ANCORA IMPARO I AM STILL LEARNING
Like a bee seeking nectar, seek teachings everywhere. Like a deer, seek a quiet place to digest all that you have gathered." -Dzogchen Tantra
February 5th, 2011. I am a student of life a dedicated love anthropologist. I wear on my wrist Ancora Imparo words spoken by Michelangelo at the age of 75 years old. Translated this means "I am still learning". And anyone who knows me knows I take my love of learning seriously. I am dutifully always trying to live in a way that acknowledges the significance of each precious moment and what it teaches me.
The Yoga is always our best teacher. It stretches our mind muscle and teaches us how to connect with ourselves and accept the sense things make or make sense of things as they are. Its like working a puzzle which requires concentration and persistence in our bodies and in our hearts. It is not achieved without interest in our own learning.
So today start with the answer YES to all questions by opening up to the teachings that flow in your path whether they be good, difficult, interesting, or funny. Try to learn from all of them my friends! Keep close to heart some final inspiration from Michelangelo "And I hope that I may always desire more than I can accomplish." With heartfelt hope for us all to be students of life in the world with the desire to keep learning! Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
PS Join me on retreat this year www.silviamordini.com Moab April 16-19, 2011 and Tuscany June 19-25, 2011 coming up!
11 WAYS TO SAY YES IN 2011!
JANUARY 31, 2011. MORE YES! Here we are in the beginning of the year. Eleven months more to go which means there is still plenty of time to set the foundation of YES in your life in 2011. Let's start by saying YES to a little quiz. First question to ask yourself is (1) are you conscious and alert to your Yes choices? (2) Do you say Yes more than you say No? (3) What do you say YES to?
In Tantric philosophy we start with "yes". It is our first choice. We say yes to opening, softening, receiving and lay the way in understanding that YES IS DOING! Or as is written in the Alchemist, "There is only one way to learn, it's through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey." You see Yoga is learning to align with nature rather than resisting it or trying to over control it by saying No all the time. This spiritual practice is about saying YES as the immediate response to life. Wayne Gretzky is so right on "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." Yes means taking the chance, risking it all for love, for a happier life, for a happier YOU. Will you get hurt? Maybe. Is it worth it? YES! So join me in aligning 11 INTENTIONS to 2011, in these eleven remaining months of the year.
So here are 11 things to say YES to in 2011
- Yoga, Cycling, Culture and Wine in Tuscany, Italy June 19-26, 2011 or October 16-22, 2011
- 10 minutes of meditation 5 in the morning and 5 in the evening
- Practicing patience with the one person you love
- Walk or ride a bike for 15 min a day
- Yoga, Mountain Biking and Adventure in Moab, Utah April 16-19, 2011 or Oct 27-30, 2011
- Take a Private Yoga Session
- Taking a few deep breaths before sending an email, text, or phone call. What is your intention for communication and does it come from love?
- Start reading the Yoga Sutras (Secret Power of Yoga is one of my favorites!)
- Get some Beach Therapy. Yoga in Xinalani Mexico Feb 26-March 5, 2011 or Big Island Hawaii Dec 18-23, 2011
- Practice gratitude daily. Write or think of 3 things you are grateful for each morning or before bed.
- SMILE more!
Take to heart that doing something is the Yes. And when you decide you are clear on what you say YES to, then everything is there to support you. It is as is written in the Alchemist "When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." At the end of the day what you say YES to isn't even as important as just doing it! Love yourself, love your day, love your life, Silvia
PS - Join me on retreat www.alchemytours.com or www.silviamordini.com
WHAT DO YOU SAY YES TO?
NOVEMBER 20, 2010. What do you say YES to? Are you conscious and alert to your Yes choices? Do you say Yes more than you say No? Or do you just pick the stuff that is the most convenient?
We are in many ways organisms of convenience so what Pema Chodran writes hits home, “when you hear some teachings that ring true to you and feel some trust in its being a worthwhile way to live then you’re in for a lot inconvenience. From an everyday perspective it seems good to do things that are kind of convenient; there is no problem with that. It’s just that when you really start to take the warrior’s journey – which is to say, when you start to want to live your LIFE FULLY, when you begin to feel this passion for life and for growth, when discovery and exploration and curiosity become your path – then basically, it you follow your heart, you’re going to find that it’s often extremely inconvenient.”
