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Saturday, May 14, 2005

wisconsin yoga journal conference musings

greetings from the land of cheese! the midwesterners are loving the tranquiliT manifesto tees - totally sold out on the first "slow" day. (i was told to expect today to be slow). i LOVE the people here. amazing what not living in the hustle of a city does for folks' demeanor.

the drive from the milwaukee airport to the resort center where the conference is held (a former playboy mansion getaway or so the driver revealed) was a gentle reminder of my roots. sooo very oklahomaish! plains, not so many trees, nice "salt of the earth" people happy to assist you and appear truly happy to have the jobs they hold, hills, farm houses, street side stands, and barns. considering i haven't been "home" in 3 years, this part of the country feels nice.

after a full day of tranquiliT selling, i was honored to hear rodney yee's keynote of serving, and then sing along with dave stringer for some kirtan-fun! govinda, gopala, gopala, govinda.... serving, do we ever really think of what that means? as a yoga teacher, i was taught to think of every class i teach as being of service. his talk was a great reminder of this. can't we be of service with EVERY role we hold - teacher, student, mother, daughter, partner, consultant, assistant, etc? how would life be different if we approached each day with "how can i serve (or make a difference) today?" WOW!

and, he went on to talk about how americans overwork (really?) and that realizing the power of shavasana can be our way of being of service. taking that down time and making it happen. i liken this to the notion of putting on your own mask before your child's on an airplane. we have to replenish ourselves before we can help others.

he also requested that we evaluate our life, cut back on something that isn't serving us anymore (relationship, job, situation, etc.), use the new found time to restore, and then replace it with being of service. i loved the concept. i will continue to ponder what that could be for me. i can never think of anything to remove, only things i want to add....may be why i'm a little tired.

anyway, he and dave stringer commented on the power of yoga and how important it is the "relish triangle, relish utkatasana." how often do you find yourself saying, "when is she going to let us out of this pose? when is shavasana?" they both reiterated how, in life, we deal with the same thing. we're in an uncomfortable or challenging pose/situation, and we keep looking for an escape rather than letting go. i get what they're saying but when your pet is sick, your beau is unbearable, and you don't know how bills will get paid, it can be hard to "relish" or "let go." what i take away from it is that in THESE times, we are learning valuable lessons, we are gaining strength and wisdom, and that there is no reason to rush the process.

one final bit of prose i took away from dave's chats in between chants was the notion of "on and off the mat," one of my fave phrases, and how life isn't really separated into the 2 parts. our on and off are one and the same. i'll ponder that one but i really liked his blending of life and yoga as a whole.

overall, wisconsin has been fabulous so far and i've met some great people. i believe in synchronicity and it seems to play out at every tradeshow i do. i meet and am connected with such amazing people. the world is full of them, we know that, but it is always fun to be reminded of it in synchronistic ways.

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