Blog Archives

Green With LOVE

The heart is the home base of everything. It is a source for the love- giving and receiving. Its energetic counterpart is the fourth chakra, the heart chakra (Anahata), all located at chest center partner to the heart and lungs. If there is a block or imbalance with the heart chakra, physical issues with the heart and lungs occur: hypertension, respiratory ailments, or upper back and shoulder pain, emotional insensitivity, depression, sadness, resentment, or dependency on outside stimuli may be a temptation to cope (drugs, alcohol, food, etc). When in balance, openly giving, receiving, and feeling love flourish. Compassion grows. Holding space for others can occur, without taking on their experience. Letting go of living in the past is released: sadness, resentment. We can live in the present- forgive, move forward from a place of emotional empowerment.
heart chakra
The Heart Chakra is the link between the first three chakras: 1st- Root (safety, security); 2nd- Sacral (creativity, sexuality); 3rd- Solar Plexus (personal power, identity); and the three higher chakras: 5th- Throat (expression); 6th- Third Eye (intuition); and the 7th- Crown, (relationship to spirit).

Heart health is vital for our physical well being. Without proper spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical health, everything becomes imbalances. Nutrition in specific plays a vital role. Chakras 1-3 are fueled by protein, fats, and carbohydrates. The heart thrives on macronutrients, especially those found in green vegetables. The vibrational energy from greens nourishes our growth, expansiveness, and ability to open in all directions. Parsley in particular, has the very high concentration of chlorophyl- a potent disease fighter. I eat it to reap the benefits of blood purification, blood vessel health, and antioxidant. It is an ingredient I incorporate into everything from smoothies, salads, soups, sauces, and of course, as a garnish that I love to eat. Something to consider next time you prepare a plate is that foods that share colors with the chakras, carry energy that activates or balances them. When I learned this, I looked at my meals in a whole new light.

Here are some ideas for green vegetables good for the heart. I’ve also included green fruits and herbs as they deliver heart goodness as well. Choose non-gmo and organic for your heart and for mother earth:
green veggie heartavocados, green apples, grapes, pears, kiwi, arugula, bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, chard, collards, dandelion greens, green onions, kale, leeks, lettuce, mustard greens, peas, peppers, snap peas, spinach, sprouts, watercress, and zucchini.

Below is a recipe that I make as my homage to mine and your heart. A little over two years ago, my dad had a massive heart attack, caused by stress and lifestyle choices. His heart was severely damaged. We were told that it would be a tough road ahead and survival after the incident was not in his favor. It has been everything but easy for my family and in specific, my dad. From the time it has happened, he has made huge choices that get credit for surviving. I dedicate this to my Pops and from my heart to yours. The recipe is vegan, dairy, and gluten-free, but the ingredients can easily be customized to include parmesean cheese and whole wheat pasta instead of nutritional yeast and rice pasta or soba noodles. I hope you enjoy this. Salud!

GREEN WITH LOVE KALE PARSLEY PESTO & PASTA

kale parsley pesto

 

Pesto:
Kale, 1 bunch (curly, lacinato, yogi’s choice), destemmed & prepped into smaller pieces.
Flat Leaf Parsley leaves, 1 bunch
Raw Walnuts, 1 cup
Garlic Cloves- 4
Nutritional Yeast, 1 cup
2 Lemons, juiced
Olive Oil, 1- 1.5 cups
Salt, 1/2 tsp
Pepper, 1 tsp
Red Pepper flakes, good pinch (optional)

 

kale parsley pesto & pasta

 

 

Pasta:
Rice noodle pasta, or Soba Noodles
Sun Dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil, drained & chopped
Broccoli crowns + stems, 2 Cups, chopped
Lg Carrots, 2 (peeled)
Olives (yogis choice), rough chopped
Pasta water or chicken broth, 1/4 Cup

Equipment:
Blendtec, Vitamix, Food processor, or strong blender*
Large pot
Pasta strainer
Small size prep bowl (for carrots)
Tongs

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

Pesto:
1) In a blender, add in this order: kale, parsley, walnuts, garlic, nutritional yeast, lemon juice about a 1/2 cup of the olive oil, salt, pepper, and optional red pepper flakes. Pulse this together a few times to break down all the roughage.

2) Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of blender jar [while the blender is off].

3) Add in the remainder of the olive oil. I use the ‘Sauces’ setting on my Blendtec. Allow Blendtec to run its course. For regular blenders, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to find the equivalent.

4) Pour into mason jar. Enjoy right away or store in the fridge. It will keep for some time. Each time you use some from the jar, pour olive oil on top to prevent the pesto from turning brown from exposure to air. You will need about 1 cup of pesto for the pasta recipe.

Pasta:
1) Prepare pasta according to package instructions.

2) While pasta is cooking, shave carrots with a vegetable peeler into a prep bowl and set aside.

3) Drain and rinse pasta. Reserve some of the water used to cook pasta.

4) In the pot used to prepare pasta, add in a olive oil or coconut oil. Add in broccoli and lightly heat through for a few minutes. Cook longer if you prefer it not so raw.
Remove the broccoli from the heat to your bowl of carrots you have set aside.
Remove the pot off the hot burner you just cooked on.

5) Add the pasta, carrots, broccoli, sun-dried tomatoes, and olives to the pasta. Add the reserved pasta water or broth to the pasta to help pull apart the pesto. Toss gently with a tongs until the pesto has become saucy and the veggies are dispersed evenly. Serve and eat right away!

Tip: I almost always add in extra greens to this dish. I usually take about a cup of chopped greens: arugula (fav!) or spinach and fold that into my personal plate of of pasta.

I measure my pasta portion according to an ayurvedic eating tip I learned from my friend, Melina Meza. Take your hands to prayer (anjali mudra or palm to palm), then open your hands and make a bowl shape. This is the portion I use as a guideline. I don’t include the additional greens I added, only because they are so small in terms of volume, but so nutritionally potent.

 

 

GONG baby GONG!

Every new year, goals, weight-loss, and becoming healthier are the buzz conversations that circulate. We are motivated by the beginning of a new year as it is symbolic of a clean slate. We get a chance to start a-new, rekindle old goals, and set new ones. For most, this motivation dies off by month two for many reasons. The most common is we allow our lives to become busy, jaded by the excuses of our commitments when in reality we have full control over everything in our life. Its called the power of choice. We all have the ability to determine what we want to do and when- even when we think we aren’t able to. We create made up limitations that create real-life obstacles that block what could possibly flourish.

Setting goals need to be realistic. Setting goals that are huge are great!! Goals are supposed to be big and challenge us to step up and take ourselves to the next level. When they are big or outside of what we are comfortable with, it can be really exciting. But… the problem is that too often, the goals fall flat. They are way too big! Beyond that, we have habits that hinder and goals aren’t set up so that they are in support of the final result. In other words, there is no process and we get locked into being really comfortable. If you want to run a marathon, you must plan better than buying kick-ass running shoes, marking a date on a calendar, and training in when its convenient. Good luck with that!

With all goals, everything must be in alignment. Having proper alignment involves digging deeper into what you are working towards. If I want to run a marathon, aside from training, I’m going to not just need to create a training schedule, but I will need smaller marker goals to chip away at- 5k, 10k, and so on. In addition to this, I will have to look at my nutrition. If I’m eating garbage all day, my performance will illustrate this. Having support is also key. We can’t go at it alone. Enroll others who have your back. Share your desires so you can be held accountable. Trust me, when you put it something out there that you want to happen, people will remember… especially if your goal was big enough.

Mi familia

The second point I’ll make is that most goals are set from a limited mind-set tinged with deprivation and or negativity. Food and weight-loss are big goals for many and often focus on what can’t be had versus what can. It creates a sense of loss and can leave a feeling of punishment or exclusion that sets up failure.

