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Hello, my friends!  I decided to record this blog also, as it invoked a lot of passion within me while contemplating the subject and putting it into words…I hope you enjoy it.  Namaste.


“Not too long ago, I accompanied my parents to a plant nursery that specializes in bonsai trees. My mom told me that they had a beautiful area where they host yoga classes, so I decided to check it out. When we arrived, I remember feeling a bit overwhelmed by the size of the nursery and the sheer volume of plants that they had on display.  Rows and rows of these tiny potted trees were arranged everywhere throughout the vast 5 acres of property, and as my overwhelm subsided, it was quickly replaced by feelings of sadness, isolation, and restraint…Thousands of trees, and yet, no room to grow.  They were all confined to their own individual pot, and all kept at bay with their maintenance of trimmings.  It looked like a factory farm of trees; like a place where trees go to have their souls removed… The only glimmer of hope were the succulent plants who were exhibiting their mastery of adaptation by growing out, around, and away from their designated areas with such prowess, as if to inspire the little bonsais to make a break for it!  “Step outside your box, my friends!  Be free!”, they seemed to encouragingly say.  It was an interesting site, and awakened a realization in me that didn’t reach fruition until yesterday morning.

I was doing my gardening chores in my back yard: pulling weeds, mowing the lawn, cutting back hedges; all things we are “supposed to do” to make nature more manageable to live around, and it hit me…WE are the bonsais!  Society is the bonsai factory farm, and our souls are all but completely removed at birth!  We enter this world kicking and screaming, full of spirit and gusto, and immediately we are placed in our designated pots of race, gender, ethnicity, economic background, etc, just to keep us at bay.  Our roots are restricted to only go as far as the pot that was chosen for us, and anytime our branches venture too far outside the “norm” of what society deems appropriate, well, you know… “CHOP! CHOP!”  WE are the bonsais…WE are held captive by the labels and expectations that society places on us, and my friends, it is time…It is time to make like the succulent plant and break free from our confinement!  

Let us realize that we are all from the same planet…We all have roots, and they want to grow and spread and breathe!  Our branches want to stretch and thrive and embrace each other!  So reach, my friends!  Reach far outside whatever pot you were placed in, whether it was a black pot, a white pot, a rich pot, or a poor pot…A pretty pot or a modest pot…A pot with a picture of a cross, or a star, or a Buddha, or an Allah…BREAK THE POT!!! Shatter it into a million irrelevant pieces, and free yourself!  Free yourself from this illusion of separateness!  This illusion that your pot makes what’s inside it any different from what’s inside my pot!  We are all just trees who simply hope for enough room to grow and be free.  So grow!  Be free!  I see you! Not your pot, but YOU!  And what is in you is also in me…And all that is within me is also in you…So let’s all GROW!  Together!  Let’s grow…And FREE THE BONSAIS!”

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Hello friends…  It’s been a while since my last post, and to say that a lot has transpired in the past few months is an understatement.  I’ve been doing an immense amount of inner and outer work, and doing a lot of spiritual, emotional, and physical healing.  I suppose that has been the key focus of the last few years of my life…Inner and outer healing…And thanks to yoga and yoga’s sister science of Ayurveda, this healing has been dramatic and profound, and therefore, I know it will be permanent.  My decision two years ago to fully purify my body and mind from all synthetic substances was a very important one, and I know that without dedication and discipline on my part, it would not have been possible.  But I’ve also been well aware of another factor that made it possible for me to make such a drastic and enduring transformation in my life…I haven’t had to focus on working 40 hours a week in a job I hate or traveling day in and day out from studio to studio teaching where ever possible just to make a living. I was blessed in this life to be born into a wealthy family who early on helped set a foundation for me so that during this time of transformation and self-discovery, I have had a comfortable cushion to focus solely on my own healing.  Over the past two years, I have been blessed with the opportunity to take my 200 hour yoga teacher’s training twice, and in July I took a three week intensive 300 hour advanced training.  I cook every meal for myself, I have a self-care regiment, and daily spiritual practice that keeps me centered, grounded, and in a peaceful state of mind.  Without these tools, I know, without a doubt, I would still be on mind-numbing psychiatric drugs, or worse, not here at all.  And the fact of the matter is, most of these tools require money and time, and in this day and age, how many people have an abundance of those things?  My point is, that so many people tell me how brave and amazing I am whenever they hear my transformational story, and as grateful and honored as I may be to hear that, deep down I know that if I was in the position that 99% of the population is currently in, there is no way I would have made it through this change with such triumph.  No, I’m not saying that it was easy by any means…No amount of money or time freedom can fully prepare a person to truly look within themselves honestly and deeply enough to embrace the radical shift in mindset and perspective it takes to be successful in this sort of change. What I’m saying is, the strength and bravery that I have expressed throughout my life is also innate within everyone else, but not everyone else was born into such a conducive karmic condition as I was in this life; which brings me to my next point.  Everyone DESERVES the opportunity to heal themselves naturally, but how many people put it off or are unsuccessful in their attempts because they lack the monetary means necessary to fully commit to healing?  How many truly sensitive and gifted people struggling with “mental illness” will be on medication for the rest of their lives because they will never have the opportunities available to them that I have had available to me?  How many people will be in and out of institutions, or worse, take their own lives out of desperation and hopelessness because they were never offered the tools necessary for TRUE healing?  These questions haunt me to my very core, and I know that I have been put in the situation I am in for this very reason.  I must create a place for those less fortunate than myself to come and heal.    My mentor and dear friend recently told me that I need to start speaking my truth fully and completely and stop holding back because of what others may feel about it.  She suggested that I sit and write out exactly what I want every area of my life to look like without regard to anyone or anything else.  Last night, I sat in meditation for some time to clear all egoistic thoughts from my mind, and then I sat and wrote what my soul purpose and place in this world must look like for me to be fully aligned.  My hearts deepest desire is to create a donation based sanctuary for people to come and learn how to live and integrate a yogic and Ayurvedic lifestyle into their lives.  For some time, I have known I wanted to create a healing yoga retreat on a farm in the mountains of North Georgia, but my views for it were limited to who would come and pay and how much money I could make to make it “successful”. These monetary aspects of income and “success” have been pushing me out of alignment with who I truly am.  In my heart of hearts, I am a person of service. I have never felt more aligned than when I am volunteering yoga or offering marma therapy and lifestyle advice just to express my love and devotion to someone.  That’s who I am, and my place in this world is to serve others.  So, what does this mean? It means I’m currently working on another huge shift in perspective.  Being born into a wealthy family also meant being raised with a certain idea of what “success” looks like, and I’ve been realizing more and more that this imagine of “success” is not an image I can live with.  For those who subscribe to numerology, it may be helpful to mention that my life path is a number 9… Mother Theresa and Gandhi both shared this life path number, and while I’m by no means suggesting I’m the next Mother Theresa or Gandhi, I share that same deep driving desire to serve others in order to bring about social and spiritual change.  And so that’s what I must do in order to live in my truth without watering down my spirit and choking on this world’s current ideology of material success.  While I would love to say I can take on this task by myself, I know that’s not possible.  The vision I have for this healing sanctuary is radical and unconventional, but it is also very responsible.  I am hoping to put together a team of healers, unconventional (yoga teachers, Ayurvedic practitioners, energy healers, astrologists, etc) and conventional (psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists, etc.) alike, in order to better conceptualize this vision.  I didn’t simply stop taking all my medication overnight. I had a team of conventional and unconventional support to help me monitor my progress as I slowly transitioned. I feel my transformation may have actually been easier and quicker if I was living with a team of healers around me at all times helping and guiding me on how to integrate proper diet, self-care, and spiritual discipline into my day to day life.  While I had great guidance available to me, living alone made it a bit difficult to manage the physical and emotional roller coaster that comes with detoxing.  I feel that creating a more communal and family-oriented place for people would be wonderful.  And of course, there must be aspects of karma yoga (selfless service), hatha yoga, Bhakti yoga (yoga of devotion which includes chanting and prayer), and Jnana yoga (yoga of self-knowledge)…And it wouldn’t be me if I didn’t integrate animal therapy into the regiment.    Anyway, this is all still in the conceptualization stage, but I felt compelled to write this out today, as I’m feeling quite inspired and aligned with what I truly wish to do with my gifts and experience…   Have a beautiful and blessed day.  Namaste, my friends.

