Life

Thanksgiving Saturday Yogi Style - Top 10

Authored By: 
Kirsten Joy Burch

Having 2 days off in a row is considered a weekend in my muggle mind, so last night as I prepared for bed, I readied myself for the ‘work week’ ahead…except tomorrow was Thanksgiving Saturday! The bonus weekend was about to begin so my yogi mind took over - the message was clear - selfcare time was mandatory.

You, too? Then let's try this:

  1. Additional meditation and pranayama time
  2. Candle-lit abhyangha (oil massage) with a playlist dedicated to self-appreciation
About the Author: 

Owner of Living Yoga Dallas, and founder of Prani Lifestyle Consulting, Kirsten studies and practices yoga from the Himalayan Masters tradition, and studies Ayurveda with Arpita Shah of Om Yoga Journey. Her first career was in healthcare and medicine, but she made a career change in the 90s to work in finance and sales operations in the software industry. After losing her husband to brain cancer in 2014, she began her full time studies of yoga & ayurveda as a means of recovery. She found a great desire to teach others the ancient science and philosophy of holistic medicine and mindful selfcare, and now teaches public, private and workshop classes, as well as speaks to groups, corporatons and agencies about the benefits of the practice and how to begin.

She can be contacted at Kirsten [at] PraniLife [dot] com for scheduling.

Shining a Light on Women's Future

Authored By: 
Refugee Services of Texas

"Our country is in such a turbulent and terrifying limbo, and for a lot of people that means pleading and fighting for their inherent human rights. I could go to the [Texas] Capitol and sign petitions and vote all I wanted, but it wasn’t the same as being face to face with the populations going through these struggles. I wanted to walk alongside each family to serve as a catalyst for their own empowerment."

About the Author: 

The RST Dallas office opened its doors in 1978 as the Dallas-Fort Worth Intra Agency, coordinating for refugee service providers and clients in the North Texas area. Officially changing its name in 2002 to Refugee Services of Texas, affiliations were formed with Church World Service and Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service to resettle refugees in the Dallas area.

Dallas is also the home of the Refugee Services of Texas Administration Office and Board of Directors.

dallas [at] rstx [dot] org
VOLUNTEER

Services:
RST Dallas offers resettlement services to incoming refugees, helping them integrate into the American workplace and society, with the ultimate goal of achieving self-sufficiency. Visit our About page to learn more!

  • Resettlement Services
  • Job readiness training and placement
  • English as a Second Language
  • Legal Services
  • Social Adjustment Services
  • Refugee Cash Assistance
  • Refugee Youth Program
  • Central American Minor Refugee Program Application (CAM-AOR)
  • Medical Case Management

How To Practice & Benefits Of Self Massage ~ Abhyanga!

Authored By: 
Christina Vargas

Ayurveda enriches our lives with its natural health benefits and numerous practices of self-care and self-LOVE. To care for yourself by cooking, meditating, keeping a clean home, and exercising is an act of self-love that takes time and effort. The time you take to care for yourself will keep you from prescription drugs, visits to the ER and many health challenges.

One of the most rewarding Sadhana practices Ayurveda has to offer is Abhyanga!

What is Self Abhyanga?

About the Author: 

Since 2005, Christina Vargas has been teaching yoga and sharing her gift for helping others live a life of balance as an avid yogi and certified yoga instructor. It was when she returned from teacher training and was introduced by a friend (now husband) to Ayurveda that her life was changed forever. Discovering this healing science that has been practiced in India for more than 5,000 years was the catalyst for SimpleVeda.

At SimpleVeda, Christina offers one-on-one Ayurvedic consultations, iRest | Yoga Nidra, dyads and meditations, yoga, personal chef services and other forms of Vedic Counseling in which she takes a holistic approach to helping clients adjust their lifestyle to achieve balance, reduce stress, and lessen chronic and acute health conditions. She is excited to help clients assess the areas in their lives in which they seek balance most. Through instruction, education, and guidance, Christina offers clients personalized service that results in happier and healthier lives — physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Witnessing her own personal healing journey with Ayurveda and how the science of Ayurveda has changed her clients’ lives motivates her each day. She is a believer that living a lifestyle of Ayurveda and Yoga is for everyone! With two kids and a busy lifestyle she knows first-hand how simple this routine can be and what a difference it can make on one’s well being. She will help you understand your unique body type and guide you in making simple changes to your diet and daily habits. Clients appreciate her ability to guide and support them through the complex world of diets and fads.

Christina and her husband reside in the Dallas area and have two children, a dog, chickens, and 2 beehives.

The Power of Ritual and Intention

Authored By: 
Tracee Stanley

What are your rituals? How do you consistently invoke a feeling of sacredness and meaning into your life and yoga practice? How can you connect to your intentions and goals in a meaningfuland powerful way?

