Yoga Therapy & Astrology Posts

I  can’t even tell you how excited I am to be presenting this program at Kripalu Center in October.  It is literally a dream come true!
My history with Kripalu goes back many decades….so far in fact that it certainly does seem as though destiny has had a hand in everything.  I received their very first catalog in the mail sometime in the late 80’s. But it wasn’t until circa 1992 that I walked thru the door.  I was a full-time, frustrated, stressed out Real Estate Broker & Trainer then. It was August and I was taking The Mystical Path of Yoga with Yoganand. on the recommendation of my local yoga teacher. Nearly everyone but me in the program was a working yoga teacher.  It was an unexpected life-changing experience .   My real interest in going was to meet the guru, Amrit Desai, but, that wouldn’t happen until 2017,.  Still, yoga became an integral part of my life from that point forward.
When I arrived, the receptionist asked me about my employment  and I declared at that moment I was an astrologer.  It wasn’t a lie.  I had a small, side gig going on offering Feng Shui & Astrological Consults.   My expertise in Feng Shui made being in the RE industry tolerable and provided many unusual opportunities to teach, consult, and do research on the art/science.   My avocation was preferable to my vocation.
Over the next 25+ years I returned to Kripalu Center so often I probably should have moved there!   My Karma Yoga included many different jobs, ie. yoga teacher, facilitator, a/v assistant, musician.  I took over 1000 hrs of YTT and worked as a faculty assistant to the many different Yoga presenters that taught at Kripalu .
All said, it was my work within the Inner Quest Intensive under the direction of Aruni Nan Futuronsky that has informed my own teaching of yoga & yoga therapy.   Through my experiences facilitating that program I became particularly interested in yoga (therapy) for mental health, recovery, and spiritual development.  I’ve written a lot of short stories detailing many of my experiences along this Sun/Jupiter line and I look forward to more to tell.
So now, I get to present my own program, which literally took a saturn cycle to imagine, create, and now finally deliver.   I hope you’ll check it out and share the news with like-minded friends.
It’s a program for everyone and you don’t need to know much of anything about astrology or yoga to take it.
The topics we cover are universal; birth/death/loss/fate/change/relationships/health/spirituality.  Life, as it is.  All that is needed is curiosity and a desire to know yourself better.
Possibilities for healing, personal growth, expanded consciousness, spiritual development are inherent in the work.
At the very least you’ll come home with a new plan for time management and stress relief.
 
 

Astrology Kripalu Yoga Yoga Therapy

 

 

 

 

The tropical charts above represent the ‘curriculum for our weekend at the Gurukulam.

Regardless of which system/zodiac you use, or what philosophy/tradition you base your interpretations on, the actual movements of the planets are regular and predictable.

On Friday night there’s a exact conjunction of the Moon with Neptune in Pisces.  The general public/collective body is in need of spiritual support.  In these last hours of the gibbous lunar phase, (the full moon is exact on Saturday just after midnight), the discomfort of previous cycles is felt in our emotional/nervous systems as unresolved tension with no apparent relief.   Many will be seduced into their habitual forms of escape/addiction/delusion.

The Virgo/Pisces axis in astrology highlights the concepts of mutability, being flexible, maybe neurotic and  concerned with bringing physical health into balance with spiritual health……more on this later.  The best practices for gibbous days include anything that aids self-development.

The Sun sits between Venus & Mars, perfect timing for self-study on relationships.  To others, to our communities, to ourselves, and to a higher power or whatever you want to call that which is greater than ourselves.

…..to be continued.

Experiential portions of this program include: Asana, pranayama, mudra, yoga nidra, meditation, chant, integrative breathwork (optional, depending on content) art, journaling, expressive movement, dyads & storytelling. Hatha yoga and experience with astrology is not necessary. The practices will be gentle & challenging at the same time. Experiences and insights that stimulate the mind-body-spirit connection can be profoundly transformational. Inner space explorations of outer space can at times stir up the unconscious and help us to see places we don’t often visit consciously.

More information here: http://www.ifcullen.com/inquire-within-sept2019/

Astrology Yoga Yoga Therapy

So, we’re in the middle of two eclipses and five planets are retrograde.  You don’t really need to know much about astrology to get a sense of the epic time cycle we’re living in.    It really doesn’t matter where you look there’s change, upheaval, and fluctuating conditions mostly everywhere.  You can try to block it out using whatever methods/medicine/magic you have at your disposal.  But relief is temporary.  There really are some terrible things happening if we are to believe the images and words on our screens.  It’s important to check in with the people around you since many are feeling fragmented, confused and hopeless.   Anyway, it’s  an auspicious time to Inquire Within and the stars will guide us accordingly.  It might not read as a “fun, summertime activity” but, for those who understand how transmutation and transformation work, the opportunity provided to you from this upcoming program is priceless.

 

more later.

Asbury Park Astrology Blogging Holistic Health Yoga Yoga Therapy

In 1926, Virginia Woolf wrote about how, when one is ill:

All day, all night the body intervenes; blunts or sharpens, colours or discolours, turns to wax in the warmth of June, hardens to tallow in the murk of February. The creature within can only gaze through the pane – smudged or rosy; it cannot separate off from the body like the sheath of a knife or the pod of a pea for a single instant; it must go through the whole unending procession of changes, heat and cold, comfort and discomfort, hunger and satisfaction, health and illness, until there comes the inevitable catastrophe.

