Category Archives: News

May’s Yogi of the Month

Gisela Ramirez

face-2.jpg

In life?
Analyst for the Global Sourcing Department in Pratt & Whitney Service Center.
Age: 35 years old

Origin : Colombia

What brought me to Yoga?
The fact that Yoga is an excellent practice to learn awareness and acceptance, since while doing the poses you need to be in the present moment, and attentive to what your body is telling you.

What book are you reading right now?
Siddartha by Hermann Hesse

My favorite album?
Granados, Goyescas Danzas espanolas – Alicia de la Rocha
What has Yoga changed your life?
Yoga has given me tools to deal with stressful situation by accepting them and finding a way to make the most out of them. It has also taught me how to challenge myself within my own limits, always respecting myself.

Words of wisdom
” As you live your hours , so you create your years. As you live your days, so you craft your life” Robin Sharma

How do you apply yoga principles to work?
I try to observe myself a lot. I have present that life is a string of learning experiences, and at the end the most important thing is to have fun.

Favorite vacation spot?
Certainly , Colombia !!!

My guilty pleasure ?
A good Crème brûlée

What a dislike about Yoga?
The long names of the poses. I accept suggestions on how to memorize them.

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forward-bend.jpg

toes.jpg

twist.jpg

Gisela Ramirez

face-2.jpg

In life?
Analyst for the Global Sourcing Department in Pratt & Whitney Service Center.
Age: 35 years old

Origin : Colombia

What brought me to Yoga?
The fact that Yoga is an excellent practice to learn awareness and acceptance, since while doing the poses you need to be in the present moment, and attentive to what your body is telling you.

What book are you reading right now?
Siddartha by Hermann Hesse

My favorite album?
Granados, Goyescas Danzas espanolas – Alicia de la Rocha
What has Yoga changed your life?
Yoga has given me tools to deal with stressful situation by accepting them and finding a way to make the most out of them. It has also taught me how to challenge myself within my own limits, always respecting myself.

Words of wisdom
” As you live your hours , so you create your years. As you live your days, so you craft your life” Robin Sharma

How do you apply yoga principles to work?
I try to observe myself a lot. I have present that life is a string of learning experiences, and at the end the most important thing is to have fun.

Favorite vacation spot?
Certainly , Colombia !!!

My guilty pleasure ?
A good Crème brûlée

What a dislike about Yoga?
The long names of the poses. I accept suggestions on how to memorize them.

looking-down.jpg

forward-bend.jpg

toes.jpg

twist.jpg

Yogi Confidential:Volume Four

Karma Yoga: By Christine Anderson

christine-5.jpg

What exactly is this yoga I have been doing consistently for more years than

I have done anything? What started in my mind as a seed that offered hope

of new inspiration to an energy that had grown stagnant… yoga has

cleansed my spirit and offered me the gift of new insight.

As things go…one foot in front of the other, I have managed to arrive in a tropical paradise where I will spend in all, 6 months, offering my service in return for the glory of the earth and the beings we share it with.

At the sanctuary where I have been for the past 5 weeks, the intent is to

live harmoniously with the earth. To plant trees and invite mother nature

to teach us of her ways so that we may learn how to support her and educate

the others to do the same.

christine-4.jpg

What I have seen here in the tiniest of beings, demonstrates more power

through unity and purpose than any alliance or corporation of the modern

world could possibly dream of duplicating.

Army ants, in the hundreds of thousands, move together through the

Sanctuary in search of cockroaches, geckos, scorpions and any other insects they can get their stinging grips upon. All we as humans can do is get out of the

way. Our reward? A garden that exhales and delights with the brief

absence of the pests sacrificed to the ants. How long will it be until they

return?

christine-2.jpg
Well, for one week it seemed that they crossed through in every direction every two days, and still the garden sings at night. Nature has provided enough

for us all.

