Friday, December 29, 2006

Something new on the horizon

I started thinking of pranayama.

During my Ashtanga practice I noticed that my exhale is longer than my inhale. I know this for a while now. My teacher B. draw the attention to it. It is not so easy to stop this habit. I think it could be a rather good idea to exercise the breath isolated.

The wish just to breath comes up for a while now. I like uddiyai breathing very much. To listen to the breath is really like sitting on a beach listening to the waves. It is so much easier for me nowadays to sit in padmasana. I'm no more distracted by pain. I can sit so much longer in this position, no matter which leg I take first. This can be a reason why I find breathing so much more relaxing and even exciting than in former times.

I'm sure my yoga practice will include pranayama in the next year.

My train for Hannover leaves at 4:20 p.m. At 7:30 p.m. I will be in Hannover.
I'm not sure if I will have time to blog during the next days. How I will miss it.

Enjoy your time. I do my best, too.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

After coffee break

The coffee break now was the break from the break. I have to do absolutely nothing here. I'm pampered from head to tow. How I'd like cleaning my home now :).

Tomorrow I will go by train to Hannover. There I will meet E. again. On Saturday we (E. and me) will go downtown to go shopping. I don't know what is planned for Sunday. This year I'm rather indifferent. I don't need a big party or the perfect dinner - a kiss at midnight, that would be fine. Then my expectations are fulfilled for the second between 2006 and 2007 :).

I'm already in planning phase for the next year. 2006 was exciting. My main goal (passing the accounting test) was accomplished already in February this year. I even got a job as an accountant without any effort from my side. I started a business. I started with Mysore class and with the 2nd Ashtanga series. I met interesting people. I travelled to the US, South Africa, Spain only to mention some highlights.

On 2nd January 2007 I will begin the new year with a new morning routine suggested by a reader. How exciting. I want to stay flexible. To change the morning routine is a challenge in flexibility. I like the idea.

Morning routine so far:
1. shower with hair washing at 6 a.m. or before
2. morning pages with a cup of coffee
3. Ashtanga yoga
4. another quick shower
5. breakfast and blogging
6. making the bed and doing the dishes
7. putting on dress and make up for work

New Morning routine:
1. Ashtanga yoga at 6 a.m. or before
2. quick shower (hair is washed the evening before)
3. journal writing
4. breakfast and blogging
5. making the bed and doing the dishes
6. putting on dress and make up for work

Hahaha, I like to hear about other morning routines.

In and out of the positions

U. practiced after the morning shower and after breakfast.

The practice lasted 1 hour. U. went in and out of the positions. She didn't hold the asanas very long. Every single asana was performed, every vinyasa was performed. But between the asanas she took breaks. Practice seemed to be heavy. Feet seemed to be cold as she warmed the feet from time to time with her hands, for a while she even wore socks. To enter kapotasana she layed down. It was not seen that she could lift her body. To enter this asanas from laying down is likely to be as difficult as to get into it from kneeling position. Then no breaks anymore, flow was to be seen, one asana followed the other. And then suddenly the face showed some reaction. It was at the start of eka pada sirsasana. She stopped, she must have injured. U. went on for a short closing sequence, but didn't look happy. Later we were informed that the right side of the lower back suddenly hurt. Overstretched. Damned.

To perform such difficult asanas it is very important that the room is very warm. Feet were cold till the end of the practice, so the body couldn't be very warm either. This injury means 2 steps back again. How sad.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


In the book by the Sivananda Yoga Center I saw an easier approach to that asana.

Most of the time I read that this asana is entered by being on the knees first. Then the body is arching backwards, hands above head, till they finally touch the floor.
But the other way round is possible, too. I can lay down on my lower legs, feet showing backwards and then I can try to lift the body up. Hands are at first beside the ears, when they lift up the body and then the hands can walk to the heels.

I started with dhanurasana with laying on the floor. After years I tried to get into the position from standing position. Why not approach kapotasana the same way?

Tomorrow is time for the second series. I will give it a try.

On U.'s practice

U. is always looking for the best time to practice. This morning mother wanted to go shopping rather early in the morning to avoid to be amidst all the people who like to change the Christmas presents. So U. had to postpone the practice. U. didn't like it that much, but there was time in the afternoon, and perhaps then the body would be more flexible. This consoled her.

After buying winter shoes in a new mall mother and daughter returned. They were looking for the yoga books which were given to the mother in former years. Finally they found them in the pantry. Mother used to do yoga as well.

U. flipped through the books by Sharron Gannon and the Sivananda Yoga Center. The books inspired her practice.

At 4 p.m. she practiced. Still inspired by the books she added asanas, variations, that she had seen in the books. It was interesting for her. The mind was happy with the change. But after the standing sequences flow stopped, asanas, vinyasas were omitted and finally she lay down on the floor obviously thinking. It was before dhanurasana. As dhanurasana was performed after a rather long break, the more active thoughts might have won. A quick closing sequence followed. A few breathes in sarvangasana, halasana, mayurasana, then savasana, that was it. Even the mother wondered why U. stopped already after only 45 minutes.

On using the 3rd person for myself: It is rather interesting to step back and to observe. It feels strange, but I will go on for a while with it. It makes detachment easier, at least I hope so.

