Nunnery Blog 4: The Simple Things

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After my sit under the big tree and the waving prayer flags, I returned to my room for a late asana practice. En route I passed Ani-la in the hallway and she let me know that dinner would be at 7 pm. I thanked her and then noticed that there was a pretty long-haired white and tan dog lounging near …

Sometimes it’s just hard…

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Sometimes it’s just hard. I have wanted to come study at the Jois institute for 10 years. For many of those years it seemed like something only free people could do and I didn’t feel like one of them. I had a “career” to build and minimal time off. At times I was so jealous of fellow yogis that got …

Nunnery Blog 3: Settling In…

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As Ani-too (Ani Sonam) left the room she said, “puja at 4 and dinner at 7:30”. So, after getting settled into my little room, which included a bit of redecorating—my gay gene kicking in—I took a nap and then made my way down to the main hall for puja a few minutes before 4 pm. Some of the nuns seem …

Nunnery Blog 2: Feels Like Home

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The day before I went up to Nagi Gompa was quite special because I had the opportunity to meet privately with my Buddha dharma teacher, Tolkpa Tulku. Tulku indicates that he was identified by elder monks as the reincarnation of a deceased master that has chosen to be reborn to carry on the teachings. Tolkpa Tulku told me that he …

Glue that’s holding this world together?

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These days it’s pretty easy to develop the feeling that this world is hanging on by a thread. In a sense, I guess it always has been, but with so much craziness going on around us, it can really become difficult to maintain sthira (steadiness) and sukham (ease) within. These past several days, as I’ve been witness to the daily …

Practicing Alone

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*I wrote this one morning at Nagi Gompa – the Buddhist nunnery outside Kathmandu. I was reminded today, as I moved through the postures in the cold of my otherwise cozy little nunnery room, of the advantages and challenges of practicing on one’s own. For many years, while working for FDA, I practiced mostly on my own in sterile hotel …

Nunnery Blog 1: You Come Back…

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I’ve been a bit torn about putting my experiences in Nepal, specifically Nagi Gompa, the Tibetan Buddhist nunnery, out here in to the webosphere. The place itself is near and dear to my heart and the time I’ve spent there is straight up sacred to me. I want to share it for the same reason I continue to feel passionate …

Om Brahmanandam

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Om Brahmanandam parama-sukhadam kevalam jñana-murtim dvandvatitam gagana-sadrisham tat-tvam-asyadi-lakshyam ekam nityam vimalam achalam sarva-dhi-sakshi-bhutam bhavatitam tri-guna-rahitam sad-gurum tam namami —From Tantrik Text and The Guru Stotram Salutations to that inner guru, the inner guiding light, which is never-ending bliss; the giver of supreme happiness, one-without-a-second pulsation of consciousness beyond dualism, beyond subject and object; which is like the blue sky and …

Ashtanga Yoga Closing Prayer

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Om svasthiprajābhyah paripālayantām nyāyena mārgena mahīm mahiśah gobrāhmanebhyah śubhamastu nityam lokāh samastāh sukhinobhavanthu   Om shantih shantih shantih May all be well with mankind. May the leaders of the earth protect in every way by keeping to the right path. May there be goodness for those who know the earth to be sacred. May all the worlds be happy. Peace, …

The Gesture – Move Like You Mean It!

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Yoga asana teaches us to move with purpose – with accuracy, poise, economy, efficiency, awareness and direction. This is right there in the meaning of vinyasa. “Vi” means “to place” and “nyasa” means “in a special way”. Anytime we include all these aforementioned attributes, I’d say it’s a pretty darn special movement! It’s a way of moving that includes all …