As I sit in the hammock watching the new leaves of a sprouted palm turn in

the wind, I think about why I am here. My days are filled with the process

of living. My job here is to care for the animals, most of which have been

abandoned or injured, so their care requires more than simply feeding and

cleaning. These animals are just like you and me, they need company and

love. Not once when offered, will they refuse. Truthfully, I wasn´t

thrilled about having been given the work of caring for the animals. It is

one of the most demanding and time consuming jobs here… the porcupines

are spiny, the bigger one is always on the go and you can´t turn you back for

a second. The smaller is very needy and requires a few hours of love each

day. The skunks stink, the opossums snarl and threaten, while the kinkijou

is fearful and delicate. As the other volunteers finish their tasks and

move on the enjoy the day, I am cleaning animal feces off of my clothes and

flesh. I stink.

christine-1.jpg
WHY AM I HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE?

The other day I was scraping cemented pig dirt from the floor of the pen

And cleaning his muddy pool… it´s 35 degrees here in the day! You could not

pay me to do what I have done here and then ask me to enjoy it. Yet,

there´s nothing I would trade for.

My asana practice is time for me to focus on me, which can be challenging

when there is the constant call from outside that rings louder and offers

an excuse to not go in… but I do, because I know that without my inner work,

the outer experience could not penetrate and bring me such joy. And I

don´t wonder so much what I am doing here. This is Karma yoga, this is Seva.

Service for the pure joy of offering it up. Karma Yoga is the path we all

walk upon. Yoga teaches us to recognize the path and walk it with heart

because there is pleasure insurmountable even the mud pool of a pigs pen.

Just ask the ants.

christine-3.jpg

Please visit www.rainsongsanctuary.com this is a true sanctuary for Karma

Yogi´s… the sanctuary is fueled by the devotion Mary and Simon have to

The earth and its creatures. Rainsong is funded strictly by public donations

and the hard work of the volunteers.

Yogi Confidential….

At AYM we are interested in fostering a sense of community, so that we can learn from one another, and inspire one another to grow. Whether the focus be spiritual, physical, or anecdotal, we would love to have members of our community share their stories…

If any of you are interested in writing a segment for

Yogi Confidential please contact us by email

info@ashtangamontreal.com

Karma Yoga: By Christine Anderson

christine-5.jpg

What exactly is this yoga I have been doing consistently for more years than

I have done anything? What started in my mind as a seed that offered hope

of new inspiration to an energy that had grown stagnant… yoga has

cleansed my spirit and offered me the gift of new insight.

As things go…one foot in front of the other, I have managed to arrive in a tropical paradise where I will spend in all, 6 months, offering my service in return for the glory of the earth and the beings we share it with.

At the sanctuary where I have been for the past 5 weeks, the intent is to

live harmoniously with the earth. To plant trees and invite mother nature

to teach us of her ways so that we may learn how to support her and educate

the others to do the same.

christine-4.jpg

What I have seen here in the tiniest of beings, demonstrates more power

through unity and purpose than any alliance or corporation of the modern

world could possibly dream of duplicating.

Army ants, in the hundreds of thousands, move together through the

Sanctuary in search of cockroaches, geckos, scorpions and any other insects they can get their stinging grips upon. All we as humans can do is get out of the

way. Our reward? A garden that exhales and delights with the brief

absence of the pests sacrificed to the ants. How long will it be until they

return?

christine-2.jpg
Well, for one week it seemed that they crossed through in every direction every two days, and still the garden sings at night. Nature has provided enough

for us all.

As I sit in the hammock watching the new leaves of a sprouted palm turn in

the wind, I think about why I am here. My days are filled with the process

of living. My job here is to care for the animals, most of which have been

abandoned or injured, so their care requires more than simply feeding and

cleaning. These animals are just like you and me, they need company and

love. Not once when offered, will they refuse. Truthfully, I wasn´t

thrilled about having been given the work of caring for the animals. It is

one of the most demanding and time consuming jobs here… the porcupines

are spiny, the bigger one is always on the go and you can´t turn you back for

a second. The smaller is very needy and requires a few hours of love each

day. The skunks stink, the opossums snarl and threaten, while the kinkijou

is fearful and delicate. As the other volunteers finish their tasks and

move on the enjoy the day, I am cleaning animal feces off of my clothes and

flesh. I stink.

christine-1.jpg
WHY AM I HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE?

