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An invitation to the yoga deepening circle

I celebrate my 50th birthday this year and I’d like to invite you not to a party but to a shared yoga inquiry.  The current debates about the regulation of Yoga teacher training have had me wondering a lot about the evolution of yoga in modern, western culture.  I’ve decided to look again at Patanjali’s eight limbs of yoga and specifically the yamas and niyamas.  There is so much public forum dialogue around the physical and neuroscience aspects of yoga.  It strikes me that these first two limbs mentioned in the Sutras, seem often overlooked or at best given cursory attention.  I want to explore whether they are philosophical remnants of another age of yoga or are as relevant today as ever?  Read more →

The madness in our method

I estimate that I’ve spent more than 7000 hours on my yoga mat.  That’s about 10 months of my life!  OK not much compared to sleeping (about 14 years so far!) but enough to give me pause to ask what motivates me and my yoga comrades?  What impact does all that mat time have
on our lives?  It seems important to speak from my own experience rather than what I’ve read or been taught.  Read more →

Letting go…

hand_over_waterIn a moment of frustration and discomfort about some yoga asana or other, I once asked Nancy Gilgoff “how much of this yoga practice is about surrender?”.  “Most of it” she casually replied.  At the time it raised a smile.   Many years later it still does, although my understanding of quite how much there is to let go continues to deepen. Read more →