Asheville...driving in the car windows rolled down, breeze blowing, radio off. Mountain air. Energy. Pulsating. Blue sky. Clear mind. No-thought. No time. Boundless. Centered. Just the moment. Chanting. This was one of my earliest experiences of bhakti yoga- each month I'd immerse myself in 3 days of group chanting to my teacher’s guitar sing along … Continue reading Chanting & Altered States
Why is Bhakti yoga special? Hidden from the glamour of the modern yoga world, you won’t find it in the insta-famous posts of sexy bendy bods, and it isn’t intelligent or scientific. Except that it is. Because all yoga is experimental. And Bhakti lets us experiment with a phenomenon that we’re just waking up to … Continue reading What’s so Special About Bhakti Yoga?
This morning I received a message on social media from a man warning me that several of his friends had 'OD-d' on kirtan & that I needed to be careful and stay balanced. Although it caught me off guard (I'm pretty confident I'm grounded with this devotional stuff) the urgent tone of his message got … Continue reading Can You OD on Kirtan?
A few days ago while on a job interview my I looked down & noticed my thumb shaking. In the past this would have spiraled me into more anxiety. But this time I had a relaxation tool- japa meditation (silent repetition of a mantra). Quietly to myself I repeated my mantra and I watched in … Continue reading 4 Beautiful Reasons To Fall in Love With Chanting
My first night in Mudhuban, India a deep emotion struck me. As everyone entered the room & gathered for kirtan, some people in the group sat far off to the left and a few others together to the right but no one had chosen to sit next to me. It was a familiar theme. Space. … Continue reading Meeting My Inner Parvati
I am fascinated with the art of surrender. From totally yielding in child's pose to rolling with the punches of 'failure,' to bowing & saying 'namaskar' to a stranger, to surrendering the human voice to mystical repetition of Sanskrit syllables. Surrender is the main reason I love chanting. The first thing I do when a … Continue reading The Gift of Surrender
I don't know about you, but when I was a kid I saw god as an old man in the sky with a white beard & white robe. God didn't feel safe, fun, or loving. He felt...distant, unknown, scary. My few attempts at churchgoing were met with 'Sure you can join us as long as … Continue reading Why I Love Hindu Deities
My first time chanting was mystical. I was about 22, had been woken up at 5am and led out in the Arizona desert with 50 women on a white tantra retreat called "Womanheart". Surrounded by the red rocks & beautiful music playing in the background, we chanted together "wahe guru, wahe guru, wahe guru, wahe … Continue reading The Power of Chanting