The other day I was scraping cemented pig dirt from the floor of the pen

And cleaning his muddy pool… it´s 35 degrees here in the day! You could not

pay me to do what I have done here and then ask me to enjoy it. Yet,

there´s nothing I would trade for.

My asana practice is time for me to focus on me, which can be challenging

when there is the constant call from outside that rings louder and offers

an excuse to not go in… but I do, because I know that without my inner work,

the outer experience could not penetrate and bring me such joy. And I

don´t wonder so much what I am doing here. This is Karma yoga, this is Seva.

Service for the pure joy of offering it up. Karma Yoga is the path we all

walk upon. Yoga teaches us to recognize the path and walk it with heart

because there is pleasure insurmountable even the mud pool of a pigs pen.

Just ask the ants.

christine-3.jpg

Please visit www.rainsongsanctuary.com this is a true sanctuary for Karma

Yogi´s… the sanctuary is fueled by the devotion Mary and Simon have to

The earth and its creatures. Rainsong is funded strictly by public donations

and the hard work of the volunteers.

Yogi Confidential….

At AYM we are interested in fostering a sense of community, so that we can learn from one another, and inspire one another to grow. Whether the focus be spiritual, physical, or anecdotal, we would love to have members of our community share their stories…

If any of you are interested in writing a segment for

Yogi Confidential please contact us by email

info@ashtangamontreal.com

Yogi Confidential: Volume Three

A Matter of Time: By Elizabeth Emberly

elizabeth-bio.jpg

one word that comes to mind when I think yoga is time. It is reminiscent of my days studying the art of composition in which I spent months upon years of dissecting the qualities of space and time. I would find myself stressing over the analysis of my past experiences, only to then have to represent them articulately through the skill of sequencing. I wondered for a while what I walked away with having earned a degree in contemporary dance choreography. Yet the more I practice and study ashtanga yoga the more profound my memories of what I learned become.

The question of time has been contemplated in a variety of mediums from science to spirituality, from the art of yoga to the art of creative composition, and yet the questions surrounding the subject matter still linger. Because of its vastness, by default, its true nature actually transcends our western percepts of time.

knee.jpg

As westerners our concepts of time are based largely on external events like the rising and setting of the sun, the seasons, the passing of minutes, hours, days etc. There is no doubt that time exists in a linear, cyclic fashion and is what analysts refer to as “physical time.” What ashtanga yoga and other eastern philosophies reveal is that physical time is only one aspect of distinguishing the characteristics of time. So then how do we explain the moments in our lives when we are standing in the line -up that seems to be taking forever??? Or the metro car ride where you fall asleep for a minute and wake up thinking you slept for fifteen??? Or the yoga pose that feels so perfect that time ceases to exist at all??? In order to legitimize these fluctuations it is obvious that time must be deeply rooted in our minds psychologically. This tells us that an individual perception of time exists simultaneously with the external passing of time. It also reveals to us that psychological time oscillates between past, present and future creating a non-linear perception of time.

lotus.jpg

Most of us generally don’t focus our thoughts around the passing of time. We trust its ever increasing and ongoing activities, much like the breath, where we need not worry about it unless we sense its irregularity or in some extreme cases its obstruction. In this state time becomes linear. Flowing from one moment to the next in which things are constantly changing. Very similar to our initial experiences of the yoga asana (postural) practice in which the body feels like it is in constant change and development. When in fact that is what we are feeling, the body and mind are actually experiencing a deep awakening to what already exists within. The result…. an awakening to our relationship to time.

