Thursday, December 22, 2011

On This Day

On this day it will be my last blog post of 2011, and I will leave you with two beautiful pieces of text. Wishing you all a wonderful festive season, congratulations to my practitioners here in Kathmandu for battling on with your practice through these cold days, I honor you all. And may the whole world find Peace and Harmony; Om Loka Somasta Sukhino Bhavantu

On This Day by Swami Chidananda
Mend a quarrel. Search our a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion, and replace it with trust. Write a love letter. Share some treasure. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in a word or deed.
Keep a promise. Find the time. Forego a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Listen. Apologise if you were wrong. Try to understand. Flout envy. Examine your demand on others. Think first of someone else. Appreciate, be kind, be gentle. Laugh a little more.
Deserve confidence. Express your gratitude. Worship your God. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the Earth. Speak your love. Speak it again. Speak it still again, and speak it still once again.

The Importance of Yoga by Swami Sivananda
Life today is full of stress and strain, of tension and nervous irritability, of passion and hurry. To remove physical, mental and psychological tensions, our ancient seers of India, not of India merely, but of humanity as a whole, perfected the system known as 'Yoga'. Yoga is an exact science. It is a perfect, practical system of integral education, education not only of the body and the mind or the intellect, but also of the inner spirit. Yoga shows you the marvellous method of rising from badness to goodness, and from goodness to godliness, and then to eternal divine splendour. It is the art of right living. The Yogin or Yogini who has learnt the art of right living is happy, harmonious and peaceful. He or she is free from tension. Yoga is complete life. It is a method which overhauls all the sides of human personality. To live in God, to commune with God is Yoga.

Om Namah Sivaya
Seeing the divinity in each and every one of you
shanti shanti shanti

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Shanti Couscous

A healthy and hearty meal for lunch or dinner.
Ingredients; (amounts depend on how many you are feeding!)

Green beans
Almonds chopped
Dried fruit, apricots, raisins or both
Cracked black pepper
Sesame seeds
Ground coriander

Mix the couscous with the cracked black pepper, ground coriander, chopped almonds and dried fruit, add about the same quantity of boiled water as the couscous and cover, leave for about 3-5 mins.

Gently stir-fry your broccoli; aubergine and green beans, just before finishing cooking add a good quantity of sesame seeds.

Uncover the couscous and add the vegetables and lastly some chopped pieces of tangerine and mix it all up.
Serve with a delicious crunchy apple!

Saying a mantra before food is important for us yogis, as it neutralises the food and makes it an offering to the divine that dwells within you, making eating a more nourishing and beneficial experience rather than just for satisfying the senses.
Also any angry or cross emotions that are felt by the cook during preparation of the food would have been induced into the food by vibrations. By saying the mantra it harmonizes and purifies the food again making it a more wholesome experience and helps us with our journeys to find our true nature. The mantra you should use is as below:

Brahmarpanam Brahmahavir Brahmagnau Brahmanahutam
Brahmaiva Tena Gantavyam Brahmakarma Samadhina.

(Brahman is the oblation, Brahman is the offering, and he who always sees Brahman in action shall reach Brahman.)

Enjoy your Shanti Couscous!
Smiling from the heart. :-)

Friday, December 9, 2011


Gurukulam means living with the teacher, Guru being teacher and Kula being home, this system belongs to a long line of guru's and disciples. From ancient time Guru's gave knowledge from word of mouth the great saints are part of this GuruKulam system, it is an unbroken chain, where the tradition keeps the teachings alive. Gods, saints, sages, masters and swamis are like rivers of knowledge with so many tributaries, through initiation there is a transfer of energy; the spark is given and then the knowledge of the student can grow through spiritual practice. To light a candle you need another candle so to speak. I have this system in my mind now, as I am preparing to journey back to India to my Guru; Swami Govindanada, to begin my advanced practice and teacher training on the 15th of Jan. It was a hard feat this evening as I said goodbye to my husband to go off on his Christmas dinner party with friends, knowing that the indulgence would be no good for my preparations even though there was a vegetarian option, staying home and lightly cooking my broccoli! But to go and embark on this course in its full glory of tradition, knowing everything that can be potentially gained from it, is a real privilege and I have to keep that in mind this festive season. Having recently been in touch with SwamiJI and him asking if I am preparing accordingly, I have to be strong, in fact as I told him I feel like I have been preparing for this since completing my first round of teaching training. Being a yoga teacher means living as a yogi, this means daily practice, asana and pranayama, daily meditation, daily Bagavad Gita reading and of course the yogi diet, as well as trying to keep up studies. How can I teach yoga properly and transfer that spark of knowledge if I am not living as yogi? So sometimes being a yoga teacher as much as it really is a wonderful and beautiful thing, it can also be a hard and lonely path, but it is my duty and one that I relish in.
I am so looking forward to being back with SwamiJi, receiving more purification and to follow his teachings implicitly as I know the benefits they will bring. However it is not good to just follow blindly, but from the practice there are sparks of light, awakenings, signs on the path that we are going in the right direction, knowledge is not all obtained all at once and yoga goes so deep the knowledge is a never ending fountain, so how can we expect to gain it all at once. No we have to keep on learning, it is said that a quarter of knowledge comes from the teacher, a quarter from fellow students, a quarter from oneself and the last quarter from time itself. So here I am my heart is open, my mind is open, with the Guru’s grace I hope for a very exciting learning experience that I can share with all of you, lets pass on the light.
With seasons wishes to you all,
Om Loka Somasta Sukhino Bhavanto
May all beings find peace and harmony
Om shanti shanti shanti
You can find Swami Govindanada at this site for courses and yoga vacations
nicky ☺