Atha is an auspicious beginning. Yoga is union. Be now. Experience the divine present moment through yoga asanas (movement), pranayama (breathwork), meditation, massage, and energy work. Balance and strengthen the body and mind in a contemplative, joyful practice. Atha Yoga is offered by Kristie Dahlia Home in San Francisco, California.
Thai Yoga Massage Workshops
February 3, March 3, and April 7 at the Integral Yoga Institute
Thai massage is a sweet, powerful, approachable form of body work. Based on yogic movements, energetic awareness, and Buddhist loving-kindness practices, this healing art is performed fully clothed on the ground. Pressure, percussion, and assisted asanas combine in a dreamy, delicious form. Pressure can be created with many parts of the body (palms, thumbs, elbows, knees) each to different effect; this allows many ways to vary for best comfort for the giver and receiver. This modality is renowned for leaving both participants bright and energized as it liberates energetic flow within the body.
In this monthly workshop you will be led through the movements of the bodywork just as you would be led through a yoga practice; no special knowledge or advance skill is required. You can come with a friend or come solo and make a friend at class.
Reiki Level I Training and Certification
February 20-22 at the Home Studio in the Castro
Reiki is a simple and profound form of hands-on healing. Many modern scientific studies have demonstrated the efficacy of this modality for healing and pain relief; experience shows it also useful for emotional integration. The training is a healing experience itself; in working to deepen our energetic capacities, we experience deeper awareness of being. Reiki is a word for life force; in this practice we learn to connect with the flow of life. This can be transformational.
Reiki is passed from teacher to student through a process of attunement which clarifies energy channels and amplifies our innate healing abilities. In addition to the attunement process, we will practice centering, grounding, clear energetic boundaries, meditation, and giving and receiving Reiki. Lecture and conversation will address Reiki ethics, philosophy, practice, the energy body, and the nature of healing.
We may be called toward Reiki by curiosity, by a desire to enrich energetic awareness, or by the wish to heal ourselves and others. Kristie has trained nurses, therapists, bodyworkers, mothers and fathers, bodyworkers; people of all sorts come to learn to offer this healing modality to themselves, their families, their patients and clients, their pets. If you have already studied Reiki, repeating the workshop is a fabulous way to deepen your awareness and increase the power of your work.
ARC Teacher Training: Alignment, Refinement, and Correction
April 23, April 9, March 20-22, March 26, May 7 at the Integral Yoga Institute
Once the basic framework of practice is laid, the fine work begins: considering how a pose uniquely suits a body and a being in this moment. In this consideration and the communication that unfolds from it lie opportunities for genuine, intimate experience and guidance. Do you want to engage with your students with greater confidence and skill? This program explores Alignment, Refinement, and Correction with a present, open eye and heart, encouraging wisdom and curiosity. As we consider how a pose suits and how to tune it, we will address serving in both directions of the continuum of intensity - toward safe, gentle, care and thoughtful, appropriate challenge. We will engage in true practice, working with the body to serve personal and spiritual evolution as well as health, using both voice and touch. This program is structured to create an effective learning experience, with an initial Weekend Intensive followed by four Integration and Practice Workshops over two months to offer extended support of your new skills. This program welcomes teachers and thoughtful interested students of all lineages; it can be a fine-tuning for experienced teachers or a toe in the water for those considering that path. If you have taken IYI TT, this program will explore more deeply the material Kristie shared with you there.
Why and How We Practice
Once a psychiatrist asked Suzuki Roshi about consciousness.
"I know nothing about it," Suzuki said. "I just try to teach my students how to hear the birds sing."
- Zen Mondo
How we change
One of my students is concerned for the health of their child and asked me for advice about how they could go about compartmentalizing those feelings in the presence of the child. My advice about this is an elucidation of the yogic principle of pratipaksha bhavana which I thought might be useful to share.
The mind has a thing it is concerned about. That is what is happening. The brain's fear/safety center, the amygdala, gets first dibs on responding to thoughts; this keeps us safe and alive. So the tendency is for fearful thoughts about the thing the mind is concerned about to arise. That's natural, and that's fine. What comes next, that's where we practice. In yoga, we use pratipaksha bhavana to shift mental tendencies that are not useful; a common translation is "cultivation of the opposite thought."