Tag: <span>Astrology</span>

Self Study, Svadaya in Sanskrit, is the 4th of the 5 Niyama’s of Patanjali’s 8-limbed Yoga.  It points us towards introspection as a way for self-development.  It recommends inquiry, awareness and self-reflection.  It challenges one to be present in each and every moment of breath, sensation, thought, emotion, and divine connection. My intention as facilitator is to integrate  various  yoga (therapy) practices with cosmic forces on order to create optimal conditions for expanded self-awareness.  Transformation, healing, or enlightenment are possible side effects.  Read more here.



Our workshop this weekend will take place on Sunday.  We’ll be alone and together online.

The chart at the left describes the astrological weather that will be in effect for all of us.

You can see that Neptune is at the top of the chart as we begin.  By 4pm when we end Uranus will have moved up to the top.  Leaving the details of the workshop up to these two guys is like opening up Pandora’s box and finding what you least expected…  Lucky for us the moon is in a sweet trine with Venus and the sun. which means regardless of whatever the universe sends us we will still have a pleasant and fulfilling time together….especially if you’re fond of exploring the subtle realms.

The mutable signs are emphasized and so with that in mind please expect a variety of activities carefully sequenced to keep you engaged.

This Inquire Within workshop will give you an opportunity to do the kind of inner work that became the hallmark of Kripalu programming   Participating from the confines of your home without the anonymity/distractions/challenges of the typical retreat experience will be an interesting experiment in svadaya. Please commit to sending in an evaluation form.  I need to know what works and what doesn’t.  Teaching on zoom has provided all of us with a huge learning curve.

Experiential portions of this program may include: Asana, pranayama, mudra, yoga nidra, meditation, art, journaling, expressive movement,  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.

If you’re interested in attending the workshop on 2/21/2021 please register at Zoom here.   Make sure you leave an email address for any last minute announcements.  You will be contacted by email with details and how to prepare ahead of time.  There is a sliding, suggested fee of $30 – $50 for this program.  Payment can be made here.





























Saturday, Nov 16   1pm-5pm

Sunday, Nov 17  10am-1pm 

Our workshops this weekend are designed to be taken together.   Sunday will complete Saturday’s inquiry.  That said, you are welcome to attend one or both.  During these half-day workshops a topic will be introduced (chosen according to the astrology of the moment) followed by discussion.  After that an experience or two will be offered as an opportunity to witness yourself and embody new information.  The experiential portions will include a variety of yoga practices that are in accordance with Patanjali’s 8 limbs of yoga.

Both the sun and moon will be in water signs for the whole weekend.  Go here for charts. The water element is what teaches us how to let things *flow*…..most especially with regards to our  feelings and emotional body.   Mars in Libra urges us to look at our relationships with others.  Our emotions are hard to separate from thoughts as understood in yoga therapy.

I’ll post more about our *topic* in the weeks ahead.

PROGRAM COST:   Saturday $65,   Sunday $45   Sign up for both  $95 .  (Class credits do not apply)

Registration for program is here.

Contact Ida with questions.

Group Rates  & Scholarships available.




























The ancient definition of therapy was “one who ministers’ or heals. Yoga Therapy re-organizes an individual’s perspective to bring balance and attention to the whole by including the causal & subtle bodies in its methodology. The whole, however, also includes the cosmic environment as referenced in many of the yogic scriptures.

Astrology is unparalleled as a tool for understanding cosmic forces. Using simple astrological techniques can help identify the most pronounced energetic blockages and thereby increase the potential for yogic healing.

The first challenge in writing about the integration of these two different paths is finding a working definition of both yoga & astrology that supports the intention of yoga therapy.

The yoga part is fairly easy. Even the minimal amount of research will teach you that yoga is more than just the physical postures (asana’s). There are many different ways to practice yoga and we don’t always have to use our bodies to reach the enlightened state that yoga promises. However, when we begin to talk about yoga therapy, we probably are going to use our bodies in some way. As one of my teachers would explain, it’s important to generate some strong sensations in the body so that we can then observe our own reactions and responses to that bodily ‘stress’ in the moment. It’s about practicing svadaya, or self-study without judgment, with the ultimate purpose towards creating unity of body/mind/spirit.