One conclusion I can draw so far: Only sometimes the conditions for a yoga practice are ideal. Sometimes I have to consider the wishes of other people. Sometimes I have eaten too much, or there is not enough time. Sometimes the body and mind is tired, overstretched or whatever. The ideal time for a yoga practice is rare.
Everything can be taken as an excuse, but it can be taken as a motivation as well.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Before bedtime

Before going to bed I practiced for a while. I did all the standing positions and some forward bendings. Body felt stiff. Atmosphere was different than yesterday. Feeling came up that my body needs to relax as well. Tomorrow is another day. I already announced that I will practice before we (my mother and me) can go downtown. I'm tired, I have to sleep.

"Potatoe chips make you thin."

My father convinced me: "Potatoe chips are so light, they make you thin." So after dinner we had our last 2 cups of glow wine and potatoe chips, because they make us thin." Sorry, but I have to laugh.

Now I'm waiting for my secret midnight yoga practice. lalali lalala.

I practiced secretly

As my parents think that little daughter (born 1959) does too much yoga, I waited till they were in bed yesterday evening. Fortunately they go to bed rather early. I went on watching TV for a while, but then I took my blue mat and I practiced. It was a wild practice at almost midnight. Body was willing to do almost everything. I was concentrated, didn't leave the mat. I had so much power, no vinyasa was too much. How I enjoyed it. I slept so good afterwards.

Today in the morning I practiced again. This morning I worked on backbendings (second series). It is good for me. Yoga is the counterpose to all the sitting and eating. I enjoy it that I have all the time I need. My parents give me the time in the living room. They do not come in and talk to me or watch me, which a appreciate a lot.

When I lay on the sofa during the day I strech my legs. I lay on my back and try to bring the stretched leg closer to my head. Then I change legs. This is stretching, no yoga. Yoga is when I concentrate on the breath, when focus is important, other activities are gym, or stretching. But only sitting and eating and sitting and eating and reading and studying English grammer and sitting and talking and........makes me crazy. I have to move my body. My body cries for it.

Tomorrow and the day after tomorrow I will have time to practice. I will do a midnight practice this evening as well. When I do, what I planned I will have 5 practices in the next 2 days. This cannot be bad. There must be some progress.

It is almost 2:30 p.m. here. This means it's coffee time, self-made cookies time. I cannot resist.

Monday, December 25, 2006

A day off - non-attachment

I enjoy it to have a few days off in a row. I'm at my parent's home and the only thing I have to do is to enjoy the food which my mother prepares.

I'm happy that I have time for myself in the living room as well. My father sits in front of his PC in the morning, while my mother is preparing lunch. This is exactly the time for my practice.

This morning, after 2 strong cups of coffee I practiced, second series. Practice yesterday was too good, so I felt a little bit overstretched today. I didn't like to make it worse, so I thought backbendigs today could be a good change. Practice was OK, not so good as yesterday, but at least I practiced. Dhanurasana was very difficult, I don't know why. But I managed it to lift me up, it was so much effort to lift me up, I couldn't believe it. Leg behind the head was not possible, no real balance in sirsasana. I write this, but I only observe it, I'm not really touched. My ambitious is satisfied at the moment, when I was on my mat and practiced.

Non-attachment is what I want to exercise now as a mental exercise. I even consider to write this blog in the third person (U. jumped on the mat.......) for a week. It might be easier to be non-attached. It might be easier as well to observe my approach to my yoga practice.

Regarding other people I will pretend to use them as a character in one of my novels. This can have the effect that I like it when people behave in a difficult way, even in relationship to me. If nothing happens and if people behave "perfect" it is almost impossible to write an exciting story. Non-attachment as a change of perspective in regards of one single event: A moody colleague is annoying for me, but he/she can be at the same time an interesting person for my fiction.
Unfortunately it will be difficult to write about other people here in that blog, because I think it is not my right to publish too much personal stuff about others. I will write about it in my journal. To see everyday how I complain about work is boring now. I will change subject: I will write about the people I see every day. I like the idea - it is an impulse.

Good news: everybody was happy yesterday with the gifts. My mother gave E. a book that E.'s brother had bought for me. Now we have it twice, but we can give it to U., who might like it as well. The book is about a pilgrimage in Germany, that a German comedian did. This was the only "gift accident". Everything else was perfect.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The yearly routine has already started - Yoga

The yearly routine has already started. Yesterday we arrived at my parent's home. We had dinner together. E. and I went downtown after dinner. We wanted to got to a Chrismas market for the last time this year and afterwards we went to a special beer bar here. People in smaller cities are very open for conversations with new people. We liked to sit in the warm smoky bar.

Breakfast this morning was good and then E. left us. His mother is waiting already in the North of Germany. We exchanged some kisses, some warm hugs and a love letter at the car like every year. I waved him.

Then I practiced. My mother played some games at the PC, my father was sleeping. I had the living room for myself. I practiced slowly, it was very intensive. I didn't omit a vinyasa or an asana. I enjoyed every movement, every moment. I just loved it.

My mother is preparing dinner now. After dinner we will exchange our presents. My 75 year old father already wanted to open his presents while E. was leaving. But we didn't allow it. He has to wait, too. It's time to offer my help, or at least I have to go on with conversation.

Merry Christmas to all.

Saturday, December 23, 2006


E. bought his company car last week.

This morning he told me: "I took full coverage insurance. It's our car now. With full coverage you can drive it, too.

Isn't that sweet - full coverage especially for me.

A long practice, nothing could derange me

It was not really in the morning, rather lunch time, when I jumped on my mat. I had already accomplished something. Some chores were done, all the gifts are packed. Then I practiced.

