Monday, January 31, 2011

Weekend is over.....

Fuck it!
I think I wrote enough help-letters now. This is time-consuming. Oh no, not to write a help letter needs time, I type rather fast, but to find a link where to explain the issues. So no pictures today, I cannot upload pictures anymore. I don't buy a software that is for free and Picasa is for free. Point.

And I had such a wonderful practice this morning in the Mysore class. First I thought it's a typical Monday. When I arrived the doors were open to get fresh air in the yoga room. Fresh means cold air came in. Brrrhhhhhh, I thought, I will be stiff. One must give the day an opportunity to develop. With each breath, with each movement my practice became better. I practiced slowly, this makes second series a bit easier.
- Mayurasana was able for two breaths today.
- My one finger could touch the toes when I was in kapotasana. M adjusted me of course.
This has all influence on my mood, that is minimum 5 points better now.

I'm so thankful that I can practice Ashtanga yoga. Sometimes I think if the old dead yogis could see us practicing yoga only for an hour or so, they would be entertained forever in heaven or hell.

Buh, I take a nap now, before I attack my projects.......

And please, I want to upload pictures......

Blogger issues.

Blogger drives me crazy.

Whoops! You're out of space. Purchase more storage.



Photos are stored in your Picasa Web Albums account and are included in your 1 GB free quota for photos. Additional storage you purchase is shared between Gmail, Picasa Web Albums, and Google Docs, and is in addition to your free quota. Learn more
 
I got this failure message this morning and yesterday, too. Blogger does not allow me to upload pictures anymore. Has anybody the same issue. My pictures are not stored in Picasa. Thanks.
 
I already reported this issue to the editor. Nothing has changed so far, I also got no info.

Focus, focus, focus. I'm glad that I can go to a Mysore class this morning. This distracts me from these issues.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The show is over.....






The show is over. The celebrities left the camp in the Australian jungle. Not the rats and cockroaches or the life in the jungle were the challenges but the others. What drama again. Also this year the spectators weren't disappointed. One could think that it should be possible to live in a group of 11 people for only 16 days in peace. But this is not possible for homo sapiens. Fights, jealousy, lies, envy and whatever entertained the German TV watchers (millions).

Peer won the race. Oh yes, I called too, much too often, hahahaha. He is now the jungle king, we all like titles. People obviously don't like boring people. The voter don't apologize it when they are bored. The liars and betrayers are also not loved. A hero, entertaining and fair, was found: Peer.

I couldn't resist to scan some of my pictures from my trip to Australia with E a decade ago (!). E showed me the world, I'm so thankful for this.

So and I can get back to my healthy routine again (since the TV show is over): early to bed, early up. Yoga as usual. To be on the mat at 9am remains the goal, also when I practice alone.
It's Sunday and my yoga week starts with primary.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Weekend, darlings.....


Weekend has come. It's time to relax.

In the jungle camp in Australia it became calmer, too. What to do, what to do, is the question now? Peer wants to play, Thomas lies lazily on the bed. The other two campers had to do another test. It became not only calmer, but also boring in the jungle.
As a yogi/yogini one has always something to do. Yogis/yoginis have always something to play: the own body, the breath, the mind.......

Yoga is a tool to enhance life. I like this definition that I found in the book about Guruji. Swenson said this.
In my case this is true. My growing passion for this Ashtanga yoga practice influences also other parts of my life:

During the interview 2 days ago I was told: At your age we don't hire people anymore. I like honesty.
The only possibility to work for this company is as a freelancer. I try to see this rather than an opportunity than a limitation:
It allows me to work around my yoga practice in the morning.
It allows me to work on my other projects. (I look up to the sky (ceiling) and think: might they develop finally.)
It's clear why they don't give contracts to people at my age: usually people get ill more often when older. In Germany one has a good protection then when working as an employee. As a freelancer it's pure luxury to get ill.
It's very important that I stay healthy:
Healthy vegan food, my yoga practice and an optimistic attitude shall keep me lively.

Life is limited. It will end. This thought is always a reminder for me firstly not to postpone anything and to do what I want, to do what is fun for me. It can be too late one day.
This was an optimistic post. Hahahaha........

...and about my pension I think later. This I postpone......OMG. Shall I remain full of energy.

Time to pamper E with his favourite breakfast during weekends. I got some Krapfen from the bakery.

Picture: yoga nidrasana. It's more or less supta kurmasana on the back. It's easier than supta kurmasana. For those who struggle with supta kurmasana, try the pose on the picture while lying on your bed. The softness of a matress will support the effort to take the legs behind the head. Supta kurmasana will become easier soon. Enjoy.

Friday, January 28, 2011

....being mentally tough.



Jungle camp:
Oh yes, this jungle camp reminds me of former jobs, where I experienced mobbing. It is possible to get into a situation where whatever you do, everything is interpreted negatively. People talk bad about you behind your back or they don't talk at all to you. Very soon one is isolated. Then one needs lonesome wolf qualities. This is what happened with Peer, the group (a group consists of single members) cut him dead. What made the campers so aggressive is that he simply didn't express prejudices too fast like all the others. He remained open and kind to everybody.

M was not even able to say good-bye to Peer when he had to leave the camp and Peer and M got closer to each other in the first week. M was not even able to show minimum manners when he had to go. It's more than disappointing. Now M apologizes for his behaviour on his website. M presented himself as an old man with the life experience of a teenager. Manners? It's a word he obviously must look up in a dictionary. You cannot teach an old dog new tricks. Enough words wasted on him.

