Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Learning to Let Go...

Everyone comes to this practice from a different place. We bring our own bag of "stuff" with us. Being in Mysore is always an interesting metaphor for the practice itself, as everyone shows up with their "luggage". Some have many bags and others have only one, and each bag contains entirely different contents from the others. We all come from different places all over the world, and yet, we enter this practice from the same place: because when it comes right down to it, all we have is ourselves. We each have to struggle to identify the kinds of lenses we are wearing that impair us from seeing Reality as it is. We have to look into our bag of stuff and find out what we've brought with us that only weighs us down, or holds us back, and prevents us from being who we really are. If we are fortunate enough to realize how to release one aspect of our pathology, there is always another level of surrender that awaits, and we are in a continual process of trying to shed each layer we've brought with us... We are all in the process of Learning to Let Go.

It makes one think though... What is it that I'm carrying around with me that inhibits me from truly experiencing and connecting with other people and places? How many times do I judge, comment, criticise or compare unneccessarily? When we let go of our own baggage, we become more open and accepting of other people and paths, because we are less weighed down with old preconcived ideas and beliefs. It is a long journey back to our true selves, but I have a feeling that in the end we'll end up in a place that feels more like "home" then anywhere else.

At the Green Hotel on Sunday morning for the weekly Green Market. A photo of the Calgarian Yoginis here in Mysore, and our "Adopted Canadian" friend Caroline from England - just to remind us of our "Imperial Heritage!"
Tea and Cucumber Sandwiches anyone?

An interesting view of a more traditional way of carrying firewood home... plus a token cow eating out of the garbage in the background!

Happy Birthday Princess Tiana!
We were invited to the Indian Song House to celebrate our friend's special day.
The food was amazing, and the company spectacular! A great time was had by all!

Just another day at Coffee Day - the local "new age" coffee shop in Gokulum:
"A lot can happen over coffee!"

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Old Friends and Mysore Musings!

Biker Chick and the new helmet look! (Compliments of the new Indian Government helmet law which is in effect from January 2007) Jeff is giving me driving lessons, so I'm on my way to becoming an full on "biker-babe"! Look out India!

Pete purchasing oil in the market with our "new friends" who have guaranteed us unlimited incense for the entire time we are in Mysore! If you want to find some fantastic incense and oil head to the Mysore market and look for their shop!

Jeff and Colin at the Chai Stand on Colin's last day in Mysore... We miss you already buddy!

Our Local Chai Stand in Gokulum
Where you can often find us chill'n for a morning chat & chai.

We have arrived in Mysore! It's good to be back... it feels a bit like we never left!
It's funny how it is when you get somewhere that just feels like home - all the people and places seem to have a friendly familiar feeling about them, and each greeting encloses a happy reunion within it.

We arrived here about a week ago, just in time to have a cup of chai with our good friend Colin before he was to head back to the winter-wonderland of Calgary, Canada. Although it was a short visit, we had a fabulous time catching up with him and hearing about all his adventures through India. We now have the good fortune of meeting up with Pete. He is at the end of his journey throughout Southeast Asia, and is visiting us for 3 days before he also flies back to Calgary. Enjoy the Snow you guys!

We are busy settling into our apartment in Mysore, and getting back into the routine of practicing with Guruji (Sri K. Pattabhi Jois). Sunday will be our first led-intermediate class and I'm sure it will be challenging to say the least! We have a new bike that we are motoring around on, and we're sporting new helmets as well, as there is a new helmet law in Mysore!
One of the road signs here says it best: "Safety First Speed Next"

Overall, we've been having a most enjoyable time of catching up with old and new friends from all over the world. There are so many students here right now, and everyone is very pleasant and friendly. The energy in the shala is incredible. Guruji is vibrant. And Sharath and Saraswati are very busy, but still find time to make jokes and have a little laugh. It is a real blessings to be here amongst such wonderful people and dedicated students. It feels great to be back!

Monday, January 08, 2007

Inspiration In Every Cup!

Our Favorite Morning Spot with the Big Soft Cozy Chairs where we send emails from!

Ready for our Morning Coffee!

Hello 2007!

We are looking forward to a fantastic year!!

We had planned to head off to Korea, but due to some last minute and unforeseen circumstances our trip was cancelled. This has left us in Bangkok waiting to receive our visas from the Indian Embassy, so that we can get to Mysore.

The “New Years Bombings”, which some of you may have heard about, apparently made Bangkok one the worst places to be hanging out in, (thank goodness we don’t watch the news!). But don’t worry we are keeping a low profile (a coffee shop profile to be exact).

So on a positive note, as far as we can see, it is business as usual in Bangkok. It’s 28 degrees, sunny, and a great New Year! We have a clean, spacious and affordable hotel that is within walking distance to a cute, cozy, little two-level Starbucks (sorry to disappoint our activist friends), where we can do our emailing, so life is great!

Of course the extra security guards do add a little comic relief, searching our handbags prior to entering the movie theatre seems to be of top priority, but other than this you really wouldn’t notice anything out of the ordinary.

Finally, we will be heading off to Mysore in 3 more days and we are definitely looking forward to this! Time to get back around Guruji and the juice of the practice... We will send more updates from our practices with Guruji in India.

Love From Bangkok - The Oriental City!

Jeff & Harmony