Hello friends…

It’s been a while since my last post, and to say that a lot has transpired in the past few months is an understatement.  I’ve been doing an immense amount of inner and outer work, and doing a lot of spiritual, emotional, and physical healing.  I suppose that has been the key focus of the last few years of my life…Inner and outer healing…And thanks to yoga and yoga’s sister science of Ayurveda, this healing has been dramatic and profound, and therefore, I know it will be permanent.

My decision two years ago to fully purify my body and mind from all synthetic substances was a very important one, and I know that without dedication and discipline on my part, it would not have been possible.  But I’ve also been well aware of another factor that made it possible for me to make such a drastic and enduring transformation in my life…I haven’t had to focus on working 40 hours a week in a job I hate or traveling day in and day out from studio to studio teaching where ever possible just to make a living. I was blessed in this life to be born into a wealthy family who early on helped set a foundation for me so that during this time of transformation and self-discovery, I have had a comfortable cushion to focus solely on my own healing.  Over the past two years, I have been blessed with the opportunity to take my 200 hour yoga teacher’s training twice, and in July I took a three week intensive 300 hour advanced training.  I cook every meal for myself, I have a self-care regiment, and daily spiritual practice that keeps me centered, grounded, and in a peaceful state of mind.  Without these tools, I know, without a doubt, I would still be on mind-numbing psychiatric drugs, or worse, not here at all.  And the fact of the matter is, most of these tools require money and time, and in this day and age, how many people have an abundance of those things?

My point is, that so many people tell me how brave and amazing I am whenever they hear my transformational story, and as grateful and honored as I may be to hear that, deep down I know that if I was in the position that 99% of the population is currently in, there is no way I would have made it through this change with such triumph.  No, I’m not saying that it was easy by any means…No amount of money or time freedom can fully prepare a person to truly look within themselves honestly and deeply enough to embrace the radical shift in mindset and perspective it takes to be successful in this sort of change. What I’m saying is, the strength and bravery that I have expressed throughout my life is also innate within everyone else, but not everyone else was born into such a conducive karmic condition as I was in this life; which brings me to my next point.

Everyone DESERVES the opportunity to heal themselves naturally, but how many people put it off or are unsuccessful in their attempts because they lack the monetary means necessary to fully commit to healing?  How many truly sensitive and gifted people struggling with “mental illness” will be on medication for the rest of their lives because they will never have the opportunities available to them that I have had available to me?  How many people will be in and out of institutions, or worse, take their own lives out of desperation and hopelessness because they were never offered the tools necessary for TRUE healing?  These questions haunt me to my very core, and I know that I have been put in the situation I am in for this very reason.  I must create a place for those less fortunate than myself to come and heal.  

My mentor and dear friend recently told me that I need to start speaking my truth fully and completely and stop holding back because of what others may feel about it.  She suggested that I sit and write out exactly what I want every area of my life to look like without regard to anyone or anything else.  Last night, I sat in meditation for some time to clear all egoistic thoughts from my mind, and then I sat and wrote what my soul purpose and place in this world must look like for me to be fully aligned.  My hearts deepest desire is to create a donation based sanctuary for people to come and learn how to live and integrate a yogic and Ayurvedic lifestyle into their lives.  For some time, I have known I wanted to create a healing yoga retreat on a farm in the mountains of North Georgia, but my views for it were limited to who would come and pay and how much money I could make to make it “successful”. These monetary aspects of income and “success” have been pushing me out of alignment with who I truly am.  In my heart of hearts, I am a person of service. I have never felt more aligned than when I am volunteering yoga or offering marma therapy and lifestyle advice just to express my love and devotion to someone.  That’s who I am, and my place in this world is to serve others.

So, what does this mean? It means I’m currently working on another huge shift in perspective.  Being born into a wealthy family also meant being raised with a certain idea of what “success” looks like, and I’ve been realizing more and more that this imagine of “success” is not an image I can live with.  For those who subscribe to numerology, it may be helpful to mention that my life path is a number 9… Mother Theresa and Gandhi both shared this life path number, and while I’m by no means suggesting I’m the next Mother Theresa or Gandhi, I share that same deep driving desire to serve others in order to bring about social and spiritual change.  And so that’s what I must do in order to live in my truth without watering down my spirit and choking on this world’s current ideology of material success.

While I would love to say I can take on this task by myself, I know that’s not possible.  The vision I have for this healing sanctuary is radical and unconventional, but it is also very responsible.  I am hoping to put together a team of healers, unconventional (yoga teachers, Ayurvedic practitioners, energy healers, astrologists, etc) and conventional (psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists, etc.) alike, in order to better conceptualize this vision.  I didn’t simply stop taking all my medication overnight. I had a team of conventional and unconventional support to help me monitor my progress as I slowly transitioned. I feel my transformation may have actually been easier and quicker if I was living with a team of healers around me at all times helping and guiding me on how to integrate proper diet, self-care, and spiritual discipline into my day to day life.  While I had great guidance available to me, living alone made it a bit difficult to manage the physical and emotional roller coaster that comes with detoxing.  I feel that creating a more communal and family-oriented place for people would be wonderful.  And of course, there must be aspects of karma yoga (selfless service), hatha yoga, Bhakti yoga (yoga of devotion which includes chanting and prayer), and Jnana yoga (yoga of self-knowledge)…And it wouldn’t be me if I didn’t integrate animal therapy into the regiment.  

