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october 3rd 2019
hi everyone :)
finally spring is here and our bodies are starting to wake up
with fresh energy!
it's a great time to open up and cleanse (like a good spring cleaning)
come join us at land of yoga :)
special 3min techniques
here are 2 excellent and completely "do-able" techniques which you could
add to your day. try to do this every day for one month... then see if you
discover something new...
3min breathing space:
1min: mind and emotion check. weather report on how you feel right now.
2min: abdominal breathing, small resting breath, count each one.
3min: body check. weather report on sensations, tensions, pain, cold, heat...
3min calming space:
1min: slow deep breathing, counting up and then back down, getting bigger each round
2min: abdominal breathing, small resting breath, count each one.
3min: body check in detail. head, breath, neck, breath, shoulders, breath, etc...
special tip: there is an excellent free phone app which works really well for these practices:
Insight Timer (click here to download)
we're doing these most days in class at the centre. to learn more, come along!
deep mindfulness yoga
toby's new style:
a deep study in the body
sessions focus on stronger stretching practice, by holding poses for
longer and exploring the 'struggle' that comes with more pressure -
using the breath to then release pressure; using the mind to relax
deeply into pressure.
toby's weekly yoga classes are:
Mon 9.30am, 6.30pm, 7.45pm (Beginners)
Thurs 7.30pm (Beginners)
open to everyone... come along and try?
more free meditation downloads!
toby has just uploaded a new meditation and breath training program called PATH Meditation
so as well as his 18 part series: path to enlightenment which can be downloaded for free on apple podcasts and spotify
there is now a new one month training course as well
this path meditation course is designed to teach from the absolute
beginning, starting with just 5mins each day. it's very relaxing and
to search for the new 5min course, look for 'path meditation'
to search for the 22hr longer course, look for 'land of yoga meditation'
please try them. any feedback will be welcome, thank you.
|at the start of the year i wanted to try to meditate every day...
the amazing calendar training method
this is an ongoing study into setting up your own meditation practice. see how toby developed his own routine, and then try your own!
|month one (january)
the beginning was simply about trying to learn new things, meditate more, open and expand myself more.
the keys were: intention, making of commitment. organising myself. then taking action.
month two (february)
month was about expanding from the original idea, into something even
more exciting and more committed. the practice grew... my confidence
grew... and the results boomed!
|month three (march)
can easily see from this 3rd month how much momentum my practice has
gained. i'm doing five times more than my original intention, which of
course feels great. now it's all about consolidation - continuing on
the pathway, going further, and sticking to the commitment with a
one thing i've become more mindful of is addressing the days where i
can look back in the calendar and see a slippage... some patterns where
i regularly miss practice. then i can decide to make extra effort on
these days :)
|month four (april)
was the most telling month so far: i got to a point where i was pushing
too much, and i got exhausted and even sick for a few days. i started
dropping my meditation sessions, subconsciously telling myself i needed to take a break.
it was good to recognise this tendency to drive the practice too hard.
i lost perspective, partly through excitement and enthusiasm, partly
through a deeper urge to get free fast. i should know by now that a
more temperate approach is the wiser way.
having learned this, i backed off and settled into a more comfortable
rhythm. the motivation was still there, and i could renew my approach
without the urgency. (i learned that i need to stop being short-term-minded, and to allow space for things to grow naturally)
|month five (may)
the practice is strong. by the end of the month i was
comfortably meditating every morning and night - a fantastic
considering my initial hopes at the start of the year. twice a day
meditation brings great reward - so much more clarity, connectedness
it's something i am thankful for. and i can recognise that i had to build this strength over a fair period of time.
|final month six (june)
the practice is locked in and natural. it took 6mths, but now i am
doing meditation every morning and evening - double the original
intention at the start of the year. it shows that it really does take
time to build a practice.
and now i'm discovering the exciting feeling of power from a strong
meditation practice. i must admit, it gives me a good reason to keep
going. i can literally taste something amazing and inspiring. i
certainly don't want to stop.