What for a luxury, I had all the time I needed. Breath was good. With every movement my body became more flexible. E. helped me doing kapotasana. We managed it that my finger tips could touch the floor. I asked him where it was where I touched the floor. When he showed me the point I was shocked. It was so far away from my feet. I need help for this asana.

I finished again with savasanas. Body was finally relaxed. My face showed still some tension. I have to relax it consciously. To walk through life with a relaxed smiling face - that's the every day goal - no matter what happens. A smile must be possible all the time.

Next time I will practice in the living room from my parents.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Finally at home

Finally at home. Work was too long again. It was our last day before vacation and we stayed till 6 p.m.. I stayed till 6 p.m. in order to be precise, my colleague stayed longer, staring at her PC. Then shopping. Pedestrian area downtown was full of people, who bought their last minute gifts. Then a glow wine at a Christmas market. It is cold here now and glow wine warms a bit. Tomorrow I have to pack all the gifts and then we drive home to my parents. My darling wants to go out at night. I can't help, but I feel stressed. Flat is a mess. I want to plan my New Year. Tomorrow, tomorrow. What else shall I do?

I go to bed now. I'm done, exhausted. Never ever is everything done. Always is something left, what I have to do.


I was on my mat. It was as if my cells breathed. To stretch the body was so good. I practiced without much effort. I did not even need a second shower. I wanted to keep up with my daily practice, which only means that I wanted to be on my mat. No stress on the mat, that was the motto. Stress on the mat and stress with the Christmas presents is too much.

I did the suryas, standing sequence and a few forward bending. I finished with shoulder stand, plough and fish. The last asana was savasana. I enjoy it now. Me too, I have the right to relax from time to time, that's what I think when I do this last asana. And then I only lay down and feel the floor (mat).

It is the last working day today in this year. Ohhhhh, how nice. There are also nice things to report from the office. It is fun to work with the handsome Bulgarian colleague. He is so interested to learn something. It motivates me to work with him. We have a lot to do now, challenges yes, not easy tasks, but this is always OK for me.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

I have no christmas presents so far

Right now I have a good idea: I will write vouchers. In every voucher I will write:
In case you send back this voucher I will dedicate one of my next Ashtanga yoga practices to you. Love. Ursula.

But I think presents like this are not appreciated. Most people like to touch something. I know a boy who said: "I like hard presents not soft presents, while touching all the presents. "(hard present means toys, soft present means clothes).

I was downtown, I work downtown. There seem to be a lot of people like me. Many people are shopping right now till 8 p.m., then the shops will close. All the shops are cramped.

I make the whole giving simple for the others. I buy my own christmas presents and then I tell the spender the price. I bought this nice winter coat for me. I will give it to my bf so that he has something for me. I bought a book for me for his mother, so that she has something for me. For my mother I bought a parfum, for me, too. I buy my own presents and I buy the presents that I want to give. It makes me all crazy.

This year I have just no ideas, I only find things for me. It is such a stress. Gifts are overfreighted with feelings. Does this gift mean that I'm honored enough, does the spender really know me and so on........

Now I have tomorrow evening and Saturday to get all the gifts. But on Saturday I already have to drive home. And when to pack the presents that I do not have yet. Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Chrismas party

Company Christmas party was very good yesterday. We were only a few people, about 10. The restaurant downtown was one of the better ones. At first I feared that I didn't get something to eat. I looked at the menu, which was prepared for us and I saw meat as a starter and meat as the main course. I used all my courage and I talked to one of the many waiters. She arranged that I got something vegetarian. When this was done I was relaxed. I enjoyed my vegetarian meal the white wine, the red wine, the grape, the coffee and the food, too. Sitting here at my desk now I think it was from everything a little bit too much, a sinful evening. Conversations were nice, too. People who travel have often nice stories to tell. After the party I walked home. I loved the fresh air. I'd prefer to stay in bed now. I woke up without my alarm clock ready for yoga, but I know to sleep longer would be good now.

But no yoga today as I have to go to the dentist this morning.

It will be a hard day today after 4 hours of sleep. And when do I buy my Christmas presents? I'm sure that I want to go to bed after work as fast as possible. Body feels exhausted.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

I was indulgent with myself

Redundant to say it, but at 7 a.m. I was on my mat. Due to the intensive practice yesterday it was as if my body had tightened overnight. I felt a bit stiff. I practiced patiently without forcing anything.

After the standing sequence I practiced till parsva dhanurasana. That was my middle part today. It followed salamba sarvangasana, halasana, mayurasana. Padmasana was very good and savasana, too. I consciously relaxed my face in savasana. I could feel the hard cold mat under my body. No further thoughts. I just breathed.

At midnight I called my boyfriend, who was out with colleagues: "Could you please take the key, when you come home. And please don't ring the bell, I will go to bed now." Everything was OK.
At 1:30 a.m. the telephone rang: " Could you please come down and pay for the taxi?" I jumped into my jeans, went down and payed for the taxi. Probably sleep was not enough today, too. But who cares.

It will be a long day today. The company Christmas party is today in the evening. We go to a very nice restaurant. I only hope that it won't be a huge problem to order a vegetarian meal. Only 3 days and then I have a couple of days off. How I'm looking forward to it.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

With Sharath

For months I haven't practiced with the CD by Sharath. Yesterday the new CD arrived, I had to test it. The greatest difference between practicing according the CD and my own practice is, that when I practice alone I need so much longer to get into the position. I take several breaths sometimes, I adjust myself and then I remain without movement only with my breath. I go out of the position rather fast. Sharath counts fast: one breath and one should be in the asana, no matter if it is mari d or what ever. But once in the asana I had to stay longer with the CD.

