Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Hang it up



It's evening. I will "hang it up". That's the recommendation from Aaron. It's nice. It could become my favourite evening occupation. By the way: this is a hip opening technique. Important is where the right foot is - could be a little bit higher.

Flights are booked

We will travel to France next week. I will have to work till Thursday in the afternoon. The flight is booked at about 7 p.m. and one and a half hours later we will be in Nice. A French colleague already recommended an Arab restaurant. It's connected with a hotel and we will stay overnight there.

With our rental car we will drive till Toulouse. From there we will return to Munich on Tuesday after the weekend.

I love France. That's something to look forward to. Really, la France c'est magnifique.

A revolution happened

I don't mean the Oscar for the German movie "Das Leben der Anderen". Oh yes, the life of the others is very interesting. I spend so much time as a voyeur, reading private details of the life of others and it is so much fun ...................the movie is not about blogger, it is about espionage in the former DDR.

The revolution: From September 1st 2007 on it will be forbidden to smoke in restaurants. This will cost us so much money, this is not fair. So often we stayed at home, because it was so smoky in the restaurants and we didn't like to clean the clothes afterwards, but now.............buhhh, this is expensive for us.

Yoga all day

I started again with nadi exercise - in front of the mirror. I wanted to observe if my stomach gets in. And how much it got in. The ribs were seen, but no more the stomach or belly. I repeated this exercise 3 times and then I sat down on my mat.

I need this quite start. At first I have to arrive on my mat. I breath consciously and then I start with these wonderful surya namaskaras a.

I thought today that I want to insert the split poses (forward an sidewards). After prasarita padottanasana is a good opportunity to take the legs wider to the sides. After trikonasana is a good opportunity to bend the already bended knee a little bit more in order to open the hips.

The splits are so important because they help to get into pincha mayurasana or headstand easier. If standing split is possible, only one leg has to be lifted without this kick to get up, which is most of the time too strong.

Middle part was too short - lack of time. It is so pity, but it is difficult to get out of bed before 6 a.m.

I did headstand, the pose was rather stable. It helps if I pull in the stomach and if I use the bandhas.
I did dhanurasana as well using the bandhas. Using the bandhas protects the lower back and it gives stability.

I'm so reluctant to go to work. This needs to be changed: either the attitude or the job.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Tired and relaxed at home

How to make this evening a nice one?

My days are very long and then suddenly it is 6 p.m. and I can go home.

But the energy level at 6 p.m. is no more the same than in the morning. When I'm with people I wake up, I get excited, but when I'm alone I just relax.

For me it would be good to take a nap during lunch time. I would have more energy in the evening. For the time being this is not possible.

This was not a practice this morning

I rolled out the mat, I did nadi exercise - stomach in.

A few surya namaskaras followed, but then I made another cup of coffee - for my darling. He had to get up early, too and I know how difficult it is for him. It is not quite anymore when he is up, I was not concentrated.

I don't care. This evening I will be alone at home and I can practice.

I'm happy, a little bit tired as it was rather late yesterday.

I want to start the day with an open mind, attentive, quite.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Oh, oh, oh

After work I went to the Ashtanga yoga class. It was nice. Afterwards I called my boyfriend. I knew that he was on a business dinner, but I was in the mood to call him and so I did it. He said: "Take a taxi and come. " They were at our favourite Greece restaurant. He said this and in the next second I had already waved a taxi and sat in it. Up we went. Half an hour later I was there. I had told E. what I wanted to eat and he had already ordered it. When I arrived the retsina was already on the table. The salad and the aubergine followed soon.

I knew the group and it was a funny evening. In the middle of the conversation it became really difficult for me to shut up. We talked about blogging and the opinion of the group was: blogging is nothing that is acceptable. I had to hide that I blog as it was a business group. But it was so difficult . We discussed and discussed. It was funny.

Picture: impression of the yoga studio.

Monday morning

I got up ten to six. I opened the curtain in the room where I practice. It had rained and it was still rainy. Desperation. I remembered a colleague who told me that his children didn't care about the weather. They always knew how to have fun, might it be sunny or rainy. I also remembered that the birds and plants need water, too. Rain is the drink for animals and trees and flowers. So during the years I must have learned that rainy weather is bad weather. What is learned, can be unlearned, too.

I went to bed again. E. is so warm in the morning, it's so nice. I hugged him from behind and asked him: "When do you like to get up?" He whispered:" At eight." Me: "Say something nice." He:"Ärgerknoten." After a while: "I like you." I gave him a kiss on his neck and then I went again to my mat. I sat down for a while. I realized that it is Monday.

I stood up. I started my practice with nadi exercise. It was rather good as my stomach was empty. I inhaled, exhaled while bending the knees a little bit, hands were on my knees, elbow straight. And now the 3rd important bandha came into play. I pretended to inhale, but the bandha at the throat was locked. The consequence: my stomach went in rather deep. It felt even good. I repeated this several times.

Practice went on with the suryas, but slow. I was a bit sore from yesterday. I only managed to do the standing sequence and a few sitting poses. Shoulder stand, halasana, fish, padmasana, and dead woman pose at the end. That was it - my morning practice.

The cold shower (after the hot one) woke me up. No trance status now anymore, I'm fully awake.

Yesterday a teacher asked me if I would come today. I said yes. In case I can leave the company on time I will practice again in the evening. This should be enough for today. Oh, yes, I heard that B. would come back from India earlier. This means that I will have soon again Mysore classes.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

What I want to add to my daily morning practice

Inner strength is so important. I want to add this nadi exercise every morning, where the stomach is taken inside. It looks strange in the beginning, but it can be a very helpful exercise to build inner strength.

I want to add to jump from downward dog to my hands, feet landing softly outside of the hands. It is a good exercise to control the jumping.

I will also add some of the exercises to get into handstand, i.e. to shift the weight on the hands and then lift up the toes from the floor. This should be enough.

And in the evening I want "to hang it out" - everything.

Next week

This fantastic weekend had not at all an influence of my thoughts of the coming working week. I just want to survive and I'm not sure if I will. Perhaps I will get laid off? This is not likely to happen, but possible. To have a nervous boss is more likely to happen. That's also not pleasant, of course, but it can be a mental exercise of observing life, letting go.

The bath that I took was too hot, the essence smelled wonderful. I want to remember everything of this workshop today. It was so fantastic.

Day 3 with Aaron Cantor (handstand and Co.)

I sit here and I have the feeling that I can do handstand in a rather short time.

Aaron is a great teacher. We did so many good preparations for handstand, that it was finally just natural to be in handstand. Now I know that there can be more than just a wall and the tries to get up into this pose. It is possible to play with this posture. I had a fantastic day.

I went to my limits, that's why I'm also so tired that I cannot write more.

Today I was grateful that I could expand my thinking of my possibilities. I think now that handstand is possible for me.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Day 2 with Aaron Cantor (hip opening)

My boyfriend was watching soccer at the Schranne, perhaps dreaming that he was one of the soccer stars, while I was opening my hips. Hahaha.

The performance: It was again a great show. I saw asanas that I've never seen, amazing sequences were performed in a perfect way.

Theory first: Hip joints can be moved in 6 directions: sidewards, backward, forward, up, ........6 directions, believe me.

Dynamic stretching: This was the revolutionary part of the workshop. We swung our legs to the air and back. We walked up and down the yoga room, stretching the legs to the ceiling. The exercises were lent by martial art exercises, but not at all worse because of this. These dynamic movements heated the body.

A lot of partner exercises followed, which were very nice and effective as well, but as I exercise most of the time alone, I enjoyed it, but it is nothing for the future.

