Thursday, April 30, 2015

Anyung, Sally

Non-attachment is easier said than done specially if one gets to be with the person for a long time. Still, at the end of the day letting go is the best option.

I am emotional right now and I must confess I have already started crying earlier today upon learning that my online student, Sally, will have her last class with me tomorrow. With all my heart, I do love this girl and I am terribly missing her now even if I knew I will still talk to her tonight and     tomorrow.

Sally started with me some 4 years ago. She was in her elementary years that time and she had a bit of awkward first few moments with me. It was understandable as she was was not yet very comfortable with me and the English language. 

That was history then because Sally has grown so much. She has become more confident using English even if at times it may sound cute and funny. The most important thing is she can communicate. I have witnessed her growth. Despite the virtual class that we have everyday, I know we have embraced each other importantly.

She needs to focus on her schooling. As we all know, Korean education is tough and Sally is going to be in high school soon. My God, my heart is aching as I am writing this. The thought of not going to skype her everyday hurts so much. This is just very hard right now.

I will forever remember her because she has really made my life more beautiful. She just is an angel to me. I want to hug her tight. This is painful, really. Well, all goodbyes are.

I am glad I have been given the five long years to journey with her and with that I am forever grateful.

Sally, Saranghe. Till we meet again.

Friday, April 24, 2015

I did it!

The women, with James, outside the shala poses after our last practice with teacher Arne

One of the greatest gifts I got within my birthday month was the opportunity to practice regularly at the shala with teacher Arne. What seemed to be one impossibility just actually culminated today. Yes! I practiced ashtanga everyday (with rest days of course) for 3 weeks and I have been so blessed.

Everything went well. Even when there were discomforts at times specially with my lower back, I felt generally stronger and more fluid compared to my previous practices. As I dealt with my body everytime, I discovered that breathing well mattered so much. I have also relearned to be more gentle to myself and by doing so, the teacher resonated  to the way I cared about my body.

I loved how the guru adjusted me. I appreciated how much he also had grown in his approach to us, his students. He didn't impose things to me. He allowed me to grab my ankles when I was deemed ready. He pointed things that could make my asanas better but at the end of the day, it was always me that would teach my body to do the poses.

My constant coming to the shala also expanded my circles. I have gained friendships without my noticing it. The energy from the practioners was contagious. Even if we came from different walks of life, there was yoga that made us one. 

I am grateful for after practice conversation over lunch. Even a simple chat right at the changing room is beautiful. I love the yogic smiles of men and women who share the same passion with me. I am sure I will be missing the routine. 

Since yoga is also all about non-attachment, I' m letting go naturally any feeling of longing or the desire to be with the same journey. I need to move on and continue with my practice. I am certain at some point, we will meet again physically. Right now, I am just very happy and grateful I practiced. 

There will be more to come. 

Om shanti, shanti, shanti.

With my Teacher Arne
Lunch with the ashtangis with the teachers, Arne and James

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Nate Ruess: Nothing Without Love [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

I must say this is LOVE! This guy can really hit notes like no other. This song is a tender reminder that life without love is nothing. Going beyond, loving may not only mean that romantic thing you have with someone but more than anything else it speaks of love that is beyond being a romantic. Love is love because that is what we all come here for. Without us giving and receiving this, our stay in this lovely world is one futile journey.

Happy watching. Thanks Nate for this.


Sunday, April 12, 2015


Someday, I'll be there. There is always something about yoga that reminds me of home-within me Dear Universe, thank you for letting me slowly come home to my self.

I am grateful to all the teachers for passing on this gift.

Om shanti, shanti.

Namaste, everyone!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

on yoga and friendship

I survived 4 straight days of practice at the shala with teacher arne. This is something I rarely do for the almost 5 years of my ashtanga journey. Perhaps I am more ready to embrace all that I need to hurdle in this spiritual path. Everything is just coming as naturally as possible. One thing I appreciate about this week's encounter is that I am becoming more aware of what's gotten into me in almost all aspects of my being.