Despite the aggression of the group against Peer, he fights to get a star for the food. He is the one who is truthful to himself. He is a strong man. He is someone who is able to show emotions, even tears. I wish him strength for the last days, mental toughness. There are situations that invite to give up, situations that seem hopeless and especially then it's important to go on. He does not know that he became a darling of the spectators and millions watch.

First the boring people had to go: a man who wanted to die and slept on his bed all the time. A woman who wants to have a man and children. Yawn, yawn. And the others I cannot remember anymore.
Then it seems as if the intriguer have to go. Good so. Hahahaha......

The spectators obviously vote for Peer. Me too. I call and call and call for him. At least in the Australian jungle the good one shall win.

Picture: A variation of ushtrasana.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

What to do, if an asana seems impossible....


There are asanas that seem to be impossible. My approach for those asanas:

1. These difficult asanas are often also the ones we don't like so much. I try to find anything that I like and if it is the fact that I like challenges. A positive attitude makes it more likely that an asana is also practiced.
2. I imagine myself doing this asana.
3. Watching others practicing it helps also. On YouTube everything is availabe. Once I saw a woman above 80 doing mayurasana. Since then I'm very motivated to practice this asana, too, with effort and optimism that it's within my possibilities. In addition I study the books of yogis/yoginis who have written about the asana.
4. I do what is possible, again and again. It can be helpful to break down an asana in it's single parts and exercise them isolated. I do this i.e. re jumping back.

Jungle camp: Desirée Nick said it yesterday. Rats, cockroaches and other bugs are nothing in comparison to the beast man. In the second week the campers show their real faces.
I have found my jungle king now. It's the victim of so many aggressions since Ms S has left the camp (voluntarily). He was accused because he talked to this Ms S. Lies were told about him behind his back.  He was target of intrigues and open aggression. Soon he was even isolated and sad. Oh, he cried, he felt so misunderstood. This man Peer is the one who was nice and open to everybody. How I can identify with him. Hahaha.Exactly how he must feel now I felt in companies. Oh, self-pity drops out of my words.

(I have an interview today. I have to go through my own cv. I live so in the present, the past is fading more an more. However everything goes today, it's OK for me.)

Oh, my approach to impossible asanas can be a formula for other impossible tasks in life, too. What a glorious idea....second coffee now.

Btw, thank you for buying amazon products via my blog. Links are on the right side of this blog.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What makes my practice more joyful...


So many factors influence my yoga practice. There are days where I'm full of energy and where I'm very optimistic. Sleep and food influences a practice. It's a difference if I practice in the morning or in the evening. The weight is also a crucial factor. If I practice alone or in a group makes a difference and and and.....

In former times I compared my practices with past accomplishments or with the "perfect" form. An example: I used to think: Yesterday I could bind in marychiasana C, why not today. But the practice and what is possible is every day different. There are so many factors that influence what happens on the mat. All the factors are like the players of an orchestra. Sometimes the single player play together and a melody is created. Then flow happens, the yoga practice becomes a dance. Sometimes only noise happens.

Nowadays I explore my limits. I try to find out what is possible today. I'm attentive to my body and my mind. I go deeper in an asana breath after breath. I see the progression in each practice. Usually in the beginning of a practice I'm more stiff than at the end. The body is warmed up later.

The experienced highlights are enjoyed. Last time I could reach my toes with my fingers when I did kapotasana. M helped me, of course. This gives me hope that one day this pose is possible for me, perhaps sooner than I think. Today I applied the known technique: deep breathing, engaging the muscles, pressing the shin bones on the floor. I gave all my energy to this pose. Fingers didn't reach the toes today. So is it. That I practiced this pose counts.

Ah, the Jasmin tea is good..........

Thank you for buying your amazon products via my blog......:)
Links are on the right side of this blog.



Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Jungle camp....(or "I'm a celebrity, get me out of here.")


She left the camp. Sarah, the crazy one. She has much more to offer than being a model. She is a raw diamond. I so hoped she would stay. This old man (what was his name again?) fell on his knees even and begged her to go. She seemed so strong, but the gossip reached me: She wants to leave the camp. Sarah, how could you!!!!! She is the only one who has had the potential to be a jungle queen: beautiful enough for this role and complicated and provocative enough. Lesson: Never ever give up too early, never ever!!!!!

Rainer (70) does not want to do the dishes, because at home he licks his dishes clean (I crack myself up). This is why he doesn't like to do the dishes in the camp. He simply doesn't like to adjust to a life style of the average people not even for 14 days. Everybody has a life style and Rainer wants to clean his plates, cups and spoons with his tongue. Yes, why not.

This Indian woman is really a nice person. Bravely she passed the tests. She grew with the tasks. She has silicon breasts because she wanted bigger ones. Dearest young lady you are not a bit more exciting or interesting due to bigger breasts. The only thing that has changed is the cup of your bras. And I thought the younger generation has a bit more self-confidence.

The other men in the camp are surely good-looking. They even shave their armpits. OMG, times have changed. Yeah, nice people but I do not fall off my chair when I try to remember them for this post.