Hang it out: That's good - hang it out. This means to stay in a position rather long. Even the master himself did 3 years ago for one year the following exercise:
-at first pigeon pose for 10 minutes,
-then lower legs laid one over the other while the upper body was bent forward for 10 minutes
-then cow pose for ten minutes, bending forward as well. We held these hip opening posture 4 minutes each.

Believe me it was not only pleasant, it hurt.
To hang it out means it hurts, but you stay. The pain should be observed. In a group it is easier to do it, but then it can be done alone. The mental aspect of this exercise is that to hang it out can also be performed in daily life troubles. Pain, anger can be observed, till it disappears.

Split pose forward, split pose sidewards were exercised. Muscles play an important role. The technique is to tighten the muscles first and then to release them while going deeper into the pose. Then the same game again. It is a very effective technique.

At the end we should think of something we are grateful for. I thought that I'm grateful for my body. Nothing else came into my mind. A little bit limited perhaps.

I had another wonderful day - it's a very exciting yoga workshop. Also today I got a lot of stuff to chew on, from new asanas, new sequences, new techniques (hang it out), dynamic stretching, improvisation, attitude. Buh.

When I left the yoga rooms today I really had the feeling that I've done something. I felt my body and it was enough for today. I met E. at the Schranne. We ate our Italian favourite food: he had spagetti bolognaise, I had penne al'arrabiata. My body is hot now. Hot blood runs through my cells. For me the day is over. I will hang it out on the sofa.

PS: Inner strength is so important.

Day 1 with Aaron Cantor (basic postures)

We were a yogi group of about 10 people. That's a perfect size of a group. It started that we introduced ourselves.

The performance: At first Aaron wanted to show us how he exercises yoga. The performance would take about 15 minutes and we were asked to walk around to look at him from different sides. We could also go and have a cup of coffee, he said, but from the first seconds on it was clear that nobody wanted to have a cup of coffee.

The performance was great. I was breathless. I thought: is this really possible. He got up in handstand and down, legs behind the head, arms somewhere and up again in handstand. Amazing, how this guy can use his body. The whole body was involved the entire time. Bandhas were used. I could see how the stomach was going inside. It was a very concentrated performance. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, was left to say.

Then we could ask him some questions: I was courageous and I asked him if he doesn't do surya namaskaras to warm the body up. His answer: Years ago he did surya namaskaras, but there are also faster techniques to warm the body up. I think we did some. This are the postures like utkatasana, with the arms to the sides.
Another woman asked if he had already considered to work for a circus. But this does not fit to a yogi lifestyle, at least not to Aaron's lifestyle.

Our practice: We started with uttanasana. The task was to feel the body, to feel the limits, to test out what is possible what not. I loved the sequences we did. Unfortunately I cannot remember anymore. I hope that my body remembers when I'm on my mat. We held the postures rather long. This was difficult and exhausting for me. I went out of the postures sometimes before the other yogis did it. But I'm self-confident enough to do it. I know it is my body and I know how fast I can injure myself when I'm overzealous.

The inspiration: Why not play around with poses? Why not make up the own sequence? To be creative, to be free, to play - this can be yoga, too. There are no limitations. I'm sure that I will add some practices to my daily Ashtanga practice which are performed freely. Improvisation is a key word.

I was glad that I could push away the thought "I will never be able to do this", after this great performance. Everybody has his/her own practice. And it is beautiful to see what is possible.

After work on Friday

I left on time. I sit in the office rather hidden. If someone goes down the aisle I'm not seen. In order to see me one has to go into the room. My colleague suggested that he can pretend talking to me when I'm already gone. Isn't he sweet? It is nice to work with him, but this is worth an extra post. Working with him is a great resource for me.

I left on time and I went to the Viktualienmarkt first. There I took some pictures as I had still some time. To see something else but the office was what I wanted. Finally I went up to the yoga studio. I picked up the key for the wardrobe and I went up to the changing room. As I was so early the room was empty. I put on my yoga clothes and went down again. I made myself comfortable on that huge sofa. I even slept there. After an hour I woke up. There was still some time till the workshop would start.
I recognized Chandra with the little sweet child on a chair. I looked at the child, which was playing with the PC. Then Chandra came to me introduced herself to me: Hallo I'm Chandra, are you going to the workshop? Nice to meet you, or something like that. Me: Hello, my name is Ursula, nice to meet you, too....... You know the ritual.
That's what I like when I meet Americans. Usually they are very open and they talk to other people without being introduced by someone else. Names are exchanged. Germans usually don't go to someone else to introduce themselves or even say the name. It is not the habit here, it is also not considered as bad manner not to do it. I like this open approach to other people, that I've seen everywhere in America.
Both Aaron and Chandra are very friendly, good-looking, open people. They represent something for me that I like when I'm in America: this unbroken optimism. (I cannot believe that there is depression in America, too).
Picture: The building above shows where the yoga takes place.

Some flowers for my readers

Some spring flowers for my readers.

The first day of the workshop was great, I will write tomorrow about it. It is too late now and I'm tired. I was out with E.. He is back from Poland. We had a drink at the Mexican bar and now we are tired, totally tired.

Friday, February 23, 2007

I want my daily prayer

I want my daily Ashtanga practice, my prayer in the morning. Even though I have a workshop this evening something draw me to the mat.

It is not that easy to get out of bed in the morning. I cannot find reasons. Food intake is healthy, sleep should be enough. I mean 7 or 8 hours must be enough. Inner discussion starts as soon as the alarm clock rings: "give you another 10 minutes." But I need these 10 minutes in the morning. Finally I had the time for 2 morning pages and my daily prayer.

I started with sitting in front of the mat, followed by the standing sequence. This is all not a very surprising story. Suddenly I heard me singing a German song: Old like a tree. Where was my breath? I think, this goes to far. Singing while doing Ashtanga yoga.

I expect from the workshop this evening that I take my practice a little bit more seriously again, with more focus, more concentration.

Breakfast time.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

A workshop with Aaron Cantor

I will attend a 3 day workshop during the weekend (Friday through Sunday).

It is with Aaron Cantor, his website is http://www.steppingintobalance.com/ . It's worth to have a look at the gallery. I found nice pictures there.

Day one is on correct performance of classic postures.
Day two is on hips opening.
Day three is on inversed poses, headstand, forearm stand and so on.

Another day where I have something to look forward to. Yepeeh

On shame

Do you know this?

In the beginning of a partnership exists still a little privacy. Bathroom is used one after the other. (Of course pretending that there is only one bathroom available; some might have more than one). But after a while one stands together around the sink brushing teeth together. And still a little bit later (after one year or so) the one partner sits on the toilet, while the other is shaving the legs. Everything can be observed, there is no secret anymore. All so natural, isn't it?

I decided that I will close the bathroom door from time to time again. And I want to be there alone. Not because I feel really shame to have someone around me in the bathroom while brushing my teeth or while.............., but I think it is more exciting for the partner not to know everything. It is not necessary to share all activities. A step back, that can be a step forward.

The evening with B.

Fast I left the office a few minutes before 6 p.m. I didn't like to risk to have to stay longer. Blah, blah, blah.

I picked up B. at her office. She wanted to buy a few books at the English bookstore which is round the corner where I live. We took the underground. Me too, I found again two books there. She bought a book by Donna Leon. I found new interesting books, too: One on writing one on the flow (a classic) . Then we headed to the Indian restaurant.

We talked and talked and talked and talked. Time was too short to tell everything. There is so much knowledge, experiences to share on work, men, fashion, languages, food, the past, the future, the present. It is endless to mention all our topics.

Finally she had to hurry up to catch the train.

I slept too long

It was already 6:30 when my left leg found the way out of the bed. That meant that I had to do huge decisions already in the morning: Shall I write my 3 morning pages or shall I practice. I decided to write 1 page and then my practice.

