30
July

Each month, “My Better Day” newsletter contains tips for your yoga practice, yoga quotes to bring yoga off the mat and into your life, affirmations to brighten your day and motivate, and more!  It is my wish for your well-being that I send this newsletter to help make your day a Better Day!

In this issue:  Yoga quote, Practice yoga pose, Meditation on the go, Chakrascope, Hand Mudra, Featured Card Deck and Quote, Healthy News, Featured Recipe (to be Posted 8/9/11), Favorite Yoga Music / DVD, Happenings at Better Day Yoga LLC, Final Relaxation Quote.

Namasté,

Sandy Krzyzanowski

Founder, Better Day Yoga LLC

Yoga quote:  “If you can’t see God in all, you can’t see God at all.”~ Yogi Bhajan

A few weeks ago I had the absolute pleasure of interviewing the CEO of Yogamint LLC, Hari Bhajan Khalsa.  If that company name rings a bell to my readers, it’s because I reference this absolutely wonderful resource often in both my newsletter and my Better Day Yoga Facebook page.  I signed up for their emails some time ago and have enjoyed every last one of them. You can sign up for the emails on their home page:  http://www.yogamint.com/.

As I read about Hari Bhajan Khalsa in preparation for the interview, what amazed me the most was the many paths she has taken in her life.  Now I know we all have similar versions of our various paths in life, but dear reader, I know that mine is nowhere near as interesting as hers:  Dressage, Life Coach, improv, published poet, wife, mother, and currently Yogamint LLC “CEO”—that’s Chief Enlightenment Officer, thank you!  She would, of course, emphatically deny that her life is any more special than anyone else’s, and perhaps that’s another endearing quality of this enchanting lady.  She walks her talk.

Did you get stuck on dressage?  So did I.  She describes it as gymnastics of the horse or “doing yoga with the horse”.  After reading the definition I found online, I’d have to agree:  “The method of training a horse to perform maneuvers in response to the rider’s body signals.”  http://www.thefreedictionary.com/dressage.  It’s a competition in the Olympics—a bona fide sport.  Who knew?  Fifteen years and three horses later, she has an immense love of horses.  Having never been an athlete, working with horses gave her a sense of confidence and fearlessness.

I can count the number of times I’ve sat upon a horse on one hand.  Each time someone much more qualified than I was nearby to monitor.  Two of those times I was part of a trail of horses going for a trail ride.  I fell off the horse on the first one—cut me some slack!  My sunglasses fell off and I had to get off the horse to get them, didn’t I?  Then when I tried to get back on the saddle, the horse moved on me and I fell off—into a cactus!

The second time I was with a group that included my husband.  All of a sudden he flew by on his horse toward the ocean at top speed.  I could hear the others commenting on what an experienced rider he must be going that speed.  I was the only one who knew his horse had to be out of control since he’d never been on a horse before and also couldn’t swim.  So flying toward the ocean on a speeding horse was not something he’d initiated!  So that’s why they made us wear helmets!

So, yes, I could see how working with these amazing creatures, honing your ability to communicate with the horse through subtle movements, could increase not only self-confidence but also promote fearlessness.  Sure beats landing in a cactus or headed for water over your head!  Hari Bhajan doesn’t ride anymore.  But horses are a part of her.  She says “A special something happens” in her heart when she sees a horse.  Now that is something we can all relate to.

How about you?  Is there some skill or hobby you’ve always wanted to try?  Maybe you admire someone else who’s already doing it?  Do you love horses and want to commune with horses as Hari Bhajan did?  Take the first step!  I wrote about this subject in my April, 2010 newsletter:

Maybe you love horses, but don’t own one and/or have never ridden one. Find a petting zoo, a horse riding club, or horse sanctuary to go to. There’s a wonderful wild horse sanctuary in the Black Hills of South Dakota, a day’s drive away from the Twin Cities (http://www.wildmustangs.com/) that I recommend highly. They have a wonderful tour, and you’ll fall in love with all the horses in their natural environment.