I read in a book on writing novels: Readers won't read about the average person, they are average themselves. They prefer to read about the obsessed ones, the crazy ones, the murderers, betrayers and so on. To be exciting, however is the formula to success for this camp (and not to be nice and a group player)

Sarah, you devil, it was a mistake to go. Some opportunities in life appear only once.To become jungle queen is such a unique opportunity. But this you cannot know yet. I know.

I also know, and this is a recommendation from prof blogger, that it is good advice not to publish posts too often. I cannot. Hahahaha. I love to write.

It's all a happening. Everybody moves, speaks as he/she has to. There is no choice.

When you like my yoga blog I appreciate it if you recommend this blog to your friends.

Jumping back.......

 This is the first step: It needs strength. I learned that it is important to bring the legs to the torso as close as possible. When I experience a pose difficult, I remember the breath and the bandhas. It's helpful to engage the abdomen as much as possible. The higher I lift the body the easier is the next step.

 Second step: I take the legs backwards without touching the floor with the feet. It happens with an exhaling. It needs strength, too. Really. But from this position, I'll will never be able to stretch my legs backwards to land into chaturanga dandasana. I'm so far not able to move my head forward. The goal is to bring the hips upwards. It is for me as if I have to travel from Germany to Hawaii within one breath. Impossible. I try to swing my body forwards and backwards. I have this exercise from the book by Gregor Maehle. Buh, this is exhausting.



Variations: From some positions like marychiasana A the jumping backwards is a bit varied. This makes it easier. When my one leg is on my arm it can be seen how far I've to go forward when I want to be able to stretch my legs. I'm able to jump back from bakasana. Sometimes I'm also able to jump back, when only one leg rests on my arm. The picture shows it. It's clear, I have to move the entire body forward and I have to bend the arms. Am I still not strong enough or is my technique not yet the correct one, I wonder?

I watched videos yesterday to see how my fellow yogis/yoginis do it. This is very helpful and motivating. There are also very good slow motion movies on YouTube.

Tips are welcomed.

Feel free to follow this blog on facebook or on twitter. Links are on the right side of this blog. Thank you.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Supta kurmasana - today with text......


Supta kurmasana is one of the four core postures of the 1st Ashtanga series. The others are marichyasana D, garbha pindasana and baddha konasana. They are core postures, because usually it takes some time till a yogi/yogini is able to do them. I needed 6 years for the above pose. No worries if this pose doesn't happen after the first attempts. Usually a teacher gives adjustments when a yogini is practicing this pose.

In the shala in Gokulam you're likely to be stopped when you cannot reach the fingers behind the back. It's not so important to cross the legs. Oh was I glad that I passed this obstacle when I was in Mysore a few years ago.

Our bodies are build differently. For some people supta kurmasana is easy, for others not. When the limbs are relatively long in comparison to the torso it might be easier.
There are 2 possible positions:
1. legs are crossed in front of the head or
2. legs are crossed behind the head/back.

For me it's easier to cross the legs behind back, see picture.

How I got into this pose: I used the sofa as a support. Leaning against it, I could take both legs behind the head. This is not so comfortable. I breathed deeply and relaxed. Then I moved my body forward the hands were stretched to the sides and pressed against the floor. I want to have a slow and safe landing. The head will come on the floor first. When the head is on the floor, I take my arms behind the back and hook the fingers. Looking at the picture I see, that it could be easier to bind a bit higher. It feels good to be in that pose. I can enjoy it.

How I approached this pose: To get the legs behind the head is easier when lying on the back and it's easier to have a soft floor. I often practiced this on the bed.  This IS helpful. Try it first in the evening. Try to take the knees next to the body on the bed, then stretch the legs. Try to take the legs under your shoulders. On the bed all these attempts are fun (and easier). The next step is to do it on the floor........then one can try to do it while sitting......

My next step is to go away from the sofa........:) The pose is called dwi pada sirsasana.

Good luck, relax and let it happen........


PS: You can also like my blog on facebook. There is a link on the right side of this blog.

My book recommendation for today: Matthew Sweeney - Ashtanga yoga as it is.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Space...


Nothing is on the carpet anymore, no book, no bag, no clothes, no files. I've created a playground. Without any effort a tiny yoga evening routine happened the last evenings. I didn't role out a mat, I didn't even change my clothes. At home I'm dressed comfortably, so I can move freely always. The asana sequence that I practiced I take from the book "Vinyasa Krama: Five Unique Sequences" by Matthew Sweeney. It's  influenced by Ashtanga yoga, but much lighter and easier (so far, I'm only at the beginning of the first sequence).

My focus when I practice at night: lightness. I play, I breathe consciously, I enjoy. No effort in order to accomplish anything in the future is done. I go with the flow.

1. The first part is moving from one simple asana to the next with each next breath. It's rather dynamic.
2. Then one asana follows the next and the asanas are held for 5 breaths. The exhausting vinyasas are missing. This makes the sequence easier.

In the evening every practice is easier and the body is more than ready to enjoy the poses.
Lightness, letting go, enjoying  are the key words that guided me through a mini practice in the evening.

A vacuum doesn't exist for a very long time. Look, look.