Astrology, too, is so broad a science/art that it  can not be defined  succinctly. At least, not by me.  After over 40 years of study and practice I can say that Astrology cultivates a perspective on life that releases a lot of stress. By connecting the movements of the cosmos to activity on earth, cause & effect becomes irrelevant.  But synchronicity becomes invaluable! That’s where the substance is. Once one recognizes “as above, so below” and experiences the magic of that statement then astrology reveals itself. There are gazillions of methodologies, techniques and systems to put this essential truth into practical practice. A teacher is mandatory. One needs to receive guidance before one can act as a guide to others. Yoga and astrology have a lot in common.


more here




Self Study or Svadaya in Sanskrit, refers to the practice of introspection and the ‘study of the self’.  It encourages one to practice awareness and self-reflection.  My intention as facilitator is bring in alignment various  yoga (therapy) practices and cosmic forces to create optimal conditions for expanded self-awareness.  Transformation, healing, or enlightenment are also possible side effects.


Yoga Nidra or yogic sleep is an ancient pratyahara practice from Patanjali’s 8 limbs of yoga.  When we practice reducing external sensory input, things become revealed to our body/mind. During Yoga Nidra long held tensions in body and mind are released.    Creativity is enhanced, vitality is stimulated, and the ability to manifest our highest potential becomes possible. Samskara’s dissipate. Time stops.

Yoga Nidra can be used as a therapeutic technique, a healing process, a spiritual practice, or a good nap.  The results are based on the intention you create as part of the practice. Yoga Nidra is also a technique that can “burn the rope” of karma and free one of the limitations carried over from past lives.

Our weekend will explore all of this and more.

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.

The location for this program has been a gathering place for astrologers and Vedic scholars from around the world for decades.  It’s a spiritual place. Although I understand the Vedic system, my focus is mostly on the outer planets (Uranus, Neptune, Pluto) which are not recognized in Jyotish.  Ergo, I welcome all to come, learn, practice, and grow.  More information will be posted as we closer to the time.

The course fee is $175 for both days.  Group Rates Available.  Discounts for Sanctuary Students also available.  To register for program go here.
Room and Board is separate.  Please contact Vimala at (570) 992-2339 Ext 210.  for arrangements.






























Dear Ones,

It’s a really special day today.  Two wonderful moments happen with hours of each other, the Winter Solstice sun/moon/earth alignment and coincidentally, a New Moon.  Both events herald an auspicious time on their own.  And, then, when you add in the recent 6th of the 7 squares, and say goodbye to saturn in scorpio it  can get a little overwhelming….and, since Jupiter does things big, in a friendly fire sign like Leo he is jovial beyond the point of tolerance some times, you know?…………anyway, I AM rambling here…..mostly because Neptune continues to provide  these  lovely “rose-tinted glasses”.! 

I know that most of you don’t really understand what I just wrote…..but perhaps many of you do?  Astrology, whether or not you “believe” in it or not, is still a wonderful Language to learn.  It is genderless, colorless, lacks a political point of view, and has no bias, opinion, or judgement in it’s dialogue.  It is us, in our own minds/hearts that makes it “good” or “bad”.   Enuf said.   Learn a new language for the New Moon.

Anyway, it’s a busy day for me and now it’s time to prepare for storytelling and sadhana……

I hope to  check back here to further inform you about these charts.




…much love, om shanti…..

Astrology Blogging The Sanctuary - Schedule & Stuff Yoga Yoga Therapy




I came across this old post and thought you should re-read it now that the Cardinal Cross is here.

Waking up to ice on my windshield on April 15 is a stunning reminder that things are indeed changing.

…more later

Ancient Wisdom Astrology Blogging lunar phases My photos The Jersey Shore


Tugging_at_your_harp_stringsWow!  Sunday was my first-ever storytelling performance with a harp, and the audience was delighted.  I recognized some serious applause and I was told later that everyone was talking about me, although, I don’t think it was really me they were talking about….it was really about the harp.  Once again  I forgot how utterly mesmerizing this instrument is to most people….and me too, of course.  For all the worry, anxiety, and practice….the music just flowed exactly the way it was supposed to.

Chiron teaching harp to Achilles

In the first person, I told the story of Chiron’s Birth and why he came to be living in a cave with his harp.

