Sunday, 9 December 2012

New Grooves

I have recently begun a 15 month study of the Bhagavad Gita. A gita is a song and this gita is a dialogue between man and the divine on the battlefield of life. The Bhagavad Gita is called the universal book of guidance because even though it is a Hindu text, it has been studied by historians, scientists, scholars, religious people, and laymen of all religions and cultures. The Gita is a book of guidance to help an ordinary man become greater, stronger, and more self-realized.

The Bhagavad Gita can bring an inner transformation in my life because I am refining my values and virtues through the study process. When I focus my mind on virtues of fearlessness, purity of being, steadfastness in yoga and knowledge, giving, self-restraint, sacrifice, absence of slander, freedom from pride and so on, I can deepen my patience and peace and be closer to my own breath and to God. Scriptural study of all traditions is valuable.

Also, my business is called the Yogic Diet and I am a life coach and a yoga teacher. I teach people about healthy diet, positive lifestyle, and law of attraction thinking.  I am hoping to end my own personal battles with food and body issues as well and I believe that I am getting much closer to doing that. May the Gita give me courage, strength, and wisdom to quiet those old patterned samskaras, develop new positive grooves, and help my students let go of those shackles as well.

Some positive new grooves I'm working on: Nine months ago I stopped eating sugar realizing that it triggers me to eat too much. And recently, I let go of eating wheat and all flours seeing that they trigger me as well. Wow, what a difference that makes! I feel so blessed to be able to NOTICE how what I take in affects me and to take heed, to listen to my body's divine wisdom. My body is like, "Girl, sugar, wheat, and flour turn you into a crackhead. Just say no."

Dancing on and on,

Sunday, 18 November 2012

A Noble Undertaking

"For fear of obstacles, low-spirited people do not begin anything at all. Ordinary people begin things but stop when the first difficulties arise. But the best of men, though repeatedly felled by adversities, do not abandon a noble undertaking." - Bhartrihari

Eating a yogic diet is a noble undertaking. Eating a diet that is gentle on the digestive and nervous systems is critical for feeling highly energetic and being physically and emotional well. "Yogic" diet may sound so severe like one would have to live on air, carrots, and grasses, but that is not the truth. The truth is that too much animal protein, animal fat, sugar, wheat, and processed food are making people ill. A yogic diet is a move toward increasing water, herbal teas, fruits, dried fruits, vegetables, and plant protein like beans and nuts. A move like this could be a sensation and experience of heaven on earth. It's just a move, a shift.

But changing what we eat is only half of the equation. We also have to change what we think. Is my life based around building values and examining my life's situations in order to bring a positive approach for change or am I wasting my time, distracting myself, and trying to escape? The problem is that when we escape by over-eating, drinking, overdosing on TV and facebook, or compulsively shopping, our problems do not go anywhere. In fact, our problems grow each time we don't face them. Yogic practices of meditation, contemplation, positive thinking, self study, hatha yoga, and eating a yogic diet can bring us back to the noble undertaking of building the values, character, integrity, and mental fortitude that we need to be victorious on the battlefield of life.

We all want the same things: energy, health, vitality, beauty, radiance, abundance, patience, security, self-confidence, trust in the universe, and overflowing love. Yoga is a system that can take us toward these sacred goals. Reaching for these high energy qualities and steady practices is a very noble undertaking.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Shake It Until You Make It

We weren't sent to the earth as a punishment.
We are here to find and spread the light.
And this the freedom we seek
Is in this very moment now.

If your life doesn't have deep creativity in it
It's time to shake it loose
Roll your neck around. Your face, arms, body shake it. Dance.
Shake it until you make it and it's ok to break it!

Find your light, your love, your clarity.
Give it away in charity.
And then people will cry at your funeral
As a soul who touched so many.

And her hand went onto my back heart chakra
And I felt the comfort there. Support.
And I knew that this is what we all need
Light. Love. Laughter. Touch.

The energy is sent in increments from the Divine
When asked for. Begged for.
Please help me God!
All our prayers heard. Miracles are real.

Jesus, Buddha, St. Francis,
Shape-shifters, Stigmatas.
The same soul is in you and me.
You. Far wiser, vaster, and deeper than your burdens or beliefs.


Monday, 14 May 2012

My Worst Mistake

I love and approve of myself. This is the teaching from Louise Hay that I have eaten and digested. I love and approve of myself. Finally, thank God. I love and approve of myself.

My mind wants to lament over the rotting potato on the kitchen counter. The knotty, wrinkled, expired, fleshy potato. A missed opportunity. You, my little potato friend, could have been a contender. But no. Here you rot. Then I notice a little bit of life shooting and sprouting up toward the sun. A paradigm shift. You are actually victorious! Regardless of your aged look. You are still full of life and longing and on a great adventure. The lamenting turns to laughter. I actually do love and approve of myself! And I approve of you too little potato head! I rejoice in all of life. Sad and desperate at times, but beautiful and thriving as well. Stopping to judge and then relaxing into acceptance. I am ready. Ready to be molded and shaped by destiny. Thank God. The critical mind moving toward the compassionate heart.

Yesterday I was thinking about what is the worst mistake I ever made? An answer popped up, then another and another. So, I went with the first.