Yoga fair in Munich:
I dont have to go to every event. And I won't go this year`to the yoga fair that takes place this Saturday and Sunday. They want 60,-- Euro entrance fee and this is over the top. What do I get, I wonder. The yoga studios use it for advertising their classes. The shops want to sell me their clothes. The food was boring and expensive last time.
Last year the yoga classes were free. It was an opportunity to get to know new teachers and new yoga styles. It was very bad organised last year. I participated in an Ashtanga class. Yogis/yoginis joined all the time. This is not possible in an Ashtanga led class, because there is a progression in the practice. So we did only sun salutations. This year I shall  pay 30,-- Euro in addition for the same class. Thank you for the offer, but I'm busy.
I focus on what is important to me. I know many yoga styles: Bikram, Sivananda, Anasura, Iyengar, Jivamukti.
I know what I want: ASHTANGA YOGA. That's it for me.
I'm happy. This year I save time and money. 60,-- Euro entrance fee! are they crazy the yogis/yoginis or what? (I think last year it was 20,.. Euro, but I cannot remember very well anymore.)

Becoming essential saves time and money. It creates room for new things.

Are you strong I asked him (E) this morning. "Tell me what you want", he answered. I could convince him to go through his clothes and we discarded A LOT. Relief.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Energy......


In the jungle camp is a woman, a model who is experienced difficult by the other campers. Why? I only want to mention one reason: She was voted to do a test and she refused to do it. She didn't like to pick up stars that were hidden in holes in a wrack. In the holes of course were not only stars but also rats and spiders and other animals. No star means no food for the group. Hahahaha........The others became angry. They want her to go. Hahahaha.

Do you feel it?

Energy. Pure energy. But nobody of the group sees the potential of this energy. This crazy girl creates feelings in them and the others make nothing out of it, but complaining about her. Even R who is experienced in meditation shows the expected and boring reaction. They all want to have the blond devil differently. They don't accept what is. They are not amused nor entertained. They show anger. Yawn, yawn here.
It's courage to refuse to do what others expect. She breaks the rules. Some authors even recommend this in order to become successful. She will also leave the camp with new experiences, but she created them for herself. She refuses to do these awful tests. I understand this. One must say, she was voted the fifth time already to do a test. Probably because she did everything so half-hearted, pretending each time it was the most difficult test. Our perception of what is, is different. But this IS true for everybody.

I searched the web later to read what the public opinion is: some like her, some hate her, some are convinced  "this is it what makes the show so good".

It's energy babies, that she is creating in others, it's a gift, it's something that can be transformed.
Sometimes I'm really good at using this firstly "negative" energy for something different. For instance someone steps on my heels in the underground. This usually creates anger in me. I can hear myself sometimes saying: "Take care of your steps!!! But sometimes another thought is faster when I feel anger coming up. Use this, use this, it's energy, I think then. This is a kick, this has the potential to make me doing something, saying something, creating something, writing something, doing another push-up that wouldn't have been possible otherwise.  Not always this is possible.

Our wonna be survival men and women do not even think that far. They bore us with known behavioral patterns. OK, they are hungry.....ohhhhhh..........

Mysore class:
Oh, I'm so thankful that M is back again. I went to a Mysore class this morning. I missed this so much. Oh, am I happy now that this Mysore show can go on.
Yes, it was great to practice in a group again. The yogis/yoginis have the potential to influence my practice for the better. They give me energy only through their presence. I'm even more focused on my own practice and I'm able to practice more intensively.  I exploit this energy shamelessly for my own practice. It was an excellent one. Ah.


Tip for jumping forward: Day in day out, month in month out, year in year out I exercise to jump through and each time one foot is touching the mat. This drives me crazy. Yesterday I had a closer look what is happening. I jump and shift my weight on my hands. The imagination is that I balance on my hands. I don't think that I jump through. I cross my legs. I crossed them so far rather close at the wrists. When I cross them a bit higher my foot touches the floor much much less. I'll work on this tiny variation now. I have the feeling this helps me.

A story at the end that I found in the autobiography of Osho. Once he hold a speech in public and an educated man got so angry about Osho's words that he threw a shoe at him. Osho caught it and asked for the second one, as he wanted to open a shoe shop, he pretended. After this event this man wrote every year letters to Osho and asked him to forgive him. But Osho wrote back each time that he didn't forgive him, because he was not injured. Yeah Osho, a friend he wanted to be..........he is.
(Oshos autobiography is a recommendation if you haven't read it so far.)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Guess, how I feel now?


Yes, fantastic.

This morning thoughts came up again to stop with my decluttering project. It's enough now, I thought. I won't find things to discard anymore. Am I glad that I didn't believe myself. This thought is already so familiar.

1. Better not to think too much anymore, when a plan already exists. It's true for all activities also for the yoga practice.

2. I set a time limit. I wanted to work 1 hour. I worked like a wild one and I wanted to go on after an hour. Amazing how much was already accomplished after only 60 min. Why not going on? I had to take advantage of my mood and energy.

3. Better to throw the books out than to sell them. It's too time consuming to sell them online. Mr Ferriss reminded me of the pareto principle. It's surely a very good advice to focus on the 20% activities that bring the best results. I won't make an income with selling my old books or returning my empty bottles. Ah, it's only to keep me busy, busy, busy.

4. To finish an activity is also important. It's part of it to take the vacuum cleaner to the storage room and the ladder, too. I even cleaned on top of the wardrobe, this is why I needed this ladder. OMG, this was so necessary, all the clouds of dust there, impossible. When the tools are at their places again, the success can be enjoyed. And I do enjoy my results. I walk around, and think: this was a good session.

