The Speed of Love

This past Sunday, I decided to go to church- something I haven’t done in a long time. In our new community, there is an adorable church just a short walk from our place. Normally, for the same amount of time and spiritual energy intake, I would go to a yoga class.  However, being 36 weeks pregnant, regular group yoga classes are getting to be more challenging. And, at this point in my practice, 99% of the reason I even go to a yoga class is for the spiritual energy, the like-minded community, and to feel inspired. The physical stuff I can do on my own.

As I entered the church, I felt instantly welcomed by smiles and handshakes. Everyone seemed so caring, so warm, and so filled with light. The service opened with silent prayer (just like meditation), we sang songs of worship (just like chanting), and the minister shared a beautiful message (just as a great yoga instructor or guru would do.) There are so many similarities between church and yoga that I felt instantly connected, moved and spiritually fulfilled.

My favorite part about this particular service was the preacher’s message. It was all about the speed of LOVE. And here is the quote he offered:
“God walks ‘slowly’ because he is love. If he is not love he would have gone much faster. Love has its speed. It is an inner speed. It is a spiritual speed. It is a different kind of speed from the technological speed to which we are accustomed. It is ‘slow’ yet it is lord over all other speed since it is the speed of love. It goes on in the depth of our life, whether we notice or not, whether we are currently hit by storm or not, at three miles an hour. It is the speed we walk and therefore it is the speed the love of God walks.” ~ Kosuke Koyama from The Three Mile an Hour Godshutterstock_93326353

Basically, if you allow yourself to slow down, take deeper breaths, stay present and truly absorb everything around you, you will feel and witness love all around you. This is exactly what we strive for in our yoga and meditation practice.  And, as my teacher Julie always says, Love holds the highest vibration.

To me, God has many names, many faces, and He works to reach us in many ways. I’m grateful that I am able to acknowledge this wisdom and to feel open to all forms of enlightenment. This past Sunday, he reached me through formal church service, through Jesus, through prayer. Monday, he reached me through meditation and slow, deep breaths. Tuesday he reached me through prenatal yoga and a deep connection to the gift, the being inside of me. Today, he reached me through the beauty of nature, hiking through a lovely meadow with the vast, infinite view of the ocean… This week, I’m reminded that the more I move at the speed of Love, the more connected, inspired, joyful, peaceful and enlightened I feel. And, from now on, when I feel lost, sad, frustrated, or anything unpleasant, I shall remind myself of this inspiring message, and I will ask myself, “Am I moving at the speed of LOVE?”


Happy Love Day

Rev1-love-nounIt’s Valentine’s day, and whether or not you have a sweetheart or think this is a hallmark holiday, this is a day to celebrate and honor LOVE.  According to the google online dictionary – Love is a strong positive emotion of regard and affection.   I like this definition because it defines love as a STRONG and POSITIVE emotion.  When we fill ourselves with strength and uplifting energy, we are at our highest potential.   So go Love today.  Love yourself.  Love others.  Love all living creatures.  Love all the things you are grateful for.  Love mountains and oceans and the wind.  Love cockroaches, bees, and spiders.  Love it all and observe how it changes you… namaste.

Yoga Teacher Training: Not Just for Teachers

If you have been practicing yoga for more than a few weeks, you have probably noticed the countless flyers, Facebook posts, and magazine ads out there for Yoga Teacher Trainings.  You might be thinking (as my mother often does) “how many yoga teachers does the world really need?”

Well, I’m here to break it down for you:  Yoga Teacher Trainings are not just for teachers!  They are a deeper path towards enriching your life.  In fact, they should probably be called “Enrich Your Life Training.”  To this date, I have taken about ten different “teacher” trainings and every single one has made me a better person and a more conscious individual.

Teacher TrainingI am now a yoga teacher, however, my training journey did not begin with that intention.  When I took my first yoga teacher training I was at a crossroads in my life.  I was frustrated with my career, in my late-20s and trying to define my purpose.  Our lives constantly present us with different paths, and at that time in my life, all the paths were jumbled, and I felt very disconnected from my life and who I was.  I needed to move from a place of negativity and depression to a place of positive, peaceful truth where I could feel deeply connected to myself.  I really needed a BIG SHIFT.

After three hysterical breakdowns, I finally went to yoga where I came across a flyer for a yoga teacher training.  I thought to myself, I don’t know that I want to teach yoga, but if the experience can bring my spirit closer to the radiant, positive, loving energy that I feel every time I am on my mat, then I am IN!  Later that day, I emailed the teacher who was leading the training (the amazing Julie Rader) and by the next day, I found myself in her yoga class opening up into bridge pose with tears streaming down my face.  I felt a shift internally and KNEW Julie’s training would allow me to explore new pathways within myself.  Immersing myself in the practice of yoga,  opening my body and mind in such beautiful ways, and connecting more to my truth were exactly the shifts I needed in my life.

So, if you are like I was, and you aren’t really sure the teaching path is for you, here are a few reasons you should embark on a yoga teacher training ANYWAY.

1.Like me, you’re craving a big shift.  You don’t know what it is exactly, but you know you need a new, positive direction for your life, and you are eager to connect deeply to your truth.

2.You want to practice yoga all the time, anytime.  You LOVE yoga, Period.  You just can’t get enough of it, and you crave a deeper knowledge of all the elements of the practice. There is a beauty and peace that comes from understanding how a class is structured: from calming the mind, to properly warming up and cooling down, to practicing safe alignment to go even deeper into poses, all of which can then lead you to a wonderfully rewarding home yoga practice anytime, anywhere, and anyway you need it! 

3.You’re craving a community and a group of like-minded friends you can create lasting relationships with.  One of my best friends in the WORLD is from my first yoga teacher training.  Two of my close friends that met in a yoga training just got married!  When you journey deeply into your body and mind surrounded by others who are doing the same, you are bound to connect in a profound way.  

4.You want to spread the yoga love.  It is not always about teaching classes or making money in the yoga business, it is about spreading healing wisdom and LOVE.  The things I have learned from my yoga trainings have made me a more grounded, connected, loving person and from that place, I not only am of service to myself, but to every single soul I encounter.  I am more compassionate, giving, and open-hearted.  I have probably helped as many friends and family members with mind and body needs as much as I have my private clients or those that come to my classes.  A simple conversation or a look at someone’s spine can help change someone’s health immeasurably.  So, whether you want it or not, you will inevitably become a TEACHER by spreading the yoga love.