Integral Yoga® Magazine, Issue No. 162  Clean the Ego
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Clean the Ego

You have to rub hard to clean the ego. It’s not an easy or comfortable job. It might hurt a lot because the ego doesn’t want to be cleaned. But if you are really interested in obtaining the light to awaken, you have to do it. So, either clean the ego yourself, or life’s challenges will clean it for you. The purpose of the nature is that—to give you all the problems so you can get cleaned up.

God bless you. Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.”    Sri Swami Satchidananda

(Photo: Swami Satchidananda, assisted by Snehan Cherniske, clears brush at
Satchidananda Ashram–Yogaville East, Connecticut, mid-1970s.)

Learning to meditate can be overwhelming for some. The mind can feel less like a place of quiet refuge and more like Times Square. In this video, you can follow along with Yoga master Sri Swami Satchidananda's instructions (read by Saraswati Ishaya from the booklet, Meditation) in order to learn how to meditate. So, close your eyes and relax, even if it’s only for a minute. If you wish to deepen your meditation, then schedule some time for this practice daily. Meditation needs the cooperation of both the body and the mind. Sri Swamiji recommends that we prepare the body with the asanas, Yoga postures, and pranayama, the yogic breathing exercises. This helps the mind to settle before you begin a meditation session. The focus of meditation is in learning to keep the mind fully occupied on one thing—like a mantra, the breath, an affirmation. Gently bring the mind back to the object of concentration whenever it wanders. This is how to cultivate a meditation practice. Om Shanti.

Loneliness, Rejection and a Broken Heart
By Pema Chödrön

There comes a time when the bubble of ego is popped and you can’t get the ground back for an extended period of time. Those times, when you absolutely cannot get it back together, are the most rich and powerful times in our lives. In the midst of loneliness, in the midst of fear. In the middle of feeling misunderstood and rejected is the heartbeat of all things…the genuine heart of sadness. Just as a jewel that has been buried in the Earth for a million years is not discolored or harmed, in the same way this noble heart is not affected by all of our kicking and screaming. The jewel can be brought out into the light at any time and it will glow as brilliantly as if nothing had ever happened. No matter how committed we are to unkindness, selfishness or greed, the genuine heart of bodhicitta [wakeful human nature] cannot be lost. It is here in all that lives, never marred and completely whole. We think that by protecting ourselves from suffering, we are being kind to ourselves. The truth is we only become more fearful, more hardened and more alienated. We experience ourselves as being separate from the whole.  MORE

The 12-Step Yogi
By Tamara Page
I was a child of an alcoholic parent. The disease governed my life, and the effects of it had a tremendous influence over how I lived. This resulted in anxiety, low self-esteem and all kinds of negative traits. In my early 20s I was blessed enough to have stumbled across the Al-Anon program (a 12-Step program for family members of alcoholics). My own healing started when I was able to separate myself from the effects that alcoholism had on my life. I had the 12-Step foundation when I started Yoga. I gradually began to understand the philosophical precepts of Yoga, and was able to see a bridge between the 12 Steps and Yoga, especially in the whole process of surrendering. I discovered a synergistic effect between the 12-Step process and the ethical precepts of Patanjali. My understanding deepened in the Yoga Teacher Training programs I took. I felt so blessed by what I had come to understand that I knew it was my duty to share the power of Yoga with others in recovery. The yamas and niyamas as set forth by Patanjali, invite the seeker to break down old systems of behavior and replace these with new ones that ultimately liberate them from addiction or habits that no longer serve them.   MORE

In her long-awaited film, "Ayurveda Unveiled," Gita Desai ("Yoga Unveiled," "Raga Unveiled") takes us on an immersive journey into India’s eternal wisdom of well-being. The film will have its Los Angeles premiere on October 20th at Ahrya Fine Arts by Laemmle. Following the film will be a Q&A with the Gita Desai, moderated by LA Yoga Magazine editor-in-chief, Felicia Tomasko. At once a stunning cinematic experience and a definitive resource, "Ayurveda Unveiled" weaves together the history and essence of Ayurveda with a detailed examination of the underpinning philosophy, fundamental principles and approaches to harmonizing our inner and outer world. With contributions from the world's leading thinkers and practitioners amidst locations of intoxicating beauty, what emerges is a timeless and all-encompassing science for enhancing life. The documentary will be released on DVD at a later date.

Rev. Bruce Shankar Fern has just launched a new website where he offers a variety of interfaith ministry services. Rev. Fern is a senior disciple of Swami Satchidananda and serves on the board of the Integral Yoga Institute of New York. He also is the president of Change-Ready Solutions which focuses on diversity, inclusion and innovation, and the Chaplain for the NY Putnam County SPCA. Rev. Fern is is one of the 40 ordained Integral Yoga Ministers in the world. Integral Yoga Ministers offer instruction in Integral Yoga practices, as well as conducting marriage ceremonies, baby and other blessings, funerals and memorials, and other services. Congratulations Rev. Fern on the new website!

Cold and creamy. Sweet and delicious. Words that usually describe ice cream and yet totally apply to this new frozen dessert from the founders of Wink — Ani Blinova-Wolff and Gabe Wolff. Gabe's food allergies actually first inspired the couple to invent this first ice-cream replacement that is not only vegan but uses natural sweeteners (monk fruit, stevia). And, they are guided by their shared life philosophy. Ani shared: "Gabe and I are both very spiritual and actually have a daily morning meditation/Yoga practice before we dive into Wink work every single morning. Around 6 a.m., after having some celery juice, we each do 10-15 minutes of meditation followed by some simple Yoga asanas to get the body flowing. We also love to write for a few minutes in our gratitude journals. Gabe uses it more as a straight-up gratitude journal, but I use it not just for gratitude—I also write in it to work through some of the 'stickiness' that can come up day-to-day, set goals, and do some visualization/manifestation. Gratitude is the best attitude." Help support this new venture by ordering online for home delivery, or requesting that your local store carry Wink if it doesn't yet.

"The Power of Mantra" : An Uplift TV Film

"The Power of Mantra" is an rich sonic exploration of the Yoga of sound that features Deva Premal & Miten, Dave Stringer, Tina Malia and many more artists, scientists, and yogis. From the neuroscience behind Om, to the extraordinary spiritual and health benefits of communing through shared song and sacred sound, the UPLIFT film "The Power of Mantra," puts a spotlight on the global kirtan and mantra community and explains the place of mantra within a balanced Yoga practice. Watch the film for free on Uplift TV.
Inside Yogaville

Evenings at Kailash—the site of the Lord Nataraja Shrine, which overlooks the Light Of Truth Universal Shrine—can be spectacular as it sits at one of the highest elevations in Yogaville. Bill Geoghean (who took this photo) notes, "The show is different every night. Sometimes it's a thriller of lightning and thunder; sometimes a mystery of clouds. And sometimes, like this night, it's a Divine Romance." 

Inspiring Meme of the Week
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