5. I delegate already, but there is still a lot to do for myself.

6. I read a lot of books on organizing and managing time. I think it's good to do the personally most difficult things first (and not 3 tiny tasks first to be motivated i.e.). We are all different, it's worth to experiment to find out what is best.

Oh, was I thirsty after this cleaning/decluttering session.

It's already afternoon. I'm ready for my yoga practice. Primary today. This is good, it's easier than second series. It will be a piece of cake now.........hahahaha......

Focus, focus, focus shall be the breath.........

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Fasting and breathing.......


I go on a fast, an information fast. From input to output is the motto.
It looks as if I've still something to do........
It's a long way to a simple life. :)
Hahahaha, and the buddha statue sits on top to have an overview.....
The book "The 4 hour-week" is so convincing. Ferriss is a man who shares his knowledge that comes from actions and experiences not from reading.
I'm working every day on my decluttering, cleaning, organizing project. Every day I get closer to my goal to have simplicity at my home. I only want to have things here that I really need and love. I discard everything that has no value for me anymore. It's liberating. I enjoy the space that I create, the lightness.

Ashtanga yoga:

Breathing:
One aspect is so important that I want to repeat it here.
The breath initiates the movement. 
This is not chicanery, it makes an Ashtanga yoga practice easier. It's impossible to hold the breath for an eternity, sooner or later I have to exhale or I have to inhale. When the movement follows (a tiniest bit later) also the movement comes naturally.
There is a break between inhaling and exhaling, a little pause, not too long, not too short....:). It separates different actions (inhaling, exhaling, moving forward, moving backwards).
Yesterday it was not so easy to start my Ashtanga yoga practice. It was afternoon, when I finally was on my mat. The simple trick to focus on this moment when the inhaling/exhaling started made it so much easier.
Finally I had an excellent practice. I added only hanumanasana. No repetitions of asanas that I want to learn and that need extra attention were done. The energy level varies from day to day.
I had a practice with flow.

I'm looking forward to my practice today.
Let go, I think, when I exhale, let go and this thought allows me to get deeper and deeper into an asana..........

PS: Don't forget to buy your amazon stuff via my blog. Only buy what you need......hahahaha.....Thank you.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A sunrise with Rumi.....:)



The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.


Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

-- Jelaluddin Rumi,
translation by Coleman Barks

 
Thank you Paz for sending me the poem by Rumi. 
Thank you Mahesh for this most beautiful sunrise in the middle of an ocean.
 
I think the picture and the poem fit very well together......:) Enjoy.

Difficult people......


Yesterday I watched again the "jungle camp", how we call here the programme "I'm a celebrity get me out of here".

Difficult people yeah, it can be evening filling this topic.
Difficult people are part of life. That's so.
Difficult people are sometimes difficult for themselves.

It's surely worth to think about what we experience as difficult:
- unreliability?
- quick changing moods?
- people who are simply different to us?

Of course there are methods to handle different behaviours of our difficult colleagues, friends, neighbours, clients, guests in restaurants. I have a lot of books here on that topic.

One should not forget:
Difficult people are entertaining.
Difficult people give an opportunity to use the emerging energy for our own projects.
Difficult people are stuff of books.
Difficult people give an opportunity to grow and learn.

Last but not least the insight might help: We are all not responsible for what is happening. There is no doer, but body-mind organism, who act as it is supposed to be regarding the genes and the conditioning. We cannot be different as we are.

No, buh, I wouldn't have been able to eat puréed rat tail. Alone the thought of it makes me feel sick. My admiration for the candidates.
I'd prefer to starve, thinking of Kate Moss, who once said: No food is so delicious as it feels good to be slim. That's what I would also say to the others when I'd return with no star and when they all had to be hungry with me. Difficult,difficult....hahahaha.

I definitely prefer to experience myself on the mat practicing Ashtanga yoga. It's time again for second series.

Picture: Munich

Monday, January 17, 2011

Limits


Jungle camp again: There was the impression that this wonna be model could have given a bit more. She should crawl through an earth tunnel with different sorts of animals in it like spiders, rats. 11 stars were hidden there and every star symbolizes one meal for the group. After 1 min out of the 8 the model couldn't breathe anymore out of fear. She said the sentence: I'm a celebrity, get me out of here. She was saved.
She considered herself as a hero and thought she had done the most difficult test ever. She was so done that she wasn't able to clean some dishes later. No, she was not convincing. The stay in the jungle camp gives the opportunity to experience the own limits. One has to fight, but also to fight is obviously something that must be learned. What reached a limit was surely her self-pity.

The spectators are merciless. Today she must do the next test. She and a man are voted, and it's exactly the man who showed  the most misunderstanding re the behaviour of the wonna be diva. The fun can go on for us voyeurs.
The next test is called "Oktoberfest". It must have to do something with eating and drinking. I'm not sure what is more difficult, to crawl through and earth tunnel or to eat lively worms and other animals. It remains exciting.

Voyeurs.....oh this was sexy yesterday night. The one man removed his underwear so far that we, the spectators, the greedy TV watchers could see his wow most beautiful ass. Not enough. He put his hands on his buttocks and moved them up and down, separated them a bit. This is for the cameras, I thought, holding my breath, staring at the tube, not to miss anything. This is for us, for those who stay up every night till midnight. Then he turned around, ahhhhh, this devil, more he didn't show. Not yet.
Rainer is different. We have seen already everything from him inclusively penis, balls, we saw his front side and back side. It's natural. He jumps naked into the water, separates his legs, swims like a frog to shoo away a last cockroach that might be hidden somewhere on his body. Why not.