When we sit rested in an asana, focusing on the subtleties of breath, we go through a process of deep personal discovery. Certain postures will trigger good or bad bodily sensations, which in turn can potentially instigate certain thoughts or emotional patterns. But the content of these sensations is meager compared to the time in which we allow for ourselves to experience these uprisings. The simplicity of just sitting and observing oneself can often create the self- realization that we are incredibly connected to our tangible bodies while being externally interwoven in our surrounding environments.

shoulderstand.jpg

My personal relationship to time reveals itself very slowly, like the transformative metamorphosis of a butterfly. And in fact the more I practice ashtanga yoga the more I feel time is on my side. Before I began practicing yoga I mostly took time for granted. I lived my days unaware of how the onset of internal and external time was affecting me emotionally and physically. When yoga became more than a physical practice time began revealing itself throughout short moments in my day. I initially clearly saw that the external influence of time was pressuring my mind to stay present. In a western society built around the concept that time=money I wasn’t surprised. I compare it to being in a headstand for the first time. The initial reaction for most is fear, but by staying grounded one can see that fear is just an emotional response and does in fact pass if we permit ourselves the time to let it do so. It may not happen in one day, but the more time we dedicate to acknowledging that emotion the more present we become. If we never take the time to acknowledge the fear than there is no way of beginning the process of ridding the fear from our lives. This acceptance of our emotional reactions and the ability to sit with them over time is yoga and has an amazing effect on the nervous system, which in turn alters the physical body.

Within time anything can exist. The physical properties of time prove it. If it doesn’t happen today there is in-fact always tomorrow. If it doesn’t happen this minute there is the next. If it isn’t manifested in the inhalation there always exists the exhalation. Time is always on our side if we choose to perceive it that way.

img_2800.jpg
“The longing for positive change or spiritual change is really a waking up from an illusion brought on by our belief in linear, ever-increasing, time. From a timeless or spiritual base of understanding, nothing really changes. There is a kind of flow without time’s presence so that each us realizes that we aren’t separate beings limited by space and time, but a One-Being continuous and eternal.”

Yogi Confidential….

At AYM we are interested in fostering a sense of community, so that we can learn from one another, and inspire one another to grow. Whether the focus be spiritual, physical, or anecdotal, we would love to have members of our community share their stories…

If any of you are interested in writing a segment for

Yogi Confidential please contact us by email

info@ashtangamontreal.com

A Matter of Time: By Elizabeth Emberly

elizabeth-bio.jpg

one word that comes to mind when I think yoga is time. It is reminiscent of my days studying the art of composition in which I spent months upon years of dissecting the qualities of space and time. I would find myself stressing over the analysis of my past experiences, only to then have to represent them articulately through the skill of sequencing. I wondered for a while what I walked away with having earned a degree in contemporary dance choreography. Yet the more I practice and study ashtanga yoga the more profound my memories of what I learned become.

The question of time has been contemplated in a variety of mediums from science to spirituality, from the art of yoga to the art of creative composition, and yet the questions surrounding the subject matter still linger. Because of its vastness, by default, its true nature actually transcends our western percepts of time.

knee.jpg

As westerners our concepts of time are based largely on external events like the rising and setting of the sun, the seasons, the passing of minutes, hours, days etc. There is no doubt that time exists in a linear, cyclic fashion and is what analysts refer to as “physical time.” What ashtanga yoga and other eastern philosophies reveal is that physical time is only one aspect of distinguishing the characteristics of time. So then how do we explain the moments in our lives when we are standing in the line -up that seems to be taking forever??? Or the metro car ride where you fall asleep for a minute and wake up thinking you slept for fifteen??? Or the yoga pose that feels so perfect that time ceases to exist at all??? In order to legitimize these fluctuations it is obvious that time must be deeply rooted in our minds psychologically. This tells us that an individual perception of time exists simultaneously with the external passing of time. It also reveals to us that psychological time oscillates between past, present and future creating a non-linear perception of time.

lotus.jpg

Most of us generally don’t focus our thoughts around the passing of time. We trust its ever increasing and ongoing activities, much like the breath, where we need not worry about it unless we sense its irregularity or in some extreme cases its obstruction. In this state time becomes linear. Flowing from one moment to the next in which things are constantly changing. Very similar to our initial experiences of the yoga asana (postural) practice in which the body feels like it is in constant change and development. When in fact that is what we are feeling, the body and mind are actually experiencing a deep awakening to what already exists within. The result…. an awakening to our relationship to time.

