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Blog Archives: January 2018 — December 2018

New Year’s Eve R-n-R Even

November 30, 2018
Brooke Binstock
There are many ways to bring in the New Year in our culture, and especially in Austin!  With an air of excitement and entertainment on every corner, we band together in a celebratory thunderclap and often don’t recollect the night’s events. I’ve had my fair share of these nights and have enjoyed each iteration of celebrating. But now, I am realizing the value in quiet reflection. Mary Richardson and I are excited to be co-teaching an event on New Year’s Eve to help quiet down the noise and get acquainted with that intentional part that is ...

Get to Give

November 27, 2018

Girls (women) Just Wanna (but forget to) Have Fun

November 02, 2018
Lizzie Brooks
Laundry, check.  Kids’ lunches, check.  Job responsibilities, check.  Fun…hello, fun? Where are youuuuuuuuu? Fun has gone missing. It used to be at the top of the list. It used to grab you by the hand and lead you through exciting experiences. It used to unveil new things and keep you out past midnight. It used to call your friends and tell them when and where. But right now, fun is playing hide and you’ve forgotten to seek. When did you and fun lose touch? Why did you start to associate fun as something more for the kids? There’s an ...

Shakti Power New Moon Gong Concert

October 30, 2018
The November new moon begins the lunar cycle of the Full Beaver Moon. Our Native Americans were not thinking of perhaps what you are thinking! Long ago this was the time to trap the beaver before the swamps froze to keep warm through the winter. Out here in Austin, Texas, we probably won’t be setting any traps to catch beavers, but we will be enjoying the cool nights and shorter days as we welcome in our beautiful fall season. The New Moon phase of 0% illumination begins November 7, at 10:02 AM. This is a great time to start new projects ...

Mindful Eating and Kundalini

October 29, 2018
Another day of “Austin’s water boil watch” brings the idea of conscious eating and consumption. So many times we unconsciously care for ourselves. We forget if we washed our hair in the shower, so we do it again. We can lose track of the time and put off eating till we are “starving”. Then we shove an emergency nutrition bar in our mouths from the glove box, while we wait in rush hour traffic. I am no stranger to giving or hearing the excuses. What if we decided to make a change? Let’s pay attention to what we put in and on our bodies. Let’s ...

The Doug Effect, How Doug Keller Catalyzed my Studies

October 18, 2018
Emily Smith
In my early days in yoga, navigating the sea of asana, philosophy and lineages was at best confusing.  At that time in east Texas, there wasn’t a yoga community. There weren’t yoga teachers. I had to seek out yoga and this was at least a two hour drive, and more often a longer more costly flight across the country.  Looking back, I am actually thankful yoga was not as accessible as it is now. I doubt if I could stream yoga, I would have committed as fully. I doubt I would have sought out my teachers with such determination. I am not sure ...

Finding Your Balance

October 11, 2018
Rhonda Green
Have you noticed you are not as steady on your feet as you used to be? Is balance becoming more challenging? Are you worried you might fall? You are not alone. Balance is a common concern for many of us. The physiological roots of balance are complex. It involves the integra­tion of various sensory and motor systems in the brain and body, including: vision (to perceive direction and motion) vestibular system in the inner ear (which monitors motion and provides orientation clues, such as which way is up) proprioception (the ability to ...

Beyond Asana

October 09, 2018
Jo Eckler, Psy.D., RYT
Yoga offers us so many gifts for body and mind. Sometimes we can get caught up in the visible physical changes, whether it’s deepening that forward bend or seeing our muscles grow. Other changes are also just as important, but more difficult to see. Psychological flexibility is a term coined by Steven Hayes, Ph.D., that describes the ability to experience all the internal thoughts, emotions, and sensations that we as humans go through and still be able to make choices about our behavior in order to live more in alignment with what’s ...

What to do When Your Mala Breaks

October 04, 2018
“My mala broke, what do I do?” Usually, it’s a tough moment because we become attached to our malas, having chanted and warn them for some time.  But, according to the yogis, once your mala breaks, you no longer need that one. Meaning, the relationship/karma associated with the mala is complete. So, it is a time to celebrate the end of that connection. I say Congrats! Of course, as the owner of Atma’s Offerings, I am always happy to replace a mala that breaks within a 30-day period. But, back to the yogic philosophy…. I suggest taking ...

Healing Vibrations

October 03, 2018
Jessica Stephens
I studied music for a big part of my life. Earlier this year I became certified as a Sound Therapist, and I was reminded how much music and sound contribute to my well-being. I admit that even I have been skeptical in the past of “energy workers,” or people who claim to work with the energy in your body to fix your stuff. What kind of woo-woo is that? And honestly, I haven’t been a huge fan of fixing things lately. From the guidance of my wise yoga teachers, I’ve worked more on learning and healing from all those things I might have ...