Anyway, this is all still in the conceptualization stage, but I felt compelled to write this out today, as I’m feeling quite inspired and aligned with what I truly wish to do with my gifts and experience…

 Have a beautiful and blessed day.

Namaste, my friends.

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Man plants a thought and harvests an action. He plants an action and harvests a habit. He plants habit and harvests a character. He plants character and harvests a destiny
— Swami Sivananda (via awakenaslove)

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One year ago now, I was faced with a
difficult choice…I could believe what Western medicine had been telling me
for over 15 years and continue taking medication that numbed my mind and
spirit…Or, I could defy the label of Bipolar disorder once and for all, and end
my relationship with prescription drugs.  One year ago now, after many
months of slow, cautious, and deliberate tapering, I took my last prescription
pill…I will not lie and say it has been easy…I will not lie and say it’s not
a daily struggle…I will not pretend that everything is sunshine and roses and I’m
perfect now.    My friends, I struggle,
just like you and everyone else.  I still
have days where getting out of bed wouldn’t be my first choice.  I still have moments when I think to myself, “What
the hell am I doing?  Who am I
kidding?  I’m not strong enough to do
this on my own!”  But then, I think about
that tortured, depressed, fearful young woman; battered and broken, and often
covered with self-inflicted cuts and bruises due to overwhelming amounts of
pain and self-hate.  And I look to my
left and right and see two beautiful dogs excited to start their day at my side…I
sit up from my comfy bed, in my safe and warm home with a roof over my head…I do
some stretching which reminds me of the yoga I’m about to go practice and later
teach to other beautiful souls, and an overpowering sense of gratitude comes
over my being when I realize, I’m not that tortured soul I once was.  I AM strong enough to do this.  And I’m NOT on my own, because I have amazing
friends, family, and animals that ONLY wish to see my success in this life…  And
so I get up, and I take on the world one day at a time.  And I want to tell you something…If I can do
this, YOU can do this.  YOU may not
believe in YOU, but SOMEONE believes in you. 
  I   believe in you.  You may not
love you, but SOMEONE loves you.    I   love
you!  You may not SEE you, but someone
sees you.    I   see you!  My friend, this life isn’t easy.  In fact, it’s damn hard at times!  But those struggles truly do make you
stronger….And the changes you are forced to make, make you wiser…And happiness
has a way of taking its sweet time, but my friend, you’ll find it!  It’s waiting for you; your happiness, that
is.  And what’s funny is, it usually
comes the moment you stop looking for it, and just start living in each moment
as if that’s all you have…Because each moment IS all we have.    So, when it feels like all life wants to do
is kick you around, just harness your inner Kevin Bacon and say, “Thank you
sir!  May I have another?”.  Each kick that life gives you is molding you
into the awesome, strong, brave, unstoppable force that you must become!  TRUST that force…You ARE that force, whether
you feel it or not, it’s inside you growing with each breath.  If I can do it, YOU can do it….This I promise…This
is the truth.  So many blessings, and so
much love to you all.  Have a beautiful
weekend.  Namaste.

One year ago now, I was faced with a difficult choice…I could believe what Western medicine had been telling me for over 15 years and continue taking medication that numbed my mind and spirit…Or, I could defy the label of Bipolar disorder once and for all, and end my relationship with prescription drugs.  One year ago now, after many months of slow, cautious, and deliberate tapering, I took my last prescription pill…I will not lie and say it has been easy…I will not lie and say it’s not a daily struggle…I will not pretend that everything is sunshine and roses and I’m perfect now.  

My friends, I struggle, just like you and everyone else.  I still have days where getting out of bed wouldn’t be my first choice.  I still have moments when I think to myself, “What the hell am I doing?  Who am I kidding?  I’m not strong enough to do this on my own!”  But then, I think about that tortured, depressed, fearful young woman; battered and broken, and often covered with self-inflicted cuts and bruises due to overwhelming amounts of pain and self-hate.  And I look to my left and right and see two beautiful dogs excited to start their day at my side…I sit up from my comfy bed, in my safe and warm home with a roof over my head…I do some stretching which reminds me of the yoga I’m about to go practice and later teach to other beautiful souls, and an overpowering sense of gratitude comes over my being when I realize, I’m not that tortured soul I once was.  I AM strong enough to do this.  And I’m NOT on my own, because I have amazing friends, family, and animals that ONLY wish to see my success in this life…

And so I get up, and I take on the world one day at a time.  And I want to tell you something…If I can do this, YOU can do this.  YOU may not believe in YOU, but SOMEONE believes in you. I believe in you.  You may not love you, but SOMEONE loves you.  I love you!  You may not SEE you, but someone sees you.  I see you!  My friend, this life isn’t easy.  In fact, it’s damn hard at times!  But those struggles truly do make you stronger….And the changes you are forced to make, make you wiser…And happiness has a way of taking its sweet time, but my friend, you’ll find it!  It’s waiting for you; your happiness, that is.  And what’s funny is, it usually comes the moment you stop looking for it, and just start living in each moment as if that’s all you have…Because each moment IS all we have.  

So, when it feels like all life wants to do is kick you around, just harness your inner Kevin Bacon and say, “Thank you sir!  May I have another?”.  Each kick that life gives you is molding you into the awesome, strong, brave, unstoppable force that you must become!  TRUST that force…You ARE that force, whether you feel it or not, it’s inside you growing with each breath.  If I can do it, YOU can do it….This I promise…This is the truth.  So many blessings, and so much love to you all.  Have a beautiful weekend.  Namaste.