This centaur, known as The Wounded Healer, is a mythological story that has captured my attention for the past 20 years or so and I’m frequently referring to his symbolism in my lectures/workshops and yoga therapy classes.  He’s got a powerful story for our times, for sure.  So many of us  feel wounded, shamed, abandoned and just plain old sad.    I’ve blogged a bit about Chiron, the asteroid, and this post gives a pretty good overview of the astrological Chiron.   Today Chiron is traveling thru Pisces which supports healing thru music.

 This was the first time, in a long time, that rather than teach or facilitate,  I practiced Performance & (intentional) Drama.    I was totally unprepared for the sheer joy that I experienced after it was over and thruout the following day.  It was wonderful to find a new, creative outlet that brings together so much of what I love to do, and still challenges me in new ways.  But four minutes is nothing when your hands are on the strings, you know?

Already, I am planning Chapter 2, and expanding my story to maybe 10-15 minutes?  Who knows?  For now, Storytelling is a new hobby/activity for me and I am so excited to see where it takes me.

Ancient Wisdom Astrology Blogging Harp journal entry sound/music therapy StoryTelling The Jersey Shore

antique zodiacI found this posting by Ingrid Naiman, one of my current, favorite teachers.  I can’t remember where I saw she posted this.

My astrology teacher, Ivy Jacobson, was born with Sirius rising and when I was lecturing at a conference at the University of Adelaide, a group of us went wild as some of us for the first time saw how immensely bright this near neighbor appears Downunder . . . where, for the record, Ivy was born (Brisbane). Like many who are born with at least some residual continuity of consciousness, at three, she asked her father if she could have Ptolemy’s Tetrabiblos for her birthday. It had to be ordered from London and took nearly a year to arrive. She had it memorized in no time. Her father seemed to recognize what a rare gift had been born and he shielded her from the rough influences of “civilization.” She never set foot in a classroom until arriving in San Francisco around age 20. However, she was self-schooled in music, architecture, foreign languages, and astrology and probably many other subjects. I will be forever grateful to her for her superb and patient mentoring that included countless techniques not used by other astrologers of this era.

Ivy Jacobson was my first astrology teacher too!  I still have the certificate she signed for me dated, June 1, 1981.

There are many things in life we need teachers for.  Maybe some of you think you can learn everything on the internet.  And, you can learn a lot.  And, yeah it’s great that you can now see a real-time face and hear a voice from a distance as you learn online.  But, oh my, how much more there is to learn from these wise ones up, close, and personal.  Love a teacher today.

Om shanti.


Looking backwards can be a useful practice at times; especially when you’re pregnant.

We’ve all had the experience of being gestated in a womb.  At least I hope so, still **.  Things are changing so fast now, so much more is possible with the advances (?) of science.  Things just don’t stay the same;  impermanence is the nature of all things.

The environment of the womb is not isolated or separate from the larger world, and  the mother is subject to external conditions & circumstances beyond her ability to control or even process!  Her emotions, thoughts, behaviors, and beliefs are transmitted loud and clear into the fetus.  The watery womb is the perfect medium by which energetic,  non-verbal information enters the fetus affecting not just the physical growth, but the mental and emotional growth as well.  Everything that is happening outside of the womb, happens in the womb, too.  As above, So below.

eclipseAstrology provides a unique insight into one’s pre-natal conditioning and can give you some important information that might have gone un-realized until right now. I am speaking of the Pre-Natal Eclipse. Astrologers locate this by looking back in the ephemeris to find the eclipse that occurred just before your birth. It could be either a solar or lunar eclipse.  Where it was located in the zodiac is where the information is stored. It’ll show up in your natal chart in one of your houses (bhava).

It is a significant place in the natal chart to study, particularly if you are pregnant, have had children, or want to.  It describes the cosmic weather that was and still is in effect during your own gestation.

If you are curious and determined to become more self-aware regardless of where it takes you than you might want to arrange for a consultation with a professional to talk about your personal pre-natal experiences because whether you understand astrology or not the conditions (external & internal) that were present during the ime of the pre-natal eclipse have marked you just as significantly as your personal DNA.

The more we can understand our own Birth Story/History the more we are able to understand and create optimal conditions for the future children we carry in our wombs.  Yes?  No?

