Life in the West is so yang-like, it is hard to even realize just how much we have become unbalanced. Our culture is based on constant movement and improvement; doing at the expense of being. It is fascinating to take some time to stop and look at the yin-side of life, to look inside our basic assumptions of how we should be living our lives to actually see what alternatives are possible. There are many ways to look at the yin-side and this newsletter offers an opportunity to do just that: to look at the yin-side of spirit and see just how our high-spirited living is at the expense of soulfulness.
Of course, life is not all mind and soul; we have a body to look after too. We will also investigate a proven yogic technique that utilizes the principles of Yin Yoga to help heal and nourish our knees. Finally, we are not alone on this planet – we will also offer a look at how we can use our yoga and the practice of living mindfully to help heal our environment.
Yin Yoga For The Knees
There is a wise saying, “There are no knee openers in Yoga.” This saying helps protect our knees when we are working to open our hips: if the hips are very tight, the stress of postures, such as Pigeon or Cowface, will often go right into the knee and could tear the meniscus. There is another wise saying, “No pain, no pain.” The philosophy here is quite clear. Minimize any twist in the knees, especially as the knee straightens, and if you experience any pain at all, back off. But this does not mean that you can’t work the knees in ways that can help them heal or make them stronger. There are ways to do so, and we will explore a very successful way involving Yin Yoga principles and some simple props.
In the dance of yoga, we can feel inspired and we can feel grounded. Inspiration and connection are manifestations of spirit and soul. For most of us in the West, soul and spirit seem like synonyms: when someone we love dies, we may say his soul has departed, or we may say his spirit has left. What’s the difference? In the Eastern Daoist philosophy, there are five distinct kinds of soul, not just one. In Western psychologies, such as the model proposed by Carl Jung, we also recognize that our inner landscape is not just one flat terrain: within each of us are many personalities and functions. Within each of us are both spirit and soul, two vastly different aspects of our being.
The most precious gift in the world is not love. Love is an amazing and a wonderful gift, but even more valuable than love is the gift of time. Time is the measure of the quality of a friendship and the depth of love. Time is what makes love work. If you do not invest time in friendship, in your love, then the roots of the relationship are shallow and unsecure. If you really love someone or value their friendship, then show it by investing time with them. Without this most precious of all gifts even the strongest love may fail.
In this complete presentation of Please Mind the Planet, Bernie Clark discusses climate change, the future of our environment, scientific credibility, the risks we are taking, the big easy steps for helping our environment; mindful buying, mindful voting, and mindful communicating.
If you are having trouble finding a Yin Yoga teacher near your, or if you are traveling to somewhere new, try checking out the Directory of Yin Yoga teachers. We have hundreds of teachers registered from all over the world. If you are a teacher and are not in the directory, just send us your information and we’ll be happy to add you.
The forum is available for anyone to ask questions about Yin Yoga in particular or Yoga in general, but the forum is not just for those who “don’t know” – it is also available for everyone who already know, and have stories and information to share with others. Recently the forum has been changed to make it easier to find the most common topics. Check it out and feel free to add your voice.
Yin is In! And, it is growing in popularity. Yin Yoga has been with us since the beginning of Hatha Yoga centuries ago. But since the early 19th century, yoga has become more and more yang-like in nature. Everything requires balance: yin completes yang. Yin Yoga is the balancing practice for the more active, muscular yang yogas. There are more and more teachers offering Yin Yoga today, and more workshops and opportunities to learn how to become a Yin Yoga teacher. If diving deeper into the yin-side of life is on your bucket list, there are lots of opportunities for you.
Upcoming Yin Yoga Teacher Trainings with Bernie Clark
50 Hour Yin Yoga Teacher Training
August 22nd-28th, 2011 at the
Semperviva Yoga Studios – Vancouver, B.C., Canada
The Yin Yoga Teacher Training Program offered at the Semperviva Yoga College is a unique way to deepen your yoga practice and touch tissues rarely worked in a more active yang style of yoga. For 200 hour certified teachers the credits of the course can be applied towards the 500 hour certification, and is eligible for CEUs with Yoga Alliance. (Continuing Education Units are required to maintain your status as a Registered Yoga Teacher).
Many teachers around the world are creating Yin Yoga based workshops and retreats. Some of them are posting these activities on our Forum page. Check it out. There may be one happening near you. (If you are a teacher, feel free to add yours to the page!)
Yin Yoga For The Knees
Yin Yoga generally targets the area from the navel to the knees, which means we mostly work our hips and lower back. However, sometimes we do need to focus specifically on our knees. Here is one way to do so.
The Yin-side of Soul
Yoga was originally a spiritual practice, designed to help us liberate ourselves from the pains and suffering of daily life. Spirit can do that, transcend the ordinary, but soul is quite different than spirit. Learn about the yin-side of soul.
Yoga For Our Planet
The good folks at MyYogaOnline.com have released the full 72 minute version of a presentation given by Bernie Clark in August of 2009 called Please Mind The Planet.
Recent Forum Topics
On the YinYoga.com website there is a forum where anyone can ask questions about Yin Yoga or other topics, and everyone is free to offer wise commentary. Click here to learn more.
Teacher Trainings & Retreats
There are several Yin Yoga teacher training courses being held by Bernie Clark over the next 12 months. The next one is happening in August, 2011 in Vancouver. Click here to learn more about these.
Checking out Other Interesting Events
There are many teachers leading workshops, Yin Yoga retreats and Teacher Trainings. Click here to learn more.