Limits: This was the topic of yesterday night. Most of us don't go even close to the own limits. We think we are close, but this is not the case. More is possible. I'm looking forward to experience my limits during my yoga practice today. May I be able to go a bit further than yesterday, a bit only.....hahahaha.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Pratyahara


From 10pm through 12pm I'm busy. I watch TV: I'm a celebrity, get me out of here. :)

Every evening one of the celebrities has to do a test. Yesterday Rainer Langhans was voted to do it. When the test is done successfully the group gets something to eat.
Last night Rainer had to lie down in a coffin with 30.000 cockroaches. These cockroaches are lively animals and they crawl and crawl and crawl. Rainer was in that coffin high in the air, motionless for 10 min. It is known that Rainer meditates. He is surely familiar with the methods of pratyahara, withdrawal of the senses. That was it what he has done in my opinion: pratyahara in perfection. He did a fantastic job. The group got food.

Animals: There are no disgusting animals. When we human beings think that some animals are cute others disgusting, it's something we've learned. Whatever we've learned we can also unlearn. These exercises that play with disgust lose the horror when this is seen. Cockroaches are amazing animals.

Methods to practice pratyahara:
- focusing on the breath (pranayama exercises are pratyahara techniques)
- focusing on only one sense (like hearing) for a certain time.
- focusing on only one point at the body.
Last mentioned technique is  a method I use when I'm at the dentist. I can stand pain very well because I shift my attention to my right big toe. Everything else, I blind out.
Picture is taken in Munich.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

It shall be a joy.......


Yesterday night I watched TV. I usually sit on the floor when I do this. This position invites me to put my body in yoga poses. The body was so soft yesterday night. The time, it was night already surely was a reason for this flexibility. To be in all these forward bending asanas and even twists felt so relaxing. I really enjoyed it, even the bit of stretching discomfort was a pleasure.

So great it can be to perform asanas, I thought. To experience such lightness and joy would be great to have also during my morning practices. I plan to stay so long in an asana till I feel relaxed and ready to go on with the next movement. Why to hurry? Currently I have time, I can practice slower if this is easier and more relaxing.

When I practiced yoga 25 years ago, we practiced an asana and remained in that asana for a very long time, motionless. This was an exercise for the mind. Not to move was the challenge, not the performance of a position. Nowadays the body is much more in the center of the attention when we practice. I shift my attention to the mind again.

I know it must be a joy to practice. The importance of setting goals is without question. To have a plan how to accomplish these goals is equally important. Too much ambition can spoil a practice. Being on the mat it seems to be good advice to let go of all the goals. Letting go again, yes. To be as intensive as possible in the given moment is what can be done to make a practice to a satisfying one.

Beauty, elegance shall be seen when I practice and not the painful effort that comes too with the practice from time to time. I love the compliment: It looks all so easy when you do this asana.

When I practice I think each time when I exhale "let go". This allows me to go very deep into an asana. Let go, I think, let go (of all the concepts, goals, must-happen-thoughts), let go.

"I'm a celebrity, get me out of here" is a programme that I like to watch. It started yesterday and it will last 14 days. It's no more so exciting as it had been the first times when this programme was broadcasted. It's still interesting. All the exercises that the jungle inhabitants have to perform are mainly mind exercises. To conquer fear and disgust can be done with  a helpful mindset. It's amazing what can be done with supportive minds. The people who attend the camp are trained. To keep lively worms/snakes (or whatever) in the mouth for a certain amount of time is surely easier when the imagination is strong enough to believe that it's chocolate. I'd like to know what the candidates imagine.
In this sense I will step on my mat with the thought: it's easy baby and a great joy to practice.

Picture of today is taken by Mahesh. A sunrise.
What a perfect moment to finish a yoga practice at the time when the sun rises.
Thank you for this unique picture.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Weekend......


Picture: Kerstin Apelman Öberg, Die Arche Noah, 1969 from the book "Geliebtes Tier" by Midas Dekkers (page 30)

Time to relax, time to take a break from everything. However. I'll take a bath.
And this evening my favourite programme begins: I'm a celebrity, get me out of here. Hahahaha.
My nights will be longer from now on till the end of January as this programme goes till midnight.

My bookshelves are a bonanza.
Enjoy my finding of today.........:)

Happy weekend.......

David Garrigues

I cannot forget the picture that I saw lately on  David,'s blog.

All my excuses that come into my mind in order to postpone a task or to avoid it seem ridiculous after having seen David sitting in a dark dirty tiny cave warmly dressed, even with shoes on, because it's too cold there to practice yoga barefoot. He sits there in that uncomfortable, ugly place in lotus pose, he is practicing Ashtanga yoga.
He has no excuses.

And why am I not doing a little evening routine? Because the carpet is too soft? Really????
Do I really have to postpone my space clearing activities, because it's dark in here? I didn't.

Each time when I find myself in an inner discussion, a dialogue if something can be done or not, or if I should postpone it or......the picture of David pops up. And I have no excuses anymore either.

Ashtanga yoga is dangerous, it has the potential to change our lives.
This is a warning before reading his blog post. It has the potential to change you and your habits.

Wow, my admiration for David. You too can become a fan of him on fb. I am.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

It's important work........

