Zen Blog

This blog collects various internet feeds aimed towards information, experience and technique exchange in support of our shared spiritual journey.....

”Namaste - may the light in me, honor the light in you…”

The worst word in the world.

Elephant is big enough that many of our fans, or readers, or friends—many of you, perhaps you yourself—are conservative. I like that. I respect conservatives. I'm a moderate liberal—"moderate" being just as important as "liberal." Moderate, to me, means that I value an open mind, working together, and listening as much as I value my…values of equal rights, environmentalism, a fair and prosperous economy, denuclearization, education and healthcare and opportunity for all, and diplomacy before war—may there be peace on earth. All those are important to me. But how many times have we seen aggression in the service of what we value? Our values fast become self-righteousness. And so it is that I love dialoguing, listening, arguing, and sharing with our readers who hail from outside our choir. That Elephant is big enough to reach well outside our choir means everything to me—what use is it to preach about local food to a farmer, or bicycle commuting to a cyclist? We effect real change when we talk with those who have different paths. And we effect real change when we allow ourselves to be changed, and further awakened. ~ @waylonlewis May it be of benefit! ? #mayitbeofbenefit ? ? Now, more than ever, read journalism and subscribe to independent mission-driven media beholden only to kindness and truth. Without transparency, facts, and honesty, we are lost. Get our free online magazine only at elephantjournal.com/best ?❤️

A post shared by Elephant Journal (@elephantjournal) on Jun 22, 2018 at 7:39pm PDT

Partisan. It’s the worst word in the world.

Take partisan out of it, and everyone relaxes. Everyone would admit they care. Everyone would admit that it’s complicated—immigration, legal and illegal, asylum, children, parents.

Put partisan back in, and it’s two sides yelling at each other—having taken their eye of the ball, which is solutions. Fixing things. Helping.

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10 Powerful (and Empowering) Poses for Pride

10 Powerful (and Empowering) Poses for Pride

This Pride month sequence cultivates self-compassion and self-acceptance. Not only will it help you heal, it will inspire you to help others in their journey toward self-love.

Jordan Smiley is a 500-hour RYT transgender yoga teacher and yoga teacher trainer based in Denver, Colorado. With June being Pride month, we asked Smiley to create an empowering sequence that cultivates compassion for the Self and others, and explain why each pose makes him feel proud.

Yoga helped save my life. 

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It’s because of the practice that I have a peaceful relationship with my body, tools to coach my mind, and a continuously deepening sense of compassion—both for myself and for others. 

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Hot and Holy: 13 Songs to Replenish Your Yoga Practice

Hot and Holy: 13 Songs to Replenish Your Yoga Practice

Relax and unwind with these divine, sultry tracks, ideal for mixing up your yoga practice.

This playlist is full of yin and yang, naughty and nice, and a bit of spice to help you relax into whatever your practice may be.

See also 16 Songs for a Sensual Yoga Session

Hot and Holy

1. "Breathing In," Craig Kohland & Shaman's Dream2. "Affair," Minoru Sakay3. "Caribbean Blue," Enya4. "Divine," Minoru Sakay5. "Sadness," Enigma6. "The Chase," Minoru Sakay7. "Roma," Minoru Sakay8 . "Opium," Dead Can Dance9. "Anabasis," Dead Can Dance10. "Gaté Gaté," Deva Premal11. "Gayatri Mantra," Deva Premal12. "Watermark," Enya13. "Breathing Out," Craig Kohland & Shaman's Dream

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Did This Week’s Immigration News—and Images—Make Your Head Spin? This Practice Will Inspire You to Take Action

Did This Week’s Immigration News—and Images—Make Your Head Spin? This Practice Will Inspire You to Take Action

I’ve been in tears on and off since we first got news late last month of what’s happening at our borders. This week’s stories of babies being taken from their mothers while breastfeeding and images of sobbing children who’d just been separated from their parents took things to an entirely new level.

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I watched the news and broke down right along with the reporters, who were unable to hold back tears as they talked about the hundreds of infants and toddlers being held in internment camps in Texas. And now we have a baffling, but welcome, reversal in policy to navigate and the next infuriating human rights crisis to prepare for: how to get families reunited.

While it is appropriate to be angry at these crimes against humanity—and also quite human to go numb when life is this barbaric—this is not the time to be silent or do nothing. In fact, this is the time when we need to turn to our yoga practice the most, and let it inspire us to take action.

See also Master the Alchemy of Your Emotions to Transform Anger, Hatred, Pain into Higher Qualities

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Live Be Yoga: How I'm Staying Grounded Through Nonstop Travel and Transition

Live Be Yoga: How I'm Staying Grounded Through Nonstop Travel and Transition

Jeremy Falk

Live Be Yoga ambassadors Jeremy Falk and Aris Seaberg are on a road trip across the country to share real talk with master teachers, explore innovative classes, and so much more—all to illuminate what's in store for the future of yoga. Follow the tour and get the latest stories @livebeyoga on Instagram and Facebook.

Jeremy and I are about six weeks into this six-month tour. From one city to the next, one “home” to the next, one studio to the next, one restaurant to the next, one task to the next, we are learning to live a life of constant movement and change. On top of that, this is a temporary experience that is serving as a transition from one point in our lives to the next. Transition on top of transition… on top of transition. When your life literally is transition, it is not easy to cultivate a sense of presence. It’s a test on our psyche—and an opportunity to choose to use our yoga tools, yet again. Yes, it is a choice.

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When I Google transition, the definition that pops up is: “The process or period of changing from one state or condition to another.” This is often a theme that yoga teachers use in their classes, and what they are referring to is the presence available in the moments between each pose. Whether you are inhaling as you lift your arms toward the sky or you are moving from Warrior II to Chaturanga, there are brief moments in which you are simply breathing and feeling the movement. It allows you to use the practice to go deeper into your awareness, which is a beautiful takeaway and practical metaphor for life.

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