At first I had to wake up my darling. He is in Nürnberg. He played soccer there yesterday in the evening. He must drive to Munich this morning in order to catch his flight to (I've forgotten it). He flies too often to different destinations. I called him and I heard his tired voice. So I know him. Some kisses via the phone and my life could go on.

My life on the mat: How I liked it just to sit, only to sit. At least I wanted to do some surya namaskaras. I did it, I didn't count - it was more than 5. They stretch me. I was so slowly today. I only did the standing asanas, but it was lovely. There is not so much ambitious at the moment, if at all. Shoulder stand, plough, fish, that was it. Then I sat again in padmasana. Proud posture. Then I bent forward, my arms pointed backwards. It was so relaxing. No judgment again. It was as it was.

And I'm sure at the workshop Friday/Saturday/Sunday I will give again my very best.

This evening I will meet B. That's something to look forward to. We will go to her favourite Italian restaurant.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Yes, tired


I had planned to practice in the evening. Tired now.
At least I bought a battery for my watch during lunch break.
Alone at home, it is the best time for switching on a yoga CD. But I'm tired.

A few asanas on the bed. Trying to get the leg behind the head. Yes, but a real practice. No.

The morning became a good time to practice.
Fast time began for the Catholics. A vegan day for us yogis/yoginis is a very good idea.

Do I take my practice too easily?

Today I had the feeling that my practice is more fun than effort.

I was concentrated. One asana followed the other like one pearl after the other. I stayed longer than one breath in upward facing dog and longer than one breath in downward facing dog. It is relaxing.

There is never time for all the asanas. But I did all the maris and I did forearm stand - once. I balance better and better. Of course I still need the wall. No question. But fear fades slowly.

What shall I write. My practice IS my first highlight in the morning. I love it.

Work: My morning pages were full of office shit. I don't want to blame anybody. This is way too simple for my current state of knowledge. But how to bear everything. I try to reframe it. Difficult people are good for novels. One day I will write a novel. I start collecting characters. Offices all over the world are a good place to do so. I know that most people are rather unconscious, so why not play with them. Only one thing shall not happen. That stupid people influence my good mood, my optimism, my motivation.

And there is something I'm looking forward to: it is a 3 days workshop from Friday on. More about it later.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

....and tomorrow

......some people might feel like this guy.

After work


The party was already in full swing. Drunk people everywhere.
E. picked me up after work and we had our dinner outside like every Faschingsdienstag.

Carneval in Munich


With a boss who does not enjoy life, it was clear that we had to stay till 6 p.m.
During lunch time I went out with a colleague. He wanted me to help him carrying the Krapfen, that he wanted to buy for our small group of 10 people. After having bought the Krapfen, we sat down in a restaurant, which was changed to a disco for today. There we listened to jazz. Lunch break was great. Music everywhere, many people were dressed in costumes. My colleague likes to gossip and I like to gossip too and to listen to gossip. I should have stayed there.
It was a long time till 6 p.m.

It was rather late yesterday

It was rather late yesterday, when I finally was in bed. I slept well and deeply. This morning I felt a little tiredness in my bones. But I got up. My morning routine is very strong now.

On my mat I thought that if I did a few suryas only it would be OK, too. But I did the suryas, I did the standing sequence, shalabasana and dhanurasana. Of course I added a short closing sequence with headstand and savasana at the end.

The body yearned to be stretched. The cells wanted fresh blood and H2O. It was not much what I did, but what I did, I enjoyed.

Today is Faschingsdienstag (carnevel). Most companies close at 12 or 1 p.m. I have not yet heard anything that the company I'm working for will close at that time. Under the cold shower I thought: What if they allow all the others to go and I would have to stay. I don't know what shocked me more - the cold water or this thought. I will go to work with no expectations. But it would be so nice if we could go earlier. I could practice in the afternoon. This would be a real gift. Afterwards I could go with E. to the Marienplatz in order to take a few pictures and to dance.

Monday, February 19, 2007

I will do it alone again - the next time

On my way home I passed by a make up shop. "Here you have a rose", the salesperson said,"come on in, I will put make up on your face."

I said yes and I already regretted it when I had entered the shop. It was a mess there (like at my home :)). 3 or 4 women were already sitting on chairs and salespeople were putting make-up on their faces with brushes of different sizes.

I asked the woman if she had a concept. Yes, she said, I look at the type of the person.

At first she removed my "old" make up, with a fat lotion. The box was half empty already. Ihhhhh, I thought. Then she put another fat lotion from another disgusting box on my face, cheap stuff probably. I'm pale, to use a brown make up makes me look painted and not more beautifully. A make up shall make the skin even looking, but please no other color in the face. Mascara was put below my eyes, because the woman didn't see well anymore. Rouge was too dark.

I bought the lipstick, I felt I had to do it: 22 Euro. I was so happy that it was already dark outside. I hurried home, finally there I threw my clothes in a corner and up I went under the shower as fast as possible.

This person of that shop has never heard anything about Bobbi Brown, the make-up artist.

A Monday morning

I made it to the mat. It was something that I would call a practice this morning. Why was it so hard? We had good food yesterday, no sinful beverages (like alc), we relaxed. The practice yesterday morning was simple too good. Then always follows a more difficult practice.

Why complain? I feel good. Isn't this one of the main reasons for a practice. Body was moved and stretched. Mind was on the mat, too. Not all vinyasas were performed, not all asanas were performed. Time was too short. Who cares?

A bit more precise: I could bind in all the maris. Dhanurasana was performed, but it was more an indicated push up than a bridge or an arch. Headstand was wobbling. Savasana was great. Even though I was not really good, the practice was exhausting.

This was the start of another working week. Let's face the day - smiling.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday excursion


It is Fasching here. It was crowded downtown. Music bands were playing loud and ryhtmic songs. Some people wore already masks. It was too loud for us and so we took the streets more far away from the mainstreet where the noise was.
We discovered this old sculpture.

Report from the black mat

The break yesterday seemed to be very good for my practice. The body was so flexible, the mind concentrated on the practice. It was an excellent practice this morning.

E. helped me to do kapotasana. He started sweating at once. It was exhausting for him. With his help I could touch the floor with my finger tips for a fracture of a second. The hands were very far away from the toes. He: "It will take you still some time till you will be able to do this pose." I had shown him the picture from Matthew Sweeney. I'm convinced, that it will take a very long time. But I touched the floor. Wonderful

I was helped in supta vajirasana, too. E. sweated even more. I went up and down 3 times and then I (we) held the posture for a while. It was nice to be in that pose.

Pincha mayurasana was the last pose of the middle part.
Dhanurasana was good. I could straighten the arms. Bandhas were used.

E.'s comment, when he saw me in headstand: "But this pose you shouldn't do anymore when you are old." I forgot to say that with yoga I won't get old. :)

Now I'm ready to go downtown with E. to eat Faschingskrapfen. Weather is sunny.

Munich's highest points


Munich's highest points are the churches and not how in other countries, other cities the huge skyscrapers. It gives me the impression, that Munich is an old city of an other century, which in fact is true.

The sun is shining

Sun is shining outside the rooms and insight my heart.
It is as if nothing has happened. Fact is, that nothing happened in reality.
I'm back to my routine: I got up early, I consider 8:00 early on weekends. I had my first cup of black coffee. Delicious. I'm going to write my morning pages, then Ashtanga yoga.

I sit with crossed legs in my green paradise.

The symphnony went on - calmer notes are played.