Last, envision what you want. Live everyday from the perspective that you have met your goal. A positive plan plus proper alignment is the meaning of manifestation. Without this, its just an illusion in disguise of a goal. This crowds out distractions and helps promote positive behavior, achieving a goal, and often times a bonus of integrating a new habit. Win!

(How adorable are my niece & nephew?!!)

One of my best friends introduced me to the GONG concept, created by the magnificent Drs. Pedram Shojai of the Health Bridge Show. The GONG is a 100 day commitment that helps change habits. Changing habits is the catalyst to shifting behavior to help goals take shape. It doesn’t cost anything, no magic pills, nothing like that.

The way it works… You commit to a list of [positive] things that are in alignment with you- your nature, interests, life, body, mind, and spirit. The list can be anything- sleep, nutrition, self-care routine, reading, cooking, exercising, meditation, massage, drinking water. Sounds simple, right? Here’s the challenge… If you miss any of commitments, you start the GONG over! The reason is because this interferes with the commitment you’ve made to yourself. Too often we aren’t a priority. We pack in full days of work and obligations, but most times, the things we overwhelm ourselves really have nothing to do with taking care of ourselves. This changes that.

I have to say that I am really good with my own self-care routine. I’ve learned over the years through trial and error what works and what doesn’t. Now, my daily life has space for personal time, self care, and a healthy balance of work. That said, there is always room for growth. This year, I am raising the ceiling on my self-care and I’ll share with you my own GONG. Some things on the list are not anything crazy, but are worth it to list as way to help me stay on track and crowd out any detractions. I’m on day 21 with 79 to go. So far, so good!

I hope this inspires you to create realistic goals that through the process, crowd out habits that hold you back. Please leave your comments in below. I’d love to hear from you.

Isabelle Casey

My GONG:

1) Drink 2L Water

2) Stimulants- Coffee and Vino- Weekends only. I find that when I do drink a glass of vino during the week, I am completely thrown off and coffee dehydrates me and I forget to drink water.

3) Meditate first thing. I have a daily practice, but so often I would get caught up doing other things- dog walk, email check in, laundry. Now its first thing as my head is clear pallette.

4) Creative daily exercise [outside of daily yoga asana practice]. Walking, hiking, body weight exercises, and even doing old skool Jane Fonda calisthenics.

5) Read an inspirational blog or article everyday

6) 10 minutes of sunshine daily. When its not, I pretend it is and go out anyway.

7) Read 1 book a month

8) Floss daily

9) Body oiling- morning and night. Before, I only did this at night or after a shower.

10) Monthly massage, colonics, facials, nail and [as needed] hair appointments. I schedule all of these in advance so I stay on track… including the colonics!

11) In bed by 10pm, except Friday nights. I stay up as late as 12am sometimes. I know, I know… I’m cRaZy!!

12) No processed food: I mostly make everything from scratch, with the exception of my rice chips. I think I’ll live without them. :)

13) Probiotics everyday: raw sauerkraut. Super easy to make and way better than a supplement!

​14) Be 10 minutes early to appointments​

​15) End yoga classes on time. I’ve fallen into a trap of going 5 minutes over. My excuse is that students come in late, so I end up starting late. Times are a-changing!

16) An apple a day

 

Update: even though it’s hard- I am sticking with my GONG, and if I fall down- I pick myself right back up!

Slow Down!

A few months ago, I was at a yoga event where I ran into someone I hadn’t seen for quite some time. We had an extremely short exchange. I said, ‘hello, how’s it going’. They responded, “so busy. I’m really busy teaching. Just really busy”. In about 1 minute, they were able to sum up all their commitments, then hurry off to take their yoga class. Beside the fact that there was so much irony being at a yoga event where regardless of the yoga topic being presented, the common denominator is to pay attention. To pay attention means slow down. Paying attention means that details are considered. All sorts of subtleties are revealed. We move slower, actively listen, and most important pay attention to what is actually happening in the present moment without time traveling. Worth even more of a mention, the space in between events is acknowledged which means the quality of the experiences we are having increase.

