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Hardware, Software, and a big book of numbers.
Some tools of the trade.

Did you know that there are two zodiacs?

The difference between them is largely a question of measurement and how and where to begin measuring. Volumes have been written and it’s not necessary for our purposes here to go into it in any detail.

The tropical zodiac is mostly used by western astrologers and looks at the sky with reference to the solstice and equinox points. Then they divide the sky up into twelve sections that may or may not be equal, depending on other data points.

The sidereal zodiac is primarily used by eastern astrologers and is more closely related to the actual placement of the stars in their constellations.

The actual difference between these two zodiacs is approximately 23 degrees depending on which astronomer you consult. This difference is called the ayanamsa.

As an astrologer, I can’t help but think that the Sidereal folks are more connected to ‘reality’ since they are looking at the sky as it is, rather than observing it as a mathematical construct.  But those same astrologers have yet to acknowledge Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto in their interpretations.  For them Saturn is an absolute boundary.  Regardless, both systems work.  Time & experience have established that fact, conclusively. 

All said, I have had many wonderful discussions with astrologers of both systems.  Aside from it’s practical or impractical uses, just the study, alone, of astrology helps to balance out a lot of mis-thinking that goes on in the world.

 

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Watercolor geometric patternMany years ago I had the pleasure of working at the NJ Center for the Healing Arts. A wonderful group of various therapists, psycho-, massage-, art-, and other practitioners of the alternative/complementary arts/sciences all worked under one roof. The founder had a vision for how to treat mental illness in today’s society. She was a beacon of light to many and I applaud her for her accomplishments and the ripple effect of healing & inspiration she provided to the whole community, clients, and the world-at-large.   I was honored to offer astrological & feng shui consultations along with some hatha & dancing yoga classes during my early years studying yoga therapy.  It was a rich time.

While there, it was clear that much of the physical space was dedicated to art….The walls were filled with paintings painted by past & present clients.  Every now and then new ones would appear.  I loved peeking into the art room to see them in action.   It never occured to me that art or painting or drawing could be therapeutic, or healing, or anything other than a means to an end, a picture upon which lots of opinions/judgements might be heaped.  “I like it” I hate it” etc.    Of course, I proved myself naive, again, it happens a lot.

Anyway, today  it’s nearly two decades later and I’m excited to be working around art again.  It’s in a different context, of course, but after such a long time learning & practicing integrative yoga therapy I’m comfortable teaching whever the winds blow me.

Anything can be therapized these days and that’s maybe a good thing?  It acknowledges that we all need healing.  All of us.   Everybody.  This is something I know to be true.

And, the kind of healing that occurs when we fully engage in a process that eliminates words can be felt thru and thru.  It has to do with how the hemisphere’s of the brain are organized.  Healing, though, is not a right-side/left-side experience, but rather what happens naturally when balance is acheived.  This is what yoga/meditation teaches us.  That amazing blissful state that occurs after one does some focused hatha practice, is the same calm, blissful state that occurs when we’re in the zone of: artistic expression, dance practice,, or musical harmonies & rhythms.

That zone, that particular kind of present moment is a very seductive state of being, and once you’ve experienced it your entire being becomes engaged with trying to have the experience again.  The challenge & difficulty is to get there naturally, chemically & substance free.  But, I digress.  Neptune is one of the astrological significators for spiritual practice, yoga, imagination, fantasy and more.  For more keywords of Neptune go here.

On July, I’ll be facilitating a weekend of workshops on yoga & creativity at The Sanctuary.  For the *intensive* on Saturday we’ll be at a local art gallery.  I’m excited to see what happens!   Namaste.

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rooster2017 001  Happy Chinese New Year…..

If you were born in:  1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, or 2005,  then according to the Chinese astrological system you are a Rooster.  There are elemental differences though and this year is the year of Fire Rooster.  And that’s really all I have to say about that.  I wanted to try and paint a rooster.  I don’t know?  Does this look like a rooster?

Have a nice day.

 

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IAYT logo-webWhen I  first got on a yoga mat  at 26 in ’76 I never dreamed that it would become such a big part of my life.  What I discovered then was that I felt good doing it.  My body responded in positive ways but more importantly my spirit soared.  The inclusive philosophy along with the practices of  chanting, meditation & service offered me a sustaining life path for 40 years.

When I took my first residential teacher training in ’99, becoming a yoga ‘teacher’ was the furthest thing in my mind, and if my Teacher hadn’t required us to teach a public class I might  never have taught one.  I wasn’t immersing myself in yoga to create a career, earn money, or achieve fame.  I wanted to know how to live an authentic life, how to fulfill my own potential, how to comprehend the cosmos, and most importantly, how to help others find peace.  But first, I needed to recover and heal myself of more than a few personal trauma’s.  From the first moment I understood yoga to be a  healing modality I recognized a path forward that was good for me and good for others at the same time.

On September 13,  I arrived in Southern California to assist in a major family crisis.
On September 14 I received word that my application to become a certified yoga therapist was accepted by the IAYT!  It took me the whole summer to complete the application which required detailed, evidence-based,  documentation for a minimum of 700 client hours.  In addition to over 500 hours of training in yoga therapy,  I was able document 2,808 client hours of yoga therapy, and over 10,000 hours if you include astrological counseling as part of yogic science/tradition.  That’s a lot of hours and I’m really grateful to be able to practice my passion with others.