This was my moon day yesterday: haha

Saturday, February 17, 2007

I feel already better

Thank you Tim, thank you Wayne,

I feel better now. I cannot give reasonable reasons why I felt so miserable (terrible miserable), now I'm on my way up. First steps are in direction to my bed. Boyfriend understood without words (even though he was part of the disaster, no this is wrong, I won't blame someone else, it is me, nobody else). Spaghetti tarrantino( with capres and olives) were delicious, dessert (zuppa romana) was sinful as well. I need sleep and tomorrow I will practice (2nd series).

That's something to look forward to, isn't it? I was so optimistic and then this storm, this desperation. I'm ashamed. I felt so strong and then this weakness. I have to accept it. It makes me more sensitive for the issues of my friends - hopefully.

Good night.

Everything is so ridiculous

- my huge sun-glasses
- the wish to be happy

What to eat tonight, that's the question. Something satisfying, that doesn't make fat. Yes, to be slim that's always important. So ridiculous.

Black, black Saturday

Drunk now, that is a relieve. And I am happy that I'm drunk from my favourite Chardonnay (the oaked ones).

So desperate. I drank 3 Chardonnay, everything I did today was embarrassing. Perhaps it is a gift when it is possible to cry, when tears are rolling down the cheeks, unstoppable even in the restaurant.

I'm fed up with everything. In my age people are half dead, and I'm still so stupid to cry. I hate me. No, I haven't taken any picture. I'm still alive. What to do now? I don't know. It is a day of no hope.

Thank you Marie-Claire, thank you Susan.

I sit among the mess


and I could cry. I will never conquer it.

Yesterday I thought that I would be able to observe my misery. But now I'm again the misery itself. I'm desperate, overwhelmed, alone.

Experience says me that this will not last. Nothing lasts forever. I'm in such a deep valley and I do not understand it.

This morning I had such interesting stuff in mind that I wanted to write down. It is all forgotten. Only black, ink black thoughts are in my mind. It is all too much for me. I get nervous so fast.

I will go out and walk around with my camera. Taking pictures always cheers me up. It is carnival outside and people think this is the time where everybody has to laugh. There is a certain group pressure to pretend that life is funny. But how to move, I'm paralyzed.

Friday, February 16, 2007

I flipped through my pictures...

....and I found this one. I like it. It is taken in America.

Yesterday I read that life is beautiful. If it is not beautiful one has added something (expectation, past).

OK

Cleaning rooms can wait. Really??????? Yes.

I was out with E.. We got two seats at our favourite restaurant, the Greece one. They sat people at our table. We talked to these people. I was able to express in German language what I wanted to express. Our table neighbours thought that we were very interesting people. They regretted it when we had to go because there was a reservation and we couldn't stay longer at that place.

It was excitement that I experienced. I was on top. I liked to talk, to express myself, to be expressive. I expect a hangover, soon.

I wanted to write about work, but it is not the time for it, after 2 retsina, 2 ouzos.

Classic Friday exhaustment

Between all the mess was a blond woman in a perfect headstand. Me.

I could hold this pose so long. I was really balanced. So balanced, as if I stood on my nice feet. That was really joy this morning.

Otherwise I was distracted during my practice. I couldn't do many asanas as a lack of time.

But I had time to motivate my boyfriend to do paravritta trikonasana. At first he didn't know where to pose his hands and his legs. But I showed him. I know this was insolent from my part. I really had to laugh when he did it. Even worse, his inability to do the pose gave me a good feeling about my flexibility.

OK, I need some encouragement from time to time, too and he doesn't care. It is not his goal to be a good yogi. He wants to score when he plays soccer.

The punishment

No yoga class today. I must attack the mess at home. It is unbearable at home. I have to start cleaning. That's not on discussion anymore and I cannot postpone it either.

During work I will think of a punishment for my boyfriend. He is even worse than me, because he thinks he has me.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

At home

I like the old houses downtown in Munich. The picture is taken on my way to the Schranne during lunch time.

Now 2 hours are available for the so-called private life. My yoga place is full of papers. E. is preparing his taxes. There is no room for me this evening to do some poses.

After work I went to the doctor. I needed a prescription for my thyroid gland. Afterwards I did grocery shopping. Finally at home I prepared the dinner (bread and cheese). One thing I really like here in Germany: we have the best bread of the world and such a choice. Nowhere else in this world I've found this.

Today the book arrived, that another blogger had recommended. I loved the title, so I ordered it: "How to be free". One chapter is about "No more housework". I don't know how other people handle this task. For me it is often too much. It is boring to clean things, which are faster dirty again than I can think. Years ago I even joined an online group (this group has more than 10.000 members, mostly from America). Five times a day or even more often I get an Email with recommendations what I shall do at home. Baby steps is the recommended method. But sometimes even these baby steps, that take 5 minutes or so are too much for me. At the moment it is a chaos at home. There is no other word for what is around me. Housework interests me not at the time. One thing I can do perhaps: I can look for things that I can throw away. I want to be free.

It's easier now to leave the job on time. I feel free with my new colleague. There is not such a group pressure, that I had when I was in the office with this other colleague. She still stays longer .....I don't know how long.

Perhaps some postures on the bed now?

I'm slow


I had not enough time again. It was already half past seven when I had finished the standing sequence. To mention all the asanas that I had to left out would be too long.
With every movement my body got more flexible. With flexibility comes joy for my practice.
Not to frown the front when I look to the "third eye" is a challenge now. Perhaps I look too far upwards. The "third eye" must be between the eyebrows. The difference between looking at the nose and looking at the third eye shouldn't be that far. The dristis are something new to discover and to focus on. Practice remains exciting.
It is already Thursday. I have a lot to do at work. That pleases me much more than only hanging around there.
The picture doesn't reflect my mood. I'm in a good mood.
I will observe life, I will practice awareness today. This is my spiritual focus for today. Yoga around the clock.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Almost bed time


Lately I read some books with almost the same concept: Someone travelled the world or travelled to India and found himself/herself.

Isn't it of the same excitement to search for oneself and finally find interest in the world.

Must it always be the own navel that is so interesting? (OK, my navel, yes........)

Picture is taken during my lunch break, downtown Munich.

Wouldn't it be nice

Wouldn't it be nice, if I observed myself now how I cleaned my rooms or how I put the laundry into the washing machine? But no, I must post another picture. I observe it.

Bavarian impressions on the picture, taken at the Schranne.

On awareness - part 2


Wake up!
This is the message in the book "Awareness" by Anthony de Mello. In order to wake up it is crucial to practice awareness. Awareness and again awareness. This leads finally to permanent happiness, this leads to getting to know oneself and with knowing oneself also knowing the others.
The idea is not a new invention:
Richard Bandler (NLP) i.e.: One of his recommended methods is, to see life as a movie. Dissociation is a key word. In case of fear i.e. it is a possibility to see oneself as if one is in a movie. It is less fearful to pretend that someone else experiences fear than oneself. If this is still too frightening it is possible to observe how I watch the movie, where I experience fear. His concept is rather flexible. Nice events can be experienced associated, not so nice things can be observed dissociated. To step back in order to see from the outside of the own life is possible. This is amazing.
Or let's talk about Baghwan Shree Rajneesh, whom I visited 20 years ago in India. He descrobed in his book "Book of the secrets" methods how it is possible to observe oneself. One of the methods was to live life pretending to be an actor. Another method was to get back to the breath all the time.
There seems to be a common sense among those who think that they have to tell something about happiness: it is practicing awareness, being dissociated, being an observer.
To take pictures brings me into the here and now. The picture above is taken on my way to the Schranne, where I spend my lunch break.

On awareness - part 1


At every wedding I used to be the bride,
at every funeral I used to be the corpse,
and now I read that it is good to observe, to practice awareness, to be a backbencher. Awareness is the key to permanent happiness.
Let's give it a try.
The book Awareness by Anthony de Mello is really life-changing. Not because the ideas are really new to me, but the author finds the right words for me at the moment. The stories he tells in his little book are surprising, funny, think-provoking.