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Soul searching…It’s not an easy journey to undertake.  In this day and age, the “soul searcher” is
often looked down upon; seen as someone who just doesn’t want to work a “real
job” or follow through with their responsibilities.  Well, excuse my language, but I’m here to
call “bull shit”.  See, us “soul
searchers” are doing the real work…The INNER work…The work that digs deep
within, pulls out all the ugly crap that most people don’t want to look at in
themselves, and brings it into the light so that it may be acknowledged,
purged, and uplifted to a higher place. 
When this work, the soul searching work, is done with heart, perseverance,
and unwavering faith in the divine, what comes out on the other end is a being
that can go out into the world and “do shit that matters”.  When you clean out your metaphorical closet instead
of ignoring all the junk you continue to pack into it, a whole new path unfolds
for you.  You start to see every moment
as an opportunity for growth and purification, and every day brings new
material for building your platform to reach your highest self.    It truly doesn’t
matter what you do for work in this life, as long as you do it with love in
your heart.  If you’re completely
miserable day in and out at your job there’s a clear internal problem, whether
you are saving lives as a trauma surgeon or flipping burgers at a fast food
joint.  So what do you do when you find
yourself in this place?  You search…You
search your soul…I have found asking myself this question helps bring clarity…”Am
I living my truth?”  In other words, are
you in harmony with what you feel, what you say, what you think, and what you
do?  If all of these things are in
harmony, you are in alignment with the flow of the universe, and the world is
your oyster, so to speak.  But when, for
example, you say or do one thing, and think something completely different, you’re
vibrational energy is scattered and chaotic. 
Furthermore, when your vibrational energy is scattered and chaotic,
guess what you attract into your life?  I’ll
give you a hint, it’s not rainbows and four leaf clover fields.  More and more scientific studies are
validating what spiritual teachings and metaphysics have been saying for centuries; we attract what we emit energetically.  If your frequency (thoughts, words, deeds,
etc.) says, “I am miserable, and my life is working against me at every turn,” then
around every turn you will continue to find misery and resistance.  If, however, you decide that it’s time to
change how you see things and start to live a full life within your truth, get
ready to soul search!  The bottom line is, the only path to true happiness is to
search your soul, because it doesn’t matter how much money you have, how many
fancy cars are in your garage, or how big your house is, if you aren’t living
in your truth and ultimately in alignment with the universal flow, something
will always feel “off”.  Whether you are
in the deepest depths of depression, or just feel a subtle discomfort within
that you just can’t put your finger on, you won’t ever be truly happy until you
find peace within yourself.  Often this
does mean making some BIG outer changes in your life because our outer world is
a reflection of our inner world, but when it gets right down to it, the real
change needs to come from within.    When you make these changes, and shift your mindset to a
relentlessly positive one, the outside world has no choice but to follow.  And this, my friends, is when you begin doing
“the shit that matters”; because this is when you start creating a whole new
world for not only yourself, but everyone around you!  You ARE the master of your universe, which
means you’re also the co-master of everyone else’s universe.  See, we’re all connected, and that means your
negative thoughts affect your family, and your friends, and everyone and
everything else around you, near and far. 
We are all a microcosmic energy within the macrocosmic energy, so
every single shift in energy creates a ripple effect throughout the world.  Just like when you throw a pebble into a
lake, that tiny disturbance creates a tangible change in the surrounding area.  So, I will leave you with one question; what kinds
of pebbles are you throwing into our collective lake?

Soul searching…It’s not an easy journey to undertake.  In this day and age, the “soul searcher” is often looked down upon; seen as someone who just doesn’t want to work a “real job” or follow through with their responsibilities.  Well, excuse my language, but I’m here to call “bull shit”.  See, us “soul searchers” are doing the real work…The INNER work…The work that digs deep within, pulls out all the ugly crap that most people don’t want to look at in themselves, and brings it into the light so that it may be acknowledged, purged, and uplifted to a higher place. When this work, the soul searching work, is done with heart, perseverance, and unwavering faith in the divine, what comes out on the other end is a being that can go out into the world and “do shit that matters”.  When you clean out your metaphorical closet instead of ignoring all the junk you continue to pack into it, a whole new path unfolds for you.  You start to see every moment as an opportunity for growth and purification, and every day brings new material for building your platform to reach your highest self.

It truly doesn’t matter what you do for work in this life, as long as you do it with love in your heart.  If you’re completely miserable day in and out at your job there’s a clear internal problem, whether you are saving lives as a trauma surgeon or flipping burgers at a fast food joint.  So what do you do when you find yourself in this place?  You search…You search your soul…I have found asking myself this question helps bring clarity…”Am I living my truth?”  In other words, are you in harmony with what you feel, what you say, what you think, and what you do?  If all of these things are in harmony, you are in alignment with the flow of the universe, and the world is your oyster, so to speak.  But when, for example, you say or do one thing, and think something completely different, you’re vibrational energy is scattered and chaotic. Furthermore, when your vibrational energy is scattered and chaotic, guess what you attract into your life?  I’ll give you a hint, it’s not rainbows and four leaf clover fields.  More and more scientific studies are validating what spiritual teachings and metaphysics have been saying for centuries; we attract what we emit energetically.  If your frequency (thoughts, words, deeds, etc.) says, “I am miserable, and my life is working against me at every turn,” then around every turn you will continue to find misery and resistance.  If, however, you decide that it’s time to change how you see things and start to live a full life within your truth, get ready to soul search!

The bottom line is, the only path to true happiness is to search your soul, because it doesn’t matter how much money you have, how many fancy cars are in your garage, or how big your house is, if you aren’t living in your truth and ultimately in alignment with the universal flow, something will always feel “off”.  Whether you are in the deepest depths of depression, or just feel a subtle discomfort within that you just can’t put your finger on, you won’t ever be truly happy until you find peace within yourself.  Often this does mean making some BIG outer changes in your life because our outer world is a reflection of our inner world, but when it gets right down to it, the real change needs to come from within.  

When you make these changes, and shift your mindset to a relentlessly positive one, the outside world has no choice but to follow.  And this, my friends, is when you begin doing “the shit that matters”; because this is when you start creating a whole new world for not only yourself, but everyone around you!  You ARE the master of your universe, which means you’re also the co-master of everyone else’s universe.  See, we’re all connected, and that means your negative thoughts affect your family, and your friends, and everyone and everything else around you, near and far. We are all a microcosmic energy within the macrocosmic energy, so every single shift in energy creates a ripple effect throughout the world.  Just like when you throw a pebble into a lake, that tiny disturbance creates a tangible change in the surrounding area.  So, I will leave you with one question; what kinds of pebbles are you throwing into our collective lake?

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Hello beautiful people.  So, it’s April Fool’s day, and though I never understood
this “holiday”, it does mark a very significant anniversary of sorts.  One year ago on this day I taught my very first
studio yoga class.  And this morning, one
year later, I taught a class in the great outdoors for two of the most
important and influential women in my life.  One, an inspiring and dear friend who has been
bravely and successfully battling breast cancer; and the other, my beautiful friend
and Ayurveda/yoga mentor.   As I sat
across from their gorgeous faces, surrounded by the intoxicating sounds of Mother
Nature, the sun seemed to be shining just for us.  The birds were singing a theme song they
wrote for our class together, and the trees swayed steadily to the rhythm of
the tune.  I couldn’t help but think to
myself, “What did I do to get so lucky?” 
Not only are these woman amazing friends and inspirations to me, but
they have also founded the amazing school I am blessed to be attending,
Sampoorna College of Ayurveda & Holistic Studies!  Though I have known them both in this
life for only about two years combined, I know deep within my soul that life
after life we have fought many battles and braved many rough literal and metaphorical
seas at each other’s sides.    I am so
insanely blessed to have found them, as it feels as though I’ve been searching for
30 years to be with them once more!  I am
so grateful to be together for another go at this crazy thing called life, and
I’m so excited to see what our journey together unfolds.  We are pioneers on the frontlines of a
spiritual revolution, and I feel stronger, bolder, and more complete knowing
that they are going to battle alongside me. 
I truly hope that one day everyone is blessed to feel this feeling of
unconditional love and support in their lives, as everyone deserves to realize
that they are a part of something greater than themselves.  I love them both so much and am so thankful
for them as my friends, my teachers, and my sisters-in-arms. May you all be blessed with friends like these… Om shantih.

