Competitive Yoga?

Is the Spirit of Competition in the Soul of Yoga? ~ The New York Times

This article emailed to me by a friend highlights a recent yoga competition put together by Bikram Choudhury’s wife Rajashree and their organization, The United States Yoga Federation.

I really have no idea what to think about a yoga championship of sorts.  Yoga at least from the perspective I find myself most aligned with has little if anything to do with getting your legs behind your head.  But there’s different strokes for different blokes eh.

I don’t forsee any yoga competitions in my future.

How about you, what’s your take on competitive yoga?


Free Yoga!

Phish is coming to Syracuse this Sunday, and a pre-concert indoor party is in the works and  I was contacted over the weekend to teach yoga classes at it.  It’s being held from 9am to 7:30pm, at the Oncenter Convention Center, admission is free, and I’ll be offering free yoga classes throughout the day!  Feel free to stop by, and get your Om on, while seeing some music

Yoga is…

… the settling of the mind into silence.” ~ Sri Dharma Mittra

This past weekend was the first of four long weekends of Sri Dharma Mittra’s 500 Hour Life of a Yogi Advanced Teacher Training.  I honestly don’t even know where to begin, word’s cannot describe the beauty and transformative power of the experience’s over the weekend.  Sri Dharma Mittra in his Life of a Yogi Teacher Trainings is imparting the complete classical teachings of Hatha-Raja Yoga.  This isn’t a training to be a fitness instructor; this is training to become a life scientist, a friend to all, a Yogi.  Sri Dharma and his senior teachers in the humblest of studios with the humblest of manners guide you on a journey into your very heart, lighting the way for you to discover your true and divine nature.

Compassion is Dharma Mittra Yoga’s core teaching atop the foundation built on the Yama’s and Niyama’s.  Dharma has said on numerous occasions,  “There can be no success in Yoga without the Yama’s and Niyama’s”.  The full eightlimbed yogic path is illumined through the Life of a Yogi Trainings, you not only get to see the path, but are trained by one who’s already reached the goal, Self-Realization.

Apart from numerous asana classes, there were pranayama and meditation sittings, workshops on the Gita, Sutra’s and yogic philosophy, training to aid one be a better teacher and even a Kirtan with Krishna Das.  This weekend was simply amazing.

Click here for more information on the Life of a Yogi Teacher Trainings.

And so it begins…

Happy Wednesday!!!

The weather in Syracuse has been beautiful the last few days, especially considering it snowed Friday apparently.  I say apparently because Yvette woke with a fever Friday morning, that continued to climb throughout the day to a high of about 103.  We spent the whole weekend in, drinking Ginger Lemon Honey tea, Thieves oil tea, coconut water and green smoothies loaded with Camu Camu Powder (200% of Daily Vit. C/Serving), Echinacea and Goldenseal.  By Saturday morning her fever was gone, but she was rather exhausted, so we just continued with the tea, smoothies and coconut water.

Her sickness turned out to be a blessing in disguise, we essentially just cleansed all weekend, which is wonderful considering tomorrow is the start of the Dharma Mittra Life of a Yogi 500 Hour Training in New York City.  The first of four long weekends studying with Sri Dharma and his incredible disciples!  From what I can tell there is going to be an amazing group going through the training, including Chelle, another instructor from CNY Yoga; not to mention we’re blessed to have Lorie our beloved friend and director of CNY Yoga Center working as staff for this training.

The journey that lay ahead is sure to be an interesting one, I know not what to expect.  I do however know that God will be guiding me throughout the entire process; may He lead me home.

Om Om OM!

~ Raw Yogi

“Develop universal love. Wherever there is love, there is peace and wherever there is peace there is love.” ~ Swami Sivananda


Dr. Gabriel Cousens, author of Conscious Eating, Spiritual Nutrition, and Rainbow Green Live-Food Cuisine (Probably the Raw Foodie we find our raw philosophies most aligned with)

Dr. Cousens strikes upon a number of important concepts regarding the synergysm of Raw Foods and Yoga.

He touches upon the nadi’s, the 72,000 psychic and energy channels within the body, which become clogged by a multitude of means, such as sensuous living, lying, etc.  The nadi’s must be strengthened and purified through yogic practices so that we are prepared to handle the increased vibrations of higher states of consciousness.  You wouldn’t plug a 100 volt appliance into a 220 volt outlet would you?

He also touches upon Isvara Pranidhana, recognizing your body and mind as mere instruments to the hand of the Lord.

If you’re into Raw Foods and Yoga, how have the lifestyles intersected in your life?

~Raw Yogis

It’s been a while…

My appologies for having taken so long between posts.  Life is always finding ways to fill itself; lately it’s been the college application process and preparing for the Dharma Mittra Yoga 500 Hour training which begins in just a few weeks.

Last night after dinner I sat reading Mohandas K. (Mahatma) Gandhi’s For Pacifists; a beautiful little book originally published in November of 1949.  For Pacifists is pieced together from a number of Gandhiji’s writings expounding Satyagraha, his philosophy of non-violent resistance.   Ahimsa, the foremost Yama of Yogic Philosophy serves as the root of his philosophies on non-violence.  Though not even a third of the way through, the brilliance of Ghandiji’s treatise shines bright.

Here are some of the highlights thus far:

Non-violence is a term I had to coin in order to bring out the root meaning of ahimsa.  In spite of the negative particle ‘non’, it is no negative force. .. but a force superior to all the forces put together.  One person who can express ahimsa in life exercises a force superior to all the forces of brutality.

It is not through strife and violence but through non-violence that man can fulfil his destiny and his duty to his fellow creatures.

The real love is to love them that hate you, to love your neighbour even though you distrust him… Of what avail is my love, if it be onl so long as I trust my friend?  Even thieves do that.

Let there be no can’t about non-violence. It is not like a garment to be put on and off at will. Its seat is in the heart, and it must be an inseperable part of our very being.

Non-violence is not an easy thing to understand, still less to practise, weak as we are.  We must all act prayerfully and humbly and continually ask God to open the eyes of our understanding, being ever ready to act according to the light as we receive it.

May you find peace in these words, peace in your hearts and peace in your world.  May you be ever and always open and receptive to the grace of God.


~ Raw Yogi

Already we’ve noticed a shift in not only the weather, and seasons but our diet as well.  Our diet lately has shifted away from cooling fruits and vegetables and into the realm of fats and warming foods.

As the seasons change, our bodily needs change.  Now that the heat of summer is gone, no longer are cooling foods being called for by our bodies.  Watermelon just doesn’t make sense in 40 degree weather.  So as the weather cools, discover the foods that warm you up from the inside out;  our favorites are ginger & cayenne.

In November, we’ll be hosting a Raw Foods for Cold Weather Workshop at the CNY Yoga Center.  Be on the lookout for a finalized date in the coming days.  Until then, warm yourself by warming up some water and making this warming morning tea.

Lemon Ginger Tea

1/2″ of Ginger Minced

Juice of 1 Lemon

Dash of Cinnamon

Cayenne (optional)

Agave (optional)

In a pot add water, minced ginger, dash of cinnamon and warm; you don’t have to bring it to a boil.  When desired warmth is reached add lemon juice and cayenne and pour into mugs through strainer.  Enjoy as is, or if you need some sweet add some agave if you wish.

Until next time.  Be compassionate & Be Receptive to the Grace of God.

~ The Raw Yogi’s