Yoga Category

As a gym junkie and weight warrior, I resisted yoga for nearly five years before I allowed it to flow into my life with ease. I went to five different classes, was led by five different teachers and walked out on five different occasions feeling as if yoga was really “not for me”. I now realize in retrospect that I was simply not yet ready for what this ancient practice could bring. I was resisting the true nature of what yoga represented and was saying “no” to the stillness IRead More
This old purple mat, ripped at the edges and stained with my sweet sweat, is my playpen. You see, though I am all “grown up”, I love to play. I like to play outside, in parks, on swing sets, and when I dance with friends. But most of all, I like to play at yoga. The studio is my playpen. That old sweaty mat is my wonderland. And this is your introduction to a whole new realm of yoga, where we step out of the rigidity and into that innerRead More
Joy can be a foreign feeling for a childhood trauma survivor. The idea of experiencing joy is approached with skepticism and mistrust. Joy is something you read about and hope to find one day. Looking back on my life, I realize that I spent most of it fragmented and out of my body, often as though I was looking down from above. I don’t have many memories of my childhood, because I wasn’t “present” for much of it. It was safer not to be present, not to feel. In orderRead More
Soon after I found out I was pregnant, my doctor advised me not to play volleyball as the contact could be dangerous and to stop running because I have exercise induced asthma. I have always led an active lifestyle and was initially discouraged about having to discontinue activities that I love. Thankfully she did not tell me to stop practicing yoga and instead encouraged it as ‘an excellent form of exercise during pregnancy’. And so as my body has expanded over the past eight months, so has my yoga practice.Read More
As a yoga instructor going through a breakup, feeling completely heartbroken, I was preaching poses and pranayama from the deepest depths of “rock bottom”. This is the story of how the aching heart, vulnerability, shame and sadness of losing love, can reveal our most hidden gifts and support systems – how falling into the darkness enables us to pick our head up out of the sand and learn to look inside and access our strengths that we know are there. What is renewal? In our personal lives, many of usRead More
For my entire life, I have been at war. I survived abuse and trauma, beginning in my early childhood. Rather than fighting back, I turned the battle inwards. I figured I deserved what I got, or was simply born “bad” and had to be punished. I tried to destroy myself, plunging head-first into the world of anorexia.  I punished my body by withholding food, and pushed it to its limits through exercise.  As my body shut down, so did my mind. I successfully numbed away all feelings and memories ofRead More

Posted On January 21, 2013By Parvati MagazineIn February 2013 - Wanting, Yoga

Yoga: Yoga and Sexuality, by Parvati Devi

Contrary to a popular misconception, Tantra and sacred sexuality are not the same. In fact, tantra as a whole does not condone the use of sexuality while on the spiritual path. But not everyone is meant to be a hard-core yogi where celibacy is usually considered essential. Most often, people wish to find a more integrated approach to their spirituality and their modern, family life. So where does sex fit into that? If we were deeply honest with ourselves and looked courageously into the recesses of our psyche, we wouldRead More
Home means many things to me. As far as I can remember, I have felt like the world was my home. I speak several languages and feel comfortable in many cultures, with varied people. Perhaps it is no coincidence that my name is Parvati, daughter of the earth. I feel very connected to this planet in a cellular, soulful and spiritual way. I am not much of a homebody, in that I have traveled a lot and lived out of a backpack for much of my adult life. But IRead More
I was asked by a yoga practitioner, who had a background of rigorous, “orthodox” asana practice, about how to know if it is truly the right time for her to change her practice. Anything in our lives can become binding. We can feel joyfully free while jogging, later to find that running feels like a constrictive chore. We can find freedom in the new yoga classes we just adore, to later find that we are bored with the teacher and the routines. We can experience heights of bliss never beforeRead More

Posted On October 17, 2012By Parvati MagazineIn November 2012 - Gratitude, Yoga

Yoga: Alignment with Grace, by Parvati Devi

We tend to think of painful things as mistakes and the good stuff as luck. Or perhaps we think of the stuff we like as grace, a gift from beyond, and things we don’t like as a curse. However we choose to see the moment and understand our life, at some point we ask, what is grace? Do we have control over it? How can we amplify it? Where does it come from? Grace to me is an expression of an alignment between our Nature Body (the physical, emotional, intellectual andRead More