Minnesotan’s can try http://www.horserentals.com/minnesota.html and take to the trails on a horse! Locally, there’s also River Valley Riders (http://www.rivervalleyriders.org/) which is a therapeutic horseback-riding and carriage driving program serving people with special needs. Try the Renaissance Festival late summer and watch some jousting. Just be around what you love and listen to your heart sing!

Want to combine yoga and horsemanship?  Hari Bhajan got me to thinking what a great combo yoga and horsemanship would be.  Of course I didn’t need to look far.  I even found a Kundalini Yoga instructor doing it.  To schedule Yoga Ride Retreats in your area:

Malika and Veronica are available to conduct Yoga Ride Retreats world-wide. Scheduling now for 2011-12.  Please contact us to schedule an exciting, personally fulfilling and healing yoga retreat for riders at an equestrian facility in your area.
http://montanahorsecenter.com/education/yoga-for-riders/  Another great site I found is:  http://www.gallopingyoga.com/gallopingyoga-training.html.

It’s amazing how I always get a timely email from Yogamint as I’m writing my newsletter:

Get With Your Program What’s Calling You?

It’s the excitement you feel when you listen to a solo violinist or read a book by your favorite author, inspiring you to get up and follow in their footsteps. It’s why you never miss a yoga class and enjoy making hand-made gifts for your loved ones. It’s something that makes your heart sing and your toes tap, and most importantly, doing it fulfills you. It’s where you belong and maybe even what makes you unique. This is what’s known as a “calling” and it’s what wants to happen in your life.

If you’re living like a square peg in a round hole—doing data entry when you’d rather be dancing, selling real estate when you’d rather be eco-farming—heed your calling! Start by acceptingyour present work and consciously acknowledge it’s time to move on. Next, write down exactly what is calling you. Then get into action: take a class, subscribe to a trade magazine, join a club or mentor with an expert. As you begin to embody and nurture your calling, it will surely manifest—so go for it! http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3930137/Get_With_Your_Program

Moving on!  True to her “MO”, when Hari Bhajan decided to train as a Life Coach, she immersed herself 110%.  She was coached herself, took all the classes and seminars and knew that she would use these skills forever.  She knew she wanted to teach and speak more, but public speaking made her uncomfortable—as it does for many of us!  So she tried a more formal training in public speaking and found it too boring.

Someone recommended she try improvHow do you know when the path is the right one for you?  When you’re a Kundalini yoga teacher and your new improv teacher ends up synchronistically being a Kundalini practitioner.  He greeted her as she walked in the door with “Sat Nam!”—the common Sanskrit greeting used in Kundalini yoga.  (More on that later!)  “Larry” told her that Kundalini yoga saved his life and he became like a brother to her.

She considers the concepts Larry taught as life concepts:  “Being in the moment, saying ‘Yes’ more often, daring to suck and perhaps to fail.  It was, at times, tortuous.” She loved it.  Just hearing her talk about Larry, it’s obvious that she has an undying gratitude for the energy he brought to class and her life.

How about you?  Remember my theme last month was looking at what you defined as “uncomfortable” and deciding if that was a habit you wanted to keep or kick to the curb?  Tried anything “tortuous” lately? Dared to suck and perhaps fail?  You just may find that you love it when all is said and done. 

Wondering whether the path you’ve chosen is the right one?  Take a page from Hari Bhajan and follow the synchronicities.  The Universe will cajole you toward where you need to be by the “God-winks”.  For a short, fun video on “What’s a God-wink?” go to: 
http://www.beliefnet.com/Video/Godwink-Stories/2009/04/What-Is-A-Godwink.aspx

Speaking of “God-winks”—A Vedic Astrology reading acknowledged she had “writing” in her future.  The astrologer referred her to a friend to pursue her writing interest further if she so chose.  Shortly after that she just happened to be talking with a cranio-sacral therapist at her husband’s chiropractic office.  She mentioned her astrology reading with an emphasis on “writing” in her future. He responded with “I have a friend,” and referred her on to the exact same guy the astrologer had referred her to!  “God-wink” serendipity strikes again!  Similar to her improv teacher, this connection became a beloved mentor who “brought so much out of her”.