But I was good today: I could even perform garbha pindasana as fast as counted. Only instead of navasana I gave me a break. I could hold sirsasana only for 10 breaths.

When I practice alone I do vinyasas only between the asanas not between the sides. Today I did every single vinyasa, every asana. I'm done now.

I ended with savasana. I could feel how my red hot blood was running through my white body.

The glass of tap water after the practice was like a drop of water thrown into the desert.

So good.

On progress

I'm sure that it is possible to do something every day without making any progress.

It is easier to see it at the example languages. I know people here in Germany who live here for years (decades), who speak German every day, but without any progress. I guess so it is with my English.
I can write and write till my fingers are red, but without any progress. To progress means more than just to write. Yesterday i.e. I took my old school grammar in hand. I discovered that if I'd like to negate a comparative I have to say "I'm no better than...." or "I'm not any better than..." instead of "I'm not better....". This was new to me. Did I progress now? Not yet. I have to remember the next time.
I can read one book after the other, when I do not look up and learn the vocabulary I won't progress. I have to look up the vocabulary and I have to learn it by heart. My experience tells me that I have to repeat a new word up to 5 times till it becomes part of my active vocabulary. By the way the blogs are a very good resource for new vocabulary. Admitted often I find a sl.(slang) behind the translation :).

If I do not speak or listen to different speakers I won't make any progress in a language either.

Concerning languages I know what to do in order to progress.

Back to yoga: What can I do in order to progress in Ashtanga yoga? Daily practice is good, but this is not at all a guarantee for progress. Which challenges do I have to face to get on? Is the focus on different aspects enough? Today focus on breath, tomorrow focus on holding the asanas longer than usual? Do I have to know my limits in order to be able to go behind them. Do I have to go to India? Of course, this I can definitely answer with yes :). A good teacher, good CDs, good books, to be in competition with others might help to progress as well.

How to progress in Ashtanga yoga, that's the question. To do a lackadaisical daily practice is not enough, that's for sure. No time, it's too early are bad excuses.

You must want it baby. You must want it baby. I guess this alone is not enough either.

Perhaps the whole bunch of flowers will do: daily practice, trip to India, good teachers, focus, to go behind limits, visualisation. How to progress, how to progress???????????

And now I will practice with Sharath's CD again. This cannot be bad.

I just came from my mat

I practiced one asana after the other, without the urge to stop or to take a break. Nevertheless the thoughts came up that I do not progress at all. But on progress I will write in an extra post. There is no time now in the morning where I only jot down some words.

The progress today might have been that I took the time for savasana. I enjoyed it. I could feel how my blood was running through my body. All the cells were nourished by new fresh red blood. My belly was going up and down, caused through my deep and slow breathing. And I had the feeling that I had done something. Finally - a satisfying feeling.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Almost midnight, how will I feel tomorrow morning

I was out with P.. We met at a Christmas market where else. We enjoyed glow wine and we shared a bruschetta. She wants to read my blog now, but I told her she had to find it. We found that funny. Once she found it she will leave a comment. As always it was so nice to meet her. One word gives the other. I'm glad to know her.

At home I found the CD by Sharath in my post office box. I need it so much. The other one had broken. And the book "Wake up and roar" by Poonja arrived. So many presents and all for me.

Tomorrow is shopping day, but then I hope I will find presents for others.

Hectic practice today

I was on my mat. It was hectic. It the morning I realized that I do not have 1 Christmas present so far and no ideas what to buy. I have to fetch my clothes from the cleaning shop. I have to pick up books from the post office and so on. This in mind I jumped on my mat and I couldn't forget my huge to do list.

I cannot even remember what happened on my mat. I only know that I was there. I know that I have to manage all the tasks one breath after the other. That's called yoga off the mat.

But I finished with savasana. This was very good.

The evenings of this week:
This evening I will meet a friend,
tomorrow evening I have to buy all the Christmas present,
on Wednesday we have the company Christmas party in a very nice restaurant,
on Thursday I want to go to the Tollwood Christmas market with my bf (the last time this year) and
on Friday I have to pack everything for the travelling.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Wonderful practice today

Still in mind that I stopped practicing yoga already after prasarita padottanasana yesterday, I considered to go to an Iyengar class at the Jivamukti yoga center. It is a typical day in November here. It is dark and cold. When I left the house it even rained. But to take the weather as an excuse not to go to a yoga class is a very bad excuse.

Yesterday I read how difficult it was for the monks in Japan to be allowed to enter a monastery and practice Zen there. They had to beg and were declined not only one time, but months after months. It is the first test. The monks have to show how important it is for them to do Zen.

To walk through the rain half an hour is nothing in comparison to what I've read yesterday.
Arrived, I stood 20 minutes in front of closed doors. Another yogini came, but after a while we were sure, that no yoga would take place today. So I went home through the rain again with my mat over my shoulder.

Nothing could stop be - at least not today.

I flipped through the book of Liz Lark when I was at home. I discovered that handstand is part of the first series, too. It is performed before the closing sequence. An interesting discovery for the ego. Then I burned some incense and....