The juxtaposition of a significant family crisis versus the validation of my life’s work was a moment that is nearly impossible to comprehend without a metaphysical understanding of how things work and a spiritual practice of acceptance.  Yoga as therapy continues to be my saving grace.  Om Namo Bhagavate Vasu Devaya.

So now, the ‘powers-that-be’ have deemed me competent as a bridge between yoga and our current medical system, a system that is one of many in our society that is obviously broken. But, cynical as that may sound, I am honored and I heartily accept the responsibility of representing current yoga therapy to the medical community, and any other community that will have me!

Please know that this achievement could not have been possible without the willing participation and support from all of my teachers, students, clients, peers, friends and family that have walked this path with me.  May you all feel the love I have for you.

Om Shanti,
ida

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The 2016 SYTAR conference was as good, and better in some ways than last years in Newport Beach.   Different presenters, different speakers, and a different agenda.  Much time was spent on the issue of credentials, as well as how to collect data for research so to make yoga therapy more “evidence-based”.   I guess that’s the only way to satisfy our western models for success.  I was grateful to see a lot of attention given to yoga therapy and mental health, addiction, and trauma.  These topics, here, at this conference illustrate the international  nature of the mental health/addiction crisis.  Yoga therapy can help. IMG_1845

In a specialty class with a teacher from Australia I learned about spanda and I’m really excited to bring the techniques  to my classes and clients.  Most of my clientele are quite enthusiastic about exploring the subtle body and spandana (the practice of accessing ‘spanda’) will help them understand that there are many paths to the inner peace we all seek.

All in all, I’ve returned totally re-inspired and still committed to bringing yoga therapy to the community in anyway that I can.

Group Classes continue at The Sanctuary, and private sessions are available by appointment.    I am inspired to offer a Yoga Rx Clinic once a month.  Thirty minute sessions, available without an appointment.  Thinking Saturday’s.  Any feedback?

Jai Bhagwan!

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2015 NJ Storyteller’s Festival, Grounds for Sculpture

It was at least 8-10 years ago during an exceptionally difficult time in my life that I discovered Ann Randolph.  I was at Kripalu for some serious soul-searching and she was on the  schedule for Saturday night  to perform her one-woman show “SqueezeBox”.   The last thing I wanted to do or even thought I could do that whole weekend was laugh, but laugh I did at this poignant performance from a slice of her life.  The combination of courage and creativity that I witnessed from her that night has inspired me ever since.
As you might  know I became a storyteller about 3 years ago and this semester I have been writing memoir and personal essay’s at a local college.  In this way I continue to collect personal stories from my own life that simulate the ancient stories and teachings from India. Things like right speech,  right action, and right relationship are concepts to live by and when integrated consciously and expressed creatively,  well, that’s just divine.

Ann Randolph is coming back to Kripalu in April and I’m enrolled in her 5-day course on Sharing Your Life Story.  She takes creative non-fiction to another level and turns it into stagecraft and performance art.   We’ll see what happens.    If I have time I’ll tweet out how it’s going, I’m @teachersjournal on Twitter.  Look over to the right where I’ve added a feed….you can probably follow me there if you like.

Anyway, the stars are aligned for some interesting possibilities and I’m excited to continue my pursuit of all things creative as saturn continues it’s march through the fifth house of my natal chart.    At the very least maybe my blog posts will improve!

“I write to find out what I’m thinking,  what I’m looking at,  what I see,  and what it means.”
~ Joan Didion

 

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I’ve been back for nearly a month now, yet Paris lingers in my mind.  The Eifel Tower was my #1 must see and we got there on the first day.  The night before, we wandered around an amusement park near our hotel and when we got near the top of our ferris wheel ride I got my first glimpse!  So exciting!  Hard to get the *feel* of it all from my pictures….need to improve my photography skills- but, if you click on the photos’s to make them bigger you might feel the awe that I felt.

….more later

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meditation on the harp…..  A-Major and it’s relative minor…..

May all beings live in peace.  Om Shanti, Shanti, Shantihi

 

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Which means that, right now the moon is passing through the balsamic phase.  It’s important.  Read this and come back later for more information.

May all beings live in peace.

Oh, and…..Mercury goes retrograde tomorrow.  Look in the ‘rear view mirror’ and clean up the stuff you skipped over because of:  time, money, illness, deaths, births, or ________ (fill in the blank)   There’s so much  written out here in cyberspace on this topic…..it’s been amazing to watch the evolution of astrology in this still new century…….   om, shanti.

 

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Three things cannot be long hidden:

the sun,

the moon

and

the truth.

Gautama Siddharta (563-483BC)

Astrologia, is a greek word that refers to the study of stars.  The earliest document available in our western libraries is believed to be from 668-626 BC and it referenced things like: astronomic observations, eclipses, and predictions.  The oldest known surviving  horoscope ( a chart cast for a human being as opposed to a chart for a city/state/organization) is believed to be from 410 BC.

The largest collection of astrological writings and manuscripts are held in the Vatican.

more later.

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