Oh—wondering what “Vedic Astrology” is?  I’m glad you asked!  Yogamint.com has your answer, of course!

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_2990070/Make_the_Planets_Your_Own?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2535827&ObjectID=2990070&ObjectType=35

http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_2842350/Astrology_for_Yogis?A=SearchResult&SearchID=2535827&ObjectID=2842350&ObjectType=35

The astrology reading and her new mentor led her to go back to school—after a 30-year hiatus from school

As she puts it, she didn’t “decide” to go back to school, really.  As emphasized earlier, she believes in signs.  When she knows something is directing her she has to listen to it.  During the summer of 2003 she saw some ads for schools in her poetry magazines and checked out a couple.  Then she saw a summer workshop opportunity.  On a spur of the moment decision, she submitted poems to be considered for the Squaw Valley Community of Writers Summer Workshop (http://www.squawvalleywriters.org/).  She mailed her submission literally the day before it was due—via FedEx.  It was a one-week workshop of esteemed writers.  There were 400-plus applicants and only 60 were accepted.  When she got the acceptance e-mail she broke into tears—the “nod” from the Universe overwhelmed her.  The workshop “changed her whole perspective—her whole universe.”  Her life totally shifted.  There was so much to know and learn.  Time to finish her degree!

Hari Bhajan needed 30 more credits to graduate for her bachelors.   She chose the Vermont College of Fine Arts and flew to Vermont (http://www.vermontcollege.edu/about) every six months for two incredible years—a total immersion—Learning, meeting, challenging

“Every blade of grass has an Angel bending over it saying, ‘grow’ ‘grow’” ~ The Talmud (ancient Jewish text).

Have you been listening to YOUR personal Angel guides?  What “spur of the moment” decisions do you hear calling you?  Are you listening?  Maybe they aren’t just “spur of the moment”.  Those urgings have been there a while, haven’t they?  That restlessness you feel is not just boredom.  It’s YOUR Angels telling YOU to “Grow!”  “Grow!” 

Take the leap!  Throw your hat in the ring!  Be the source of your own manifestations!  Acknowledge that you are ready and give the Universe a chance to respond, “Yes! It is your time because you leapt—because you said I am going to try.  All this time the power was in you to make the net appear by taking the first step.”

“She decided to start living the life she’d imagined” ~Kobi Yamada

College at 50 was “like living through high school again,”  she shared: “It was good to process through what I hadn’t processed through in high school.  The beauty of yoga and meditation is it teaches you to be the observer.  Here I’m 50 and happily married and I’m having things like crushes on guys.  I found myself watching my reactions and saying to myself ‘Isn’t that interesting?  You just acted like you were 16-years-old there.  I can’t believe you said that!  Wow! Where did that come from?’  Through the course of the two years, people died, divorced, and rose to the occasion.  It was a great experience—a memorable experience.”

Wondering if you could go back to school after some time off, or a lot of time off?!  Just remember:  

“If you keep doin’ what you’ve been doin’, you’ll keep gettin’ what you’ve been gettin’!” ~ Zig Ziglar. 

You may hear your “doubting Thomas” voice as your excuse—“Do you have any idea how old I’ll be when I’ve completed that?”…the answer from the Universe comes with a thump on the head—“You’ll be as old as you would have been had you NOT completed that!”

Hari Bhajan’s poems have appeared in over 30 publications with her poem, “I Would Tell You” selected for The Best of the Web 2009.  She has been a fellow at the Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences and Associate Artist at the Atlantic Center for the Arts.

