We are getting crazy excited for SPRING here at the travelling yoga school that is The Yoga Viva! Already we feel our energy blooming and that we are able to do more, more move, and breathe more! Here are some of the tools and resources we are REALLY digging as we release ourselves from the winter months!
Dark Chocolate (DUH!)
I have been loving dark chocolate a little extra this month. Dark chocolate gives me that little kick when I need it. With all the work that I've had to do this month it's kept me going by providing me all of it's natural antioxidants.
I have been studying the playfulness of Iyengar yoga and alignment in general for the last year or so. The amazing Carrie Owerko defines Alignment as the sustainable relationship between parts. As a simple statement, this has a huge implication for developing balance in life. If you want to get started understanding the body of work by an incredible teacher and one of the main dudes who brought yoga to the west, catch his book Light on Life. It’s a joy to read and so jam packed with wisdom to inspire you.
OM AIM HRIM KLIM CHAMUNDAYEI VICCHE
This is a mantra for not only heavy duty protection by the goddesses that slay our inner demons, but one that also helps to create an incredible sense of self confidence, especially for those who may suffer from eating disorders and feelings of insecurity due to lack of self esteem. As a main mantra to the goddess Chamunda Devi who is considered to be the wrathful form of Durga (the protectress), it also embodies the three goddesses Lakshmi, Kali, and Saraswati! Ultimately bestows the blessings of creativity and good fortune and helps the practitioner sustain wealth, abundance, prosperity, joy, bliss, and happiness and protects and defends us from the inauspicious effect of negative planets, bad luck, and setback due to enemies.
Argan oil has been loving me lately! I use it on mainly on my face before bed, but I also use it on my nails and hair. It has been doing wonders. It hydrates my skin, smooths out my nails and controls the frizz that is usually caused by February weather.
Burning Local Mugwort
I have been pretty obsessed with mugwort lately, especially when it comes to using her in ceremony, before my practice, and in circle. I love that I am able to use a different plant as my sacred smudge than palo santo or sage since they are both at risk of being over harvested. I love that the original mugwort I am burning was gifted to me by a dear friend who grew it in her garden and that the original plant was a gift by one of the local herbal elders, Willow LaMonte. When I burn mugwort as my smudge, I feel like her spirit is clearing away the debris that gets in the way of me being awake to my heart! She also does a great job at keeping the energy moving.
If you don’t know about this practice, it translates as Yoga Sleep and is designed to drop you down into your deep psyche so that you can plant a seed for true growth and transformation. A few students of mine and I have committed to 2 months of weekly yoga nidra practice to see what the effects are, as it’s best to practice for a long period of time. What can I say about this beautiful practice? My favorite local yoga nidra session is by Annie Okerlin of Exalted Warrior Foundation. You can find some of her audio recordings online HERE.
Crystal Medicine & Piezoelectricity
I recently acquired a lovely piece of lepidolite at the Florida Herbal Conference and it feels like everything I need. Even if you don’t have a strong relationship with stone medicine, they can be incredibly valuable gifts and trinkets especially if you set deep intention into them. I like to sing into them, wear them in my bra close to my heart as I meditate, hold them up to different parts of my body that I am working on healing, and set them in beautiful patterns with stone grids. It's hard to explain the validity of this practice but it lies in the secrets of Traditional Chinese Medicine and piezoelectricity. If you have time to go down a rabbit hole, I suggest starting here:
HERBAL ACTION NETWOR
"Herbal Action Network was launched by the Florida School of Holistic Living in Summer 2016. The Orlando Grief Care Project, a program of the school launched in response to the Pulse nightclub shooting, became the inspiration for other communities to respond to local events and trauma. After networking and providing resources for a variety of events, we saw the need to formalize our network of herbalists to ensure that calls for support were more efficient and effective, as well as to share educational resources and organizing tools among the herbal community.”
I am incredibly inspired by the humans that created the herbal action network! I look forward myself to being able to support and establish care from my local herbal community for groups in need!