 It's important work, otherwise it wouldn't be so emotional. I work fast, this is best. Not to think too much is helpful. How much time do I want to waste on discarding garbage? I space cleared again another book shelf.
Today I won't find anything to discard, I thought. I think this each time. But look, also today I could let go of so many old books.

Yes, Mr Logdge, I laughed loudly about your stories. Will I laugh a second time about the same stories. I'm not sure. Thank you for the entertaining hours, bye-bye.

This book on marathon by a German politician was so authentic. This man lost 30 kg or more and  ran 40 km, the marathon. He conquered shame. "My long run to myself" he called his book. A few years later he was fat again. I don't believe him anymore with his new life-style that he has found and that he wanted to keep till the end of his life. In the meantime he'll listen again to rock and not to classical music. He too has the right to change and to invent himself again and again. It's not my beer, away with this book.

Jean-Paul Sartre, le mur. Oui, oui, in French language, sorry Sartre I haven't read this book. When I want to speak French fluently nowadays, then to whisper love words in the ear of a beloved one and not to crucify myself through your books in French language. See you in hell.

I took all the empty boxes from my storage room to the garbage in the back yard. I had to go twice! Room for my bags was needed that lived in my bedroom. I'm not yet so far to let go of those bags. But I don't want to see them anymore. I still think they can bring me some money. Deadline is the the 30. August. If they are still dawdling in my storage room by then I'll make them legs.

Main feelings: regret. All the books that I've not read.......all the money that I've thrown out of the window. That my yoga blanket business didn't become a million-dollar business is not a surprise. It could have been a success, but it wasn't. I'v only spend money on goods. It had to be so, obviously.
At least these blankets support me now with back bending. I face the facts: they have to go, too.

I'm drinking orange juice. Too much dust was flying around again, even though I had the vacuum cleaner handy. I must clear my throat with something liquid.


Also today I got a reward, I found an old picture. I sit next to a friend, but I know she wouldn't like it to see herself published in the Internet, so I had to cut the picture. It was nice to see her again, at least on a picture, a very beautiful woman, with black curls (to give a visual).

Oh, I feel relieved.

Yesterday I wanted to go out. It was already after midnight. In the one hand I had a plastic bag full of garbage, in the right hand I had old papers. A neighbour came up the steps: "Ah, you're going out?" Me, laughing: "Yes, I want to go to a bar." She: "It's raining outside."  Then we stood there in the corridor at midnight and started talking for half an hour or even longer. Every few minutes I had to switch on the light again. When Germans chat, they enjoy complaining. She is 40, but she isn't in the mood to work for companies either. She got even ill due to the stress. Mood is surely not the right word.
We both are convinced something else is waiting for us.

May the rain has stopped in the meantime. I want to enjoy the bar life for 1 hour or so. A Cuba libre for me tonight, libre, liberty, yeah.....

Tip of the day: Throw out your old books and buy new ones, via my blog of course, at amazon. Hahahaha, and don't forget to live.

Back bending


Yes, finally these carpets have a use. They help me to come up from urdhva dhanurasana.

When I drop back I land with my hands on the carpets. It's much higher than the floor, but I need it that high. Then I come up.

The idea is, when I feel really good coming up, I'll remove a carpet, till I drop to the floor.

I filmed today, but no, the head is cut, I don't like this at all. They are nor for publishing. My videos bring me always down to the floor. My back is straight, it needs much more flexibility.

I change my self-talk from "I don't give up", to "yoginis always find a way to get what they want".

Whoever wants to learn back bending, I highly recommend the blog by David. He shows the way. I read his instructions and watch the videos he has produced. It's so helpful.

Time to move on. My primary was good, but it took all too long.
Space clearing first, before it's dark again.....:)

Don't forget to buy your amazon products via my blog......hahahaha, thank you.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I deserve to write about it.......


Yeah, I worked well.  To clean a bookshelf needs a lot of strength. There is so much dust there. Clouds of dust I had to vacuum away. Each and every book must be cleaned separately with a dish towel. I found treasures, but other books had to go. My throat is dusty now. I have accomplished a lot. I'm not yet through all my book shelves, I live like in a library, I'm a book lover. Tomorrow I'll go on. After every session I finish my work with carrying the discarded stuff down to the backyard. Done, I think, done and I feel relieved. Away with this burden.

There are also funny moments. I found an old love letter written by me, dated March 1985. Yeah, so I am, I thought. I decided not to quote it. I always loved to write obviously. Hahahaha.

When I have no space, things have to go. And I don't have much space and I don't need more.

My insights: I do not have enough space here to store goods. I must sell intellectual property and no carpets, or blankets when I want to have a business.  I also want to live in a way that I can invite a friend without apologizing myself because of the mess.

I walk around and enjoy the air. It's already so much better. Space symbolizes wealth. Tightness is as if I'm in prison and who does not like to break out of it. Life must become simpler for me, much simpler.

The book "The 4 hour work-week" by Ferris is great. I had to read twice what stood there: Don't schedule to work 5 hours a day, but 2. Two?, I thought, two? Hahahaha. But he is so right. We all tend to keep ourselves busy and avoid the things that really have to be done. When only 2 hours are available for work, one is forced to focus on the really relevant work, one has to be productive and not busy busy busy.