on the contrary, i've now decided to commit to a full year of the 24
sattipathana practice - a new technique i've recently learned. i just
know if i do it, i'll benefit greatly.
so what did i learn?
by giving my practice a structure for support, it helped build
something substantial and lasting. actually on the 23rd july i stopped
using the calendar. i didn't need
to keep recording what i've done. it felt time to take the
training-wheels off and just assume the new position of mature and
reliable meditator :)
this was a really great experiment
|update (october 3rd):
two months later - as a result of this development program, my
meditation practice has increased again. quite unexpectedly, i now am
meditating 3-4 times a day. the benefits have been so good, and the
development of my mind so effective, that now i want to see what more
is possible. this has come about without pushing - it's come naturally
on top of the initial steps i took way back in january. this is an
example of the practice building gradually over time :)
thursday breath class
toby runs this session.
breath-work is the quickest practical way to open up change in the body
and mind. the yogic tools of 'pranayama' range from very basic, to very
advanced. most people know the breath is important, but few understand
the real implications of what this means.
this session suits any level - it's ideal for those with anxiety
because it is deeply relaxing (and freeing). it's ideal to unlock all
mental health conditions. it's a gateway to deeper meditation.
give it a try?
6.15-7.15pm drop-in sessions cost $10
all levels. no bookings required.
what do i get from a meditation practice?
this year i had the intention to meditate once a day. i have known for
a long time that i benefit from this practice, but i haven't locked it
in as an automatic part of every day. i wanted to see what my mind (and life) would look like, with a solid reliable practice in place...
6mths later and my mind and self-awareness feel like double or triple
what i had a year ago. this doesn't mean i am in any way perfect - far
from it, in terms of my still-locked old habits and moods and negative
attitudes - but at least now i feel so much more aware of all this, and
aware of what to do about them. in fact i know exactly what to do:
there's so much confidence which comes from the self-awareness gained through meditation:
- it allows me to recognise the way i hurt others. it allows to me recognise why.
- it allows me to let go of my past negative attitudes and emotions
- it allows me to feel more positive
- it allows me to feel more understanding of what is happening around me and within me
- it allows me to access some deep energy adn confidence within
- it allows me to feel the power of the present, of this world, of every moment
it's worth remembering that the expert teachers of meditation and
mindfulness have full knowledge of what it can offer people. still,
it's up to each of us to make a decision whether we want to live
intently in this way. i have no doubt enlightenment and amazing
connected states of mind are available to most (if not all) of us. i
see this possibility more and more.
i just wish others would commit to the practice too, as soon as possible :)
something that takes time. it does usually take years. but what else
are we going to do with our time? watch another game of thrones series?
watch another football game? watch another rom-com?
death reminds us: we can't procrastinate any longer. time is short.
we can build a positive structure for our lives - we need to focus upon doing this, for the good of all.
(please note: this newsletter was written by toby and is not necessarily the view of other teachers at the centre)
lots of people are bringing in lemons to the centre (thanks), because
it seems everyone's trees are abundant at this time of year :)
this tells me nature wants us to use lemon as much as possible!
grab a couple when you're here at the centre...
have a warm lemon and ginger every morning...
maybe make a little green salad with cucumber and sunflower seeds and
squeeze heaps of lemon juice all over it. it's delicious :)
how's your diet?
the power of now
by eckhart tolle
mind is an instrument, a tool. it is there to be used for a specific
task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. as it is, i
would say about 80-90% of most people's thinking is not only repetitive
and useless, but because of its dysfunctional and often negative
nature, much of it is also harmful. observe your mind and you will find
this to be true. it causes a serious leakage of vital energy."
many people have bought or owned this book at some point in their
life... never to read it! it may well be sitting in your bookcase right
now :) if so, go and grab it and start reading it again. it's so
logical, so simple... and very very powerful.
