Journeys of the Spirit® Newsletter September 19th, 2012
WHAT’S NEW? Using what is happening outside of ourselves to get clearer within!
When things start getting crazy out in the world – rather than going to that place of judgment about how sick, uninformed, and demented everyone out there is – I take the opportunity to look within. While watching the news, debates, advertisements, or any kind of political “hoo-ha” – I pay close attention to how I feel and what I’m thinking.
If I see that I’m judging – even for a minute – I can tell my blood pressure is going up and my demeanor changing. Then I remember a promise I made to myself years ago to always to respect myself, especially my physical body. No matter what happens I will never use anything or anyone to hurt myself again.
Years ago I used to avoid the news as a spiritual practice for peace. However, I do want to be an informed voter and I do run a travel company so it’s a good idea if I’m up on what’s happening around the world! I’ve been practicing not taking the TV personally for so long I can now make a conscious choice to watch without having an emotional reaction – and so can you. We’re not victims of the TV, we’re powerful people who are making choices all day long. So what’s your choice? Post below and let me know!
**LAST CALL FOR THESE UPCOMING TRIPS!
We’ve got two wonderful journeys coming up fast. So if you’re interesting in joining any of them – IT’S LAST CALL!
The Awakening! a Women’s Intuition, Yoga & Life Mastery Retreat: Sedona – Sept 29-Oct 4th. Ladies, join us for a uniquely powerful, 6 day immersion course held in the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. Unveil the truth of your spiritual awareness through yoga, mediation, healing and igniting your intuition. Perfect for yoga, mediation, healing and igniting your intuition!
Mayan Mysteries of the Heart: Uxmal, MX – Nov 10-17th. Join us for a very special journey to the Mayan Heartland to embrace the new consciousness of 2012. Becoming fully aware of the of your deepest passions and hearts desires will allow you to live boldly from your sacred center. THIS is the space where the Divine flows unobstructed by the illusion of the ego and its limiting perspectives living from your Sacred Center!
Blessings and love,
The picture of Buddha is thanks to h. koppdelaney
For all you local St Pete, FL folks I want to share a fabulous day of awareness and personal growth taking place on Sunday Oct. 21, 2012, from 9am-5pm. It’s the ALLOWING ABUNDANCE WORKSHOP. There will be 4 powerful presentations, a group healing session, free lunch, fun gifts, live music, a free BioMat and healing sessions – plus book signing with all presenters!
If you’re wondering who’s speaking – here’s the line-up!
- Emily Rivera Andrews, Angel Healer, MANIFESTING WITH THE ANGELS, Let the angels guide and inspire as you clear, cleanse and awaken!
- Sheri Rosenthal, Author, Speaker, ROOTING OUT THE FEARS THAT SQUELCH THE FLOW, Nip those fears in the bud and reopen to abundance.
- Jim Del Veccio, Author, Investor and Debra Loran, Healer, MANIFESTING ABUNDANCE, Practical tools for realizing your potential and creating abundance.
- Terez Hartmann, Author, Performer, ALLOWING PROSPERITY! Tools and insights for LETTING prosperity happen while ENJOYING the journey.
The pricing is great – only $89 – IF you register by Oct 1st. Even lunch is included! (Regular price $99) To register go to: www.SuncoastTransformation.com/awaken.html or call: (941)-479-0323
Are you looking for a new exercise practice that combines postural alignment with strength gain and flexibility? Skanda Yoga may be exactly what you are looking for. This new style of yoga is practiced by top athletes and sports professionals in Miami. It is an alignment based power vinyasa (flowing movement) practice that embodies the energy of the warrior spirit. Skanda Yoga is a unique approach, combining traditional asana (postures) with modern scientific stretching techniques.
Most styles of yoga simply instruct you to simply “stretch,” but stretching is really a misnomer, because if we stretch our muscles without engaging them first it triggers the “stretch reflex,” which inherently limits our ability to lengthen our muscles, and makes us more prone to injury. If we first engage, and resist the stretch, then it off sets the stretch reflex, and we can go deeper, safely without injury.
The stretch reflex is triggered anytime we attempt to “stretch” a muscle. It is caused through sensory feedback relayed from the golgi tendon organs (g.t.o.’s), a thin layer of fascia that covers our connective tissue. If a muscle is stretched without first engaging it, or its antagonist, then the g.t.o.’s send a message to the central nervous system to contract the muscle at its origin and insertion, in order to prevent the connective tissue from being damaged. This is why a “pulled muscle” is the most common injury from stretching, because the muscle has been “pulled” away from the bone, because it was not first engaged.