.......then I rolled out my mat and I practiced. It was not necessary to apply Karen's hint to set thoughts aside. Today I wanted to stay on my mat. No thought came up to leave the mat, to eat or to do something else.

I practiced till leg behind the head. I did some variations here as I was not really able to perform this asana. The body was too cramped. The variation: I took the bended right leg behind the body, calves were on my shoulders. Then I put the right hand next to my hips. With the left hand I grasped my foot and then I tried to straighten the leg. The left hand should support this. Then I did it on the other side. It will take some time till I will be able to do eka pada sirsasana A and B. But I already progressed.

Usthrasana was good, so was laghuvajrasana. I discovered that I do not have to fear Laghuvajrasana that much. My hands on the calves are like brakes that can prevent that I fall with my head on the floor. This gave me the courage to go deeper into the position. I do not know how to approach kaptoasana alone. I indicated this asana. Better than nothing.

Before the closing sequence I remembered the handstand. I looked at my wardrobe and I felt pity for it. I omitted it. But at the end I did pranayama, while I was sitting in padmasana. I could feel how I had sweated, sweat was still running down my body. Soon I felt rather fresh.

I ended my session with savasana. It was a very good practice today. It is easy to like the good practices, to like the bad practices is the challenge. Like your enemies. But is a bad practice really an enemy, I don't think so. It is only a bad practice.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

On yogi/yogini cliches

My darling and me in the underground:

Me:What do you think when you think of a yogi/yogini?
He: Nothing.
Me: But you MUST think something.
He: No, nothing.
Me: That's nice, you think nothing, I always think something.
Me: But you must think something, what do you think, when you think of yogis?
He: They wrench themselves.
Me: Ha,Ha, what else?
He: Nothing more.
Me: Come on, start thinking.
He: Yogis wrench themselves, they are sweating, they are overstretched, they walk on the mat of others, they want to get enlightened, they want to live healthy, they are introverted and they all want to go to India.

I only missed that yogis/yoginis smile all the time. My next year is dedicated to "smiling".

I wished, I could report something else

I set the alarm clock at 8 a.m., as it was late yesterday, when we came home from the party. I wanted to have at least 7 hours sleep. I talked (and listened) a lot, most of the time with a woman from the US. She spoke perfectly German with almost no accent. We talked about globalization, shares, writing. The evening was too short to talk to everybody.

At 8 a.m. this morning I got up for my morning pages and my yoga practice. My Ashtanga practice started so hopefully. 5 wonderful suryas a, break, 3 nice suryas b, break. Then I started with the standing sequence. The standing asanas are a balancing exercise. Today I trembled in parivritta trikonasana. But I could hold the poses without falling out of them.

After prasarita padottanasana d I got hungry. I stopped my practice went into the kitchen and ate a banana, raisins, some cheese and dried mangoes. Now I can really stop. It has to be a longer break now, my stomach is full. Why was it so important to go into the kitchen?

I will practice again, but now I have to wait.

But that's what I observe for a while now. The body is easier to handle than the mind. There is pain from time to time, sometimes the body is stiff, sometimes not. But that's all. The body is learning, slowly, but learning. The greater challenge is the mind. It always wants to do something else. When I'm on the mat I consider to eat. When I blog I want to be on my mat, I could go on and on.

How to train the mind, that's the question for the coming time.
I remember what I've read in one of Iyengar's books. He wrote that the body is heavy and slowly, while the mind is the opposite, fast, light. To bring them both together is the task. But how? How to bring the mind to the mat, how to stay there. I have to make it very interesting for my mind.

Distracted as my yoga is my writing. Often I delete sentences that I've written in my blog, because I jump from one subject to the next. I see it in my morning pages and on the mat as well. It is difficult to stay focused. For my morning pages I can accept it, because the goal is just to write whatever comes to mind. But I don't like it if I'm so distracted on my mat.

All is relative of course. I have a colleague, who is not able to do one wire transfer without interrupting himself several times in order to tell anything. There is no focus, no concentration at all. But do I really want to compare myself with him. No. I only want to relativize my lack of focus for myself.

Writing this I also can see that one step forward is at first 2 steps back. At first I was so busy learning the sequence. I even was not able to do some asanas at all. I was busy to look up the asanas in my book by Swenson. I struggled with individual asanas just to perform it. Till now I do not know all the asanas by name. And now another huge dimension is on my mat. The mind. I train my body for 3 years now, but what have I done for the mind? Almost nothing. It needs attention. I will look for special exercises for my mind. Very important.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Jivamuktie with Marie

My colleagues stayed at the office. But I left it at 5:10 p.m..

I had planned to go to a Jivamukti class.
And I was there, I just came back. It was great. Friday evening most people are already in restaurants or elsewhere. So we were about 10 people, enough room for everybody in the studio. I also met a yogini, who I know from my summer practices there. We greeted each other friendly. I haven't seen the other yogis so far. One man, nine women were starting their weekends with yoga.

I learned new poses. Poses that could help me to perform kapo. We were on the balls of our feet, knees together, knees trying to touch the floor in front of us and then we bent back. Ideally head was touching the floor. A great posture.
I was helped doing a side twist.
We practiced as well pincha mayurasana. This asana I want to be able to do at the end of 2007. I think there must be a trick to do it, but so far I do not know this trick. I tried this pose against a wall.
And last but not least I got a neck massage. What else do I want on a Friday evening.

I guess, that if I had practiced alone, it wouldn't have been that intensive.