So, another day

I feel good now. I feel as if I can manage my life again.
Yesterday I felt so overwhelmed. Weak.

Because of this I thought this morning, that I do only what I really want on my mat. With every movement energy level went up, mood went up, flexibility went up. (Only I had not enough time). I turned out to be a good practice. To hold urdhva muka swanasana longer that 1 breath is very helpful.

I got angry as well. Angry about these teachers who do not know that adjustments should be given on both sides and not only on one side. Even though my body is relatively evenly stretched on both sides usually, this changed since I go to classes again, where the teachers give adjustments only on one side. I will mention this the next time before a class: no adjustment or adjustments on both sides.

The Munich Ashtanga yoga scene is dessert.

That's why I had to develop a self practice and this is really the good point. My self practice gets better and better. I'm more concentrated, the group pressure or the coaching of a bad or medium teacher is not so necessary. I couch myself as I always did in my life. I'm looking here and there. I pick up something here and there, I judge by myself if it is good for myself. Of course I'm learning a lot from others, also from their faults, but finally I'm more and more my own guru.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

My activities

I do nothing else but working, yoga, reading, blogging, (of course body care), eating (most of the time in restaurants). I'm too lazy to do anything at home. I live in a mess at the moment.

I close my eyes and go on with my favourite activities.

I must clean my rooms.

It was a try

I switched on the CD "backbending" by David Life (Jivamukti Yoga). But then after perhaps 20 min power faded. I didn't like to go on and so I stopped the CD.

I few minutes later I sat at the kitchen table and I had dinner. I cannot live without 3 meals a day.

Shower and bed that is the order now. As usual I will read a few pages in one of my books and then I can bury the day.

Another practice this morning

Another practice this morning to become a bendy body. But it was more today. I was so concentrated. This is usually my weak point. Today I really was on my mat and not somewhere else. I enjoyed the asanas as they were. The suryas and the standing sequence get familiar and familiar. I held the postures longer than usual. This was perhaps the post-influence from the led class yesterday.

I held urdhva muka svanasana for a few breath every time I did it. Today was the back bend day - 2nd series. But I had to adjust the practice to the available time. This meant - no kapotasana i.e.. I had to omit other asanas, too. But today I did dhanurasana. It was not really good. I used my bandhas. This improved this asana, but no it was not really good. I also did pincha mayurasana. Here I get somehow ambitious. I want to do this pose.

How it might have been from the outside, from the inside I feel great now.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Urdhva mukha Svanasna - a little bit longer please

I read in Matthew Sweeney's little book that he recommends to hold upward facing dog a little bit longer than one breath only. This makes sense, as the whole 1st series is so focused on forward bends. I experience it as a deep counterpose when I hold it longer. It is really a helpful hint in order to have a balanced practice.

Ashtanga led class after work

After work I went to a led Ashtanga class. It is the studio downtown, round the corner of the office where I work, that offers this class on Monday. In the changing room we could listen to low music.

In a led Ashtanga class poses are usually held longer than I do it, when I practice alone. To hold the poses longer was demanding for me and I enjoyed it. Vinyasas after every side were performed. After navasana and a short closing sequence the class was over. We did no mari d and no dhanurasana. That's how it is in a led Ashtanga class with beginners.

In the changing room I heard that some students didn't like this sort of yoga - too sportive.
The woman from the last time, who did again her Mysore style complained as well. I heard how she wanted to have more attention, more adjustments. From the view of a teacher, I think it is not possible to please everybody.

A. gave us a wonderful neck massage when we were in savasana. She had a basil oil and it smelled extraordinary good. I loved it.

My attitude: I try to pick up everywhere something that I can use for me. If something doesn't say me anything I won't go anymore. At least I had a practice in a nice yoga room. That's something, isn't it. I feel good now.

I went home by underground with a relaxed face. I'm drinking a ginger tea now. Wonderful.
Half an hour, perhaps an hour and then I will be in my bed, perhaps dreaming that I do perfects asanas. Upavistha konasana gets better and better.

Short first series on Monday morning

I didn't like to go out of padanghustasana only because I knew that I won't have enough time. I loved this forward bend after the suryas (5 suryas a, 2 suryas b). To hang forward that was it this morning. After a long while I went on and the standing sequence was good, too.

Then time was tight. I went on with the series, I did the vinyasas. I know that I need strength, inner strength and strength in the arms and legs. This motivated me to do the vinyasas. The vinyasas are the reason why I like Ashtanga yoga. They make the difference. I ask me why I want to omit them so often (Answer: because they exhaust me and they are difficult). I want to jump through without touching the floor with my feet.

I did kurmasana (not supta kurmasana), baddha konasana.

Then I did upavishta konasana. I wanted to see if my dream comes true (to get the chin to the floor). I could go very deeply into this position. This pleased me this morning. I even relaxed, which helped me to go even a little bit deeper, with straight back hopefully.

Headstand was performed, pincha mayurasana. This is also something that I like, that I have the feeling this pose is doable (without my wardrobe) one day. A quick closing sequence - fish with straight legs. Savasana. Great.

Summary: not enough time, but what I did, pleased me, a good start for this week.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Breath and bandhas were my focus today

Surya namaskara a: I like them. They wake me up. I'm still a little bit stiff in the morning, but it gets better with every movement. It is a joy to start with the suryas a. After 5 suryas I take a break. I'm already proud that I've started.

Quick break!

Surya namaskara b: I have to convince me to do 5. Often I want to stop after the 3rd surya. But I need strength. I get out of breath when I do 5 and I need more breaths as indicated. I don't care about it as long as my breath is even. But sometimes it is not even!

Break!

The standing sequence: I get better and better. My stomach does not touch my thighs in pandanghustasana and padhastasana. Nevertheless I like these two asanas as a starter. And then I go on. I had a very good parivritta parsva konasana. This pose is a good preparation for pashasana. I did every single pose and I held it and I breathed. Bandhas were used. It was very intensive.

The intermediate part: This is the part I've teached myself. I get better, I think.
When I came to kapotasana reluctance, discontent came up. I can only indicate this posture. When I come to this posture I'm already exhausted. I have no more the forth and the will to give everything. That's why I think I should work on this pose more relaxed in an extra session, where I do a few warming ups and then these demanding poses, like laghu vajrasana and kapotasana.
Eka pada sirsasana was also indicated. I did preparations for this pose.
Tittibasana - let's change the subject.
Pincha mayurasana gets better. I altered the legs. First I went up with the right leg first, then with the left leg first. I always want that my body gets trained equally. Here I stop.

At the end I was somehow discontent. I wanted to be better. In the beginning it was easy going, at the end I struggled, I had no more power. The body feels good now, I must admit it, but I wanted to be better.

Closing sequence: Too fast. Dhanurasana was good, but I cannot even imagine what I shall do to get up from this position. I fell out of garbha pindasana as every morning. It is somehow funny. I did sirsasana. Savasana was great in my white soft jacket.

That was my morning practice on Sunday.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Do I really need another journal?


I consider to buy a journal writing software: www.lifejournal.com
I ask me - do I really need this? I think yes.

My morning pages are very good for me, it is handwritten and I don't want to loose this ability. But to be honest it is often difficult to reread it. If it is difficult to read I won't read it again and I won't find things.

A software with a searching tool can help finding entries. It is readable.

I want to write about other people as I can analyze people very well. I think it is not my right to publish my writing about others. I also like to write on job issues, but this is also nothing I can make publicly.