To purchase Hari Bhajan’s poetry book, “Life in Two Parts”, please go to:  http://www.mainstreetrag.com/HBKhalsa.html

When asked if she still writes poetry, she responded:  “With Poetry there are two aspects.  There’s the craft of writing a poem and then there’s being a poet and looking at life as a poet.  The actual craft expands your vocabulary.  Words you use expand in meaning and concept.  There is a beautiful respect for putting words together in a way that evokes meaning.  Being a poet is a huge thing.  I only went so far with it.  It requires such a commitment.  I think you almost have to be in a dream state.  You need to be idle to be a poet.  You need to have an immersion.  You need days, weeks, months to get into that space.  In the business world and all it involves, it’s too hard.”  Read the “Meditation to go” section for her first published poem.

I can relate to Hari Bhajan’s comment about the beautiful respect for putting words together in a way that evokes meaning.  My eldest sister read poems to me when I was young and cried many times as she read them.  Her tears over the meaning of the poems made an impression on me.  Did I feel the emotion toward the poem before she read the poems with tears or did the tears from someone I loved dearly create the emotions?  All I know is I fell in love with poems.

Poems that didn’t rhyme intrigued me the most.  I’d sit outside in my rocking lawn chair reading poems for hours when most kids my age were playing other games.  Some of my friends considered that a bit odd, but I never felt odd.  The poems became some of my closest friends connecting me to myself.  That connection is how poetry and the poets who wrote them enchriched my mind and made me think in ways I never would have otherwise.  With heartfelt gratitude to all the poets, I say “Thank you!”

“If you do not believe in magic, your life will not be magical.  Magic, like the power of Stonehenge, is part of the unknowable—that which you cannot describe, but which exists and makes your life extraordinary.” –The Power Deck, The Cards of Wisdom, by Lynn V. Andrews.

I think as a poet waiting for your muse, you have to be willing to expect magic and whimsy to play through your expression.  YOU are the poet of your life.  Your life is your poem.  What is your muse?  What inspires you?  Expect the magic.  Expect the miracle.  It needs your welcoming invite to make its appearance.  You have to prepare the way. 

Hari Bhajan took the time to immerse herself into writing poetry to find her muse.  Once she found it, she used that as a stepping stone to what was next.  Take the time to immerse yourself into finding your inspiration. Make the commitment to believe in the magic until it finds you.  Believe it and you’ll see it.

At this point you may be wondering about Hari Bhajan Khalsa’s name.  It intrigued me as well.  Hari Bhajan Khalsa is the spiritual name she received from her spiritual teacher, Yogi Bhajan, in 1973. 

“In Kundalini Yoga, the spiritual name that you receive is based on your full name, and also the numerology that is associated with your date of birth. Your spiritual name is your challenge but also your destiny. For many it is also the strength that you may not have necessarily learned to harness just yet.

Additionally, a spiritual name is based on Naad Yoga, which can be described as the power of a sound vibration.  Any time we think, speak, chant, or utter a sound, we set a new vibration into motion. That thought, word, or sound may be a vibration of high frequency that serves to elevate us and those around us, or maybe one of a lower vibration that diminishes us and others. In the case of Kundalini Yoga and spiritual names, the experience is of the former.

Each of us has experienced the powerful impact of sound when we have been on the receiving end of hurtful words that have had a lingering harsh effect on our emotional state. A spiritual name based on a high quality sound vibration reinforces and accelerates our progress for our highest destiny. It challenges us to live in highest consciousness and awareness. Your sacred name is one of your first steps in leaving past patterns behind and embracing your spiritual identity.