"There is only one way to learn," the alchemist answered. "It's through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey." (The Alchemist To Santiago.) In Tantric philosophy we start with "yes". It is our first response. We say yes to opening, softening, receiving and...
YES IS DOING!
Take to heart this blessing: "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." Wayne Gretzky is so right on. Doing something is the Yes. And when you decide you are clear on what you say YES to, then everything is there to support you. It is as is written in the Alchemist "When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." At the end of the day what you say YES to isn't even as important as just doing something, saying YES is your commitment to living the moment full blast! Love yourself, love your day, love your life, Silvia
Join me on retreat www.alchemytours.com or www.silviamordini.com
WHY DO YOU THINK THE WAY YOU DO? PERSPECTIVE
FEBRUARY 19, 2010: So today in class some of you are going to think this is the easiest class ever (and you'll blame it on me) and then others of you will think this is the hardest class ever (and blame it on me). And to complicate matters those of you who might think it easy love that and others will think that's just not so good, and those that think it the hardest class ever will call it your favorite class ever while others will rate it as your least favorite. What is this about? Well its about our perspective. In this practice we see our old mental habits and see what areas we are holding ourselves back from forwarding our lives because of self-limiting belief. Time on the mat helps us to contemplate why we think the things we do. Do you, for instance, allow yourself to from time to time refresh the way you think about yourself? It's like wearing the same t-shirt from 8th grade...maybe its time to try something else on? This practice is neither hard or easy it is often our perspective that is making it more or less difficult.
There is this story about The Problem with Human Compassion by Author Shankar Vedantam about why a dog tugs our hearts more than a distressed nation of millions that makes this point about Perspective. "On March 13, 2002, a fire broke out in the engine room of an oil tanker about 800 miles south of Hawaii. There were eleven survivors and the Captain's dog, a terrier named Hokget. The crew were rescued but as the rescuers pulled away they heard a dog barking. The captain's dog had been left behind on the tanker."
So long story made shorter, money, people, energy poured in to save the dog.
"The philosopher Peter Singer once asked if you see a child drowning in a pond - and you would ruin a fine pair of shoes worth $200 if you jumped into the water - would you save the child or save your shoes? Obviously a child's life is worth more than a pair of shoes. But if this is the case, Singer asked, why do large numbers of people hesitate to write checks for $200 to a reputable charity that could save the life of a child. Psychologist Paul Slovic at the University of Oregon asked two groups of volunteers shortly after the Rawandan genocide to imagine they were officials in charge of humanitarian rescue effort. Both groups were told their money could save 4,500 lives at a camp, but one group was told the refugee camp had 11,000 people whereas the other group was told the camp had 250,000 people. Slovic found that people were much more reluctant to spend the money on the large camp than they were to spend the money on the small camp."
So in our poses on the mat we learn about our personal perspectives and can view how we react or respond and whether or not it makes intellectual sense. This gives us the insight to make better choices. To have a more holistic perspective broadens our scope of knowledge so maybe we would want to save 250,000 people and not just the 11,000 if given the choice. We will learn Mandala Namaskar in order to help us find this global view within ourselves.
The other take away is that based in sutra 2.46 we can only really teach what we know, what we have integrated and processed for ourselves in this life. So what you learn on the mat you not only apply in your life but through your actions teach others. This is not a case of do as a I say not as I do. But all I ask is that you join me today and just learn to be conscious of what you say YES to and equally what you say NO to, and why. May all beings everywhere be peaceful and free, Silvia
WHY IS IT SO HARD TO BE GOOD TO OURSELVES: LIFE IS INCONVENIENT
OCTOBER 23, 2009:
Namaste Friends on the Path,
Why is it so hard to stay on the path of wellness and optimal health? For instance, why is it so hard to keep a regular yoga practice?
Seriously life is so inconvenient.
"Life is simple not easy" says Jon Kabat Zinn. Nothing is promised to us as easy. Life requires effort and discipline mostly because we have a lot working against us in keeping us mindful and present, more all the time to be honest. So a certain amount of work is required. And this is what inspired me today. When Pema Chodran says Life is so inconvenient I said to myself YES! that’s true. I just never heard it said so straightforward like that before. The word inconvenient is very different than something like saying life is hard. And what I’ve also found to be true is that following our hearts, love itself is inconvenient.