About the Author: 

Tracee says:
I have been studying Yoga and Tantra since 1995. My introduction to yoga was through the practice of Kundalini Yoga where I was fortunate enough to practice with Yogi Bhajan on several of his visits to Yoga West in Los Angeles. Being in the presence of this great teacher gave me a glimpse into the true power of Yoga. Soon after I was introduced to the practice of Hatha yoga and became passionate about sharing how yoga had changed my life with anyone who would listen. At the time I was a high level executive in the film industry and my practice provided the balance, clarity and perspective that I needed to stay calm in the midst of chaos. After reading a translation of the Yoga Sutra's, I went on a quest for a teacher who could impart the deeper teachings and the promise of Yoga. It was then that I met my teacher Yogarupa Rod Stryker and was initiated into the lineage of Sri Vidya.

Since 2001 the focus of my teaching has been empowerment, sankalpa (intention), self-mastery and healing. The teachings are sourced from my many years of practice with Yogarupa, study with Gary Kraftsow and my personal journey and study. As a ParaYoga® Level I Certified Teacher and a Certified Four Desires Trainer I utilize the unique practices of the  ParaYoga® and the Himalayan traditions to guide students towards the door of awakening to their true nature, creating positive momentum and accelerating the trajectory towards fulfilling their destiny for an empowered life that is full of purpose and joy. I enjoy sharing the profound practices of Yoga Nidra, Meditation and Self-Inquiry informed by wisely sequenced asana, mantra and kriya practices to create a fertile environment and safe container for transformation and growth.

It is my greatest honor to be on the faculty of Esalen Institute and to teach at festivals like Wanderlust, Symbiosis, Lightning in a Bottle and Bali Spirit Festival. I love leading teacher trainings, retreats and holding space for you to remember your radiance and power!

Unleash Your Creative Intelligence

Authored By: 
Dr. Paula Joyce

Creativity is a loaded topic. So many people are convinced they’re not creative. I should know because I was one of those people. I believed my parents and teachers who told me that I had no creative talent, that I couldn’t draw, paint, write creatively or dance. It wasn’t until I was 50 that I finally decided I didn’t care what they thought. I was going to try.

About the Author: 

About Dr. Paula Joyce

Dr. Paula’s clients attain success, achieve breakthrough thinking and enhance productivity.

She did her postdoctoral studies at Yale University in the Cognitive Psychology Department and presents to national and international audiences. As Director of Leadership Development for Carrollton-Farmers Branch Independent School District, she coached and trained top level executives.

An internationally published author, she is writing a book about her Ultimate Creative Problem Solving Process. Dr. Paula uses her process with such diverse organizations as American Express Financial Services, Baylor University Medical Center, The Jung Society, The Irving Arts Center, Voluntary Hospital Association, Southwest Human Resources Conference, Fashion Group International Board Retreat, The TransSynergy Group, Shearith Israel, Unity Church, University of Texas Women in Business Leadership Conference and Right Management Consultants.

Dr. Paula’s unique work has been highlighted in: The Dallas Morning News, Speaking—“Women to Women”, Texas Jewish Post, WBAP’s Business Program and her radio show, Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit.

Awards & Honors Received by Dr. Paula

She has received many honors and awards, among them:

Best-Selling Author
Leading Expert
Top 10% Most Viewed LinkedIn Profiles
2000 Notable American Women
Distinguished Educator Award, IDEA Academy of Fellows
Who’s Who in the World
The World Who’s Who of Women
Who’s Who in American Education
Innovative Programming Award

Dr. Paula hosts the radio show Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit. It airs weekly Thursdays at 10am CST on VoiceAmerica 7th Wave Channel.

10 Benefits of Yoga

Authored By: 
Jayson Goetz

Anyone who works out regularly understands the benefits.  Exercise helps us feel better not only physically, but it improves mood, brain function and our psychological well-being.  Incorporating a variety of exercises into your routine will help you achieve a more well-rounded sense of health and wellness.

Yoga has become popular in the west in recent decades.  It makes us stronger, stretches our muscles, soothes chronic pain, promotes mental wellness and encourages us to be more present, which can be hard to do if we lead busy, stress-filled lives.

About the Author: 

Jayson believes there are many solutions to your back pain. Having personally suffered from back pain he has tried them all. He started writing in hope of sharing his experiences with those who are looking for help.

Qi Gong (Chinese Yoga)

Authored By: 
Nena Watkins, LAc

People have many questions about acupuncture. Most people ask how the ancient Chinese figured out where to put the needles. Great Question! It turns out that the oldest tradition is through meditation, known as Qi Gong. These ancient meditation practices were passed down to interested persons, mostly those who study martial arts or the healing arts.  The health benefits of Qi Gong have been long recognized in China.

About the Author: 

A native to Dallas, Nena received her bachelor degree in chemistry from UT Austin. Then she completed her Masters in Acupuncture at Bastyr University. After a full-time practice outside Seattle for several years, Nena is excited to bring the beauty of Chinese medicine to the Dallas community.