A spiritual name reinforces and accelerates your progress on your path to your highest destiny. Making the choice to receive a spiritual name (and using it) is taking a rebirth in consciousness. It has positive benefits every time one says it, meditates on it, or hears it.”  http://www.karmicecology.com/body/environment/patty-kikos/1072/change-your-namechange-your-life

Hari Bhajan told me that a name is something to live up to—it’s an identification.  Her name means “Song of God.”  Echoing the sentiments above that your spiritual name reinforces and accelerates your progress toward your highest destiny, she is a writer, speaker, teacher, poet, and CEO of an inspiring, educational website.  She uses her voice to help people change their lives—“Song of God” indeed.

A name representing a spiritual identity is not uncommon.  One of my yoga teachers, TeriLeigh Schmidt has studied extensively with a West African Shaman from the Dagara Tribe of Burkina Faso, Malidoma Somé.  In the Dagara Tribe there is something known as the hearing ritual—or naming ceremony.  A shaman comes in to help name a newly conceived baby speaking through the voice of the mother.  The baby communicates why they are coming this time.  They communicate their purpose for this new life.

“Malidoma” means “he who would be friends with the stranger/enemy.”  Malidoma was literally kidnapped when he was four and taken to live in the modern world until he was an adult.  When he escaped back to his tribe he was initiated and given the purpose of using his modern-world knowledge to communicate with those that were threatening the Dagara Tribe’s way of life.  He is a bridge between two worlds, a man whose self- expressed goal in life is to convey his knowledge of the spiritual life of his people to the rest of the world.

Malidoma came to the United States originally because the tribal elders said it was where he needed to be. They knew his role in life was to explain the Dagara culture, to be “swallowed” by the West, in order to teach others about the African world. http://www.answers.com/topic/malidoma-patrice-some

There are many traditions for “naming” a child or changing a name.  In Poland, where my parents were born, they name the child after the saint that is celebrated nearest the child’s date of birth fostering a spiritual connection and blessings from the saint.  Also, historically it’s been common to take your husband’s name upon marriage.

Those of us who have changed their name know that it feels different to be called by another name.  With Hari Bhajan Khalsa, or newlywed brides for that matter, the new name represents a new path.  I know from experience that when I started referring to myself as “Krzyzanowski” vs. my maiden name, “Bronicki” it felt very different.  Just as when I refer to myself as “Sandra” vs. “Sandy” there is a difference in both how I feel as well as how I construe others feel toward me.  “Sandy” evokes more warmth and familiarity.  “Sandra” feels like a wall of formality is present.  In all instances, it is an absolute honor and privilege to be part of the family that my names have come from, and I aim to live up to the legacy of my ancestors.

“’When one asks for a spiritual name, that name describes the destiny’ says Yogi Bhajan (Hari Bhajan’s teacher).  This is a particularly poignant thing to remember regardless of whether you are known by your birth name, spiritual name or even pet nickname. The manifestation of your current situation will be shaped by how people address you.” http://www.karmicecology.com/body/environment/patty-kikos/1072/change-your-namechange-your-life.

How about you?  Have you experienced what it feels like to use a different name than your birth name?  Do you have a nickname?  Do you notice how you feel when you are called one vs. the other? 

Changing your name “changes your nature because it changes your behavior.  It changes the vibration of who you are.” ~ TeriLeigh Schmidt.  Choosing to take on a spiritual name carries with it the responsibility of living in accordance with the spiritual path you have chosen.

It is traditional, for Kundalini Yoga Teachers, to wear all white and a white turban. Natural fiber clothing (cotton) allows the body to breathe and is comfortable during yoga. White is good for the body energetically and for the nervous system. Turbans, in particular, are useful for holding energy in, and for creating a meditative focus at the third eye point (brow point). This creates a focus of the functional circuit of the hemispheres, and wearing white tunes the neurological system and electromagnetic field.  Some teachers wear white and some don’t.  Some teachers wear turbans and some don’t.” http://www.kundalini-yoga-info.com/

Hari Bhajan chooses to wear white and does wear a turban.  “I don’t feel right if I have no white in my outfit.”  She echoes the wisdom of her teacher, Yogi Bhajan, when she shared:  “Don’t wear white because I tell you to, or because anyone else tells you too.  Try it for yourself. Wear it for a week and see what happens.”  In her experience, wearing white is not easy!  It can get pretty mess pretty quick!  Can you relate to that?  I feel like I’m tempting fate whenever I wear white!

