On December 3rd, 1967 the first successful heart transplant occurred in CapeTown South Africa. The revolutionary medical operation was not without it’s flaws but it started there and the beat goes on.
Today’s intention is to work with heart. When you think you might give up, remember your heart. Remember your passion and remember why you came here. When you want to give up, remember it all and then ask yourself if you want to move forward in the practice.
I know that this is not a struggle when dealing with flow classes, but when teaching in the heat (at Hot 8 Yoga in Santa Monica) there are so many ‘external forces’ telling you to get the heck out, get out of the room quick and get yourself a cocktail. Alas, NO. There are so many internal forces telling you to keep the toxins in. I’m telling you to listen to the true depth of you, beyond your flexibility, beyond your mental edge, beyond the point where you think you can’t stand it in the room any longer and ask yourself, can you do this?
I have been teaching flow for a decade. I’ve been teaching Hot yoga on and off for five years. I love it all but can honestly say that with any structured discipline whether yoga or fitness, it’s the mind that tells you to stop before the body gives in.
Get through the muddle of the mind to get deeper into the heart of why you came to practice to begin with. I know. You purchased a Groupon package and you are wondering when you can hit the mall and grab a Cabernet with your pal. Why did you come here? Why do you practice yoga, go to the gym, hire a trainer? Does it feel like hell? Does it always, ALWAYS feel better once you’ve done it? Um, yea. Does it feel good and do you look better putting yourself in a position to challenge yourself mentally and physically in a safe and nurturing environment so that when you get out there in the ‘real’ world, it all seems better? Hell to the yea. Well then, you have found the right spot. The Y spot. Oh, baby.
Yoga (and I don’t ALWAYS mean on the mat), whatever your yoga is, is YOUR yoga. The place that can challenge your alchemy beyond physical and emotional pierces you on planes so deep that the ‘practice’ of your yoga becomes habit. It transcends the sheaths of the transparent, the immediate, the internal and penetrates you on a cellular level, challenging all your beliefs, visions, passion and fervor for life. It rocks your heart and makes you move from that place.
Blabadi blah. No, seriously. What the frick is keeping you from ANYTHING in life? Is it yoga? Probably not. If I do standing bow pulling pose and hold it for a minute, can I achieve all of my greatness? Probably not.
Listen peeps, showing up is 90%. Just be present for Buddhas sake…in anything you do. You heart is an involuntary muscle that you cannot control. Honey, it’s gonna beat whether you sit on the couch or lay out your yoga mat. But…does it not quicken when a new love enters your life picture? Does it not pound faster with the sound of Rihanna in your ears and Brooks shoes on your feet, running along a smooth running path before you? Does it not skip when you are promoted at your job or cut off in traffic? Alas, it does!
Be proud of that heart beating and support it when you put in positions you aren’t comfortable with.
In Yoga, we are sooooo used to moving. Love it, don’t get me wrong. But, with Hot Yoga, you are forced to look at your darn self in the mirror, in stillness, in heat, and hold, for the love of all things that glitter…and that’s hard.
It’s uncomfy. It’s wool on bare skin. BE with it and GO with it. Make it through and…my darlings…will the rest of your trials, outside of the mat or ‘your’ version of yoga, will you be able to rule the lifewalk.
Go there. Get scared there. Call me if you need me or take sip of water and rest. It will all be ok.
Follow your heart.
Be quiet first.
Feel the answer.
Then leave the rest to trust. It’s the best investment.
Nothing to lose….
“I would rather have eyes that cannot see; ears that cannot hear; lips that cannot speak, than a heart that cannot love” – Robert Tizon
Have a strong mind and a soft heart. Anthony J. D’Angelo
Let us not grow weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. -Galatians.
When we talk about understanding, surely it takes place only when the mind listens completely-- the mind being your heart, your nerves, your ears- when you give your whole attention to it. -J. Krishnamutri.
The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands. -Robert M. Persig
The way is not in the sky. The way is in the heart.
He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help. -Abraham Lincoln
If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded. -Maya Angelou
We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival. -Winston Churchill
It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart. -Mohandas Gandhi
To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer. -Mohandas Gandhi
It is very important to generate a good attitude, a good heart, as much as possible. From this, happiness in both the short term and the long term for both yourself and others will come.
There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness. -Dalai Lama
I firmly believe that any man's finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle - victorious. –Vince Lombardi
Do what you feel in your heart to be right- for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't.
Wherever you go, go with all your heart.
What is true of the individual will be to-morrow true of the whole nation if individuals will but refuse to lose heart and hope. -Mohandas Gandhi
If you look into your own heart, and you find nothing wrong there, what is there to worry about? What is there to fear? -Confucius
A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.
There never was any heart truly great and generous, that was not also tender and compassionate. -Robert Frost
Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. -Oscar Wilde
Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
In art, the hand can never execute anything higher than the heart can imagine. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart. -Helen Keller
It is not the body's posture, but the heart's attitude that counts when we pray. -Billy Graham
I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death.
Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart and the senses.
The ear is the avenue to the heart.
Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart. -Marcus Aurelius
Whatever your heart clings to and confides in, that is really your God. -Martin Luther
Believe deep down in your heart that you're destined to do great things. -Joe Paterno
There is no charm equal to tenderness of heart. -Jane Austen
Let us dream of tomorrow where we can truly love from the soul, and know love as the ultimate truth at the heart of all creation. -Michael Jackson
If you ask people what they've always wanted to do, most people haven't done it. That breaks my heart. -Angelina Jolie
Purity of heart is to will one thing. -Soren Kierkegaard
Everyone has been made for some particular work, and the desire for that work has been put in every heart. -Rumi
It takes more than just a good looking body. You've got to have the heart and soul to go with it.- Epictetus
Throw yourself into some work you believe in with all your heart, live for it, die for it, and you will find happiness that you had thought could never be yours.