Perhaps another blog on blogger.com would do as well. On the other hand a special software has extra tools. Why not test it. Will I have time to write even more? I think I cannot afford not to write and reread it. Thoughts are so fast and if they are not captured they fly away.
Picture: Impression from downtown Munich- Viktualienmarkt

Downtown on Saturday


Munich is a beautiful city. We were downtown. I bought some food at the Viktualienmarkt. I even found a vegan stand there. I want to prepare a luxury salad tomorrow.
We had our breakfast in the famous bakery where I had bought the Krapfen. It is called "Dampfnudel".
It is rather warm here. People were sitting outside dressed with their winter coats. It was such a relaxing Saturday. I ask me where the time went.
When there is fun, time runs, when I'm bored, time stands still.

I must post these damned sin


This is called a Faschingskrapfen. It looks so harmless, but it is damned delicious (with soooo many calories, that it can substitute a lunch). We had 5 of it. 5. Inside is apricot jam. There are others with other fillings. So damned good these Faschingskrapfen.

Saturday on my mat

I decided not to go to Ashtanga playground. My concentration should be on my practice (Ashtanga 1st series) this morning.

And it was good, as I could perform all the asanas. I didn't omit a vinyasa. I had time.

At the moment I find it very helpful to stay a little bit longer in upward facing dog. It is a counter pose to all this forward bends. It should have some room, more room than only one breath in the 1st series.

I tried to get into padmasana without helping hands, while in shoulder stand. I could fold, but padmasana was not so good as with my hands. It was the first time, I will repeat this.

I know that it is the best thing I can do - Ashtanga yoga. I only want to progress faster.

If I only could progress faster ....... but I also know if I progressed faster another wish would come up. Then I would write again: If I only could....... So it is as it is. A daily practice will show me the way.

I added pincha mayurasana and handstand (once) at the end. Savasana was performed.

It is sunny here and warm. It is Fasching (carneval). Yesterday I bought Krapfen for my colleagues and we had much fun. The Krapfen were so good, that I have to take E. to this bakery today. Krapfen are his favourite sweets from the bakery. He eats other cakes, too, of course. But Krapfen - it must be always 3 - he considers them so good.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Jivamukti class after work

The led Jivamukti class after work initiated my week-end. Flow was in my practice, around me were many beginners. E. would call them "peeing flowers". (very nose up, but nothing behind)

Something strange happened at the beginning. I was the very first in the practice room. I rolled out my mat. The entire room and it is a really big one, was empty. Another yogini came and it seemed as if she liked to roll out her mat exactly where my mat was. The whole room was empty. She asked me to move my mat. I did it. I thought: if I can please you so easily, I will place my mat somewhere else.

Marie, the teacher, is so good. It is so nice to see, how she works with the bodies. It is real bodywork. She changed her practice. She became much more attentive. She is just perfect. I like to be in one of her classes, even though it was not so enlightened. But let's say it as it is. It is totally the same when I do paschimottanasana surrounded by beginners or by advanced students.

I enjoyed the practice and then the sinful life began. E. picked me up and we went to the Israeli restaurant round the corner. I had (oh my goodness) 2 glasses of wine and a starter. E. seems to be pleased again that he is with me. He is looking at all the young girls and sees that they are all so tall. He likes it that I'm so tiny (and that I have always something to tell).

This story is for me

"Last year on Spanish television I heard a story about gentleman who knocks on his son's door. "Jaime," he says, "wake up!"
Jaime answers, "I don't want to get up, Papa."
The father shouts, "Get up, you have to get up to go to school."
Jaime says, " I don't want to go to school."
"Why not?" asks the father.
"Three reasons," says Jaime. "first, because it's so dull; second, the kids tease me; and third, I hate school."
And the father says, "Well, I am going to give you three reasons why you must go to school. First, because it is your duty; second, because you are forty-five years old, and third, because you are the headmaster."

Wake up, wake up! You've grown up. Your're too big to be asleep. Wake up! Stop playing with your toys." (Awareness by Anthony de Mello, p. 5)

This author can give me advice. It is clear what I will do this week-end. I will read this book. So curious, how I can wake up.

Time, time and my morning practice

It started to become a very good practice. I was concentrated, what usually seems to be a great problem for me. Today I was focused. I didn't feel any resistance, which means that I could go rather deep into the positions.

Surya namaskaras, standing sequence was rather intensive and then I looked at my watch which lays on the floor next to the mat. It was already rather late. I knew that I wouldn't be able to do the whole 1st series. I did a few forward bends and vinyasas. Bandhas were good today as well. Soon I knew that when I wanted to have a closing sequence I had to start with it. I did dhanurasana. Bandhas help a lot. I could lift, but my arms couldn't straighten. At least one backbend was performed.

I did savasana with my white jacket like every day. It protects me. It keeps me warm.

This would have been a very good full practice, if I only had time. I know that all people of this planet have the same amount of time like me, but from feeling I think I have much less.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

The writing Ashtangis

I counted: there exist 82 blogs at ashtangi.net. Of course there are much more writers outside, who focus on yoga or even Ashtanga yoga. But gathered on ashtangi.net are 82. I thought we are much more - 1000 or even more.

We come from America, Canada, Europe, Australia. That's what I know. We have a lot of links on our blogs. Some write often, some not. We are men and women, single, married, with children or without, old, young. Every day is an adventure, so is every single Ashtanga yoga practice. We share new experiences: how it is to lift the right food a little bit higher in utthita hasta padangustasana or how it is to be a little bit deeper in baddha konasana is so important. It is all very exciting. Feelings are shared, and so much more.

It is so much life in these blogs that I thought we must be 1000 or so - but we are "only" 82.

What an exciting gang.

Wednesday morning practice and a dream

During my practice I suddenly remembered: I had dreamed this night. Usually I'm a daydreamer. Since I've read Sigmund Freud, I know, that also me, I dream during the night. But I have to draw my attention to it. Laying an empty piece of paper next to the bed with a pen, wishing to remember the dreams helps usually to remember. But I do not do this. That's why usually when I dream it is during the day.

Not this night. I dreamed that I sat on the floor, I opened my legs, I inhaled and during the exhale I bend forward with straight back till my chin touched the floor. I performed a perfect upavistha konasana a this night. This was my first yoga dream.

Back to this morning: I practiced. Time was not enough as every morning. I shouldn't mention it anymore. I was relaxed. I moved myself through the suryas, the standing sequence and a few back bends and closing sequence of course. I enjoyed my practice. It was not such a great practice, but I must see the joy. During the week-end I will have time again for a real intensive practice. In the mornings my time is limited.

I lifted my body into dhanurasana 3 times. It really helps to use the bandhas. That's my focus at the moment. I use the bandhas in almost every position and each time it feels differently. The bandhas improve a position. It stabilizes the pose. The bandhas help to go deeper into a position. The pose looks better, more concentrated. The whole body is active when I use the bandhas.

I feel good, the weather is bad.

Breakfast time.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Hanumanasana naked

I really desire to be able to do hanumanasana. I never did this pose naked. I remember that I wrote about hanumanasana once or twice. But what astonishes me is, that someone entered "hanumanasna naked" at google and he/she found my blog. This is really amazing.

This makes me thought-provoking.

I walk through a paradise during lunch time


During lunch time I walk through a paradise. Every food, every herb, every beverage I can imagine is available there. Only lunch time is too short.

On my practice on Wednesday morning

I was 10 minutes too late on my mat. It was already 7:10 a.m. When I got up I had the feeling that it was today that I felt the intensive practice from Monday evening. I felt a little bit sore.

I decided to take it easy today. I thought of a few surya namaskaras. I was stiff, but they felt good and after a short while I didn't feel anymore that my body was slightly overstretched.

Unfortunately my nose was clogged. Breathing was not so easy. Every day is something else. I realized how helpful a good breath is. An intensive breath makes half of a good practice.