I shared with Hari Bhajan that I’d read that wearing white was supposed to make you feel younger.  She responded:  “I don’t know if I feel younger or not, but I do feel clearer, cleaner, brighter.”  To which I replied, “If clearer, cleaner, brighter doesn’t define younger, I don’t know what does!”

Aside from esthetics, however, Hari Bhajan shared that “wearing white makes you move more consciously throughout your day.  You are more aware of your space in the world, more aware of your actions.  People view you differently.  You stick out more so you are aware that others are aware of your actions as well. White increases your aura by three feet so your presence becomes bigger.  It’s symbolic.  Of itself, it doesn’t change the world, but Yogi Bhajan always said all three aspects – body, mind, spirit –are involved in everything you do.” For her, taking her spiritual name as well as wearing white honors the Kundalini Yoga teacher lineage and all they stand for.  She truly embodies a connection of mind, body, and spirit—a sentiment her teacher, Yogi Bhajan imparts in his “3HO” foundation—“Happy, Healthy, Holy”.  http://www.3ho.org/kundalini-yoga/yogi-bhajan/  Also see http://yogamint.com/_webapp_3043631/Dress_for_Success for more on wearing white.

“Find the answer in your own words.  Ground yourself in the foundation of your own experience.  You cannot know something until you discover it for yourself.”  ~ Susan Woldman’s Yoga Path Cards. 

“Don’t believe what I say.  Do it.  Experience it.  This call to experience it yourself puts more on the individual to find their own truth.” ~ Hari Bhajan Khalsa. 

Hari Bhajan feels that this is why yoga and meditation are on the rise—the dawning of what many refer to as the “Aquarian Age”—an age where we are learning to rely on our own experience for our truth vs. believing what is told to you by others.  “We need a system to act consciously.”  Yoga and meditation teaches us to observe what is within and to connect with that.

So just how did Hari Bhajan meet her spiritual Kundalini Yoga teacher, Yogi Bhajan?  Her future husband found Yogi Bhajan and started to train with him.  She was not at all sure about this thing called “Kundalini Yoga”, but she was sure about the man that led her to it. (See the Chakrascope section below for more about “Kundalini”.)

She wanted something spiritual vs. hypocritical in her life.  She was resistant at first, but once she started doing Kundalini Yoga, “you can’t help but feel something shift.”  She was hungry for community.  Kundalini Yoga provided it.  Kundalini Yoga “had everything:  Spirit, community, philosophy, relationships, soul—the ‘whole shamoley’,” as she puts it.  She shared that a lot of those like her coming out of the “flower child” culture wanted a revolutionary change in consciousness.  Click here to read her account of how she went “From Hippie Chick to Kundalini Yogi”. (http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/03/inhale-up-exhale-down)

She will have been involved with Kundalini Yoga for 40 years next spring.  What a testament!

So yes, she followed her husband “ranting and raving” as she describes herself.  But she shared that her husband’s effervescent patience allowed her to learn her own lesson that—“this stuff is amazing!”  She was 21.  For the story of her transition from “ranting and raving” to “this stuff is amazing”, click here for her account on “The Summer Vacation that Wasn’t:  How My Heart Chakra Cracked open on a Hillside in Elk, CA in 1972.”  (http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/04/the-summer-vacation-that-wasnt-how-my-heart-chakra-cracked-open-on-a-hillside-in-elk-ca-in-1972)

Little has changed over the years since she married her husband in January, 1973.  She shared that she still does her share of ranting and raving and he still supports her with effervescent patience and love. Another testament!  I love to share the sentiment that marriage gets better every day.  Her blog from her wedding day in 1973 ended with “We are young. We are in love. We are beginning.” http://www.ourtruetales.com/2007/03/14/our-wedding-january-13-1973/

How about you?  Have you ever gone down a path you were unsure of but a trusted advisor suggested it?  Remember we are not in this world alone.  Our “helper guides” are always around sending us signs and giving us inspiration.  Don’t try to take it all on yourself.  Know that sometimes the Universe uses those that you love and trust to deliver just what you need until you know it for yourself.  Listen to your heart.  Trust that the Universe is on your side. 

