Kristie Dahlia Home offers a broad spectrum of support for a wide-awake and joyful life: yoga, thai yoga massage, reiki training, meditation course, spiritual counsel, weddings and ceremonies, based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Long Form Evening Practice
Thursdays at 66 Sanchez Studio, 6-8p, next: April 6, 20
"It is eternity now. I am in the midst of it. It is about me in the sunshine; I am in it as the butterfly in the light-laden air. Nothing as to come; it is now. Now is eternity; now is the immortal life." - Robert Jeffries
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Last year, tragedy offered me the opportunity to rebirth my practice, to consider anew how to best be of service to my community and the world right now, how to distill and synergize my own studies into gatherings which are engaging, nourishing, and healing. I found myself saying, "I don't want to be a band aid, I want to be a blow torch." Yes, I wish to comfort and soothe, but also, I wish to offer you depth and challenge, to make our time together a genuine tool for transformation. Yes, a respite, a refuge; also, a fertile ground to encourage the continuous process of life, of becoming the truest expression of ourselves that we can be. This feels all the more vital in the dark times that have arisen for our nation and world since I made that resolve. Let us turn inward together, let us in practice feel our ever-dwelling peace and our power, let us rise in strength and love.
"My actions are my only true belongings." - Thich Nhat Hanh
This class offers deep, thorough, widely-varied, long form practice. "Yoga" comes from the root "yug", meaning, "to yoke together." My yoga yokes many things; my yoga is inclusive, compassionate, and varies to suit the moment. The foundation is in mat practice, in yoga asana; there is also Taoist energy work and chi kung, guided meditation, and breathwork. There is a strong element of massage, working on ourselves and one another with bits of Thai massage, acupressure, and Chi Nei Tsang. If you have been on retreat with me, this format will be a sweet homecoming! We take a languorous pace, working attentively, pausing to feel, to heal.
On Meditation and Time
I've heard about the magic of 20 minutes of meditating a day several times - most memorably from a middle-aged woman in a hotel gym bathroom who said that she and her husband were promised by a guru that meditating 20 minutes a day would change their lives, and bingo, five years later and they own their own strip mall! No judgement - each has our own idea of enlightenment...
My question: what can be accomplished if you only have 10 minutes a day?
Sweet love, I am not a guru and I make no promises other than to tell you the truth as I know it, but I will say some things about practice and about time. This little question, is, you might be surprised to hear, the hardest one I have been asked in this Meditation Course thus far -- because the answer is along the guru lines. Guru literally means "dispeller of darkness." In America, we use guru to mean teacher. In India, a guru is an enlightened being who is standing on the rim between states of awareness shouting COME ON IN THE WATER IS FANTASTIC.
How We Change - On Pratipaksha Bhavana
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."