i'm one of those people who started it many years ago... i think i
didn't get past the intro! now i look back and really regret that
reading it again now, i know why he uses the word 'power'. it's really
amazing to get that feeling, to sense the present moment arising, all
around you, and within you. it's fantastic.
so it's occurred to me that i breathe poorly when i sleep.
thinking about hh the dalai lama, who apparently sleeps 4hrs a night...
thinking about lama zopa rinpoche, who doesn't sleep (!)... it makes me
also consider whether maybe i could set my alarm for 4am or 5am, and go
to the meditation room and practice breath-work instead of just
sleeping more but breathing poorly...
there's an excellent buddhist technique called 'shamata'. i do it most
days, for 24mins. you breathe normally, easily, a resting-type of
breath... a little bit in... a little bit out...and in your mind you
count each breath at the top. it looks like this:
in, 1, release... in, 2, release... in, 3, release...etc...
i do this practice after lunch, or if i'm tired and drained from
working on the computer. it's so restorative - i always feel clear
afterwards. partly because i have rested... but also because i have
been breathing well, and getting good oxygen to my brain.
this type of breathing is better than the breathing i do when i sleep - that's what i am guessing
- simply because i can feel when my mind feels tired, and in need of
more oxygen. once i do the breathing, my mind clears. so i figure that
sleeping for a few more hours breathing poorly might be a waste of
time. possibly, by getting up and doing better breathing, i'll feel
better and need to sleep less. this might actually give me more time
i'll test it out. i've set my alarm for 4am tomorrow. i'll let you all know next month how it went ;)
saturday afternoon restoration!
yoga every sat afternoon with jacqui 4.00pm - 5.30pm
do you get tired by the weekend? do you feel sore in your body, in the back or shoulders?
jacqui's gentle yoga class is restorative hatha yoga, slow, and meditative,
with plenty of stretching and breathwork and meditation, yoga nidra
too... it suits any level.
plus it's nice to do an extended 1.5hr session :)
drop-in class costs $15.
we have a meditation class every wednesday night 6.15-7.15pm. cost $8.
the place to explore more deeply the nature of our own minds, the
stresses we create for ourselves, and the simple solutions
connected to awareness, clarity and letting go...
Be your own doctor!!
the cold weather, the lack of sunlight, the year dragging on... often
people are getting sick at this time of year and it's worth checking
whether you are run down and tired. if so, that's why you'll get sick.
once the body and/or mind get depleted, we become weak and susceptible
to illness. especially colds and flus when everyone else has them too
and passes them on like presents :)
it is not a guarantee that you will get sick if exposed to someone else
who is sick. but if you are run-down or exhausted, you'll almost
definitely catch it. surely this is logical. it simply means your
defences are low.
if this is true, then pay attention to your energy levels, urgently!
stop pushing and running endlessly without eating well or resting
properly. otherwise you'll get run-down. it's pretty simple.
if you recognise you're getting tired, then don't go out on the
weekend. stay home and be quiet and rest. catch health before it runs
be your own doctor, your own health physician, your own inspiration.
to ask doctor qua'c a question about illness or injury, email toby.
great meditation learning tool!
"path to enlightenment"
guided meditation cd series
does the mind work? how does it affect our day, our emotions, our
ability to be happy, our ability to connect? what's going on? how do we
get healthy? how do we unlock our past? how do we learn to manage
stress and fear and insecurity?
we just need to learn about meditation, it's tools, and its
logical wisdoms. we just need to practise a new way of thinking and
being. This cd course explains how.
each session goes for 60mins and is deeply
relaxing. each session involves simple discussion, breath practices,
meditation techniques, and rest periods. there are 18 sessions in total.
perfect for beginners and advanced as well, this takes one's
mind to a whole new level of awareness and knowledge. available
from the centre, for free.
available for free on-line!
|to download this whole course for free, search for 'land of yoga' on itunes, spotify or google podcasts.
remember that meditation (like life) is all about learning!
come on down to land of yoga where 7 days a week we are always practising :)