When we sit rested in an asana, focusing on the subtleties of breath, we go through a process of deep personal discovery. Certain postures will trigger good or bad bodily sensations, which in turn can potentially instigate certain thoughts or emotional patterns. But the content of these sensations is meager compared to the time in which we allow for ourselves to experience these uprisings. The simplicity of just sitting and observing oneself can often create the self- realization that we are incredibly connected to our tangible bodies while being externally interwoven in our surrounding environments.

shoulderstand.jpg

My personal relationship to time reveals itself very slowly, like the transformative metamorphosis of a butterfly. And in fact the more I practice ashtanga yoga the more I feel time is on my side. Before I began practicing yoga I mostly took time for granted. I lived my days unaware of how the onset of internal and external time was affecting me emotionally and physically. When yoga became more than a physical practice time began revealing itself throughout short moments in my day. I initially clearly saw that the external influence of time was pressuring my mind to stay present. In a western society built around the concept that time=money I wasn’t surprised. I compare it to being in a headstand for the first time. The initial reaction for most is fear, but by staying grounded one can see that fear is just an emotional response and does in fact pass if we permit ourselves the time to let it do so. It may not happen in one day, but the more time we dedicate to acknowledging that emotion the more present we become. If we never take the time to acknowledge the fear than there is no way of beginning the process of ridding the fear from our lives. This acceptance of our emotional reactions and the ability to sit with them over time is yoga and has an amazing effect on the nervous system, which in turn alters the physical body.

Within time anything can exist. The physical properties of time prove it. If it doesn’t happen today there is in-fact always tomorrow. If it doesn’t happen this minute there is the next. If it isn’t manifested in the inhalation there always exists the exhalation. Time is always on our side if we choose to perceive it that way.

img_2800.jpg
“The longing for positive change or spiritual change is really a waking up from an illusion brought on by our belief in linear, ever-increasing, time. From a timeless or spiritual base of understanding, nothing really changes. There is a kind of flow without time’s presence so that each us realizes that we aren’t separate beings limited by space and time, but a One-Being continuous and eternal.”

Yogi Confidential….

At AYM we are interested in fostering a sense of community, so that we can learn from one another, and inspire one another to grow. Whether the focus be spiritual, physical, or anecdotal, we would love to have members of our community share their stories…

If any of you are interested in writing a segment for

Yogi Confidential please contact us by email

info@ashtangamontreal.com

November’s Yogi of the Month

Benjamin Leonard

ben-5.jpg

26 years old and born in Sydney Australia

In Life?
A contemporary dancer and also a bar owner.

What brought you to yoga?
Friends that told me that its very good to combine yoga with dance training.

What has Yoga changed in your life? I’m much more grounded and this brings positivity into my life.

What Book are you reading right now? The book that I’m reading is Mal Eleve by Stephane Dompierre.

Your favorite album right now? My favorite album is Nebraska from Bruce Springsteen.

Words of wisdom: Respect Yourself !

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ben-4.jpg

ben-7.jpg

ben-6.jpg

ben-2.jpgBenjamin Leonard

ben-5.jpg

26 years old and born in Sydney Australia

In Life?
A contemporary dancer and also a bar owner.

What brought you to yoga?
Friends that told me that its very good to combine yoga with dance training.

What has Yoga changed in your life? I’m much more grounded and this brings positivity into my life.

What Book are you reading right now? The book that I’m reading is Mal Eleve by Stephane Dompierre.

Your favorite album right now? My favorite album is Nebraska from Bruce Springsteen.

Words of wisdom: Respect Yourself !

ben-1.jpg

ben-4.jpg

ben-7.jpg

ben-6.jpg

ben-2.jpg

August’s Yogi of the Month

KATE LOW
kate-1.jpg

Name: Kate

Age: 26

Place of Birth: Ottawa, Ontario

Occupation: Visual Effects Coordinator

What brought you to yoga?