A few forward bends like janu sirsanana a and paschimottanasana, marichyasana A were performed. Then sirsasana, halasana and padmasana. Savasana. This was it. It was all very quite, my mind became quite, too. Relaxing.

Of course I think now, that it would be good to add an intensive practice in the evening, but I can really decide this later. A long working day awaits me. Breath by breath I'm likely to do it through this day, too.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Bed time

I repeat myself. My morning practice starts now the evening before:

Early in bed - early up - good practice.
Late in bed - early up - torture, remorses.

Half an hour

Half an hour to fill with meaning. Almost impossible.

I asked me, if I'd write down 5 things of my life that I haven't mention yet, if I would then hide more, confuse more or expose more. To confuse would be good.

1. I know how to drive a Harley Davidson, I have a driver's licence for motorcycles (Ohhhh).
I would not drive anymore - too afraid. I cling to my life. I want to go to work tomorrow morning - healthy.

2. Bukowski was one of my favourite writers (not because of his sex stories), but because he wrote that not for everybody the American dream can became true (for those who do not know what the American dream is: from dish washer to millionaire). The postman is an excellent book.

Nowadays I'm not sure anymore, if this is right - perhaps the American dream can become true for everybody. Human beings must be so smart to fulfill the needs/wishes for everybody.

3. I'd appreciate it very much, if my brother (see picture, we both in younger years), wouldn't be so difficult with the family and with me. It is sad, he used to be so light-hearted.

4. I like to sit/meditate near the ocean, but it is not necessary to jump in.
Enough, enough. Many things have changed. I write something down and at the same moment I'd like to write the opposite or something else.

Alone at home

Again yoga? Perhaps a little bit later. Something dynamic? surya namaskaras a.

It becomes more and more clear that I spend too much time at work. Ha ha.

This year will bring some changes. I know it.

After work I was downtown at the Marienplatz. I wanted to buy a present for my darling. I had something in mind for a long time. Today I finally made it to that nice shop. I think that it is time for my darling that he has his own facial lotion. (I'm not sure if he thinks like me). Of course I share mine with him. But usually I think of his face care and put him some lotion on his face. He likes it. But he is old enough now...hihihi for his own. The lotion is so good on the skin, nothing is seen on the face, but it refreshes. It is with ginseng actif, with green coffee and vitamins - only natural ingredients of course, no animal testing either.

The lotion even gives energy. It is called Ginseng actif pour homme. The producer comes from France, where else. Hope E. will like it.

Before he comes home from soccer playing, I have to hide my little gifts for me (body lotion, shampoo, bathing foam, a lipstick).

After soccer it is a good time for such a present. If he isn't injured he usually is in a good mood, like me when I did Ashtanga.

The hour of the truth

I don't know why, but I didn't sleep well this night.

This morning I went up at 6 a.m. as usual. At 7 a.m. I sat on my mat. I started very slowly with my practice, I had to. It was a very intensive practice yesterday. I had no pain, but I could feel the edges rather early today. This is a sign that I went rather far yesterday.

I didn't like to vex my body, so I practiced slowly and carefully. I did only a few back bends, like ushtrasana and dhanurasana. My body needs time to relax.

I would like to go back to bed and stay there till lunch time. That would be fun.

Monday, February 05, 2007

We are all individualists - the led Ashtanga class this evening

T. was not the teacher today. I would lie, if I would write that I missed him.

A. is the teacher, a woman with a huge smile. She also teached us to smile. Also when it is the last vinyasa and we do not know how to do it, this last time, because all the power faded already, we should smile and we should show attitude. Isn't that what I used to write, too?

A. was a good teacher. I loved her energy that she gave to the class.
In the beginning of the class a yoga student talked to her. She wanted to do Mysore class even though it was a led class. She emphasized that she wanted to get adjustments. "I know the whole first series", she proclaimed proudly. The teacher promised her to press her into the asanas. My opinion: to practice Mysore style in a led class is like swimming against the river. Only those with a very good focus can do this. Gurus? And of course individualists are able to do this.

I couldn't resist to watch her from time to time. I don't want to analyse too much, but I think she could have learned more if she went with the group, if she held the positions a little bit longer. Her rhythm would have been more equally. And last but not least, it would have been good for her ego not to do the practice on her own. Later I thought that she works perhaps independently. Working as an employee it becomes an easy task to put the ego on a hanger in the changing room before entering a yoga class. It would have been fun, if everybody wanted to do something else.

It was an enlightening class. I could lift my whole body with straight legs. That was hard. But I did it several times. The trick is to place the hands next to the thighs but more in the middle of them. Janu sirsasana b shall be good for good sex. OK.

I had an intensive, focused practice. Only when I watched others, I was not focused. But it was understandable - so many new people today in the class.

I hope that I haven't done too much. I don't want to be overstretched tomorrow. Afterwards the man, who practiced behind me said: "You are very good." I like this compliment. I start smiling almost at once. Best mood becomes even better. I complimented back, that he was good, too. He did yoga for a few months, I think he told me. When I see bloody beginners I always ask me if they will give up or if Ashtanga yoga will become a passion for them? There is nothing in between. I also know that among blind people the one with one eye is the queen. This relatives the level of my practice, but not my joy of getting such a nice feed back.

In savasana the teacher pulled my legs and the arms, I got a little neck massage and then a little cushion was laid on my eyes. It smelled of herbs. I relaxed.

I walked home in the rain, rather happy.

Very slow

I was very slow today. It was already half past seven, when I had finished the ouverture (standing sequence). I close the curtains now when I practice. In the backyard are men with their probably first cup of coffee, smoking cigarettes. I don't like them to watch me. If they look up, they can see me, like I can see them with their unhealthy morning ritual. It is cold outside, but for smokers it doesn't matter.

I was very slightly overstretched form the intensive practice yesterday. With each movement my body became softer. I had only time for a few forward bends and a short closing sequence. I do not omit savasana anymore. It reminds me to relax my face, to be cool.

The second cup of coffee is next to my PC now. I like my clean desk. The week-end was a productive one.

I plan to go to a yoga class this evening, led Ashtanga, first series. Why not.

Motivation to go to work is not very high. But the duty calls me. And of course I like the money I get. I should think of the workshop I want to go to at the end of February and that I don't have to think if I can afford it or not. I just go, because I have a job that brings me money.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

The first steps are done


The buddha can breath again. Life can go on.

I lost the battle

I lost the battle. But today I will attack again.

It is no more a chore or a task (challenge), it became a goal. Goal no 5 is to clean my desk. I want or perhaps better I need a clean desk in order to be able to use it.

Work, yoga, blogging, eating out, sleeping, that's my life.

Now, let's attack. There might be a small chance that I win.

Such a good practice today


It was a good practice. I was concentrated. Only after the first surya namaskaras A I took a short break. Then I went on and on, I experienced flow. I went with the breath. The breath was there from the beginning to the end of my practice.

My breath is also longer, when I know that time is unlimited. I enjoy this so much to have time as much as I want.

I even tried tittibhasana a, which was frustrating. Each asana that I try the first time is only indicated. More is just not possible.
Kapotasana: I bended backwards first and I experienced fear. Then I tried to get up from lying down first. I could lift the body a little bit. It is a start. I cannot force the body into an asana. The body won't do it. I can only injure myself. Patience must be learned.

I'm relaxed now. I enjoyed the practice. To practice yoga is a wonderful start in the day.

I deserve a breakfast now with sweet home-made jam and another cup of coffee.
Picture: The winter view, when I practice.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Blood diamond

We just came back from the theatre. We watched the movie "Blood Diamond". It is about the diamond business in Sierra Leone and the world in 2000. I've read about the children soldiers and the cruelties in these countries, but to see all this in pictures (also when it is only a fiction, based on historic facts), is really hard to digest. Di Caprio was perhaps a little bit too handsome for the story. But perhaps handsome people are in every business. He was very good as an actor. Really great.