Pema Chodran writes, “when you hear some teachings that ring true to you and feel some trust in its being a worthwhile way to live then you’re in for a lot inconvenience. From an everyday perspective it seems good to do things that are kind of convenient; there is no problem with that. It’s just that when you really start to take the warrior’s journey – which is to say, when you start to want to live your LIFE FULLY, when you begin to feel this passion for life and for growth, when discovery and exploration and curiosity become your path – then basically, it you follow your heart, you’re going to find that it’s often extremely inconvenient.”
This single teaching continues to resonate with me, not just the first time but every day. To read more check out her book The Wisdom of No Escape. Hey I know it's hard to keep doing things that are healthy for ourselves because "we're just so busy." Ok but what I really think that means is code for "It's inconvenient to make time for myself on the mat." Once we give up the yoga then we don't feel like our best selves: the insomnia comes back, the GI issues return, we feel tired but anxious, we get impatient with our partners or family members and on and on. If you stop loving yourself (even if its inconvenient) you give the world permission to treat you the same way. So stop making war with reality: Life is Inconvenient. Follow your heart anyway. It is simple, just not always easy and that's what makes it all an adventure! Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
PS: Take time to enjoy some of our FREE events: October 23rd 7:30pm FREE Sun Salutation Workshop with Silvia; November 1st 2pm-4pm FREE Acupuncture Happy Hour with Carrie Wilhelm, November 13th 7:30pm FREE Yoga & Journaling Workshop with Silvia
ARE YOU A SERIOUS OR CASUAL STUDENT OF YOUR LIFE?
What this would mean is that you are making the promise to yourself to become a more serious student of your own life. I know the word Serious has been given a bad rap sometimes because we often think of it as meaning: Solemn; Somber; Stern; Grim; Humorless but that’s not it only. Instead think of the word SERIOUS as meaning:
So in this light do you live your life saying Yes as a serious student acknowledging the significance of each precious moment, the deep meaning of each breath the profound effect of each though? And then take it the next step. Are you a serious student of your job but just a casual student of your spiritual life? Isn’t it more important to be serious students of our lives (which is not related to our work life)? If you are trying to make this shift to serious student of life and need support then get to the yoga mat. Yoga stretches our mind muscle, it teaches us how to connect with ourselves and accept the sense things make or make sense of things as they are. Its like working a puzzle which requires concentration and persistence in our bodies and in our hearts. It is not achieved with casual apathy at all.
So today start with the answer YES to all questions and fall in love with being a serious student of life, not matter what flows in your path my friends!. With heartfelt hope for more YES in the world. Namaste. Love your life! Silvia (Check out the Movie YES MAN, super funny!)
YES AND NO TO LIFE: KNOW WHAT YOU'RE SAYING
MARCH 22, 2009: I read this article this morning and it is by a great dear friend and teacher Todd Norian, who I dearly respect. He visits us once/year and will be end of June 2009. Save the date. Basically he takes a verse from the sutras and interprets it from a Tantric perspective. Chapter 1 verse 2 yogas citta vritti nirodah (from April Fit Yoga).
The summary of the article is this: When you say NO to something by doing so you are automatically saying YES to something else.
In class today I contexualized this during the course of the asana practice and brought in my own analogies and examples. Here I offer you the straightforward article and leave it for your own meditation. Just know this, I am always saying YES and will support you if you want to live this way too! Love you all, Silvia
ARTICLE: “We assume you can say “no” to something. But in doing that you are automatically saying “yes” to something else. In tantric philosophy we want to start with “YES”, to open, soften, and receive what the moment is offering. Then, after taking a moment to reflect, we can say “no” as a boundary to what is NOT life enhancing.
Yoga is learning to align with nature rather than resist or control it. Instead of viewing our challenges as separate from you and a problem to be solved, the Tantra sees them as a gift of embodiment, the pulse, the very essence of the flow that arises from desire. Instead of being part of the problem, desire becomes the source of the solution.
The tantrikas believe the universe is made up of desire. The universe desires to be known by becoming you. Everything in this universe is awake, which includes the ripples of the mind, like waves on the surface of a lake. The key is to see beneath the ripples to the bottom of the lake, the deepest essence of self. However the self also appears in the surface waves. Instead of going against the waves we learn how to surf.
This is very helpful in navigating the ups and downs of life – learning how to flow with them, embrace them, and know exactly what you’re saying “YES” and “NO” to, rather than pushing them away in the name of freedom.”
SAY YES! YES!! YES!!!
FEBRUARY 22, 2009: