the flow of life. See the sparkle, the joy, the preciousness of this earthly life today… and Be.

Om shanti, shanti, shanti.

Jeanne

Source: https://www.facebook.com/castlerockyoga/?r...

Breath and Love

Don’t think you know what love is?

Think about the marriage of inhalation and exhalation and how the inhalation loves the exhalation. Try exhaling and then wait. At some point you say to yourself, “Oh my goodness! Here she is! Wow” and you are grateful for the inhalation’s arrival. They are in relationship with each other. They show up for each other. They depend upon each other. Together they create a space of separateness and togetherness.

The inhale as a way to be with God. The exhale is to give yourself to God.

The Art of Doing Nothing

The value of teaching without words and accomplishing without action is understood by few in the world.                                                                                                       ~ Tao Te Ching, chapter 43

You are a human being, not a human doing. Don’t equate your self-worth with how well you do things in life. You aren’t what you do. If you are what you do, then when you don’t…you aren’t.
                                                                                                                                       
~ Dr. Wayne Dyer

Most of us need to work, and money is a much-needed tool for survival. However, what is the cost we are paying for staying trapped in this busyness? What if we miss an essential part of our lives? What if we start disconnecting from our true nature (dharma)?

We live in a world where time has become a scarce commodity, and most people are in a permanent hurry, yet we never seem to have enough time. Our modern society has transformed us into doers, performers, and overachievers. Always running somewhere, always busy to get more, and achieve more. Many of us have been conditioned to evaluate our human worth through how well we do in life (based on personal and professional goals, results and achievements), our possessions, or job title on a business card. We want to do more and to get more and tend to attach our happiness to a projected future we don’t even know will be there when we arrive. The need for DOING is energy consuming, and it can be exhausting for both body and soul. Ancient sages taught about the art of BEING.

Practices of being in stillness, like yoga or meditation, or connecting to our dharma, have become something we need to learn. Instead of listening and following our natural need for slowing down, we tend to define worth through social status and profession, so we work harder, longer, and live life in action. We forget how to BE. It may take time to get rid of the guilt of choosing to take things slow, doing things you enjoy, and allowing your BEING to recharge.

Ideas to consider:

1.      Attend Inner Connections Yoga’s Dharma workshop on April, 2019.

2.      Be okay with good enough (let go of perfection, of identifying your worth through professional accomplishments)

3.      Understand that taking care of your own needs, including long sleep, is not selfish (this is a learned misperception).

4.      Listen to your body and recharge the batteries of your soul.

5.      Set healthy boundaries with the outer world and say no to things you don’t really want or need to do.

6.      Value your time as an asset, knowing that, once gone, it’s never coming back.

7.      Stop trying to accomplish a hundred more things in a day.

8.      Cease comparing yourself to others.

9.      Reconnect to yourself to get grounded, to reflect, and to recharge.

10.  Your life is yours – don’t feel that you owe anyone an explanation or apology for the way you choose to live it.

 Doing nothing is an action as long as it comes from an empowering place of choice– your own choosing. Take time to breathe, relax, and recharge: mind, body, and spirit.

Tools to recharge:

1.      Take breaks between working hours.

2.      Walk in nature.

3.      Play with children and pets.

4.      Treat yourself to something relaxing: massage, cup of Chai at ICY, our Rock Salt Therapy Room, or a yoga class.

5.      Watch a good movie or read a good book.

6.      Listen to relaxing music (did you know that listening to raga or yoga music reduces your risk for heart issues, according to a recent European study?)

7.      Take a nap in the middle of the day.

8.      Enjoy a candle, incense, or aromatherapy for some olfactory connection to relaxation.

9.      Spend time alone.

10.  Seek out positive, non-judgmental people who love you as you are.

11.  Be aware of your preprogrammed self-talk, let it go, and take time to BE.

Treat life as a gift worth enjoying and celebrating today. Stop living for the weekends and instead live for each day, each moment. Smile more. Laugh more. Have fun. View every morning as a fresh start and a wonderful opportunity to learn new things and grow. Life is to be lived, not just to exist and to accomplish tasks.

Choose to live life to the fullest!

Why We Come To Our Mats

As human beings, it is part of us to get caught up in our own stories - ruminating on our past, dreaming about our future - that we suffer in this moment rather than living in the NOW. To bring you to the present moment, think RIght Now… right now I have my breath; right now I have my family; right now I don’t feel pain; right now I am grateful for this experience; right now I choose to see and experience blessings.

If we bring our practice into these moments, we can see that even in the hardest moments, there is collateral beauty. In every moment what is wrong is always available. But if we are practicing yoga, we can also find what is right.