Hello beautiful people.

So, it’s April Fool’s day, and though I never understood this “holiday”, it does mark a very significant anniversary of sorts.  One year ago on this day I taught my very first studio yoga class.  And this morning, one year later, I taught a class in the great outdoors for two of the most important and influential women in my life.  One, an inspiring and dear friend who has been bravely and successfully battling breast cancer; and the other, my beautiful friend and Ayurveda/yoga mentor.   As I sat across from their gorgeous faces, surrounded by the intoxicating sounds of Mother Nature, the sun seemed to be shining just for us.  The birds were singing a theme song they wrote for our class together, and the trees swayed steadily to the rhythm of the tune.  I couldn’t help but think to myself, “What did I do to get so lucky?” Not only are these woman amazing friends and inspirations to me, but they have also founded the amazing school I am blessed to be attending, Sampoorna College of Ayurveda & Holistic Studies!  Though I have known them both in this life for only about two years combined, I know deep within my soul that life after life we have fought many battles and braved many rough literal and metaphorical seas at each other’s sides.    I am so insanely blessed to have found them, as it feels as though I’ve been searching for 30 years to be with them once more!  I am so grateful to be together for another go at this crazy thing called life, and I’m so excited to see what our journey together unfolds.  We are pioneers on the frontlines of a spiritual revolution, and I feel stronger, bolder, and more complete knowing that they are going to battle alongside me. I truly hope that one day everyone is blessed to feel this feeling of unconditional love and support in their lives, as everyone deserves to realize that they are a part of something greater than themselves.  I love them both so much and am so thankful for them as my friends, my teachers, and my sisters-in-arms. May you all be blessed with friends like these… Om shantih.

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capacity:

33v0:

33v0:

what is it about capybaras that attracts groups of small animals to them?
Its not just mammals either its like birds and turtles and frogs too

look at this shit

They radiate peace

PURE LOVE

Thought this was really beautiful…

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Feeling incredibly inspired for so many reasons, and this poem wanted to be written!  Enjoy, my friends!     The Charioteer     This is a prayer for the spiritual warrior  I ask you kindly to lend me your ear  As we walk the ethereal battlefield  Let me tell you about your charioteer     Though you may have the purest of vision  May have journeyed this entire sphere  Zigging and zagging on a treacherous path  Unaware of your charioteer     You may not be able to see them  But have faith they are always near  Silently guiding you gently  You’re always led by your charioteer     In the smile of a stranger  Your mother, father, or the face in the mirror  You can trust they are always watching  The countless eyes of your charioteer     So whenever you’re feeling lost or lonely  Surrender and relinquish all fear  Krishna, Buddha, Allah, and Jesus  Different names and forms, same charioteer     So, my friend, as you’re fighting the good fight  Know this much to be clear  As long as you keep your heart open  Your soul is safe with your charioteer

Feeling incredibly inspired for so many reasons, and this poem wanted to be written!  Enjoy, my friends!


The Charioteer


This is a prayer for the spiritual warrior

I ask you kindly to lend me your ear

As we walk the ethereal battlefield

Let me tell you about your charioteer


Though you may have the purest of vision

May have journeyed this entire sphere

Zigging and zagging on a treacherous path

Unaware of your charioteer


You may not be able to see them

But have faith they are always near

Silently guiding you gently

You’re always led by your charioteer


In the smile of a stranger

Your mother, father, or the face in the mirror

You can trust they are always watching

The countless eyes of your charioteer


So whenever you’re feeling lost or lonely

Surrender and relinquish all fear

Krishna, Buddha, Allah, and Jesus

Different names and forms, same charioteer


So, my friend, as you’re fighting the good fight

Know this much to be clear

As long as you keep your heart open

Your soul is safe with your charioteer

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Hello beautiful people.  So, I’ve been spending a lot of time and doing a lot of yoga with my best friend of 16 years, as she is moving to Australia in a few days and oh my Lord, am I going to miss her…But anyway, she brought to my attention that I often say things like, “The ‘old’ me would have done this…But the ‘new’ me did this…” etc, etc.  She loves when I do this, as it sheds real perspective on how far I have come in my transformation.  The “old” me was negative, angry, and sometimes quite aggressive…The “new” me is positive, happy, and incredibly peaceful.  I wonder though, am I using the adjectives properly?  If you look at it from a Vedantic or yogic perspective, the closer one gets to true inner peace, the closer one gets to their true nature: the self, the soul, the Atman, which is unchanging and eternal.  So in reality, when I forgo flipping off the guy who pulls up behind me and lays on his horn because I’m walking my dog in the street and instead say a prayer that he realizes what is truly bothering him so that he may make peace with it, I’m walking in the shoes of the “old” me; the timeless, deathless, limitless soul that always was and always will be.  The Ashley that would have jumped on his windshield screaming threats and profanities is actually quite new to the picture in the grand scheme of things! So HOORAY “old” Ashley for slowly, but surely killing the “new” Ashley!  So excited to be reunited with my true and timeless self, and thank you to my best friend, Trina, for reflecting so much of that person in me.  You help me see who it is I wish to be!  Namaste loves!

Hello beautiful people.  So, I’ve been spending a lot of time and doing a lot of yoga with my best friend of 16 years, as she is moving to Australia in a few days and oh my Lord, am I going to miss her…But anyway, she brought to my attention that I often say things like, “The ‘old’ me would have done this…But the ‘new’ me did this…” etc, etc.  She loves when I do this, as it sheds real perspective on how far I have come in my transformation.  The “old” me was negative, angry, and sometimes quite aggressive…The “new” me is positive, happy, and incredibly peaceful.  I wonder though, am I using the adjectives properly?  If you look at it from a Vedantic or yogic perspective, the closer one gets to true inner peace, the closer one gets to their true nature: the self, the soul, the Atman, which is unchanging and eternal.  So in reality, when I forgo flipping off the guy who pulls up behind me and lays on his horn because I’m walking my dog in the street and instead say a prayer that he realizes what is truly bothering him so that he may make peace with it, I’m walking in the shoes of the “old” me; the timeless, deathless, limitless soul that always was and always will be.  The Ashley that would have jumped on his windshield screaming threats and profanities is actually quite new to the picture in the grand scheme of things! So HOORAY “old” Ashley for slowly, but surely killing the “new” Ashley!  So excited to be reunited with my true and timeless self, and thank you to my best friend, Trina, for reflecting so much of that person in me.  You help me see who it is I wish to be!  Namaste loves!