I often stress the importance of creating space in life… This is especially important this time of year when we tend to over-book in attempt to close off the year without carrying the past over into the new year. Without a doubt, space will show up in life if we make room for it. Space allows us to expand, explore, get rooted, and stabilize. Space is the catalyst for wellbeing. Without space, the density of stagnation is what sets the foundation for the manifestation of disease and pain. Without space, it is impossible to be present for the ones we love, especially if we are not prioritizing ourselves.

Isabelle CaseyQuality increases when we slow down.. Just like in yoga transitions, we have loads of opportunity to do this as well. Right now, vinyasa yoga is the hot trend. Most don’t teach or practice it the way it was meant to be taught- postures informed by breath; breath revealing energetic intelligence; the length of a breath cycle dictating  the time spent transitioning between asanas.  Overstimulating circumstances such as excessive heat, music, fast and complicated routines not only inspire distraction within the body of the class, but the energetic imbalances this sort of diffusion encourages reinforces instability. As a result, our yoga practice becomes the tool to reinforce the unstable qualities, as opposed to increase the qualities that create awareness.

No different than yoga transitions, in life we have the transitional moments… Quiet space, transition, places to be still, reflect, and indulge in the present moment we often neglect. I used to be just like many- over committed, always planning, living in the future, not feeling complete, all while also teaching yoga. Then one day, it really hit me how fast life goes. Its hard to really acknowledge that when you are deeply invested in your commitments. I began to notice that as soon as my week began it would be almost over. I could always clearly reflect on what had happened the day or year before. It would feel like it just happened. Deadlines would just come so fast. One of my teachers told me a good measurement of time is to watch how fast your children grow. That made it very real. After all, I can remember being 5 years old like it was yesterday… and I’m 38.

Under my ‘yoga job’, I have quite a few commitments (yoga teacher/trainer/mentor/ private instruction/ MYS Editor/Website Navigator-too many roles to list)- all of which I love and am deeply committed to. In order to do them all and do them all well, I’ve had to learn a few techniques that help me create more free time, but more importantly, help the quality of my present tense life experiences glow.

                         6 things I do to widen the gap between my commitments:

1. Create time buffers. When I have full days, which is often, I make sure to pad my schedule with plenty of time between. I didn’t always do this. This came about after the realization that not only did my day feel like a blur, but my week did too– Morning turned into bedtime; Monday night became Saturday morning. I didn’t like this. I realize life is short and if I spend my time booking myself full, without quality time in between, I was going to be 90 years old before I knew it.

2. I don’t over schedule myself. I have a set number of meetings per day/week (phone, lunch, in-person), that I will not surpass. Integrity is key and I hold myself accountable with my calendar.

3. Cut myself off. I make sure that I work within the time frame of the work hours I have on my daily calendar & call it a day when its time to end. Besides, the work will still be there the next day.

4. Self Care: I have a non-negotiable daily early morning yoga & meditation sadhana (practice). In the past, when I would skip and plan to carve out time later in the day, it just wouldn’t happen. So, its the first thing I do always.
This includes cooking. I always make my meals, with exception of extracurricular dinner dates (mostly weekends), or if I indulge in the luxury of a juice from the juice bar inside the yoga studio I teach at. I add this in to my ‘schedule’, because self care is imperative to quality. If I don’t take care of myself, I know that anything I’m committed to will be half-ass quality.

5. Less is more. Prioritize what you absolutely need to do each day and clear your schedule of the rest. So key during the holiday season. This is the time of year where according to Ayurveda, we should be hunkering down. Because of holidays and festivities, we fall victim to the fast pace of the season, ending up burning the candle at both ends. This leaves little energy for ourselves and the ones we love. So, do less and be more.

6. Meditate. Every. Single. Day! Here’s exactly what I do: brush my teeth, tongue scrape, wash my face, grab my big sweater coat, sit on the floor, and close my eyes. Its sets the tone of my day doing it first thing. I find if I wait to meditate, too many things have occurred and it is difficult to settle down.