Mindful Walking in These Modern Times

October 02, 2018
We all take daily steps and actions in our lives; many of us do not realize where our consistent steps are actually leading us. With the fast-pace of the modern world, going within and slowing down often seems counterintuitive, counterproductive, and “down-right wrong”, and yet for most of us, it is the very thing needed. In this age of digital devices, our nervous systems are flooded with constant streams of information from texts, emails, calls, social media feeds, online communication and notifications of various sorts. In addition, ...

What is a Mala?

September 20, 2018
Malas have become a popular tool in the yoga world these days. The reason is not just because they are beautiful to wear, but also because they really work! If you are not sure what a mala is, I sometimes describe it as a rosary, but for yogis. You usually find them with 108 beads plus one guru bead at the end. 108 is a sacred number in yoga world and the extra guru bead represents that you have all the knowledge you need inside you. A tassel is at the end of the guru bead and it represents the lotus flower. Malas (sometimes called ...

Yoga for Vitality and Self Care with Mirka Kraftsow

September 19, 2018
Ravyn Abboushi
Austin yoga lovers, enthusiasts, teachers, freaks, geeks and athletes: this September we have a rare opportunity to study with a master yoga teacher and long time student of TKV Desikachar. Mirka Scalcow Kraftsow co-founded the American Viniyoga Institute, where she has trained hundreds of teachers and Yoga therapists, many of them in the Austin area. After years away from teaching locally, she is returning to reconnect and support the community of practitioners and teachers here. Mirka is such gift to the yoga community because her yoga ...

A Year With Jenn Wooten Online Live

September 09, 2018
Jenn Wooten
As is true with most humans, my relationship with change has been a fickle one. My soul deeply craves change, but my mind and my body don’t always weather it well. As a student of Ayurveda, I’ve learned that my particular Vata constitution needs rhythm, routine and steadiness. As a mother of two, life with children has foisted the need for some semblance of constancy upon me in ways that have been mostly healing and sometimes maddening. How odd is it to both crave and reject the daily grind? In several years of working with trauma, I’ve ...

A Love Offering - Kirtan Benefit Concert

September 07, 2018
Mark Uridel
Join us for our annual Kirtan Benefit Concert on September 22, 2018 from 6:00 - 7:30 at Yoga Yoga Westgate in Austin. Chanting (kirtan) is a major part of the path of devotional (bhakti) yoga. When we see the beauty of our own being we are seeing the beauty of the Being that is the One of which we are all a part.  And when we turn towards that One, love is the natural reaction of the heart. The words of these chants are called the divine names and they come from a place that's deeper than our thoughts, deeper than the mind.  And so, as ...

Skill Building: The Foundation in Alignment

September 03, 2018
John Mackey
Staying healthy is a primary concern. Our joints last a lifetime with attentive care: yet they take a lot of unhealthy punishment if we mistreat them. Understanding the anatomy of the foot, ankle, and knee joint along with their proper movement and alignment while under stress, and how to strengthen them gives us a safe and enjoyable practice, and a knowing sense of calm that our practice will not elicit harm. For principles of foundation alignment, we might begin by researching the history of yoga. In the past, a student practiced ...

Therapeutic Yoga For Addiction and Recovery

August 31, 2018
Laura Marcotte
Addiction is a disease that touches many lives.  We can be addicted to all sorts of things- diets, shopping, sex, food, love, substances and our phones.  We start using these things as a distraction from pain but end up separate from ourselves. Without our center we forget our truth and become lost. For the last 10 years, my work with clients struggling with substance abuse has been extremely informative. The tools they receive from yoga and meditation serve them. When you think about the transformative powers of yoga, awareness is one of ...

Sleeping with the GONG

August 25, 2018
Mehtab Benton
Have you ever heard anyone snoring during a gong relaxation? It can be a little annoying, especially if it turns out to be yourself. Yet it does seem natural to zonk out during a deep relaxation. But if you do sleep with the gong, you may be missing the best part of the relaxation – the deep personal transformation that comes from the sound of the gong while in an engagedaltered state of consciousness. There is a special state in the practice of yoga called Yoga Nidra, or literally “yogic sleep.” Yogic sleep is a state of consciousness ...

Change Your Brain with Yoga

August 23, 2018
Mark Uridel
There's an urban myth that "it takes 21 days to start a new habit."  This was a statement from a plastic surgeon in the 1950's. Dr. Maxwell Maltz noticed that when he gave a patient a new nose, it took about 21 days for them to get used to it.  “These, and many other commonly observed phenomena tend to show that it requires a minimum of about 21 days for an old mental image to dissolve and a new one to jell.” he wrote in his book, Psycho-Cybernetics, that sold 30 million copies, and the rest is history. First of all, he said "a minimum of ...

Mindfulness in the Workplace

August 13, 2018
Lisa Feder
Let Yoga help you clear your mind of clutter. The second of the Yoga Sutras states: Yogas chitta vritti nirodha. This means “Yoga is the resolution of the agitations of the mind”. Think about your typical workday and some of the “agitations of the mind” that you face.  Maybe these take the form of a tight deadline, a difficult co-worker, or a quality control issue. If you are really thinking about this difficult situation, you are probably becoming a little bit stressed just thinking about it. When you thought of your stressful ...

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