To everything (turn, turn, turn) there is a season (turn, turn, turn). – Ecclesiastes (& Pete Seeger)
Seasonal changes are intense and the coming of Spring can seem like a major upheaval. Spring forces our slumbering seeds to sprout and can leave us feeling off-balance – particularly after an unusually snow-blanketed Winter.
For some, the transition from Winter to Spring feels more like “churn, churn, churn.”
A number of years ago an acupuncturist explained that I get irritable due to the shift from Winter’s laid back water element to Spring’s pushy wood element. I took to carrying a piece of tree bark in my pocket as a touchstone reminder to chill out during moments of annoyance.
Thanks to many teachers along the way, today I have more than a piece of bark in my tool box.
BI-MONTHLY FOCUS: MARCH/APRIL – TRANSITION & BALANCE
Over the next two months, we’ll explore Asana and related practices for embracing the process of transition, and for cultivating balance during times of change. Take a moment to reflect on the shifts in your life – either current, upcoming or from recent weeks. They might be small adjustments; they might be expected plans; or they might have been unexpected opportunities for growth.
Over these eight weeks, I invite students to cultivate an everyday awareness of responses and reactions to these shifts. If you find yourself easefully accepting these shifts, hooray! If you find yourself losing your balance, perhaps yoga can offer some tools – not only for dealing with change, but for transforming because of it. For example – what if you focused on the process rather than the end result? What if you found something that helps you stay balanced? What if you tapped inner resources to deal with and even transform from these challenges?
To start, we’ll work on Asana, Pranayama and the Chakras – practicing balances, using the breath to transition between and grow within all poses, and, chanting through each energy center. In April, we’ll learn how to maintain emotional balance with The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali – because Raja Yoga and the eight limbs offer so much more than physical tools.
“SPRING AHEAD” WORKSHOP
Spring is here! I’ll be teaching a special Equinox workshop this Saturday, March 20th, 5:30-7:30pm at Past Tense Yoga Studio in Mt. Pleasant, DC. Support your transition from hibernation to germination with: journaling about change, reactions to change and tools for change; Spring Salutation Asana (movement); Yoga Nidra (guided deep relaxation and journeying); Pranayama (balancing breathing exercises); guided Meditation; and, to raise the Equinox energy, Kirtan with lots of percussion instruments to shake, rattle and roll! Bring a cup/mug for water/tea and a journal. To receive a discounted rate, register in advance from the Events page at www.pasttensestudio.com (Note: Equinox will be at exactly 5:32pm – I think we’ll start the session by trying our most challenging balancing pose!)
And if you’re not in DC, or not in an area where Spring occurs in March, I hope you will find something in these March and April entries to enhance stability and balance through any transitional time.
OM Shanti. Peace.
(PS – Coming soon, posts about Baseball & Yoga, Chakra Chanting and more.)