My breath was neglected. I'm so concentrated on what comes next in a class. I have to listen carefully to understand, so I cannot concentrate on my breath as usually. But who cares. It was a very intensive practice. I held the asanas rather long, as long as counted.

Marie is a very good teacher. She takes care of everybody in the room. Really great.

(I'm looking for people who really like their jobs. Marie is one of them. But also the photographer, who convinces his clients to take off their shirts, so that he can take pictures of the clients naked, the waiter in the Greece restaurant, who finds a seat for every guest even if there is no seat anymore, Danny Paradise, who I met this summer, who didn't stop teaching after 3 hours. I want to experience more passion during my job, too.)

E. is on the plane from Berlin to Munich. I got a message on my answering machine, that there shall be a party somewhere. I will go out and meet people this evening. How nice.

Yipiii, I discovered "check spelling". I switched to English and here it is.

One breath, one asana

And I was happy that I did one breath, one asana. I feared that I'd leave the mat without having tormented myself.

After the suryas, which were not that smooth like the other days I leaned against the window observing my neighbours like a voyeur. The student on the left side was eating her breakfast. The woman in the house in front of the house where I live was smoking and reading the newspaper. Her hair is not so bright red anymore. She must have dyed it into a more light color. Right above was also someone walking around. After a while I decided to go on with my practice. Motivation was low.

I did the the standing sequence very fast - in and out of the asana very quickly. I tried to get into parivrita parsvakonasana without putting the knee on the floor first. The consequence - I wasn't as deep in that asana as usual. But I gave it a try.

Then I did a few forward bendings - no vinyasas. It's Friday. I went to bed on time, I ate not too much and good stuff, no alcohol. There is no reason why motivation was so low and practice so bad. I don't think too much about it. I left my mat already, it is at its place already. Another boring working day is before me. At 5 a.m sharp I want to leave the office.

I don't think that I will find real passion in that job. I want to stay a year that's for sure (if they don't lay me off before the year is over). After this year I have fullfilled the conditions to pass the tax adviser test. But do I really want this? This test can open the door to much more money. But I'm not sure if I will be able to pass the test. And I'm looking for easier ways. I want to make money while I'm sleeping. I don't want to work hard for the money.

My conviction that developped in the last years: Work must be fun, then it's as if it is no work and it will bring much more money, which is no more that important, because it is fun what I'm doing. Is that dialectic?

Thursday, December 14, 2006

8 o'clock in the evening

After work I ran to the chemical cleaning shop to pick up my clothes. Then I hurried to the photo shop to pick up the pictures from my boyfriend. The owner of the shop was very enthusiastic about my boyfriend. "He showed me his passport, he travelled the world. He talks a lot, we had so much fun". Me:"At home he talks not so much". Photographer: "Really?"

I brought all the stuff home, then I had to go out again for grocery shopping. Bf is hungry when he comes home. It will be late when he will come home, as he is working for an American company, conf calls at night are not seldom.

After grocery shopping I hurried home, talked with a neighbour women about the heating, which does not work proberly.

In the post-office box was a post-card: Parcel is at Ms L. I rang the bell picked up the parcel had a quick word with this nice woman, too.

Now I sit here. Not exhausted, but knowing that I don't want to waste my time. House is a mess, but to start cleaning now is out of question. Yoga or reading are the things I like to do, always the same ideas come up.

What for a boring post, so boring like my day today.

Emphasis on backbendings

I started with the suryas, of course, I did all the standing positions. I had not enough time to do all the asanas till "leg behind the head". But it was clear, the emphasis was on backbendings. Nevertheless dhanurasana at the end of my activities was hard. It needed much effort to lift me up and once up it was not that comfortable. I stood on my head - headstand was performed. That's my pose to prepare me for all the crazy things that will happen during the day. I omitted pindasana. I hate it to fall out of this position every morning. I could curse every day, that's what I wanted to avoid.

Generally spoken: I was happy on my mat, I enjoyed my practice as it was, I wished I had more time.
Downtown Munich is a skating ring. While drinking Glühwein it is a nice entertainment to watch these sportive people.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

It was so good yesterday evening

So good, that I tried it again. I practiced with the CD by Sharron Gannon. And it was good again. The CD is so demanding that I forgot everything, the good things and the bad things of the day. I have to concentrate on the asanas otherwise I risk to fall out of the positions. To bring me into the moment refreshes me as well. I feel relaxed, I could carry trees now if I had to (lucky that I do not have to do it). Now I have still one hour. Relaxed as I am now I can do something productive, i.e. reading in my new book.
On the picture the large pedestrian area of Munich is to be seen - pre-Christmas time. The place is called Karlsplatz Stacchus. I took the picture while standing on a christmas market. But today I only took pictures, I wanted to have a good practice.


My practice was average or below average. I think now that I do not make any progress, because I practice too slobby. But perhaps the truth is that I need trust. I cannot go every day to the edges, but every practice helps.

Dhanurasana was bad, could scarcly lift up. Forward bendings were far from what I usually accomplish. Emotionally I'm not really touched, but I observe.

I did kapala bati when I was finally in padmasana. This breathing technique gives power, wakes me up.

I have to admit that one of the reasons why it was so difficult is ,because I gained 1 kg (about 2 pounds). The visits of the christmas markets can be seen on my belly now. So, no christmas market today!!!!!

A side note: health insurance is translated illness insurance, when I translate it word by word from German to English. Interesting.