As a result of how I manage my time, I have more time. I’ve become more efficient at my commitments and the space between continues to increase revealing more free time. I walk my dogs a few times a day. Read daily. Experiment in the kitchen outside of just my meal making. Oh and sometimes I do absolutely nothing and I love it.

Create space to make positive changes.

We have plenty of opportunities and remember that every component of your life, you choose. Its all a choice. Start small…

-Turn off the radio & don’t talk on the phone when you commute. See what you notice- every light, every road sign, other vehicles, every little moment it takes to get to the final destination. A college professor of mine once said that those who are continuously engaging, are afraid to be alone with themselves.

-Learn how to say no. Its an art for sure, but it will free up time for those of you who overcommit. Be okay with the fact that you can’t do everything or be everywhere. That’s energetically depleting and the goal is to see more space and be more whole, so say NO!

-Take 15 minute breaks before and after your daily appointments. Doesn’t sound like much, but if you don’t do this now, try it. Those breaks add up to hours.

-Consolidate your errand running. If you grocery shop multiple times a week, plan your week and choose a day to shop. (I know I just contradicted myself as this involves future planning. Sometimes you just have to!). Better yet, join a Food Co-op Delivery service. Order from the comfort of home, and have it delivered to your front door.

These are just some ideas. Just try one. Start small and reap the rewards of quality time and the experience of space between things. After all, life is short and it flies by. Just check out a little person in your life and remember when they were even younger. Make the most of every moment. Slow down.

Bryan Kest Power Yoga

For those of you who don’t know Bryan, he has been a key figure in the global yoga community for over 30 years, beginning at age 14. His first teacher was David Williams, a pioneer in bringing Ashtanga Yoga to the west. Bryan continued his studies in India under Ashtanga’s founder, Pattabhi Jois. Bryan has integrated his experience of traditional yoga and delivers it seamlessly on stilling the mind and understanding our relationship with the inner teacher (sat guru) inside. Read about Bryan Kest’s yoga journey here.

I first met Bryan some years ago at a workshop. I was always interested in studying with him, but the opportunity never presented itself. I knew of so many who spoke highly of him for his direct approach to sharing yoga. (There are many well known instructors whom I study with now, such as Seane Corn, who were also students of his early on- references go a long way with me!). I was most impressed with BK by his clear way of expressing his points. He doesn’t heavily layer ethereal metaphors to express a point. He also uses himself as an example in his lessons, demonstrating vulnerability. Though he can seem intense with his raw, direct personality, BK is fun, gentle, and most important, has a big heart. His compassion clearly is conveyed through passionate reverence of his message. This sincerity is what drew me to continue my studies and complete the Bryan Kest Power Yoga Teacher Training. Since then, I’ve experience personal transformation and growth transcending the yoga mat. I’ve gained clarity in relationships, my teaching, practice, and rooted into deeper sense of self.

bk dog

One more thing… Power Yoga… its a yoga label liberally tossed around these days. Often times it is associated with heated and intensely physically challenging classes. BK’s Power Yoga, was not only pioneer in this ‘style’, but it isn’t what I just described. Well, it is but its not… Its the balance of physical and mental practice, which enables personal exploration and growth. The physical practice can be as challenging as one makes it, that said, if that is the goal, check that off the list. The mental aspect is challenging as BK is a master in the integration of life experiences, often times calling out current affairs and issues that we all deal with today. This, mixed with the physical, is why its called ‘power’, not because its super hot or that the practice is dependent on asana to journey deeper.
bk weekend flyer

Stay tuned for the next Bryan Kest Weekend in 2015! You won’t want to miss him!

Manifest!… Happy 2014!

So much has happened in the past year, and I owe the acknowledgement to the power of manifestation, and diving head first into goals.

A year in review… 2013 was filled with a continuation of consistent weekly community blog postings from myself and the greater yoga community, setting the tone of my vision of highlighting yoga culture locally here in Atlanta, and beyond. We have readers and contributors from all over the globe now. Its amazing and it couldn’t have happened without community support.