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Hello friends!  It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything, as I’ve been quite busy with life happenings, but I wanted to take a brief moment to share something very special with you.  Back in December, I had the great pleasure of taking part in something really beautiful with my mentor, Ayurvedic practitioner, and very dear friend Anay Amrita Abreu.  This particular organization brings people together, records their stories, and archives them for future generations.  Their mission “ is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world”.  Pretty beautiful, isn’t it?  Anyhow, Amrita interviewed me on how yoga and Ayurveda saved my life, and she was brilliant at the process and keeping my tangents to a minimum!  Haha!  If it interests you, have a listen, and please feel free to share with anyone you feel may be inspired.  It’s about 40 minutes long.  Namaste, loves.  Om shantih.

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        Om, my
friends.  Well, today officially marks 6 months free from the mind numbing
prescription medications that had ruled my body and mind for over 15 years.
 I cannot possibly express the level of relief and joy I feel on this day.
 I celebrated by making myself gluten free fig and date pumpkin spice
pancakes, and I must say, they were deeeeeelicious!  What is proving to be
more memorable about this morning, however, is the fact that I burned my palm
on the pan pretty severely; and no, it’s not notable due to the searing pain I feel
every time I inevitably happen to hit it on something.  The reason this
event is so memorable is because when my hand touched the pan, and shot back in
response to the pain, what left my mouth was not a curse or a scream or even an “OUCH!”…What
left my lips was laughter…A light hearted and warm giggle directed
toward myself and the clumsiness of this perfectly imperfect body is what resulted from the severe
pain I experienced.  Ladies and gents,
THIS is what progress sounds like!  THIS
is the result of continued hard work, discipline, and a desire to truly purify one’s
body and mind in order to attain inner peace.            At 31
years old, am I financially rich?  No, I
wouldn’t say so.  Am I famous?  No, I can’t say that I am.  Do I hold lots of power over many
people?  No, I don’t believe so.  But at 31 years old, I’m happy, I’m healthy,
I’m at peace with myself, and, most importantly, I am gaining more and more
power over my mind and emotions each day. 
Folks, I would say that actually makes me pretty wealthy indeed!  Wouldn’t you say?  I know, in society these days success is
measured by the numbers on your pay check and the amount of people who answer
to your authority, but don’t you think it’s about time that we start
recognizing the aspects of a person and their lives that makes them someone
truly worth revering?  For example, personally,
when I meet someone who can smile, joke, and laugh(genuinely, of course) in any
situation, good or bad, THAT is a person I aspire to be like.  Have you ever met a jubilant millionaire? I find
that most of those who are wealthy and powerful according to this millennia’s standards
are quite bitter and often carry such a heavy energy around with them.  Maybe they would feel happier if they relieved
themselves of some of their financial burden by regularly donating their time
and money to a worthy cause.  Some karma
yoga always lifts ones spirits!                That’s
just it though, isn’t it?  Karma
yoga.  Selfless service.  Giving for the sake of giving, without
expecting anything in return.  It’s what
we need more of in this world, because it truly purifies the mind and liberates
the soul.  I’m currently reading the book
Sermon on the Mount According to Vedanta by Swami Prabhavananda, and in it he
speaks of how purifying the mind is much like trying to clean an ink jar that
is glued to a table.  One cannot simply
tip the jar and remove all the darkness in one quick motion.  It’s not that simple.  One can, however, slowly and mindfully pour
fresh and clear liquid into the jar and little by little remove all the
darkness until all that remains is overflowing clarity.  That’s what yoga, and more specifically,
karma yoga, does for the mind.  Little by
little, one replaces all the darkness by flooding ones being with thinking
good, being good, speaking good, and doing good.  It’s, as Guru Shri Yogi Hari always says, “a step
by step process”, and it’s not an easy one at that.  For me, the challenge comes with being
patient with myself.  It’s easier to be
patient with others, and I find that often even when I’m feeling impatient with
another person it’s usually because I am experiencing something in them that I
recognize as something I disapprove of within myself; but in order for it to become
a permanent quality, patience must start within.          Beautiful
people, we are so darn hard on ourselves, and I’m here to say, “STOP IT!”.  So many of our problems come from our fears,
anxieties, and doubts within ourselves. 
Most of our struggles are internal, and can be alleviated with patience
and self-acceptance.  NOBODY is perfect,
and we all make mistakes.  We are
human.  It’s OK!  The world isn’t going to end because you made
a mistake.  Life will go on, and most
likely, you’re the only one who will remember a majority of any mistakes you do
make.  So take a deep breath, and lighten up! 
Now, I’m not saying that one should just accept themselves for who they currently are and never seek growth. The important thing is that we learn from our
mistakes, correct our negative tendencies, and do our very best not to repeat
them.  That’s what allows for positive
transformation, and that’s what life(and yoga) is all about, no?         So, today,
when you stub your toe, or get a paper cut, or crack your cell phone screen on
the pavement while checking your Facebook, or whatever…Be aware of what you
feel and think internally, and be careful of what you allow to escape from your
lips.  Every thought is so incredibly
powerful, and the energy we release is absorbed into everyone and everything
else around us.  Together, let’s make it
a point to do our very bests in only sharing the type of energy that uplifts, purifies, and strengthens the world we live in.  After
all, it’s our world to share and care for. 
Doesn’t it make sense to do our best at keeping it clean?  Have a beautiful day, everyone.  Namaste.

        Om, my friends.  Well, today officially marks 6 months free from the mind numbing prescription medications that had ruled my body and mind for over 15 years.  I cannot possibly express the level of relief and joy I feel on this day.  I celebrated by making myself gluten free fig and date pumpkin spice pancakes, and I must say, they were deeeeeelicious!  What is proving to be more memorable about this morning, however, is the fact that I burned my palm on the pan pretty severely; and no, it’s not notable due to the searing pain I feel every time I inevitably happen to hit it on something.  The reason this event is so memorable is because when my hand touched the pan, and shot back in response to the pain, what left my mouth was not a curse or a scream or even an “OUCH!”…What left my lips was laughter…A light hearted and warm giggle directed toward myself and the clumsiness of this perfectly imperfect body is what resulted from the severe pain I experienced.  Ladies and gents, THIS is what progress sounds like!  THIS is the result of continued hard work, discipline, and a desire to truly purify one’s body and mind in order to attain inner peace.

         At 31 years old, am I financially rich?  No, I wouldn’t say so.  Am I famous?  No, I can’t say that I am.  Do I hold lots of power over many people?  No, I don’t believe so.  But at 31 years old, I’m happy, I’m healthy, I’m at peace with myself, and, most importantly, I am gaining more and more power over my mind and emotions each day. Folks, I would say that actually makes me pretty wealthy indeed!  Wouldn’t you say?  I know, in society these days success is measured by the numbers on your pay check and the amount of people who answer to your authority, but don’t you think it’s about time that we start recognizing the aspects of a person and their lives that makes them someone truly worth revering?  For example, personally, when I meet someone who can smile, joke, and laugh(genuinely, of course) in any situation, good or bad, THAT is a person I aspire to be like.  Have you ever met a jubilant millionaire? I find that most of those who are wealthy and powerful according to this millennia’s standards are quite bitter and often carry such a heavy energy around with them.  Maybe they would feel happier if they relieved themselves of some of their financial burden by regularly donating their time and money to a worthy cause.  Some karma yoga always lifts ones spirits!  