Side note 2: Of course time was not enough.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

That was good

The first step is probably always the most difficult. This evening the first few steps were to role out the mat and to switch on the CD strength and flexibility by Sharron Gannon. I practiced. It was so good to have someone, who led me through a demanding sequence.

The most challenging asanas of this CD are hanumanasana and pincha mayurasana. I'm approaching these asanas. Dhanurasana was good as well even though I don't know how to manage it to stand up from this position - alone. I shall see.

Now I feel refreshed, relaxed. It was a concentrated practice, how I loved it. Challenging, yes, indeed. I have still another half an hour for ..(whatever)....... before bedtime.

My new book arrived today: I like the title: Novice to master - An ongoing lesson in the extent of my own stupidity. I'm curious what Soko Morinaga has to say.

I feel like: where is the next horse to ride. I guess the next horse will be my practice tomorrow morning at 7 a.m. We'll meet on the mat.

Dreaming on the mat

I sat down and dreamed. I knew that today was not a practice day. It was totally OK. I put so much pressure on me every day, that today it was absolutely OK to do nothing. Nothing means not that I didn't move at all.

I did a few surya namaskaras, uttanasana. I did baddha konasana, some side stretches. But without having done the standing sequence, the body was still rather stiff. I breathed consciously. And finally I found myself in savasana, a very neglected asana. And it was so good. I felt the mat, the hard even floor and liked it. Faster than ever my yoga time was over.

I ate my breakfast very mindfully. I enjoyed the banana, the almonds, the raisins with sojayofu. Often I eat and blog at the same time in the morning as a lack of time. A bad habit.

Now the second part of my morning routine can start: making the bed, doing the dishes (morning cup and bowl). I want to have a clean kitchen when I come home. I will dress, I will put some make up on my face and of course I take some parfum. I will also listen to some music to prepare me for work. I want to go to work ligththeartedly. (Fact is I don't want to go at all). But as I have to go I at least want to pretend that it is a joy. So it is.

Monday, December 11, 2006

I need more time

Always the same blues. I'm not yet ready to get up before six except I wake up alone without my alarm clock. But the time will come......

Practice was excellent. I could concentrate. The standing sequence gets better and better, I experience flow. One asana follows the other. I had to omit a lot of asanas from the middle part. I did mari c. I didn't want to omit the core and "difficult" asanas.

I finished the practice with pranayama today. Suddenly it was there, the wish to do pranayama. Udjjay breath was deep and long. After a while I switched to kapala bati, which was emotionally relieving. Still in padmasana I leaned forward, forehead on the floor and relaxed at the end. My breath calmed down. Then I stood up, a quick uttanasana, and that was it. I had to leave my paradise, my mat.

I should be ready now for the challenges of the day. Me, the observer - I think this is a good attitude for today.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A duty and the last asana

It was more a self-imposed duty today than a fun practice. Energy level was a little bit below average. I'm not in trouble because of this. I was on my mat, concentrated on my breath.

Yesterday I read that the quality of the asanas can be judged by the quality of the breath. So I concentrated on the breath again today. After years of practice I think that the body knows by itself what asana follows next, so that I can concentrate on other things like the breath, bandhas and so on.

After half of the second series and a short closing sequence, I did pranayama. I enjoyed this, especially kapala bati. That's new, too. Also feelings and preferences change.

The last asana:
Savasana is not my favourite last asana. To lay flat on the floor is for me the sleeping position. I never slept in savasana. I always was half-conscious, relaxed. Nevertheless this position invites me to sleep.

Uttanasana pleases me more. I stand. I know that after my practice life will go on. It is easier to start other activities out of this position. It is relaxing, too. There is not much to do in that position. I just hang forward. Blood can flow in the head, which keeps me awake.

My favourite last asana is a sitting position. I sit in lotus position or half lotus and bend forward, forehead touches the floor, arms point backwards. No effort is needed, it is relaxing, shows respect of what will come during the day. It is a very grounded position. Perfect.

I've just read what I've written: It is on my preferences related to asanas/breathing. That's not a real yogini attitude. Is a yogini attitude an attitude without judgment? I think yes. Each asana is supposed to be welcomed, each event in life is supposed to be welcomed to think a little bit further. Everything can be a possibility to learn, to experience life as it is. Me, the neutral observer? Does really every unpleasant event contain as well the opposite of it? Every crisis a chance? Is it only necessary to open the eyes to see it?

"Life is unfair, it makes no sense to complain about it." That's what I used to say when someone complained about unfair events. To make the best out of everything that's the task of life.

Saturday, December 09, 2006


I get up every morning, often before 6 a.m. only for my beloved practice. Every day at 7 a.m. I'm on my mat. I go to my knees, so consequent.

I do the standing sequence, one asana after the other without breaks. I do not tremble in utthita hasta padangusthasana. Most of the times I even lift the legs straightly (not together, one after the other), which is the more exhausting variation of this asana.

Ardha baddha padmottanasana is one of my favourite asana of the standing asanas and this is not the easiest asana.

I can bind all the marichyasanas A, B, C and D.

Baddha konasana: no problem for me. Knees go to the floor without any resistance.

I even do setu bandhasana. Urdhva dhanurasana: I go up 3 times without complaining.
Sarvangasana is straight up, couldn't be better.

I'm admired by Ashtangis, not by ordinary people, by Ashtangis how I bring my legs in a 90 % position while I am in sirsasana and how I get up again.