It’s good to know there are angels in our midst—even more so when that angel is your husband (or husband-to-be). 

Finally, what you’ve all been waiting for me to cover!  Hari Bhajan’s is “Chief Enlightenment Officer”/CEO of Yogamint, LLC.  Their Website says it best:

About Yogamint.com

“Yogamint is an online spiritual spa for the body, mind and soul. Based on ancient yogic teachings and designed for the fast-pace of today, Yogamint shares information through bite-size articles, or ‘mints,’ that support and energize all aspects of your being.

Visit www.yogamint.com and sign up for your twice-weekly mints, such as: Have a big meeting in five minutes and need to relax? Smile. Did you know smiling affects your mood and tone of voice? Smiling during a conversation not only helps you feel better, but the other person feels better just by seeing and hearing your smile.

The folks at Yogamint all practice Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan. You will find that a good portion of what we share on the web site and in the newsletter is derived from this tradition. Because yoga isn’t a brand name, nor does any one group or lineage have a patent on it, and because we ourselves enjoy the fruits of many paths of wisdom, we’ll also be sharing information and inspiration from other yogic, cosmic and wellness traditions that are in harmony with our message. As for our physical location: We’re based in Los Angeles with links to New Mexico, Oregon, the U.K., New Zealand and beyond.” http://www.yogamint.com/about-us

Monthly Videos

I have found their videos to be invaluable.  The “Sign Up” box to receive their “e-mints” appears on each page of their Website, http://www.yogamint.com/.  Go subscribe now!  I’ll wait…Once you subscribe to their “e-mints”, you’ll receive a once-a-month link to a video in one of two categories:

  1. “All Kundalini” presents a meditation demonstration.
    “Your issues are in your tissues” was the July video:  http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3931238/Your_Issues_are_in_Your_Tissues, or
  2. “Food & Flow” presents a video series with vegan cooking and yoga in each monthly episode.
    “The Cool Factor” was the most recent “Food & Flow” video featuring a melon drink and a meditation/yoga practice for emotional balance:
    http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3935994/The_Cool_Factor.
    “Food & Flow” also has a Facebook page. So for more, I suggest you “friend” it!:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Food-Flow/104255402985276?v=wall&sk=wall#!/pages/Food-Flow/104255402985276?sk=wall

Both of the above videos also feature free downloads with the recipes and meditations as well as have links to recommended books for reference on the featured subject!  See the “Hand Mudra” section below for the free download that came as part of the “The Cool Factor” mudra and meditation referenced above.

Bite-size Mints, Cosmic Corner, In Depth

Your emails will also feature “bite-size articles”, or “mints” such as the one referenced earlier in this article called Get With Your Program What’s Calling You?” http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3930137/Get_With_Your_ProgramI reference these wonderful “bite-size mints” often in my newsletters. They cover topics for a healthy lifestyle.

They also have an interesting section called “Cosmic Corner” featuring topics such as the Vedic Astrology one I referenced earlier, tarot cards, or an “astral weather report” for what to expect for the month of August, for example, which appeared in a recent “e-mint”:  http://www.yogamint.com/_webapp_3931816/Ruled_by_the_Heart

Other meditations, recipes, articles, etc. are covered in their “In Depth” article section:  http://www.yogamint.com/in-depth/all

Whenever you need a moment of refresh-mint, go to the Yogamint Website and click on any mint, article or video and see what you get! Or use the “search” box and look up a topic of your choice.  It’s easy and fun to investigate all that Yogamint has to offer! The challenge will be to stop at one topic!