           That’s just it though, isn’t it?  Karma yoga.  Selfless service.  Giving for the sake of giving, without expecting anything in return.  It’s what we need more of in this world, because it truly purifies the mind and liberates the soul.  I’m currently reading the book Sermon on the Mount According to Vedanta by Swami Prabhavananda, and in it he speaks of how purifying the mind is much like trying to clean an ink jar that is glued to a table.  One cannot simply tip the jar and remove all the darkness in one quick motion.  It’s not that simple.  One can, however, slowly and mindfully pour fresh and clear liquid into the jar and little by little remove all the darkness until all that remains is overflowing clarity.  That’s what yoga, and more specifically, karma yoga, does for the mind.  Little by little, one replaces all the darkness by flooding ones being with thinking good, being good, speaking good, and doing good.  It’s, as Guru Shri Yogi Hari always says, “a step by step process”, and it’s not an easy one at that.  For me, the challenge comes with being patient with myself.  It’s easier to be patient with others, and I find that often even when I’m feeling impatient with another person it’s usually because I am experiencing something in them that I recognize as something I disapprove of within myself; but in order for it to become a permanent quality, patience must start within.

        Beautiful people, we are so darn hard on ourselves, and I’m here to say, “STOP IT!”.  So many of our problems come from our fears, anxieties, and doubts within ourselves. Most of our struggles are internal, and can be alleviated with patience and self-acceptance.  NOBODY is perfect, and we all make mistakes.  We are human.  It’s OK!  The world isn’t going to end because you made a mistake.  Life will go on, and most likely, you’re the only one who will remember a majority of any mistakes you do make.  So take a deep breath, and lighten up! Now, I’m not saying that one should just accept themselves for who they currently are and never seek growth. The important thing is that we learn from our mistakes, correct our negative tendencies, and do our very best not to repeat them.  That’s what allows for positive transformation, and that’s what life(and yoga) is all about, no?

       So, today, when you stub your toe, or get a paper cut, or crack your cell phone screen on the pavement while checking your Facebook, or whatever…Be aware of what you feel and think internally, and be careful of what you allow to escape from your lips.  Every thought is so incredibly powerful, and the energy we release is absorbed into everyone and everything else around us.  Together, let’s make it a point to do our very bests in only sharing the type of energy that uplifts, purifies, and strengthens the world we live in.  After all, it’s our world to share and care for. Doesn’t it make sense to do our best at keeping it clean?  Have a beautiful day, everyone.  Namaste.

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The Walking Yogi

Hello again!  So, earlier this year my friend and I planned a trip to Orlando for a nerd convention called Walker Stalker Con.  Yes, I’m a geek for The Walking Dead…I was hooked on the show before I was hooked on yoga, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.  I have never really been into zombie movies or shows, but this particular story line and the characters that have been created are truly exceptional. Needless to say, I was very excited to have the opportunity to meet some of the cast.  I knew, however, that I did not want to waste this opportunity by simply gushing all over these individuals for photos and autographs, because they are in fact, just people, albeit, some pretty influential ones. So I decided that this would be an amazing opportunity to begin my mission of spreading awareness about the benefits of yoga for mental illness, as well as a great way to get the word out about the nonprofit I have become so fond of, called Connected Warriors.  The following is the letter that I mailed and passed out to the cast and crew of the show.  I hope you find it compelling enough to check out the Connected Warriors cause! Om shantih.


Salutations to you, Walking Dead cast and/or crew member,

               My name is Ashley Lauren.  I’m a huge fan of your show, as well as certified Sampoorna yoga instructor currently located in South Florida.  I would like to start by saying that from the beginning, I have found the story and characters behind your show incredibly inspiring.  I began watching shortly after my first cervical spine surgery in 2010, and I have always found its resounding, “Never give up” message particularly encouraging.  In some way, your show helped me maintain hope through some very difficult times, and I am forever grateful to have discovered it.  I’m writing to you today because I have a story to tell, and I’m hoping that maybe you just might find some inspiration in it as well.    

               For many years before and after my spinal surgeries, I felt like one of the walking dead.  From a very young age a plethora of physical and emotional issues plagued my body and mind; and for well over 15 years I had been walking through a seemingly endless revolving door of doctors’ offices and pharmacies.  I was a very active child, and due to a dangerous disregard for my own wellbeing, I injured myself quite a bit.  On the emotional end of things, early on in life I was diagnosed with major depression and insomnia…then anxiety disorder…then bipolar disorder.   Pain and psychiatric medications flooded my medicine cabinets, and it didn’t stop there. The utter lack of control I felt over my own body and mind led me into years of substance and alcohol abuse, as well as self-harm and dangerous risk taking behavior.  After the injury that led to my spinal surgeries, I lost my job as an EMT, and subsequently lost my desired career as a surgeon due to peripheral nerve damage and chronic spinal pain.  Things were not looking good for me or my future.

               But about three years ago, something miraculous happened that turned my entire life around completely.  My mother invited me to join her at a yoga class.  As I said, I was always an active person; however, prior to my back injury,  I enjoyed lifting weights and running in place while listening to angry music, and from middle school onward, that was my daily routine; I thought it helped keep my demons at bay, so to speak.  Obviously this routine was no longer an option for my worn out physique, so I figured I would give yoga a try, and I can honestly say that for the first time in my entire life, I found peace within.  Consciously connecting to my breath literally changed my world, and I finally had hope of one day having complete control over my mind and body.  As I started to regain control over my physical and emotional states, managing my chronic pain without medication became possible.  I began to respect myself and my body again, which led me to desire a healthier lifestyle.  I began an Ayurvedic diet, cut out alcohol, and am now entirely prescription medication free for the first time in over 15 years; all thanks to yoga, meditation, and positive thinking.

               Yoga saved my life, but my story doesn’t stop there. I wanted to share the extraordinary benefits of this practice with the world, so in 2014 I decided to acquire my teaching certification.  In March of this year, I got my first studio job, and while posting flyers for my classes at my local grocery store, I ran into the person who, I would say, is actually the true inspiration for this letter.  For the purposes of this letter, I will call him “Steve”.  Steve is a marine veteran.  He was in the service for about 30 years, and was discharged due to a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.  Like so many servicemen and woman, Steve was having trouble assimilating himself back into society after so many years in a structured military setting.  Finding an identity is not easy when you have been told exactly who and what to be for 30 years.  Steve was also struggling with haunting memories of his wartime experiences, and was having trouble concentrating and could barely sleep at all.  Two of his brothers in arms had already taken their own lives due to their difficulties reintegrating into civilian life, and Steve had the desire to break that cycle.  