The  above quote was taken from a fairly dense but beautifully written article that I found posted to my Yoga Therapy group.  Some of you may find it very interesting. The posting yoga therapist referenced the similarity between the neuro/psycho states in the article with our practice of Yoga Nidra. 

You don’t need to be ill to practice Yoga Nidra.  The process works on healthy bodies too.  Enhanced creativity, greater ease under stressors, and increased happiness and joy are all common benefits. On July 11, at the midpoint between two eclipses, we’ll practice Yoga Nidra at The Sanctuary.   Lunar aspects to Neptune, Sun & Pluto promise us deep healing, regardless of source event be it trauma, tension, or stress.  Join us.  Please call ahead to save your place.

Yoga Yoga Therapy

….feeling the need to re-post this today.   Om Shanti, Shanti, Shantihi. 

 

Within the city of Brahman,

which is the body,

there is the heart,

and within the heart

there is a little house.

 

This house has the shape of a lotus,

and within it dwells that which is to be

sought after,

inquired about,

and realized.

 

Even so large as the universe outside,

is the universe within the lotus of the heart.

Within it are heaven and earth,

the sun, moon,

the lightning

and all the stars.

 

Whatever is in the macrocosm is in this microcosm also.

Ancient Wisdom Astrology Dharma Doodles StudioIFC Yoga

2019, SYTAR conference was inspiring, validating, and rejuvenating.  I was inspired to be part of this international community of yoga professionals bridging the gap between Western medicine & Yoga. There were 500 of us.   Many who attended had completed research projects with hospitals, universities, governmental agencies, non-profits, and large corporations.  The results easily confirm, without a shadow of doubt, what all of us who’ve practiced already know,  and that is that Yoga works.   It works as a stress management tool, a time management tool, and a vault of knowledge stored in our higher chakras that we can access at will…….  as long as we practice.  …every chance we can.

On the first day I learned about yoga therapy and cancer care.  There are many who are working within this community and doing some amazing work with evidence-based results.  On the second day I attended a 2-part session on yoga therapy and cardiac care.  Nischala Joy Devi was a familiar face at Kripalu over the years of my training, yet I was unable to attend any of her classes.  But here in Newport Beach, CA  I was grateful to spend time with her.

On the third day I continued to learn more of ayurveda, which is providing me with good info on aging & longevity.  The last session I attended, appropriately titled, The Last Breath offered up yoga therapy for dying.  It was the second best presentation of the weekend and was exactly what I needed.

The best presentation of the weekend for me was Keynote speaker Dr. Margaret Chesney  She and Larry Payne, were the speakers who touched me the most.

The event was well worth my time & effort and I’m grateful to my daughter for providing me with daily transportation to and from the event.  It was a wonderful experience overall.   I look forward to sharing all I’ve learned in the months to come.  Feel free to contact me if you’d like some information on how Personal Yoga Therapy can help you.

Blogging Yoga Yoga Therapy

Where were­­ you in the Fall of 1982?  What was going on in your personal life?  What was going on in the world?  How old were you?

In November of that year Pluto and Saturn made a conjunction at 27 Libra.  Where is 27 Libra in your natal chart?  Is anything in your natal chart at 27 degrees?  Look at the cusps and angles too.

This is a good place to begin our self-discovery lessons in Saturn and Pluto.  We need some data for: discussion, transforming, healing, fixing, and most importantly, understanding and seeing a big picture view.  Answering those questions will help as we approach another Pluto/Saturn conjunction/cycle in January, 2020.  It’s a big deal and we astrologers have been holding our breath as we watch the state of the world change (again) before our eyes.  That’s where yoga helps this astrologer.  B R F W A, in Kripalu talk.  Breathe. Relax. Feel. Watch. Allow.         All is well.

There are lots of articles floating around the internet speaking of this culture-changing time and I encourage you to read them.  Every astrologer has their own specialty.  The mundane astrologers are doing a great job tracking the economic/political/geographical/cultural shifts that are going on.  I can recommend some good ones to read if you’re interested in the mundane.

As for me, I want to know how to live thru these cycles, with peace, serenity and reaping the best possible outcome.   It isn’t easy and it’s not always fun,  but the rewards are sure and deep.  Bringing your chart to life and seeing the symbolism play out in your everyday life is a great way to stay connected to something that is much greater than me.

 

Yoga teaches us how to be present in the moment.  Through practice and study we notice that how we think/feel/act in the world is always connected to some deeper cellular/tissue/muscle memory on the inside.   By choosing yoga practices that reflect the symbolism of current transits we get to release, in the moment, any tensions building up unconsciously.  In addition, we experience thru yoga nidra, breathwork, and meditation the release of old tensions held in the body from past lives., which is a whole different conversation having  to do with spiritual beliefs.

But  first, there’s more astrology to look at .

