Merry Vata Derangement Season!
Ayurvedic physician and author Robert Svoboda coined the term
"vata derangement" to describe the physical effects of the anxiety-ridden, over-scheduled, multi-tasking lifestyle that so many of us live. The word "vata" refers to the principle of movement in our bodies, ruled by the air element. The air element is quick and pulls energy up off the earth. When it is dominant, as
when we are overly busy, we become impatient, ungrounded, and distracted, even anxious and panicky. We can get into a state where we literally can't think. I know for myself that when I move too fast, do too much, and neglect my meditation and movement practices,
I can actually feel less weighted in my body, like I am starting to float off the surface of the earth.
Image credit: Carlos R. Photography on DeviantArt.
This time of year, when all of nature is resting in the dark, going deep, and practicing stillness and quiet, is paradoxically the one where we humans are the most busy, frantic and external. Our bodies and psyches truly do feel the jarring split between the behavior of trees, animals, and earth and the speedy and bright pace of the highways, televisions, and devices that we surround ourselves with.
What to do? GET IN YOUR BODY by cultivating the earth and water elements that balance air. Here are some ideas:
- Take a bath. The literal heaviness of the water on your body will slow your nervous system.
- Meditate, anywhere you can, however long you can, in whatever way you can. Practice being less precious about your meditation; it can even be a pause in the middle of the day. Research shows that positive brain changes begin to occur after only 5 minutes of meditation!
- Without being too rigid about it, spend a few minutes bringing your inhale and exhale to even lengths, without trying to deepen your breath intentionally. Taking deep breaths is not as calming as harmonizing the length of your inhales and exhales.
- Move! The key words for balancing vata in your movement practices are: calm, slow, steady, grounding, strengthening, consistent.
- Take your awareness to your feet, the furthest body part away from the hyper-activity of your brain. Travel your awareness through each toe and every part of each foot.
- Wrap yourself in heavy blankets. Special weighted blankets are now available, because they are soothing for autistics. You'll benefit from being swaddled in weight, too!
With warmest wishes
to you for moments and even hours of stillness, reflection, and peace during this dark time of the yearly cycle.
And with immense gratitude to each and every one of you who have been our students.
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UPCOMING EVENTS AND SERIES
There is a LOT going on at the studio this January.
Be sure to read on so you don't miss out!
The start of a new year is a beautiful time to rediscover what supports and nourishes us so that we can fully express and embody our best self, moment to moment, breath to breath. Come and enjoy the blessings of community and practice on this auspicious first day of the year. We will tend to our roots in order to support new and fresh expressions of being. All levels welcome!
Friday, January 15 5:00-8:00pm
Saturday, January 16 1:00-6:00pm
Sunday, January 17 1:00-5:00pm
What is meditation really? What happens when we turn within and focus on the very processes of life? In this interdisciplinary, non-denominational weekend we'll delve into the basic playing field and experience of meditation. We'll look at it from both ancient and modern perspectives, incorporating instructions from Indian wisdom traditions and insights from contemporary neuroscience.
Saturday, January 23
Come join us for a one-day only special event with visiting instructor Ross Rayburn! Ross will lead us through a full spectrum Master Class for the first section of the day followed by a therapeutic training on manual self-adjustments for the second section. All levels are welcome in each section!
With Meg Agnew and Rebecca Denk
Fridays from 8:00am - 9:20am
12 week session: January 15 - April 8
The intention of this program is to encourage a deepening of our meditation practice and, within the refuge of sangha (spiritual community), to share insights and support for living with wisdom and compassion. Throughout the series we'll be investigating A Fearless Heart, an excellent guide for working with the powerful practice of compassion, written by Thupten Jinpa, PhD.
January 4 - February 15
Morning Practice Series: Graceful Beginnings
This class is for anyone new to hatha yoga, who is interested in learning the fundamentals of a physical yoga practice. This six-week series will provide you with the tools to increase flexibility and strength, release tension, and develop concentration and body awareness.
A Four Week Series With Claudette Evans
Monday, Wednesday and Friday
January 4 - 29
Join Claudette and Ganesha for a morning practice series designed to help you transition into the new year with grace. Let go of certainty, and allow yourself the luxury to experience growth naturally, as we explore the modulations, the spaces, and the mysterious moments of the in between.
Come and explore Ayurveda, the 5,000 year old natural medicine of India and a sister science to yoga. All sessions will include asana, meditation, lecture and inquiry.
January 12 - February 9
The gentle flowing practice of Qi-Gong is a kind of moving meditation that enhances our awareness of the energy in our body and in the world around us. In this 5 week series, we'll practice healing sounds, acupressure and ancient qi-gong.
No pre-registration required for
Welcome Danny Arguetty
We're thrilled to welcome Danny Arquettey, M.A., E-RYT 500, as the newest addition to our teaching staff.
Danny is a deeply seasoned teacher, who has studied Anusara yoga, been in residence at Kripalu, and conducts advanced teacher training annually in India.
His classes are intelligently sequenced, practical, and touch upon the body, breath, mind, and heart.
Look for Danny's classes on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings starting in mid-January.