And tomorrow I hopefully throw out all these yoga journals. For what do I need them? Practice is 99% and the 1% information I get online. Not always, and I like to look at the pictures, even though I cannot remember anymore when I've looked at these yogini models the last time. Mainly I look at them when I consider to throw out these magazines. Shall these magazines accompany me till my death, I just wonder????? NO!!!!!!

I don't want to move because of too much stuff. Things shall not have so much influence on my life.

Actions first, then possessions. Better to travel to India than to read books on it. Ah, here we go.

E just called me. He is on a business trip in Italy till Thursday night. The food is too delicious in Italy and all the business dinner......yeah, further words are redundant.

Time to take a bath, I intend to go out........

An evening routine....

 Inhaling
 exhaling
 inhaling
 exhaling
 inhaling

exhaling
 inhaling
 exhaling
inhaling

Lately in the evening it happened that I found myself on the floor, on my carpet in the living room, I didn't even take a sticky mat. Soft asanas happened. The body enjoyed different position. I practiced asanas like hanumanasana (side split) and others. Not that I do not know enough asanas, but  I felt lost and helpless on the floor. The book Vinyasa Krama by Matthew Sweeney came into my mind. I rediscover this great book with many many good information. Matthew created 5 asana sequences. They are of course all much much longer than what you see on the pictures above.

I read in the book and the next day I practiced the above sequence. It's the first row in the book of a much longer sequence. Ashtanga in the evening is too much for me. I wanted some asanas before pranayama and meditation and this is it.
First the movements are practiced one breath, one position. After 7 rounds hold each posture for 5 to s10 breaths, he writes.
It's an easy routine with back bending and forward bending. Very soft everything. 
After a few rounds I'm perfectly prepared for breathing and sitting (10 min).

It's a routine that finishes my day with grace.

The sequences become more challenging, they progress. For now the above row is enough for me. For a week or two I'll practice it before I add the next line. Let's see.

If you like my blog, feel free to recommend it to your yogi and yogini friends. Thanks.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Up.......


Yes, I didn't practice yoga for 3 days now.
- On Saturday was my day off from yoga, it was marathon cleaning day. I worked a lot, it's bodily work to iron and to clean the book shelves. I sweated and was exhausted afterwards. E invited me for dinner.
- On Sunday I wanted to start my yoga week with primary, but I felt still exhausted from the activities on Saturday.
- On Monday I felt the inner pressure to move on with my decluttering activities. It's important to feel strong when doing this and I felt so strong on Monday. So I went on. I could let go of sooooo many books. Really. Books on mobbing, on history, old accounting books, everything had to go. I threw it out. It would last too long to sell the books. It's never much money that is earned  with old books, but of course it makes sense to appreciate every Euro in my current situation. Nevertheless I thought to get clearer and clearer is more important. To create a vacuum for new things is more important than to make 30 Euros. To let go of the past is so important.
Clutter cannot be organized, it must go.

Times have changed enormously during the last decades. Many books were bought during a time where Internet didn't exist yet. I got most information out of books. Today other sources are available, too. One must take this into account.
However, I was proud of myself, when I saw how many books I discarded. I took them to the backyard quickly to avoid to go through them again to save some of them.

Interesting that I've lost also 1 kg again. My decluttering activities have always symbolic character. I arrive in the here and now. I let go. I throw out what seems to be a protection. I don't want to hide behind my goods and avoid life that way. This stuff keeps me so busy, it steals my time. Away with it.
That I've lost one kilo again is also because of my healthy eating:
On the pic is a dinner that I prepared for E and myself during the weekend. Half of the plate is filled with salad. The green beans have no calories at all, but taste well. The potatoes are filling and good carbohydrates. It was all a bit dry, I admit it. My mother would have cut parsley in addition for the potatoes and she would have poured butter over the potatoes. This is more tasty, yeah, but not that healthy.

Seeing my weight on the scales this morning made me very optimistic re my yoga practice. For a while I had to admire my naked body in front of the huge mirror. Oh, my belly muscles can be seen again. This looks great. I have also strong back muscles and my legs are strong, too, so are my arms. My body is the well-trained body of an advanced Ashtanga yoga practitioner. I love it. Ah, quickly I jumped into some clothes again, it was still a bit fresh in here.

Back to yoga: Today I practice, for sure. And decluttering activities come afterwards.

The insecurity of my current life provokes different sort of feelings:
- Worst case scenarios go through my mind. I see myself in worn-out clothes. I see myself reading the menu in restaurants from the right side. The future seems to be dark and failing seems to be programme. These minutes don't last long, Hehehehe.
- In the next minute I feel full of energy and can't wait to experience the adventures that will come. Where is the next horse to ride, I ask myself and look around.

I went out for a long walk yesterday. It was cold and this was good. I shivered. The coldness cleared my mind and in the evening I was full of optimism. Let life flow, I thought. I updated one of my blogs about my online activities. I came to the conclusion that I cannot do more but to do the little next step.

I finished my day reading in the book "The 4-hour workweek", an excellent book BTW. It strengthened me and made me believe that also for me a life outside the companies is possible.

3:30 pm: I forgot to publish my post this morning. And time flies. I had an excellent practice, second series, I feel great, I'm full of optimism, and I feel like working. I love my life.

Picture is taken by Mahesh at position Latitude 36 degrees, 34 minutes and longitude 0 in Mediterranean sea. Hehehehe. Enjoy.