My blog seemed ridiculous after this movie. My discussed issues in my blog (when to shower, to complain, when I have to work half an hour longer, posture problems) seemed perverted to me. I see me as a victim of the Zeitgeist, a victim of my environment.

I'm not a conscious political person. But just after the movie it seems difficult to write about all these banal problems of my life. I have everything. My problems are created by myself. My main issue is how I can make my life still a little bit better than it is already (in a world where many people struggle for survival).

I needed 2 cuba libre after the movie. We also ordered chips and salsas. How comfortable.

PS: Of course the movie is a recommendation for those who want to look over the rim of the own plate. The movie goes under the skin - that's a warning.

Addition after having slept: It was a typical American movie: There was a heroe. The heroe is always a white man (never a chinese, never a woman, never a black man and so on). Dying in the mountain Leonardo, the hero still initated a last (perhaps his first) good deed. And there is a happy end. The black family was united again - and they became rich (I only write one word - diamond). This is not at all realistic, but finally nice to sea. Perhaps that's why I slept so good. Everything is OK again. Technically the movie was perfect. To see the nice countries, the colours was amazing.

Back to my yoga practice.

The kitchen



The kitchen is the place where we (bf and me) eat most of the time (when we are not in restaurants).

The kitchen stores the food.

It is the place where I relax, when I drink a cup of coffee or a cup of tea, the newspaper (Handelsblatt) in front of me.

I cook in the kitchen, sometimes I make phone calls from there.

At parties people gather in the kitchen to chat, to eat, to drink - the kitchen an important place.

The oven - the fire


In earlier time it was the open fire, what nowadays is the oven.
I needed a break from cleaning, but now I have to go on. There is still a lot to do. The corner with the spices needs cleaning and of course the floor.
When the kitchen is clean I will prepare a green tea. I found a very good one under the table. What a surprise.

Spiritual house cleaning - the kitchen


I started. The refrigerator, the oven, the table, the chairs are the most important items in the kitchen. They want to be free, too, free from dust and dirt. Old food must be thrown out of course.

To clean is exhausting like surya namaskaras.
The corner, where the spices are, needs cleaning now. I want to be courageous and want to look into the cupboards. Difficult was only the start. Now it is even fun, because I see success.

This morning I told my mother that I would have to clean my home, because it is a mess. She: Mine is clean. Mothers of her generation are perfect housewifes.

I need to sell to myself that it is important to clean. Today it helped to interprete cleaning as a spiritual activity. :)


On faces

When I was younger I used to say that everybody over 30 is responsible for his own face. That's my opinion till now.

A relaxed, smiling face, with open eyes reflects success in life (whatever this might be for different people), happiness, wisdom.

A diamond ring, fancy clothes or whatever one thinks can represent the own self cannot express, what a relaxed happy face can mirror.

To smile is a way to happiness.

I just made a decision

At first cleaning. Then yoga. I remember a sentence one of my friends said: "I cannot die now, because when people will have to go into my home after my death, they will think what a chaotic person must have lived here." That's my situation now, too.

My life consists of working, yoga, writing, eating in restaurants. Unfortunately there are chores to do, too. And now is the time.

I have to take care of a spiritual atmosphere here, and this is a clean atmosphere. OK, my eyes are worse now, I do not see everything so clearly, I often close my eyes in order not to see all the mess. I look out of my balcony doors, so I do not see the chaos either. But this morning I decided, it is better today to clean first. What a good decision.

I can do yoga late at night.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Friday evening

I left the office at 5:30. I must mention it. I thought I worked half an hour longer, I will say good-bye to the boss. I looked in an unhappy, discontent, perhaps concentrated face and I regretted that I had said good-bye. I won't do it again. But at the same moment I knew that I would take it with homour and that the feelings of others won't touch me.

I had a very good working day. I know that I complained a lot. The truth is: I like to work. The challenge is to find the right work. There will always be challenges, name it problems, yes, but most tasks can be handled somehow. I want to repeat it: I like to work, but the circumstances must be as I like them. I like to work independently and with optimistic people. Work must be fun, not a duty. I will look for this environment and I will find it.

Today I had set for myself a doable goal. I wanted to enter in the PC all the debtors. And I did it. I even had the time to check if everything was entered correctly. It was somehow satisfying.

The energy in the room is so much better now. When I was in the room with my former colleague I had the feeling I was in an old pension home. My situation improved. But I will take care that it will get even better in this year. I want to have a work that I like, where I can live my passion.

2 new people started working at the company. They were led from room to room. This provoked me to think again about the importance of the first impression. I definitely make a better first impression. Both made all possible mistakes. The worse the competition the better. Also this sentence is not true. I like to be surrounded with great people. It is so much more fun. I know that the first impression is overrated. So I give everybody all the chances they want. Let them play their role on that stages of this world and I like to be convinced.

Then I went home and my darling and I went out: Indian food this evening. I liked it and the Chianti was good, too. No yoga class. It was again a sinful evening. But I was together with my darling. We have not much time for each other, so I enjoy the evenings with him where we eat out at one of the Munich restaurants.

Tomorrow I will do yoga in the morning and in the afternoon and in the evening I will read books about yoga, while sitting in padmasana.

On the mat on Friday

I didn't think a lot today. I was too lazy and tired to think anything. From a yogini point of view this is appreciated. (not to be tired and lazy, but to stop thinking while practicing)

Time was limited as every day. I did the four core asanas: marichyasna d (left side was very difficult today), kurmasana (I'm on my way), garbha pindasana (Will I ever be able to touch my ears in that position?) and baddha konasana (my favourite one, chin touches the floor, I feel excellent in this position, I like it, perhaps because I'm good at it).

One more time I remembered myself that it is so important to have a straight back while forward bending. It is not so important how deep I can go into a pose, the straight back is important. I had to omit a lot of asanas/vinyasas, but so it is.

I did headstand, forearm stand and handstand. I was wobbling today.

And savasana. I could totally relax. It was wonderful.

(The meeting with B. yesterday will change my life this summer. I'm so excited.)

It is breakfast time now.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

The day is already over

I met B. this evening. I picked her up at the office and then we went to the station's lounge. Only men were there watching the handball match. We discussed our future. From time to time all the men were jumping off their seats. The match must have been unbearable exciting. When I read the news at home I was informed that the match must have been very good. I think I didn't miss anything. To talk with B. was more exciting.

Later I went out with E.. We went to the bar round the corner. It was relaxing. At home I took a shower and now I'm tired. I must do so many things, but I'm lazy. I want to read, I want to do nothing else, no tasks, no chores.

I will visualize an intensive practice before I will fall asleep. Perhaps it will help me to be good on the mat tomorrow morning. This is so important.

Lifestyle and yoga

My lifestyle during the last 3 evenings didn't support my yoga practice. It is not remarkable during the first or second day. But today the body answered. My body was stiff this morning. Wine every evening is not supportive. Who does not know this. It was so relaxing. But there are better methods to relax (a bath, yoga, telephone calls, an exciting book, a movie or TV).

I did the standing sequence, but I hurried through the postures. I was glad that nobody saw me. I did some backbendigs, including dhanurasana. I couldn't stretch my arms today, but I was glad that I could lift me at all.

Halasana relaxed me. I did headstand, forearm stand and handstand. Very quick everything. But the week-end comes soon and then I will have again all the time I want.

When I practice like today I won't progress, perhaps I can hold the level that I currently have.

I should be ready for the day now. My mantra: I have to go home on time. Today B. awaits me at her office. She invited me to the station's lounge.