When I was in high school, I wrecked my mom's 280ZX and sustained painful injuries myself. Left largely alone to recuperate after. By myself. I hurt myself. Confused feelings. Mother issues. Unworthiness issues. Self-pitying issues. I ate. It was Halloween and I knocked out every single candy bar in the whole tray. I punished. Though, it felt like I was sucking on a pacifier. Pacifying my pain, loneliness, guilt, and sadness.

Here we go again. Close to the doom...and then the light. So what? So what if I ate and ate for all those years. So what if my cheeks got chubby and my tummy ached. That was the past. My tummy feels good now, most of the time. And so what if I slip and make mistakes? So what if food can still be my favorite pacifier. I love and approve of myself.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Perfect Body

What is your idea of a perfect body? One of my yoga students said, "Jennifer Aniston!"

Well, that's true...there's no denying it. I get into comparing my body to others sometimes and to messages of the media of a perfect skinny, hipless beauty. When a friend told me about how liposuction finally solved her issue of big hips, I have to admit that I paused. Cogitate, cogitate, cogitate.

But we are talking about a really "perfect" body. And, it seems, a perfect body would be a body that one felt very comfortable, happy, and easy being in. A body that isn't stiff, isn't tired, isn't overly heavy, isn't plagued with pain, suffering, or disease. A body that is relatively relaxed, fit, hydrated, and healthy. The bones, skin, muscles, internal organs, blood flow, and cellular regeneration all working as Nature intended.

 So do you have a perfect body?

If not, try some of these:
- Lots of fruits and vegetables
- Lots of water and Herbal Teas
- Beans, Nuts, Yogurt, Whole Grains, and other plant protein
- Balanced blood sugar
- Deep breathing
- Regular Yoga
- Relaxation Exercises
- Meditation
- Positive Thinking

See if you can enjoy a heaven on earth experience right here in this body!

Namaste, Monique

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Everything Happens for a Reason

Everything happens for a reason. Everything happens for the best. Everything happens for our own upliftment. This is a cornerstone teaching of yoga. But how can that be in a world where so much seems so wrong? We know the facts: we are born, we learn and grow, we enjoy much and sometimes suffer much, we create worlds and destroy them, we experience life with others and much time alone, we watch as the world seems to fall a part at times and then as it all comes together such as after September 11th. Doors open and they close; people are cherished and hurt. We experience both health and disease. One day these bodies die. The yogis say that the purpose of life is to know God and to serve. We experience karmic lessons to take us deeper and closer to this purpose. Sometimes these lessons are very painful. Pain can be a very effective tool for our learning. By facing the pain, our hearts can be transformed toward a more loving, giving, responsible, patient, selfless, and compassionate state. No one said it would be easy. Can you see in your own life that everything did/does happen for a reason? Your life experiences helped to bring you closer to God, to your own healing, to your own heart, to the hearts of others, and to service. Or maybe for now you're a bit stuck in blame. Others, your parents, your spouse or children, your government, the media, your health, the democrats and/or the republicans, or the evil behavior of others have caused your troubles. We learn all that we need to in good time. May our lessons be learned with grace, inner strength, and understanding. Namaste, Monique

Monday, 9 January 2012

Happy New Year 2012!

Happy New Year 2012 to you.

I hope your holidays were filled with blessings and love and that this new year holds great promise and happiness for you and your loved ones.

I want to share with you an account of some of our blessings of 2011:

1. We started our new year on a junk boat on a river near Hanoi, Vietnam. It was pretty amazing. However, January 2011 also surprised me with some health issue. Fortunately, I was able to heal with vitamin supplements, a more balanced diet, and positive thinking. Louise Hay says that the emotional root of anemia is a "yes, but" attitude, lack of joy, fear of life, and not feeling good enough. So, I repeated her affirmation, "It is safe for me to experience joy in every area of my life. I love life." I repeated this as a gardener sowing seed after seed into the fertile earth of my beliefs. Now, I am well.

2. In February 2011, my yogi friend Tomasz and I held our first Yogic Diet Retreat in Bali. It was blessed, perfect, powerful, and delicious. Every participant experienced life changes...from the reduced size of their waistlines to the improved quality of their marriages and beyond. Our next retreat in Bali is April 9-14, 2012. We still have room for more and we really hope you can make it. A yoga retreat is much more than a vacation. It is a true turning point in your life. Check for details.

3. During the rest of the spring, we had a beautiful Chinese themed birthday party for my daughter who turned seven. So many cherished friends helped make it fancy and special. My son turned ten and his whole class slept over on his birthday. It was a total blast. Our family also experienced so much love as we were bade farewell by our dear community in Indonesia.

4. We traveled back to the US for the summer. We caught up with friends and family and also took a yoga family retreat together. This retreat has become one of the highlights of our summer.

5. At the end of August, our family had a smooth move to Kuwait for my husband's job. It is a different world here in many ways. Camels, desert, ultra conservative clothing, the wild west highways, and an interesting first world veneer on a mostly third world country. And though it is natural to see, feel, and at times resist the differences, I believe our family has settled down now and that we will begin to feel more at ease and find more in common with the people here.

I would love to hear back from you about some of YOUR 2011 blessings. I would even love to post them for all of those who follow the yogic diet posts to read.

I believe that when we count our blessings, that we make more space in our lives for greater abundance. Again, we are shifting our focus from what we may not feel is right in our lives to what we do actually want.

And what I want is for you to have a very happy, a very blessed, and a very soothing new year.