By Jeanne Adams

Working with the Chakras

Chakra work describes the techniques that are directed toward the chakras and the circulation of chakra energies. Such practices include sound, color, visualization, gemstones, aromatherapy, breath work, meditation, and asana practice. Chakra work improves our energy system by helping raise our level of energy, strengthen our intuition, and heal the mind, body, and spirit. Some of the effects of chakra work include strengthening metabolism and the immune system, detoxifying and improving functioning of internal organs, decreasing anxiety, mood swings, mental fatigue, and depression, and improving powers of concentrations, memory, clarity of mind and spirit, and more! By connecting with the centers of awareness and opening ourselves to balanced energy, we can treat ourselves and the world around us with grace.

At INNER CONNECTIONS, we offer many modalities to harmonize the energies of the chakras and promote well-being, including: Yoga, Meditation, Aromatherapy, Massage, Tibetan Singing Bowls, Reiki, and our Salt Room. 

Choose the methods that correspond best to your inner nature and are comfortable for you. The more approaches you practice, the more successful the results will be. NOW is the time to set an appointment at ICY to experience balance, peace, and freedom. 303-588-8598

Meaning of Chakra

The term chakra comes from Sanskrit, the sacred language of ancient India.  You will experience a taste of the Sanskrit language in Inner Connections Yoga classes.

Chakra means "wheel" or "turning." In fact, the chakras revolve continuously and through their rotation, we take in energy from our surroundings - plants, animals, and other people, as well as from the sun, moon, planets and the entire cosmos. Chakras are sometimes described as funnel-shaped flowers. Yet, at the same time, they allow prana (energy) to radiate from within us and act as miniature suns. Each chakra serves as a kind of way station in which energy is collected, transmitted, and made available for the ongoing processes of an individual's physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual life.   

You can make a positive impression in the world and influence your surroundings for the better by working with your chakras. Working with these vortices of energy, the chakras promote harmony between your inner and outer worlds.

LEARNING ABOUT THE CHAKRAS

The knowledge and teachings on the chakras come from yoga - the oldest system of addressing the development of the whole person. Yoga is a philosophical system and meditative practice directed toward mastery of one's body, mind, breath, and spirit. A goal in yoga is liberation from suffering and union with our divinity. The ultimate significance of the practice of yoga lies in the recognition of our highest Self and when we live in our highest Self we contribute to the greater good of all. 

Chakras are centers of awareness in the human body. These energy centers are neither physical nor anatomical. They are found in the subtle energy system, although their energy corresponds to certain existing systems within the body. Chakras influence cells, organs, and the entire hormone system, can affect thoughts and feelings, and are centers of psychic energy.

Sukha (good space)

"Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself."                         ~ Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha

One of the best ways to infuse your home with serenity and sacredness is by practicing meditation in your space. Prayer, meditation, asana, pranayama, and chanting in your living space provides you with a sanctuary to receive inner guidance and a clear space to Be.    Remember that your true home is within you. Relax, let go, breathe, and turn inward.

Lavender

Place a few drops of lavender essential oil onto a tissue and inhale, or breathe deeply and mindfully from the lavender essential oil bottle for a few minutes to enhance a sense of peace, calm, and relaxation. Place some dried lavender in a small bowl and when you need, gently squeeze the flowers to release the beautiful scent.Lavender can calm nervousness and anxiety, cure insomnia, or relieve a headache. 

One World

Your religion is not the garb you wear outwardly, but the garment of light you weave around your heart.  Discover who you are, behind those outer trappings, and you will discover who Jesus was, and Buddha, and Krishna.  For the masters come to earth for the purpose of holding up to every man a reflections of his deeper, eternal Self.
                                                                    ~ Paramhansa Yogananda

 

Benefits of a Infrared Yoga Practice

What Is Infrared Yoga?

The hipper younger sister of hot yoga is practiced in a room heated by infrared technology. Rather than blasting steamy air at you (like a typical hot yoga studio), the heaters actually warm you on a molecular level, from the inside out. The difference provides benefits like increased blood flow, intense detoxification, and digestion stimulation in addition to boosting your metabolism and burning calories.

BENEFITS OF INFRARED HEAT: 

·       Burns hundreds of calories in 20-30 minutes

·       Reduces stress and fatigue 

·       Strengthens the cardiovascular system 

·       Heals injuries faster and more efficiently 

·       Relieves pain and migraine headaches 

·       Eases joint pain and stiffness 

·       Relaxes muscles and increases flexibility 

·       Deep cleanses skin naturally 

·       Removes toxins and mineral waste 

·       Improves the immune system 

·       Increases metabolism 

·       Helps fight cancer cells and generate healthy cells

·       Removes heavy metals, toxins and pollutants from the tissue

Won't you join us today?