Gathering.

Offered this piece at Yoga Journal LIVE at Kripalu, November 2015. If we wish to receive and hold and give and shape and mold the totality, we need to be near others who help us see the patience and the love in the lining of our soul. So we generate moments where several of us gather to experience the traction of the evolutionary force of Nature, together. We practice. We dance. We chant. We pray – as prayer is our attention and our first listening – our way of giving as well as receiving. We’re seeing more such gatherings, which bring us into a higher conversation, and keep our highest quality of communication open. That keeps us in alignment, and supportive of each others’ refinement, which keeps us learning and educated, and keeps our connections hydrated and ventilated, so the currents of learning and teaching can flow between us, unabated. This way we can all remind each other to let the greater flow in, and that there weren’t any accidents along the way. And nothing was ever broken. All our teachers, studies, understandings, hardships All our victories, phases, chapters, righteousness None of it was wasted and nothing needs to be replaced. But it […]

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Gestures From The Influence

Dear dharmic brother Darren Rhodes sent me this piece years ago from our teacher Lee Lozowick, referencing Divine Influence as an all-pervasive, unknowable, indescribable force, imperceptible by the senses, but discernible by other means. “In order to develop the proper charge, and to recognize the Influence for what it is, we need to train our perception. This training includes developing an appreciation for subtlety, for the hints and clues that arise in our environment. “These are not the omens of the superstitious, but real gestures from the Influence. Picking up these gestures – whether from the environment or from a living carrier of Divine Influence – requires unlearning. “We must unlearn the habit of perceiving the world in gross, strictly linear terms and our own biased views [which are] based on neuroses, misconceptions, judgements and projections. Then we can begin to see for ourselves that [the Divine] does not live in the sky, but is immanent in all of Creation, and, for our purposes in sadhana, in the human body… “In order to recognize Divine Influence, one must shift perceptions from the worldly domain of ‘consensus reality’ into the subtle domain of real feeling and intuitive knowing in the slowly awakening, divine

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Today.

Today. We are lucky to have the time to be here. We are lucky to have a chance to call anyone dear, We are lucky to have a space of our own, We are lucky to stand in the middle of somewhere called home and feel love and unity, even if virtually. And begin to explore this new quality of prosperity. Wealth of appreciation, of thankfulness. Of standing tall and being ready to give what we get. So today hold those you love so close, Be sure to tell them you love them the most – Take care to have a rest, even if it’s in your mind, And be present for this day. May it be an easeful one in a long, strong line of loving days for you. Love you guys, E

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Questions and Answers

On the occasion of Jamie Zimmerman’s untimely death, I sat and asked her what she might have me say when we gathered to remember her. These are the words that landed. What will you do with this elevated state? What will you clear out? What will you commence? What will you cultivate? What will you love? How will you listen? From whom will you learn? Can you let this unexpected sadness burn up every last doubt? You’re here to lift it all up, to usher in big, transcendent love, to remember who you are; that might be enough. You’re here to construct context tenderly, To sit and observe appreciatively, To hear Nature with sensitivity, And if you forget who you are, Please, please, Remember who you are to me.

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Office Yoga Sequence

[Featured in Sonima, September 2015] When midday stress or aches arise in your body, take a break with this simple yet powerful office yoga sequence. When we’re happy, we can thrive in our work. This practice will make your whole body happier in just a few minutes at your desk. Yes, yoga at the office—we dare you to try it! Based on my burgeoning understanding of Katonah Yoga, an alignment-based yoga system developed by Nevine Michaan in New York City and Bedford Hills, NY, here are a few postures to help you get through each day a little happier and healthier. This sequence incorporates quiet meditation, invigorating breath-work, and  deep stretches. When practiced regularly it can give your immune system a boost, open your interior spaces, and clear your mind so you can perform at your peak. Sit Take a seat with your hands resting on your thighs, feet resting on the floor. Breathe and feel your body for two minutes. Hear all the sounds around you; simply let them in and out of your awareness smoothly. Stretch Staying seated, inhale your arms high and bring your hands to touch above your head. Keeping your arms super straight, lift your inner body off of

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Challenges Are Clues

“These challenges are clues. They have been placed in your path, strategically… so you would not be able to continue to ignore the experiential evidence that has been nudging you a lifetime. Choose carefully how to respond to these signals. And recognize them for the gift they truly are. There is no limitation whatsoever in the structure of your fundamental essence. And you can, in fact, be anything you choose to be. The key to transcending conditions in which you perceive the evidence of limitation… is to dwell utterly and completely in a perception of how you would like it to be.”* Every thought reinforces the vibrational building blocks of our circumstances; today’s reality is a result of years of thinking and believing in certain outcomes. This year I’ve made this real for myself, releasing long-held addictions – first to substances, and now to anger. With almost one year substance-free, and now two weeks with no inward or outward expressions of anger, I am learning firsthand the mutable nature of this mind. Even generations of habits can be shifted. As I wish, I create. As I think, I relate, with more or less compassion. And if I wouldn’t say it out loud, I

