Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Practice Yoga to Deal With The Four Aggravations

From Tommy Rosen, "In the two decades that I have been living recovery, I have come to view addiction as a human condition, not limited to any class of people and inclusive of just about everyone walking this planet. I actually feel that addiction is that widespread and quite misunderstood, especially in some of its less visible forms. I ask a lot of people what their addiction is. Many of them say they don’t have one. Then I give them my definition of addiction: Any behavior that you continue to engage in despite the negative consequences that the behavior leaves in its wake. If you are not addicted to any of The Big 5 – drugs, alcohol, food, sex or money, then you might be struggling with what I call The 4 Aggravations: Resentment, Negative Thinking, Self-Doubt and Procrastination. These “less harmful” addictions sap us of our energy, cause lots of damage and must be faced in order for us to live a life of fulfillment and to heal ourselves and the world."

Monday, June 20, 2011

Yoga and Healthy Cooking Retreat in Turkey (June 2011)

I just wanted to share some memories and photos from our Turkey Yoga and Healthy Cooking Retreat. I partnered with my dear friend, Jennifer Iserloh, (aka Skinny Chef) to provide daily yoga and cooking lessons close to Antalya in Turkey. Thank you to everyone that came! It was a beautiful group of people from the United States, Switzerland and Ireland. Thank you to Jennifer Iserloh (for her delicious detox recipes and lessons), to Uli Iserloh(for his technical support and overall kick-butt reliability), to Anna Csoenge (for her amazing snorkeling abilities), to Alice Carroll (for her fantastic restorative yoga lesson), to Nora Dillon (for her infectious smile and medical expertise), to Reena Shah (for her glowing inner and outer beauty), to Mary and Susan Dowd (for their exemplary mother-daughter relationship and amazing enthusiasm), to Imelda Condon (for her naughty smile and fun-loving resilience), to Amy Faery (for keeping us laughing at all times), to Suzanne Fagan (for the determination she brought to all the yoga classes), to Chef Mustafa and the staff at Heliotrope for their exceptional service and yummy vegetarian cooking! I learned something from each of you :)
Blessings and Namaste,

Thursday, June 9, 2011

My Vipassana Meditation 3 Day Retreat at Passaddhi

I had the honor to go on a 3 day Vipassana Retreat at the Passaddhi Meditation Centre on the Beara Peninsula in the SW of Ireland. The retreat centre is managed by Marjó Oosterhoff and her husband. Passaddhi holds various retreats and teaches the techniques of vipassana and metta meditation. These are available to anyone: Buddhist or non-Buddhist.

These vipassana retreats are actually held all over the world. I became interested in this type retreat ever since one of my friends attended a 10 day retreat at another location. She said it had changed her life. Although I had a huge interest and desire in attending, I was also apprehensive whether I'd be able to survive 3 days of silence and only meditation. I decided to over come my fear and meet the challenge. What did I have to lose?

I had to admit it was a tough three days, but I learned so much about the teachings, vipassana meditation and myself. This particular retreat was led by Bhante Bodhidhamma who is the Spiritual Director at the Satipanya Buddhist in Wales. He was a brilliant and compassionate teacher who answered all the million questions I had.

The Passaddhi Retreat Centre is located in a gorgeous part of the country with stunning views and beautiful landscapes. The group of people that joined me for the weekend were lovely and like-minded. The food and hospitality were fantastic as well.

As for my personal insights about meditation, this retreat reaffirmed my belief that meditation is absolutely beneficial if not ESSENTIAL to my daily life and I have now started to meditate 20 minutes per day. There is medical research that supports this as well. I also had some powerful personal insights and feel like I cleared a lot of my mental sloth. I'd recommend this type of retreat and meditation to everyone. Thank you to Marjo and Bhante for such a rewarding experience! Thank you to the lovely group of people who joined me as well! Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

Blessings and Namaste,