Yoga teaches us that the time is (always) NOW.   One of my teachers impressed upon me that what we feel, we heal and what better time to heal oneself?  We all want what’s best for our children.  Becoming a parent, a mother most especially, is such a unique experience.  The more we practice yoga, on and off the mat, the more we become aware of the myriad of sensations, thoughts, feelings, and insights that occur without pause, inside of us.  This is a moment of transformation, this new awareness.  We can intentionally insert a “change” order, if we are so inclined.  Regardless, taking one conscious breath while you continue to observe, is all that is necessary.

The whole birthing process has changed. The advances of  modern science & technology are competing with the previous advances of mid-wifery and natural birth.  The natural flow of intuition is being silenced by a money driven society and many women do not know what it means to ‘trust your body’.  It is vitally important that we remember who we really are.  It is vitally important that we care for our whole selves while we continue to pay it forward to the human race.


There’s another reason to study the pre-natal eclipse that’s very appealing to those who believe in reincarnation.  There are so many ways available to tap into this incredible resource of information….your past lives, that is. shamens,  Hypnotists, Psychics, Mediums, Regressionists, etc. all have powerful medicine to aid you in your search.  Astrology can also point a lens at your past lives and deliver some insightful, validating, and perhaps surprising details on who you used to be.  Searching the past helps one to understand Karma.  Creating a ‘now’ that will support you in the future is Dharma.  The pre-natal eclipse as stated above will describe the temporal environment at the time you were a fetus.  (Look for workshop/event on dharma/karma if you’d like learn more.)

to be continued…………………….


An interesting debate is available here:    Should we genetically engineer babies?

Om shanti, shanti, shantihi.

The Lunar Cycle

It’s been a while since I posted here.  A long while.

As I’ve written in many different posts ( here, here & here) the balsamic phase of a cycle is a time when we turn away from worldly concerns ( 1st chakra ‘stuff’) and redirect our energy inward ( or upward) towards the spiritual/cosmic/ethereal,  either voluntarily…….or not.

I have found that it’s best to just go with the flow of this time period rather than try to force anything .   Regardless of the local weather, you’re traveling thru some dense fog and smokey waters.  Meditation/Prayer is the best activity to engage in.  If you can find an ashram or retreat center near by, go.

I live at the sea.  It helps.

The Lunar Balsamic phase lasts 3.5 days.  That’s a pretty easy time frame to work with for pulling out of the rat race.  However, the days of the week may prevent some challenges if you’re on some one else’s schedule and not your own.

Every planet in the solar system goes through a balsamic phase at some point-in-time.  The solar balsamic phase occurs for the 6-week period every year before your birthday. ( The Solar Return occurs when the sun reaches the exact place it was in at the moment of your birth.

The Balsamic phase for Mars lasts approximately 16 weeks.  Jupiter’s balsamic phase lasts about 18 months and Saturn’s balsamic phase is approximately 3.5 years! Few of us live long enough to experience a balsamic phase for the outer planets…..except perhaps Uranus.

In addition, any planet transiting thru the 12th House would also initiate the same kind of energy as a balsamic phase.

All that said, I am currently experiencing a 12th house Sun transit, a balsamic Mars, Jupiter, AND Saturn………………all at the same time.  It’s a miracle I can function!  For those of you versed in Vedic Astrology I have  just completed the Sade Sati which is a 3 year period of Saturn aspecting the Moon, also similar to the balsamic phase.  Whew.  It’s exhausting for no apparent reason.   What keeps me positive is the absolute knowledge that when this period is over I will be poised for a creative cycle beyond that which I have experienced for quite some time.

Teaching yoga is a gift.  Spiritual practice and practices are highly recommended during balsamic periods.   Yoga helps to create a global awareness of body, mind, emotions, and spirit.  For me, yoga helps me to be in the world and in-spirit at the same time.

Today is a First Quarter Phase in my lunar cycle, a time for action, ergo this post.

For the past few months I have been busy working on a private blog which I hope to publish soon, perhaps as an E-Book.

The subject is Astrology for Yoga Teachers/Therapists. If you’re interested  in being contacted upon publication please send an email to: asanctuary@optonline.net.

Astrology journal entry lunar phases Yoga Therapy