We Have a Date! Samyama will Open its Doors in March

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Samyama Yoga Center, the new studio in Midtown, Palo Alto that I’ve been harping about for the past six months has Grand Opening Date officially set in stone. Following a celebratory Grand Opening Party on Saturday the 9th and an Open House on Sunday the 10th, classes will begin on (drum roll, please):

Monday the 11th of March

(Update…Our opening date has had to be pushed back a few weeks.  No, we won’t be opening on March 11th but when we DO open, and it won’t be long after our original date, Midtown will light up with Yoga Joy!  We’ll keep you posted…)

I’ll still be teaching:

Gentle Morning Flow:  Tuesday and Thursday from 7-8:30 AM

Yin Flow:  Fridays from 1:30-2:45 PM

   Hatha:  Saturdays from 4:00 to 5:30

    If you haven’t checked out the Samyama Facebook page yet, click here.

      Give us a look and then give us a ‘like’.


Samyama

 

The term samyama refers to the combined practice of dharana (concentration), dhyana (meditation) and samadhi (union). It is a technique we can utilize to cultivate deeper understanding of the qualities of an object or a person or a concept. It’s said that the yogi who successfully practices samyama will experience the lightness of being freed from the mental constructs – the kleshas – that bind us to the ‘real world’. In other words, samyama liberates us from obstacles, hindrances, troubles and suffering.

Samyama is also the name of the new yoga studio opening in Midtown, Palo Alto in October (just in time for Diwali).

Samyama isn’t your ordinary yoga studio. It’s one man’s vision manifested. To read the history of how Samyama began, click here.

Two months ago John Berg and I met for coffee at Philz – John’s office until the new one is built. The following week he invited me to teach at Samyama. I’ll be joining local yoga master Anirudh Shastri plus Louis Jackson, Annika Williams, Hillary Easom and Bethany Sala. One or two others have yet to be confirmed but the truth is John is keeping the teaching staff small for a reason – he’s not creating a yoga mini-mart with 48 available flavors . He’s creating a yoga home.

And I can’t wait to move in.

 


This Present Moment: Adventures in Meditation and the Arrival of a Mantra

English: All Solutions By Yogi Tamby Chuckrava...

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It began with the purchase of my iPhone, this new bad habit.  The cold weather, this cold apartment and my laptop encouraged me.  I began to love curling up under the blanket and surfing in the hour before sleep.  And if I woke in the night, which I do sometimes, I’d pick up the phone or the computer and surf again.  When the harp sounded on my iPhone alarm in the morning, guess what?  Out came the laptop.  I just needed to know if Matt’s gig in Oxford was a success, if it was snowing in Michigan or if I could chat with a friend in Nevada I’ve never met.

Don’t get me wrong – I’ve a stack of books next to my bed, too.  And sometimes I even read them.  I jest.  Of course I read.  Since ditching the cable and television I’ve had plenty of time to read.  But it’s clear to me this new bad habit is filling the gap those ten-year-old episodes of “That 70’s Show” once held.

If I really want to quiet Monkey Mind and to have a life long, transformative meditation practice, then I need to break this new bad habit and begin a new good habit.

Here’s where I’ve gone wrong:

Rather than dedicating the same time each day to practice, I’ve been fitting it in when I can – four or five days a week, ten or twenty minutes at a time.  The only dedicated periods of meditation are the forty-five minutes a friend of mine and I take prior to a yoga class we attend and the hour of practice I enjoy on Thursday evenings with a local Daoist Meditation Group (I’m new to this group and have only attended twice.  Still, it feels as though I’ll continue indefinitely).

I don’t want meditation in my life as something I practice on a whim.  Meditation should be who I am, not something that simply hovers around me.

Fortunately, I have a mentor who is gently guiding me in the right direction.  He’s the teacher who recommended Eknath Easwaran’s Passage Meditation to me – a book I’m now recommended to anyone who is on a path similar to mine.

Last night my mentor gave me the gift of a mantra.  He said it would change my life.  He said it would settle me (how did he know I was unsettled?) and that if I repeated this mantra each day very soon nothing would ever again ruffle my feathers (how did he know my feathers were ruffled?).

Seriously.  All that from one word? Almost less than a word – my mantra is one single syllable. He’s telling me one single sound can change my life?

I surfed before sleep last night.  And when I dreamed about earthquakes I woke and checked the USGS website.

But when my iPhone’s harp began to play this morning I swung around, placed my feet flat on the floor and set the timer for thirty minutes.  I let my hands rest on my lap, right hand nestled in the left with my thumbs touching and I closed my eyes.  And then, for one hundred and eight rounds, I began to repeat…