Loving life with nature, beauty and yoga's wisdom.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Meeting a Master: Dada J.P. Vaswani

 



     A couple of weeks before my wedding to Amit, it so happened that his Father's Guru, Dada J.P. Vaswani from the Sadhu Vaswani Mission in Pune, India was in the New York/New Jersey area. He was scheduled to speak at several venues and I was looking forward to attending these events which included Dada leading a meditation at The Town Hall in New York City. I was honored when Amit said Dada was coming over to his parent's house to bless us as a couple.

     I previously attended events in Manhattan where Gurus were present but I never had a face to face meeting before. I was a bit nervous but at the same time thrilled. Being raised Catholic I was accustomed to getting dressed up for special holy events so I made sure not to wear my yoga teaching work clothes but to change into a simple summer dress with a light scarf in case I needed to cover my head and shoulders. I had no idea and was guessing what was appropriate. Amit insisted not to worry about these details. He encouraged me to simply show up and enjoy.

    I arrived at my soon to be in-Law's house and the suburban streets were covered with parked cars. This was not typical nor was the crowd of people in the house. The floors were covered with white sheets and everyone was wearing white except for me and Amit. I was overwhelmed with hugs and kisses and words of Congratulations for my upcoming wedding. Eventually Dada arrived and all eyes turned towards him. It was hard not to stare at him. He's a luminous being. He entered with his assistant Krishna Kumari by his side and about 10 other people. I heard a tambourine, people bowed as he walked by while a photographer filmed his every move. Things got quiet and cameras were turned off when Dada sat with Amit and I where he meditated with us, blessed us and mantras were repeated.

    What touched my soul was Dada looked at me and quietly told me something I was thinking about the day before. I told no one about these thoughts. How did he know? He continued to look at me and told me something I was thinking about when I was a teenager. Then he told me something I would think about in the future and as I'm writing this exactly ten years later he is correct. He was able to know my past, present and my future mind. Not in a way that anyone ever did before. He continued to look at me. This time there were no words. Rather a feeling of unconditional love came from him. I was in awe that he was able to look at my mind with all its thoughts including the confused ones and he continued to send me unconditional love. I never felt this feeling before. It was an incredible feeling that was healing my heart. When I looked back at Dada I loved everyone including myself. I imagined this must be what heaven feels like. After our meeting I remember trying to hold onto this high frequency love vibration. Life and its challenges sure does make it rough to always embody loving thoughts, words and actions. The beauty of spending time with a Master like Dada is I have the memory of this feeling in my heart. It's a feeling that I visit often to stay soft and approach my life with an open and brave heart.

    I'm sharing this personal memory of Dada J. P. Vaswani because July 12th is the sacred day a year ago he dropped his physical body at the age of 99. I'm so grateful to have had magical healing moments with Dada. Above is a picture of our last face to face meeting on September 13, 2017. I will be posting more photos and tributes in the coming weeks up to his birthday August 2nd which is observed as Global Forgiveness Day. Please visit momentofcalm.org and sadhuvaswani.org to learn more.


Monday, July 1, 2019

New Moon, New Vinyasa Yoga Flow




    Tuesday July 2nd's New Moon is a Total Solar Eclipse. A day where the Moon covers the Sun's light for a few minutes. This lack of light show will be visible in the South Pacific, southern Chile and Argentina. I once asked a spiritual teacher named Alexander Murray, what it means spiritually to experience an eclipse? He said "Imagine water moving through a creek and its path being blocked. The water doesn't stop moving. It finds another way through." I love his simplistic and profound answer. 

     Every New Moon I bring new yoga flow choreography into all my classes. The postures vary from month to month while some postures are repeated from the months prior. What can be expected is classical yoga postures and exercises to get into them that are strung together in such a way to stimulate your mind and body to be in the present moment while developing both strength and flexibility. I teach a variety of Yoga class levels including body sculpting classes called Creative Core Conditioning

     I hope to see you this summer on the mat at: 


www.birchwoodcenter.com 

www.bamboomovesenglewood.com


      

Thursday, June 20, 2019

International Day of Yoga at Lululemon Nanuet, NY




    I took this picture of myself falling out of an arm balance last week when we were experiencing the sparkly paradise days of June. The sun was streaming through the green trees creating bubbles of light that eyes can only catch for a second. I'm so excited for the playful and long summer days of light ahead. Tomorrow Friday June 21st marks the Summer Solstice plus it is also International Day of Yoga. 

    To celebrate I will be leading an All Level Yoga Class hosted by Lululemon in Nanuet, NY. This class will be outdoors on the green in front of Qdoba. It's a donation based class to support United We OM. Here's a link to learn more about this special cause www.unitedweom.org

    Happy Summer!


Saturday, June 1, 2019

June's Offerings




     It's June and the sun is getting ready to hit its highest point of the year by mid month. To stay balanced with all this fiery solar power I'm grateful to be offering different ways to ground and center this month.