I knew that if he was ready, through yoga, I could help this man and others like him; and so, immediately following our first conversation, I began researching PTSD conscious yoga, and learned of a chilling statistic; on average, about 22 veterans commit suicide every single day in the United States.  That’s almost one suicide every hour.  In my research, I was pleased to see that many organizations were making great strides in battling mental and physical illnesses in veterans through yoga, and so, thanks to Steve’s story, I was inspired to take teacher’s training workshops with two incredible causes: Yoga Warriors and Connected Warriors.  While both organizations are remarkable with similar philosophies, Connected Warriors really stood out to me in particular.

Connected Warriors is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing wellness programs that enhance the lives of veterans, service members, and their families. They are community based, and are run strictly by volunteer yoga teachers who hold classes for these military families free of charge.  That’s right! FREE!  How beautiful is that??  Currently Connected Warriors offers classes in 14 states and holds about 175 classes each month with an attendance of over 1,200 individuals.  Connected Warriors is offering hope to those men and woman who are feeling hopeless.  For most, medications and traditional talk therapy are not enough to relieve the crippling symptoms of PTSD and other trauma related post-service issues. Yoga is a positive experience that directly contradicts the feelings of helplessness brought on by trauma through conscious connection of breath and movement. Through regular practice, these men and woman are able to heal themselves emotionally and physically.  I recently had the opportunity to attend a class held at the VA in Miami, and was so moved to see the change in disposition of the men before and after class.  

So, you’re probably wondering, why is this chick contacting us about all of this? That’s a good question.  The truth is, we need your help to spread the word about how beneficial yoga is at fighting the debilitating effects of mental illnesses and to help the Connected Warriors mission spread even further. While yoga is growing in popularity in the US, not enough people are aware of the transformational benefits that can take place for people suffering from emotional trauma.  Even those who are aware of the benefits may be hesitant to try yoga because they are under the impression that yoga is a religious practice.   So how can you help?  That’s another great question!  The Walking Dead has become one of, if not, THE most popular shows on television.  With your help, through social media, word of mouth, and maybe even a segment on The Talking Dead we could easily reach millions of people in a very short time.  This could greatly benefit our country and even further, benefit mankind in general. I truly believe that every time a new person takes up yoga as a practice, it brings us one person closer to world peace. In exchange for your help, I will teach you and the entire cast and crew of The Walking Dead a free yoga lesson.  What do you say?  Are you ready to feel what it’s like to unite your mind, body and spirit through yoga? Lord knows Rick, Sasha, and Father Gabriel could use some yoga in their lives!  Thank you for your time and consideration.  When you have a chance, please check out the Connected Warriors website for more information.  

Om shanti.

Namaste,

Ashley Lauren

Connected Warriors Inc.

900 Broken Sound Pkwy

Boca Raton, FL 33487

www.connectedwarriors.org

954-278-3764

Info@connectedwarriors.org

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Transformation is Afoot

Well, the weather is changing…And though we don’t get to experience the colors changing in South Florida, transformation is apparent everywhere one looks:  beautiful birds chirping, butterflies fluttering from flower to flower, and dragonflies hovering at every turn.  The beauty that unfolds around this time of year is simply breathtaking, and for myself, the change is not purely an external experience.  It’s been two weeks since the last day of my very first panchakarma, and when I say I’m a new person, it couldn’t be more true.  Physically, I haven’t felt this healthy in my entire life. Emotionally, I’ve never felt so incredibly clear. And spiritually, I feel as though something has been awoken inside of me, and I’m so excited for what is in store. 


Looking back, it’s amazing to think that it’s been almost a year since I took that first step on what seemed like an impossible journey: to free myself from the dependency of Western psychiatric medications.  For those of you who are unaware, when I was 19 I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. Still even before that diagnosis, the various doctors I had visited threw around things like severe depression, anxiety, and insomnia. And for well over 15 years of my life I was on a mutlitude of tranquilizers, antidepressants, mood stabilizers…etc…etc…However, last year (upon deciding that I wanted to become a yoga instructor) I realized that if I truly wanted to not only be my authentic self and practice what I was preaching, that for me, the medications had to go…And thus set out on a mission to successfully wean myself off of the 5 medication cocktail the doctors said I would likely be on for the rest of my life…

In November of 2014, with no idea of how I would successfully accomplish this goal, I entered Yogi Hari’s Ashram to begin my 200 hour yoga teacher’s training (YTT).  I didn’t know how the answers would manifest, but I had faith that the universe would show me my path to liberation. Week one of training: enter Anay Amrita Abreu…a woman who came to lecture on Ayurveda, the world’s most ancient science of healing.  She began to speak about the elements, energy, food, and how it’s all connected. She spoke about how what goes into our bodies is either poison or medicine, and therefore, we must be mindful of everything because our body is either being nourished or polluted…The stars aligned, and I immediately realized that THIS was how I would be able to heal myself.  Her words resonated with me, and felt more true and honest than anything I had learned in all my years of studying Western medicine.  This was a way to HEAL oneself, and not just place a band-aide over the real problem; like we so often do in the West.  I knew it would be a difficult path, but the way I saw it, it was my only choice.  

Almost immediately following the completion of my 200hr YTT, I met with Amrita for a consultation.  "There’s nothing wrong with you…“ she said, “You’re just sensitive…”.  Those words, will stay with me for the rest of my life…Those simple words changed everything for me.  For my whole life I was convinced that I was broken, and for the first time I had begun to feel that everyone (including myself) had been wrong for 30 years. Nothing’s wrong with me…I’m just sensitive.  YES!  In that unexpected moment, she saved my life, and I am eternally grateful.

So now, almost a year later, and truly EVERYTHING has changed. My diet is Ayurveda conscious: all natural, fresh, organic, and cooked everyday.  I wake up at 4am to begin each beautiful day with a Sampoorna yoga practice, meditation, and self care.  I take time for myself, and think positively about each experience that comes(even the difficult ones).  I go to bed early, and don’t fill my mind with useless or negative information from the TV, radio, or internet. And most importantly, after slow (and often arduous) process, I can proudly say that I have been completely medication free for 4 months; the first time in over 15 years! I am happier, healthier, and more stable than ever in my life.  It is amazing what yoga, a proper diet, and a positive mindset can do for a person.

In all honesty, I can say that I’ve been both reluctant and terrified to share this story with the world via social media; I’m still a little uneasy about how these sites are used. But as of late, I’ve been thinking that maybe if I choose to share my story and can inspire even just one other person to make a better and healthier life for themselves, then that would be pretty amazing.  So, there you have it, a very tiny sample of my story about healing…If any of you are interested in learning more about Sampoorna yoga, ayurveda, or in choosing transformation over “trend”, check out http://omritayoga.com/  or http://www.yogihari.com or shoot me a message.  Om shantih and be well…

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