How Much Do You Believe in Yoga?

The following video was shared with me by a dear yoga student today. As I watched, my own practice as well as my teaching, grew truly inspired. And yet, there was a tiny nagging voice that asked, Do you really believe? Even after all of these years of practicing, studying, classes, teaching, I questioned my own belief in the transformational power of yoga.

How large is my capacity to change? How strong can I grow? How large is my faith? Can I move forward without becoming burdened and worn down by feelings of shame, guilt, sadness, and self-recrimination?

In the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, the ancient sage advises us to study and concentrate upon the qualities of an elephant  to gain strength (Sutra III.24). In the video, we watch the transformation of a human being, from burdened and weak to fast, and strong with a much wider capacity to live a bigger life, to express his own life force. How important it is to the development of faith to see examples of transformation in living beings!

May you also be inspired. Would love to hear your story!


Hurray for Woman Power

Yoga is about learning to channel energy. Using your power involves channeling your energy. Not recognizing your power is perhaps the easiest way to negate the energy at your disposal. This tribute to women who have transformed their own energies into action to change the world in big and small ways is inspiring for all of us, men, women, children, elders alike.

Though International Women’s Day is March 8, I am inspired by this video TODAY. It really supports my intentions for the year 2012. How about you?

falling outta freefall into the blogosphere

img_0204It’s not so much about what’s new as it is leaving the old year simmering in the dust. Looking at the past to see where I am today. Checking back on the flight plan with a sense of bewilderment and awe. Who signed off on this journey anyway???

Leaves turning. . .

It was the Fall the leaves stayed on the trees longer than usual. Some speculated that it had been because the summer was sooo rainy. But I knew it was because of me. I needed the leaves and all of their glorious fire to cool me back into life.

Week after week I was surrounded by colors so brilliant they put the peak of spring blossoms to shame. And the sky blazed overhead  just about as blue as the whole big sunny ocean. A perfect azure backdrop for all the yellow, gold, and amber leaves fluttering on their skinny petioles.

These were my personal prayer flags strewn up, my personal supplication and praise to the energy of existence. Praise to the pain that had leaked away, sometimes in torrents last Spring. That was pain, generalized but constant  angst and anger at me, you, the world.. . .stored up over my entire life and probably over many lifetimes. What Eckhart Tolle calls the pain body.

I know you want me to be more explicit here, but, well, it’s a long long story and mostly vague anyway. Wish there was ONE THING that I could point to, one incident that contained my anger, but that’s not what it was. Which is why I question whether it drew upon several lifetimes of miserable existence. Which is why it is pretty much miraculous that IT  is gone. And hallelujah for that.

Now I am filled with endless gratitude for my life and all life.  The turning leaves, brilliant and dying, can fall now. Fall to the ground, free for the slow burn of decay and the purity of snow.

lake erie leaf new year 2009 (David Kieber photo)
oak leaf floating in lake (David Kieber photo)

The day I signed my first blog post – a whopping seven months ago – was the day I dropped into another universe while birthing LaughingYogini. Then week after week spun on the single question WHERE AM I?

The first months of L Y’s teething pains, I kept tinkering with the site, posting, screaming for help from LY’s very patient tech team and feeling VERY INSECURE in the new social milieu. Navigating through the etiquette of comments, copyright, and asking WHO AM I? about every five minutes.

Tree overlooking Lake Erie
tree teetering over lake erie (carolyn photo)

I foundered in freefall.

Slowly and surprisingly, an online identity began shaping up though. I was becoming laughingyogini and laughingyogini was becoming ME.

two rocks - one wave (carolyn photo)
two rocks – one wave (carolyn photo)

One day I was friended by a hip Aussie writer on blog catalog, a blogging community I had sent an automated “join” to months earlier. As I checked out Svasti and delved into bc I fell into the virtual blogging community.  What a trip it’s been!

The community has helped me find my place. I have new friends, sources of inspiration, tech advice, and old fashioned support. Reading their posts helps LY create her voice, question her calls, raise her standards.

In the brief history of the WEB, I am a newbie. In my personal history, the WEB has literally given me a life, a community, and education, and most important to you, my readers, it’s given me voice.

With such dramatic changes in the last twelve months, I cannot begin to project into the future, but only create aspirations and intentions for HOW I AM GOING.  My intentions focus on lovingkindness and awakening. Which are really the one and the only way for me.  HAPPY 2009!

sand pebbles and grapevine (cynthia king photo)
sand pebbles with grapevine (david kieber photo)


A New Earth.