My good fear of being with this mexican yogi again slowly vanished as I am getting more aware of the kind of person that he is. I am beginning to let go of my delusions that hardcore teachers aren't humans in the real sense of the word. I am also able to extend and expand my circle of likeminds as I am beginning to embrace more practitioners whom I have not been practicing with before. 

Today is a revelation.The universe has always its own ways of bringing me to the path that I don't even expect I would be taking. Sharing meals with fellow yogins after the practice is always an exciting feat for me. What makes this day more beautiful is the fact that i get to spend quality time with teacher arne and james (another authorized teacher). 

Laughing and sharing insights and stories about yoga and life simply made this day worth remembering. I love how candid everything was. I am honoring the universe for bringing to me people that I really love to hang out with. I am glad I did not give up the practice. I am happy for choosing experience over things. 

I don't know what is beyond or before me but I know what  I need to do this summer and that is to simply live for the moment. I also need to rest more and think less. I need to practice more.

Right now,my eyes are tired and my body's wanting rest. Still, my heart is ecstatic for the accomplishment I have. I love yoga and i love my community.

Namaste everyone.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Summer Practice

I made a kind of  a promise that I will intensify my yoga practice this summer. You see, the last semester of travelling and hurdling the traffic, not to mention the frenetic demands at the university have left me without a choice but to settle for only a weekend full time practice. I could sense the need to let my body find its center again and I could not afford to suffer that scoliosis attack anymore. My back, more than anything else, has begun to take its toll on the oddities of work. I love teaching but not the politics behind it.

So I decided to attend teacher Arne's class. This time, I am aiming for an almost everyday practice with him. In my mind, I would like to rest on a Friday to be with Teacher Jon on a Saturday. Anyway, my Mexican teacher's class started last Monday and I was early at the shala. After two years of not seeing him,  I was really thinking he would forget me but no. He exactly knew my name and he welcomed me back to his class. I could not help but hug him. He's the sweetest, alright. Candidly, I asked him to be gentle with me which he gladly responded he would. Happiness!

So my practice started and true enough he changed a lot. He was way too comforting in his adjustment. I love how he simply guided me to where I could be in  my practice. I am very grateful. 
It is now my third day and my body's very sore and tired. Despite this, there is this inner push to continue because all is surely going to be fine in the end. I know I will become better and my body will find its center once more.

I will practice again tomorrow,Goodluck to my weak toes and legs. 


My 44th

The last time I checked in here was roughly two months ago. That was long enough. Believe me, I have been wanting to share so much about what has happened to me during that period but there must have been something that disabled me.

University life was both tough and fun. I guess that's a given. In the midst of my teaching and having a blast with my students, I also have episodes of wanting to give up. I guess I will be writing about this stuff in my next entry, hopefully.

Yes, I am 44 and what is it like? It has been like 5 days ago so I still could not figure out if I am indeed 44. The only thing I know is that I had a blast with life. I am grateful.

I had 3 great celebrations of life this year and I must say I enjoyed every bit of it. The people I have been with for the past years are very helpful with my growth. With them and through them, I have learned to value my worth as a person. My family, despite the distance has always been there. I can feel that.

I have few great friends at the university.They are those that I can easily laugh at life with. More importantly, my yoga community is growing. I need to say that I am overwhelmed with the fact that in this lifetime, I have met my likeminds. My heart of hearts knows that these are the kind of people I would like to hang out with. They are those that remind me in their own special way that I am loved,  that life is good and the universe loves me no less despite my idiosyncracies. 

I am forever thankful to the teachers of yoga for bringing into life the practice. I am grateful for the teachers I have  been with. To my teacher Jon, who has become one of my dearest and closes male likemind - I am forever  grateful. God must have been so happy knowing I have finally found my home-in YOGA.

I am 44 and I am grateful. There is so much work to do. One thing I learn within the past few days is that I need be practice, practice and to believe that all is coming. I would like the thank the great Pattabi Jois for this wisdom.

Namaste everyone.

Here are some photos of my celebrating my double 4.