Ayurveda's 10 Pair Of Opposites – The Delicate Dance Of Balance

Authored By: 
Prani Lifestyle Consulting

Everything you see around you, and everything you don’t, can be described by 10 pair of opposites. In Sanskrit they are called gunas (qualities, or attributes).

  1. Heavy/Light
  2. Dull/Sharp
  3. Cold/Hot
  4. Oily/Dry
  5. Smooth/Rough
  6. Dense/Porous (or liquid)
  7. Soft/Hard
  8. Still/Moving
  9. Gross/Subtle
  10. Cloudy/Clear

Look around you to find examples. No recall how these qualities have been present in you, across the majority of your lifetime.

About the Author: 

Prana is a Sanskrit word that means the smallest unit of life - it is the breath that moves in us and animates us.

A Prani is a being who is animated by this breath of life.

We are all Pranis. And there are written guidelines in Ayurveda that teach us how to live our best and healthiest life.

Prani Lifestyle Consulting uses the science and philosophy of Yoga, Ayurveda, Tantra and Vedanta to navigate more skillfully in the world, and promote material, physical and spiritual wealth and wellbeing.

Kirsten Joy Burch is the founder and lead consultant for Prani Lifestyle Consulting, located in Oak Cliff / Dallas, and is available for private consultations, workshops and corporate events. contact: Kirsten_J_Burch [at] yahoo [dot] com

You were made for this...

Authored By: 
Mary Bruce

Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely. It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom, will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good. What is needed for dramatic change is an accumulation of acts, adding, adding to, adding more, continuing.

About the Author: 

Mary Bruce is an internationally beloved yoga teacher and educator who creates sacred space and presence for her students. Mary is a torch bearer. A beacon of light. A rare guide that is breaking the mold of the modern climate of yoga. Her teachings light us up and help us manifest our deepest desires.

Through a deep connection with each of her students, Mary expresses and teaches in a way that has been described as “pouring the goddess” straight from her mouth. She has an organic, poetic language for her teachings so students find their own inner truth of yoga and living. By being gifted with the ability to be both rooted and wild, gentle and fierce, joyful and deep, Mary’s teaching style integrates all energies so students can truly intersect light and shadow, the god and goddess. Her gentle and calming attention help her students find comfort in the moments of discomfort and to build confidence while challenging the edges of their self limitations.

Mary teaches all levels with an emphasis on the philosophical teachings of yoga that remain true to her linage. You will not find her classes “dumbed down” or diluted. She trusts her students' ability to understand the essence of yoga. While she pays honor to what has been passed onto her, she also stays true to herself and most importantly- true to each student, meeting them all exactly where they are. She guides her classes through all layers of yoga- from the flesh to the bone to the soul. She brings attention to detail (alignment), awareness of breath (pranayama), connection with divine source (bhavana), intelligent sequencing (vinyasa krama),
as well as, Ayurveda, visualization, meditation, mantra and more to each and every one of her classes.

Her wish for each student is that they practice expressing who they truly are. To radically embody that truth. And that their truth bring greater peace, to themselves, to this world. A yoga teacher since 1997, Mary considers herself a forever student and began her journey in 1995 with Julie Crutchfield. She was so inspired by what she learned with Julie she continued her studies with her Teacher Yogarupa Rod Stryker in 1998. Mary Bruce is now a senior student of Rod Stryker’s and is Level II ParaYoga® Certified, a Certified Four Desires Trainer and a member of the Para Yoga certification board. She is also a 500 hour E-RYT Yoga Alliance teacher, a Relax and Renew trainer under the mentorship of Judith Lasiter, a certified Yoga Nidra Facilitator and a Reike Master. Mary directed the Yoga Teacher Training program at Southwest Institute of Healing Arts in Arizona from 2004-2008. She also co-directed the Yoga Teacher Training program at Practice Yoga in New York City in 2009 and co-directed the Yoga For Life 300 Hr. Master Immersion into The Yoga Tradition Program from 2011-2014. She currently trains teachers in Arizona, California and Switzerland. Mary has written for internationally known magazines such as Yoga International, Origin and Mantra Magazine, and is featured on Gather Yoga. Mary occasionally travels with musicians such as Jennifer Nettles and the band Sugarland to bring yoga and wellness on tour.

Mary currently teaches throughout the United States and abroad, dedicating her life to spreading her love for yoga and all the ancient wisdom in a new and radiant light.

Discovering the Sacred Within

Authored By: 
Yogarupa Rod Stryker

Tantra as Science

About the Author: 

Founder of ParaYoga® and author of The Four Desires: Creating a Life of Purpose, Happiness, Prosperity, and Freedom, Rod Stryker is widely recognized as one of the country’s leading authorities on the ancient traditions of yoga, tantra, and meditation. Rod’s teaching weaves together his depth of understanding, experience, and ability to make the ancient teachings and practices accessible to students of all levels. Rod has trained teachers for over 25 years and leads retreats, workshops, and trainings worldwide. He lives in the mountains of Colorado with his wife and four children.

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