Manifest

From the beginning of the year, one of my goals was to have a team. It was an open conversation I freely shared when enrolling others of my vision. As the year got going, I got super clear on components of my vision and the direction MYS was traveling. I needed help in order to make it a reality. As much as I shared with community supporters, I manifested equally. Not long after, the MYS family grew, adding 2 more co-editors: Michelle Young, & Meredith Hesse. Our bandwidth is larger and the website’s depth is stronger. The team spreads the community message by contributing blog posts and taking ownership over specific areas of the MYS site, such as lifestyle, events, and yogic insight on everyday life. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t feel grateful for them.

In early fall 2013, another big change… The  Atlanta Yoga Scene incarnated to My Yoga Scene reflecting more accurately the global yoga community. It was an organic transition inspired by the fact that yoga is practiced everywhere and has no restrictions. Though specific geography influences trends and styles, yoga is yoga. No matter where you travel to practice, there is always a common thread that connects the message. For me it was clear that the new name needed to embrace our greater yoga community, hence My Yoga Scene was born with the vision and mission to connect yoga communities and encourage conversations and experiences from yogis everywhere.

AYS becomes MYS

There are new goals pulled from the vision & mission of MYS that are currently underway. One of which is the website will soon be getting a new face-lift, creating more ease in navigation for both users and the MYS team. Expect to see the new website relaunch in the next coming months. There will be new faces that are part of the MYS family as well. Another goal that has come to fruition is that MYS will have a more formal role in supporting events, beginning locally first. Our first gig will be supporting and having a presence at Chantlanta, March 2014. I’m so excited about this and trust you will be also.

For right now, I celebrate with you 17 months of growth, inspiration, perspective, and community  that you all had a hand in facilitating since I took ownership. Without your support, the MYS wouldn’t be where it is today and definitely couldn’t go to where its headed. I thank you greatly from the depth of my heart. Here’s to 364 more days of peace, love, and community! Manifest… its where its at. Happy 2014!

Tony & IsabelleIsabelle is a community leader on and off the mat. She shares yoga through weekly yoga classes, workshops, trainings, and local & international yoga retreats, She is also the owner & Editor In Chief of My Yoga Scene. When not teaching, she finds inspiration from her daily home  yoga practice, and her interests in ayurveda, cooking, reading, writing, hammock-ing, trail-running, and traveling. Isabelle takes great pride in living a life of wonderment and is lit up at any opportunity to connect to other yogis. She loves creating community and knows this work lends to positive personal growth and spreading of the yoga tradition. For more information, please visit Isabelle Casey.

Top 10 Gratitude List

1. My family & friends: my immediate family; family & family spread all over the globe; my hubby- thanks for all your support in everything that I do. My fur children who are the best heaters at night, give the best smooches, & inspire me to be a better human.

2. Choice… what a luxury! I’m so f’n lucky to have this and don’t ever take it for granted.

3. My teachers: formally & those who don’t know it. You all reveal things in my life I admire and aspire to & expose qualities in life I needn’t enhance in my own. Thank you.

4. Failures, I mean opportunities. They keep me humble and continue to shed light on how to stay grounded.

5. My home: refuge, sanctuary, haven, personal yoga studio. Heaven.

6. Food & Farmers: Thank you for putting real, whole, organic foods on my plate. I think of you every time receive food, prepare, & nourish myself. Thank you for all your hard work.

7. My chiropractor, Dr. Mike & masseus team, Ranier & Reggie. You have magic hands!

8. Blend tec: You’re the bomb. I not only thank you, I’m on my knees bowing!

9. MacBook Air: No really. I love you. You make my life convenient and keep me connected to friends & opportunity not within reach.

10.  MYS dream team: For awhile it was just me navigating the MYS ship. I set some goals, reshaped my vision, & manifested my team would take shape. It did and I am so lucky! They are my friends and my colleagues. I love you guys! I couldn’t do this without you!