During the ’82 cycle Pluto & Saturn were alone in Libra.  In 2020  the south node of the moon, Ketu in the Vedic system, is tracking with them both in Capricorn, adding an entirely different dimension to our experience of this cycle.  Anytime the Lunar Nodes are involved in an aspect it increases the likelihood that an individuals karma is activated during this period.  I am in my Ketu MahaDasa in  the Vedic system and it’s a fascinating time to engage in self-study.  More reason to use yoga for processing.

In our dharma/karma workshops we investigate our natal placement of the lunar nodes and try to discern how they show up in our lives and more importantly how to learn from them, isn’t that what it’s *all* about, anyway, to learn, grow, evolve?  Otherwise what’s the point of anything?  So we investigate how south node holds the information from our past lives and encourages us to take the easy way out of most situations.  It feels wickedly ‘comfortable’ ,just like your old slippers.

There is no growth without conscious effort and we will be stuck in our old patterns doomed to repeat the wheel of karma without any progress, until we come to understand how the North Node leads us forward.

Inquire Within – Registration is open for weekend intensive & 5-day immersion.

 

 

 

 

Astrology Kripalu Pluto Saturn The Lunar Cycle Yoga Yoga Therapy

“Meet this world with neither grasping nor fear.  Trust the unfolding of life and you will attain true serenity.” 

~Bhagavad Gita

 

Another way to think about Yoga is as a neurological cleansing where the effects of past actions are released, not on the basis of meaning, but neurologically dissolved from the inside by the pure bliss consciousness inherent within us.  We do this in meditation and yoga nidra.  This is not a matter of belief or analysis.  It is a mechanical process. It will work for anyone who does the practices, skeptics & atheists alike.

Gurudev Amrit Desai, founder of Kripalu Yoga & Amrit Yoga Institute, says, “Every time you withdraw from your reactions and move beyond your pre-programmed past there is the possibility for the resurrection of that part of you that lies beyond the ego.”

Western psychology likes to analyze, diagnose, and ‘fix’…ie psychoanalysis.  Most of the time they stay on the level of the mind and rarely do anything other than talk.  This is very helpful but not necessarily healing.  IMHO   Western psychology is like analyzing the waves coming up on the surface of the ocean.  Whereas Yoga Nidra & Meditation especially, are like cleaning the ocean from the bottom up, at levels where analysis is not possible.   Amrit explains obstructions as energy, and thinking is energy.  Yoga deals with the root issues by going beyond the ‘energy’ to pure bliss consciousness.  Meaning is a less fundamental form of neurological energy and it’s found near the surface of the mind.  Meaning is the tail on the dog of thought energy.  Using the tail to wag the dog is not very effective.

Of course, you don’t need to know any of this to experience the benefits…….   Yoga Nidra at The Sanctuary – April 28, 1-4pm

Geometric Art Yoga yoga nidra Yoga Therapy

Blogging Geometric Art Meditation

When an outer planet (Uranus/Neptune/Pluto) moves into a new sign or a new house it can be a momentous occasion and often manifests in some kind of (symbolic) event (major or minor) to announce the ‘new’ energy pattern that is about to unfold.

Of course, leaving behind the old sign, or old house also has it’s own significant events that sum up the lesson(s) of what’s being left behind, for now or for however long it takes until the cycle repeats again.  Such is the ‘wheel’ of Karma.

Neptune entered Pisces in 2012 and slid into my ninth house in the spring of 2013.  Neptune can deliver some frightening experiences if left unnoticed so its always best to find healthy ways to experience it.  Such is the gift of astrology, to make one aware of what is possible.  But, back to me, it’ll take until 2029  before it  connects with my midheaven and enters my 10th house.

Neptune in the 9th for 11 years will slowly dissolve what was before and invisibly recreate all ninth house affairs.  In doing that it will also send some *shade* onto the 3rd house, and any other natal placements it aspects.  (Astrological dictionary here)

Some ninth house  affairs include:  long distance travel,  foreign or distant places, aliens, immigrants, as well as Judges, Religious Authority figures, philosophers and athletes.  Travels need not be physical, but could be intellectual or spiritual .  Our personal philosophy is described in the ninth house and with Neptune here I expect I’ll think about things quite differently before it’s over.   (some Neptune keywords here)

In order to understand a transiting planet in one’s personal horoscope, you must first investigate the natal placement of that planet first.  And that’s where it gets impossibly ridiculous for me.  Because, you see, I was born in Neptune, NJ, and lived from 0-8yrs in Neptune City, NJ.  Natal Neptune is in my 4th house of home, real estate, and early childhood.  I have no choice but to pay attention to *neptune*.

Obviously, as the current colloquialism goes, “you can’t make this stuff up”.

Today, Neptune is only minutes away from a trine to Natal Sun, midway thru Pisces, and midway thru my ninth house.   The landscape of my life has certainly changed since I began writing this post in 2015 and I’m happy that I kept the draft.  It helps to mark certain time-periods.

I can say this, we do create our own reality, and with Neptune time is fluid.  It helps to have *spiritual* practices that connect you to *the present moment*

Om Shanti.  May all beings be peaceful.  May all beings be kind.  May all beings be happy.

Do More Yoga.

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