     Sunday June 2nd at 10am-11am I will be leading Yoga on the Green at The Shops of Nanuet for Lululemon. This class is complimentary and will be outdoors on the newly renovated grassy area in the center court near Qdoba. Please bring your mat.


     Sunday June 9th at 12pm I will be creating a Flower Mandala at ROCA Rockland Center for the Arts during their Art and Wellness Festival. This will be a live performance piece meaning there will be music playing and I will be creating within the Emerson Gallery. There's so much more going on at this event so please check into www.rocklandartcenter.org for more details.


     Also please check out my weekly yoga and fitness teaching schedule below. Peace!



Mondays 10am Level 1 Creative Core Conditioning 1hr 
An upbeat barefoot body sculpting class which focuses on strengthening your abdomen and lower back as well as toning your buttocks, chest and arms.

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY



11:45am Gentle Flow 1hr 15min
A step up from gentle yoga with easy to follow yoga flow sequences and meditative moments. 

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY




Tuesdays 9:15am Level 2/3 Vinyasa Yoga 1hr 30min
Vinyasa flow style yoga with Iyengar Yoga style peak pose breakdowns. 

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY




12noon Gentle Warrior 1hr 30min 
Like a level 1 posture class with Sun Salute variations, restorative yoga, meditation, breath work and no inversions. 

www.bamboomovesenglewood.com Englewood, NJ




Wednesdays 11:45am Gentle Flow 1hr 15min 

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY




Thursdays 9:15am Level 2/3 Creative Core Conditioning 1hr 

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY




12noon Gentle Warrior 1hr 30min 

www.bamboomovesenglewood.com Englewood, NJ




Fridays 9:30am Level 2/3 Vinyasa Yoga 1hr 30min 

www.birchwoodcenter.com Nyack, NY





Monday, May 13, 2019

The Creative Path



     Creating content be it choreographing a yoga flow, designing a yoga workshop, creating a flower mandala or preparing dinner for my family is art to me because to create I access what's deep within my consciousness and name it as something. A yoga selfie, a post on my blog and that perfectly sautéed assortment of veggies always comes from deep practice and meditation. Once it's created it is there to be seen and experienced.

     As the days grow warmer and nature's blossoming inspires so much creativity, I felt it was time to go through my photo files to motivate my current creations. I hope you enjoy the photos I'm sharing and feel to dig deep and take the creative path. 

    Please connect to me on Instagram @allisonegandatwani to see more. Peace, Practice and Love, Allison


















Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Beltane: The May Day Holiday

Garudasana/Eagle Pose Variation

     

   Beltane, the May Day holiday is a festival of love, fire, flowers and fairies. It is the shift from spring to early summer. A time to acknowledge what you are passionate about and start taking those bigger steps towards it. That may mean stepping into a little radical action. Where you don't only visualize what you want but you also let go of a few things in your life to have the room to move closer towards the life you've always dreamt of.

    The fire aspect of this holiday which embodies the energies of passion and transformation may help you in the letting go to grow process. On this day, April 30th (May Eve) ancient Celtic people would extinguish their hearth fires then relight the fire in the morning from a community bonfire. This ritual signified letting go of the old and igniting the new. You could do your version of this ritual by lighting a candle tonight then blowing it out while holding the intention of what you are letting go of. Tomorrow morning relight that same candle while visualizing your next steps forward.

    There's so much more to Beltane, the May Day Holiday like the symbol of the Green Man, representing the God of the woods and all growing things. For the next 2 months we will energetically dance with the Green Man, the May Queen, the fey and all we are inviting into our life. We will explore how to grow more mindful of our environment and create together so much beauty. We will make flower crowns, flower mandalas, yoga flows and meditations that will heal your soul and raise the energy of all that surrounds us.

    I'll be posting my early summer offerings on the blog soon. In the meantime please connect to me on Instagram @allisonegandatwani where I post more frequently. Peace, Practice and Love, Allison



Thursday, April 11, 2019

Flower Power Healing Meditation



       Stretch the beauty of your springtime blossoms out just a little bit more before they fade by making a flower petal mandala. Taking the time to sit and create with nature's mandala, a flower, reminds you of the great beauty, strength and grace that's always around you in the natural world. The time it took for these flowers to blossom is no different from your efforts to create that fab presentation for work, cook that delicious holiday dinner or show up on your yoga mat this morning. We are all creators, creating different things to contribute to the good of this magical and equally difficult world. 

      If you are looking to blossom, pick what your heart desires and with this intention sit with a flower or two. Pull off each petal and place them down into a pattern. Notice what you see, feel and how time disappears. You can add crystals, shells, pebbles or glitter. There is no right way to do this. Simply allow your concentration on the flower help you to dive deeper into yourself. Notice the loveliness unfold.

     Sunday June 9th at ROCA/Rockland Center of the Arts in West Nyack, New York I will be creating a Flower Power Healing Mandala that you just may want to experience. Details are coming soon! In the meantime, do check out the many lovely events that are taking place at www.rocklandartcenter.org