I promise you’ll love your subscription so much, you’ll be recommending it to friends!  (http://www.yogamint.com/tell-a-friend).    

Teach in a classroom?  Health Practitioner in a clinic?

  1. The supportive, friendly folks at Yogamint will provide a set of free “elevate” postcards featuring one of their “mints”/articles to hand out to your students or clients.  The back side has beautiful graphics with the “Yogamint” yogi in lotus position, hands at “Namaste”/prayer position, and the heading “elevate”. 

  2. Add their widget to your website, which will connect your visitors to one of the many “bite-size mints/article” referenced above:http://www.yogamint.com/widget.html
  3. Use their “mint/articles” as content for your newsletters or blogs or print them out as handouts for your students or clients.  Yogamint invites you to share their content!

Coming soon:  Yogamint Ambassador program!

If you are a teacher in a classroom, or a health practitioner in a clinic, become an advocate of Yogamint and receive soon-to-be-announced perks and benefits of the program.  I would be an advocate without the perks!  So I, for one, can’t wait to see what the generous, supportive, friendly, fantastic Yogamint folks will come up with!  Stay tuned!

Sat Nam

I mentioned earlier that “Sat Nam” is a popular mantra that is used in Kundalini Yoga.  I’ve referred to this mantra in past newsletters. Hari Bhajan uses it as a greeting in her communications as well.  It evoked such a warm feeling of having been blessed when she used it to greet me—surrounding me like a warm hug.  It means “Truth is my identity” or, “I honor your identity and the truth within you all.”

I’ve read that chanting “Sat Nam” awakens the soul and give you your identity as well as balances the five elements (sometimes referred to as: fire, water, earth, mineral, and nature—there are many philosophies that refer to the elements).  In closing my wonderful visit with Hari Bhajan, I asked her to speak to how the recitation of “Sat Nam” has influenced her life:

“I am so grateful for your bringing this up and grateful to Yogi Bhajan for bringing the teachings here.”  She emphasized Yogi Bhajan always said he came to create teachers, making it clear she didn’t “worship” him, nor did he ask his students to.  He shifted a culture of non-awareness.  She and others like her were “so hungry to have the tools.  You need something to sustain you.  ‘Sat Nam’ is two syllables—innocuous—but those two syllables hold the whole world.  Your truth, my truth, identity is truth, the infinite truth, you and I—we are one.  Yogi Bhajan said ‘If you can’t see God in all, you can’t see God at all’.  Having that simple tool—‘Sat Nam’, or writing it, affects you.  Many of us use the “f” word without even thinking about it.  What does it really mean?  Think about THAT.  I’m not judging—been there done that.  Saying ‘Sat Nam’ affects you.  I am grateful for having it in my life.  It is like a gem, a jewel, a diamond to wear.  Gemstones have (energetic) affects—that word/phrase is like a gemstone.  How beautiful.

Hari Bhajan ended with words of encouragement—telling me to keep on doing what I’m doing—that there is no big or bigger. (I had referred to Yogamint being so much bigger then what I’m doing) and she said “everything you do ripples out.”  You have to love this lady!

Today I received another poignant “refresh-mint” from Yogamint that included the same sentiment:  “Every person you touch with a generous act or mannerly deed may potentially pay that kindness forward.  Although unknown to you, the goodwill you send out today will return back to you tomorrow. You may have learned manners in kindergarten, but being polite goes a long way at any age!”

Hari Bhajan Khalsa, you are the gem.  You are an inspiration!  It has been my honor and privilege to have had the opportunity to interview you.  You have touched my heart with your openness and sharing.  I have been so very blessed to have had this small glimpse into your life.  From the bottom of my heart, I say “Thank you!  Sat Nam and Namaste!”