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Home Feels Like This

The first “aliyah” or opening of the Torah each year on Yom Kippur at the New Shul feels like I’m coming home; here we are once again, listening, learning, liberating ourselves and beginning anew. This is my piece for this year.  Every year around this time, I think I hear the world collapsing; unfolding, laughing, reloading, and I’m knowing that this Moon today wants her way with me and I’m sensing that her big, beautiful showing is meant to give us a deepening sense of dignity, a dissolution of insincerity, a fresh wash of lucidity. It’s LOVE! It’s here. It’s Amplifying, Mesmerizing; that’s what’s making it feel so sacred, so holy, so utterly naked, so much higher this is the part that always makes me cry each year. Even if i haven’t really considered until now how close God is to me, I know I’m still being guided to how to receive this moment freely – and read this map and open my highest creativity then wrap my voice up in these words to share with you so quietly, which is how i feel them in here. “Home is not a place. Home is a state of consciousness, where in your spirit

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Essential Empathy, for A New Year.

[For Rosh Hashanah, New Shul, 2015 / 5776] At our darkest, do we wish for sleep? Where the troubled are calm, the halls echo? The tired are resting and only the walls can know what we’re all hiding from? And is death the buried treasure? Or is this light, this life the truest measure of our capacity? And if it’s accurate that more precision yields fluidity, and fluency, and currency, then I offer this precise prayer as both question and answer, and as a kneeling-down-surrender, as a quiet declaration of how we might begin right here. Could it be that we confuse our feelings about our darkness, our fear, with its essence – which is respect, which is listening, maybe holiness, maybe reverence? Could it be that my reverence gave birth to an entire universe of light and sound? And could it be that clearing out our darkness isn’t our way around our fear – but compassionate evolution might be? Can we circumambulate our anguish and see everything that’s there; can we surround it with more love and be crystal clear that we care for ourselves? However large, however small, you draw the map of it, and tell the tall and layered story about how it

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Daily Respect as Devotion

[Featured on Mystic Mamma, Summer 2015] Each moment spent in a state of respect is felt through all we do. How can we culivate devotion daily? Moving intentionally. Sitting quietly. Noting when we interrupt, and when we gracefully navigate our interactions. Granting unexpected kindnesses. Arranging ourselves with abundance in our thinking, and our loving. Orienting ourselves toward daily ritual until reverence becomes the only offering we make to ourselves, even when we falter. Remembering to respect even in the face of disrespect, until respect becomes all we offer everyone, every time, everywhere. And what if those around us seem less than reverent? Our work is to hold to our own internal devotion. This is why we keep up our practices – to keep reminders of reverence nearby, so when doubt enters our environment (our own or another’s), we can hold the space naturally and effectively until the doubt dissipates.

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There’s Grace in All of It

Where do I stand, in my own heart? Rather than denying anguish or anxiety, let’s include it. Let’s learn to use our doubt as a sacred place to start.  Hiding has a cost, so keep talking, asking, lighting the path, and lasting. Keep knowing there’s grace in all of it. Whatever the question, remember this truth: you’ve designed the scene you’re seeing perfectly, in order for you to grow, and it’s time to trust completely that you already know what’s needed next to evolve. Time to map out the smallest next step. And when you forget what you know, let your fear be surrounded by love. Pave an easeful path from one to the other. Have empathy enough to cover all of your thoughts with a blanket of kindness; forget your physical features and practice purposeful blindness to anything but your highest. Then you can bring to this world your most refined behavior. Stay close to yourself. Be your own savior. As ever, so grateful to be walking this path with you.

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Yoga Sequence to Elevate Peace

[Featured on SONIMA, August 2015] A Yoga Practice for Elevating Peace Move with intention and ease through these powerful postures to reach towards peace within yourself. On September 2nd, I’ll be co-teaching with two of my first teachers, Colleen Saidman and Rodney Yee, for the  Löle White Tour in New York City. Here is a little sneak peek of the sequence we’ll lead at the event. Inspired and informed by my work with Katonah  Yoga, each posture helps create a stable structure, open us architecturally, and elevate us internally. As you work through the poses, remember to breathe, smile, and stay close to yourself and to those who fill your day with peace. Breathe three to five breaths in each pose and repeat on the opposite side. Kneeling Rock Pose Center yourself, welcome yourself. Land in your practice. Cat and Cow Create a frame with hands and feet. Inhale to round your spine; exhale to arch. Downward Dog Bend your knees a bit, root your index finger knuckles, reach your seat high, and lengthen your spine. Chair on Balls of Feet Take opposite elbows with your palms, and frame your head with your arms. Lift your heels, bend your knees, reach your seat back,

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Shaped By Bhutan

“A place can’t really change your essence. Nothing can. But a place can most definitely shape you. And you can shape yourself to fit the place. You have to keep going, even when things get rocky. What to do, La? Never stop. Let it go. Let it be. Let it flow.” -Linda Leaming, A Field Guide to Happiness: 22 Simple Things  I Learned in Bhutan

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