An unfortunate foot injury forced me to alter my forms of activity, and both my sister and my mum suggested I try yoga. I did, and my practice has become my saving grace.

How has yoga changed or influenced your life?

It has made me more accepting of the way things are (or aren’t), and I’ve become much more patient – both with myself, and with others.

How do you apply yoga principles to your job?

At work – just like in yoga – there are some things that you just can’t do (er, feet behind head anyone?). I used to stress about not getting everything done “that minute”, but now I can chill out and not sweat the small stuff.

What book are you reading right now?

I’m actually “cheating” on my books right now: I’m half way through “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy and I’ve also started “A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini.

Favourite Song and Favourite Album right now:

I can’t seem to get enough of Lily Allen’s album – especially her track “Everything’s Just Wonderful”. I’m also obsessing over the DJ GirlTalk.

Favourite Concert of Montreal Jazz Fest 2007: MANU CHAO!!!! He performed outdoors at Parc Jean Drapeau on Canada day and it was amazing!! The rain mixed with sun graced us with a beautiful rainbow, and the concert couldn’t have been better.

Favourite Vacation spot:

My parent’s cottage. When you’re down on the dock you can’t see any other cottages and it feels like it’s just you, the lake and the loons. Total Bliss.

Childhood pet’s name: Lina, a black Lab and the most loved member of our family. She also had the best downward dog of any yogi I’ve met 😉

Favourite Cartoon(s) from childhood: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – I knew all the words to the theme song…

What is (are) your guilty pleasure(s)? Sitting in the sun (which I’ve curbed enormously, thanks to the weather we’re having) and licorice. Who doesn’t love licorice?

What do you dislike about yoga? I dislike how hard it is to get out of bed for the early morning Mysore practice, especially on Mondays.

Words of wisdom: Learn to be happy – it’s so much nicer that way.

kate-2.jpgkate-3.jpgkate-4.jpgkate-5.jpgkate-6.jpgKATE LOW
kate-1.jpg

Name: Kate

Age: 26

Place of Birth: Ottawa, Ontario

Occupation: Visual Effects Coordinator

What brought you to yoga?

An unfortunate foot injury forced me to alter my forms of activity, and both my sister and my mum suggested I try yoga. I did, and my practice has become my saving grace.

How has yoga changed or influenced your life?

It has made me more accepting of the way things are (or aren’t), and I’ve become much more patient – both with myself, and with others.

How do you apply yoga principles to your job?

At work – just like in yoga – there are some things that you just can’t do (er, feet behind head anyone?). I used to stress about not getting everything done “that minute”, but now I can chill out and not sweat the small stuff.

What book are you reading right now?

I’m actually “cheating” on my books right now: I’m half way through “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy and I’ve also started “A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini.

Favourite Song and Favourite Album right now:

I can’t seem to get enough of Lily Allen’s album – especially her track “Everything’s Just Wonderful”. I’m also obsessing over the DJ GirlTalk.

Favourite Concert of Montreal Jazz Fest 2007: MANU CHAO!!!! He performed outdoors at Parc Jean Drapeau on Canada day and it was amazing!! The rain mixed with sun graced us with a beautiful rainbow, and the concert couldn’t have been better.

Favourite Vacation spot:

My parent’s cottage. When you’re down on the dock you can’t see any other cottages and it feels like it’s just you, the lake and the loons. Total Bliss.

Childhood pet’s name: Lina, a black Lab and the most loved member of our family. She also had the best downward dog of any yogi I’ve met 😉

Favourite Cartoon(s) from childhood: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – I knew all the words to the theme song…

What is (are) your guilty pleasure(s)? Sitting in the sun (which I’ve curbed enormously, thanks to the weather we’re having) and licorice. Who doesn’t love licorice?

What do you dislike about yoga? I dislike how hard it is to get out of bed for the early morning Mysore practice, especially on Mondays.

Words of wisdom: Learn to be happy – it’s so much nicer that way.

kate-2.jpgkate-3.jpgkate-4.jpgkate-5.jpgkate-6.jpg