There are many different ways to engage a muscle to create a greater opening. Skanda Yoga uses predominately a technique that we call Active Dynamic stretching. It is active in requiring a conscious engagement of the muscle. Then this “muscle energy” is linked with the breath. On the inhalation, the muscles and limbs are drawn in towards the core of the body in a concentric action. On the exhalation the muscles and bones are extended away from the core in an eccentric action. These actions are maintained by the spanda (pulsation), of the breath and prana (universal energy).
Skanda Yoga also applies the techniques known as proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (P.N.F.), and reciprocal inhibition. P.N.F. is applied through first contracting the muscle that is going to be stretched and engaging it strongly. For example, if you are working towards the front splits bend the front leg and push the heel into the floor. Snap the leg down and back toward the hip, so the hamstring muscles fires. Hold it for 30 seconds, then release and push the leg out as it straightens.
After entering the position, then engage the opposing muscles that support the muscles being stretched. This is the technique called reciprocal inhibition. In the front splits the quadriceps would be engaged to support the opening of the hamstrings. This method produces fast effective results that can be applied in any situation to prepare for an athletic event. It retrains the nervous system so that one can continue to make flexibility gains while increasing strength.
The breath leads the way in all yoga poses. Advanced yoga can only be performed through linking physical actions with the breath. The type of breath taught by most yoga styles is known as the ujjayi breath, which means a “victorious uprising.” The ujjayi breath can only be performed correctly by maintaining a lift and expansion of the inner body, with engagement of uddiyana. The muscles are toned in the back of the throat, so you can feel the breath swirl on the inhalation and exhalation.
The breath should be slightly audible, like wind blowing in the trees or oceans waves. Concentration is used to bring equal length to the inhalation and exhalation, while lengthening the gap between the breaths. It is in the space between the breaths where the two energies merge in balance, and the mind reaches equanimity. Thoughts rise and fall with the breath, but in between is a moment of silence. It is the time spent in silence that relieves the mind from stress and imbalance.
Skanda Yoga is derived from the ancient mythical hero from India, who represents our “Higher Self.” When we align with the ideas that the myth presents, we unlock facets of our own consciousness. When we embrace the spiritual path and its sadhana (practice), then the six aspects of the “Higher Self naturally develop. The six aspects are strength, wisdom, non-attachment, grace, prosperity, and spiritual power. We all have the potential to enhance our lives, but it requires that we open ourselves first to doing the practice. The hardest part of yoga is simply unrolling your mat.
In order to fully benefit from any yoga practice, you must embrace your fears and obstacles as vehicles of transformation. Even if it is only practiced once a week, it can create a shift – the darkness and inertia slowly begins to transform into optimism and radiance. When you step into a higher light, a greater way of being, then you give permission for others to take the initial step as well. Thus, by transforming ourselves, we can inspire our friends, family, and community.
Shanti, Ken von Roenn III
Ken von Roenn III (E-RYT 500) is the creator of Skanda Yoga (RYS) and director of Skanda Yoga Studio in Miami, FL. He holds a B.A. in Philosophy, and has been practicing yoga for 18 years. He teaches with his spiritual partner, Lina Vallejo, and together they lead the Skanda Yoga Teacher Training, as well as retreats and workshops.
**Want to experience Ken and Lina’s teachings in a
deeper and more profound way?
Join them at Lake Atitlan, Guatemala for their upcoming
Skanda Yoga, The Art of Transcendence yoga retreat
Dec 9-15th to celebrate the new cycle of energies
coming in the end of 2012!
OUR MENU OF UPCOMING FABULOUS ADVENTURES!
The Awakening! a Women’s Intuition, Yoga & Life Mastery Retreat
~BOLD OCTOBER EXPEDITIONS~
The Dalai Lama & Tibetan Buddhism in Exile
~NOURISHING NOVEMBER RETREATS~
Mayan Mysteries of the Heart
~DELIGHTFUL DECEMBER ADVENTURES~
Skanda Yoga, The Art of Transcendence
Awakening Solstice at Willka T’ika
Reawakening to our Deeper Purpose
Awakening Your Divine Joy – Wild Dolphin Trip
Want to see our whole line-up for the upcoming year?
Visit our Trips at a Glance page.