Isabelle & Tony

Interview with Saul David Raye

Bhakti yogi & spiritual activist, Saul David Raye, shares his love, light, and teachings.

Saul kirtan

Moi, (Isabelle): What is bhakti yoga to you, and what was your first experience with this tradition? What drew you into it to begin with?

Saul David Raye: Bhakti is the nature of the heart. It is the deep love that flows through all of existence. yoga is union, bhakti yoga is the path of union thru love. the ancients gave different paths to come home, love is the fastest. God is Love. My first experience of bhakti yoga was thru my first teacher who taught me the different paths of yoga. this was in my early 20’s. Then i read autobiography of a yogi and went to india, where I experienced first hand the deep devotion that is at the heart of the yoga tradition. I have tried many approaches and studied with may teachers, for me bhakti is the deepest and it connects us all together and with all of life.

I: Many who come from a bhakti tradition highlighting kirtan. You are immersed as both a teacher of hatha yoga & bhakti yoga. What role do you see bhakti yoga playing in the future?

SDR: Bhakti yoga and the practice of kirtan are spreading with great speed. When people have a taste of the sweetness of the heart they respond. I see the world transforming only thru love and for this to happen we have to open our hearts, both personally and collectively. There is no other way. Bhakti brings us together, we are one family. I see it happening already, we are coming together. Bhakti is the heart, it is not limited to only the yoga tradition. When we open our hearts, when we share our hearts the world heals. We are the world.

I: What is the role of a guru in the bhakti path? Is it necessary to have a one?

SDR: We definitely need a teacher, but i don’t think one teacher can teach us everything. I do not feel it has to be one person. True bhakti is to live with the heart, with love as the guru. To be guided by the heart. the scriptures say that we all connect to God in different ways or forms. The true guru takes all forms.

I: Besides participating in kirtan, what other work can the yoga community can do to raise awareness around the bigger picture of love and devotion?

SDR: There are many practices of yoga besides kirtan. When we live our yoga, we change ourselves, then our world changes. When we live with love and devotion, it addresses that question. There is no other way. Earth, peace… thru self peace.

I: Do you have a favorite chant? If so, please share?

SDR: They are all my favorite chants. the one in my heart right now is a grandmother chant i learned ….

the river is flowing, flowing and growing.

the river is flowing down to the sea.

oh mother carry me, your child i will always be.

oh mother carry me down to the sea…

aum shanti ….

SDR bioSaul David Raye is an internationally acclaimed teacher, healer and spiritual activist known for his empowering and transformational approach to yoga, healing and spirituality. Saul’s teaching draws on the depth of the Yoga tradition, Bhakti, Tantra and all forms of universal light, love and wisdom. Through the grace of his teachers and guides he is able to bring alive the ancient wisdom teachings for modern seekers.  The depth of Saul’s teaching allows students to connect deeply with their own authentic power, spirit and truth.

A pioneering and inspiring presence in Yoga’s evolution in the west, Saul’s authentic and heart-centered teaching has influenced thousands of students and teachers around the world. He holds certifications in Yoga, bodywork and energy healing and is an ordained minister and musician who infuses his classes with healing music and chants. He has been on the faculty of International and National conferences and festivals for years, and has presented alongside many luminaries in the Spiritual world. Saul shares this work through teacher trainings, workshops, classes, sacred journey’s to ancient power sites and sacred music.

I can’t take credit for Saul David Raye’s shows here in Atlanta, as it was made possible by Stan, ‘the man’, Holt, visionary entrepreneur behind Swaha Productions and who is hands down responsible for selflessly serving the southeastern yoga community by facilitating events that host kirtan gatherings, (such as Krishna Das this past winter). Thank you Stan! Not just for bringing Saul here, but for all your efforts in creating depth, uniting, and spreading the love! This is a collaborative effort between Swaha Productions, the Atlanta Yoga Scene, & Be Yoga, with tons of love and support from the SE Yoga Conference. It takes a village!