Padmasana - that's nothing for me. I just do it.

And after the practice I do not need a break or savasana. I just go on with my hectic life. :)

When I walk it is seen at once that I'm an Ashtangi: I smile and my body shows strength and flexibility.

......and I have always something to write after the practice......

I could go on and on, but enough is enough.

On the picture is Castle Nymphenburg in Munich

Hands up

The rules for today's practice:
- breaks only after the suryas a, after suryas b, after standing series and after navasana
- no preferences - each asana, each vinyasa should be honoured
- music in the background was OK
- I had every time that I needed.

Practice was good, very good. To have time is a luxury. I had also time to see my weak points. Of course. Breath does not always match with the movement. I need so much more breaths to go into an asana as scheduled. I will observe it.

Supta kurmasana is a weak asana. It will take some time till I will hold the wrists in mari c and d. There seems to be always a part of me that is critical.

It was a joy to practice, I was concentrated, I loved to be in the asana. I worked hard on the vinyasas.

I do not find words how much I love these asanas.

Friday, December 08, 2006

I was dizzy

I was dizzy the whole day. When I walked around I had to concentrate to walk straight (no, not because of the Glühwein the day before). When I was at the restrooms I had to lean against the wall. I feared to fall. Sometimes I have a sixth sense and I can feel future events.

Finally at home. At 5 p.m. I wanted to leave the office. Then our newbie asked me to help him. Of course I helped him. My collegue is supposed to help him, but he asked me. I know why. So I helped him one and a half hours. A lost person helped another lost person. I wanted to give him the feeling that he can ask question and that he is not alone in that office far away from his home in another European country. Consequence: I left the office at 6:30. I was the first who left it. Yes.

Weekend. How I like it. Tomorrow I can practice as long as I like. What for a luxury.

I would have allowed me a moon day,

if I wanted one, when I was on my mat. I was very early on my mat as I woke up short after 5 a.m. I waited in bed till 5:30 a.m. Then I got up. The morning routine could start.

I was on my mat before 7 a.m. It would have been OK today if I only did a few suryas and padmasana. It would have been OK as well, if I did nothing at all, just sitting, moon day. But body and mind were ready to practice. So I practiced. It was not a special practice. It was quick and dirty. 1 or 2 breaths while I was in the asanas, no vinyasas. But I stood already on my head. What for a perspective.

Work will be till 5 p.m. today. Buuuuuuh. I know, I know, so many people would be happy to have a job and I'm happy, too. Yes, really? I will answer this question for me later. General opinion: work is pleassure, I want to work till I pass away, that's not the question. To find the right task, that's the challenge. At work and on practice the average practice should be honored. So let's be average today.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

The red thread

The red thread that leads me through the chaos of life:

My books, my writing, my yoga.
Picture: Munich this summer.

That cannot be all - 9 hours boredom pure

That's not my last job till retirement. That's for sure. Other jobs will follow. I cannot really complain, not at all.
But sometimes it is ......yeah..... unbearable. Collegue didn't talk today with me, because she was offended, because of yesterday. It is too boring to write in detail about it. Sorry. At exactly 6 p.m she left the office today. What for a surprise. The atmosphere was thick the whole day. Power fights, nothing less, nothing more, now in front of the new employee it is more "fun" (this is sarcasm). Hierachy must be build again. I can live with it. Skin got thicker, expectations lower. I'm trained now, I know what a bad atmosphere is and I can stand it. I know power plays as well. We are 3 in a room now, like the rabbits. I had almost nothing to do. I had to pretend to work. Couldn't await till it was 6 p.m.. Sometimes I have too much to do (then my back hurts in the evening), some tasks I'm not able to do as a lack of knowledge and sometimes I have nothing to do. When I have almost nothing to do I sit and sit and go secretly in the internet, write some emails and feel remorses because of it. I recover financially. That's good. I like to see my bank account growing bigger every month and I like to spend money.
What will I know more when it will come to an end, because I'm layed off again, or because I go on my own? I will know another software. Perhaps I learn the International Accounting Standards. Perhaps. What else? I think I cannot live according to my abilities there. So I go on searching. In my age searching, searching, searching. This makes me crazy. It is almost 10 p.m., have to think to go to bed. There I won't find my calling either. And I wanted to do so much this evening.

Picture: Munich this summer

At the opera

To have the chance to go to the opera in Munich is considered as something really special. There are only abonnements. G. has an abo since 40 years. Yes you read correctly, 40 years. So have the others. And how G. told me many spectators dress always the same clothes. The woman in front of us always has this sweater with silver yorkshire terriers on it. The woman on the right side has always this knitted cap on the head. I guess that 50 % of the people were no more able to touch their toes. But I also found a few youngster among all these settled people.

Now imagine: You are a dancer or actor at the opera with spectators which come since 40 years. I cannot believe that there is so much stress. They do not loose the spectators even if it is not the best performance they show. Only when spectators pass away they loose them, and then the children are ready to go to the opera.

The three pieces were different: First danse was lovely (clothes ugly - sort of bathing suits), second piece was a fight between men and women. I loved the third piece most: dancers were dressed in grey short pair of trousers and white tee-shirts. Light was used and a voice was commenting. These beautiful bodies moved as if nature laws like gravity didn't exist. I saw beautiful hanumanasanas, janu sirsasanas and so on.

During one of the breaks we had a bowle. I felt as if I was part of a secret community.

Oh, it was special. I loved the music, the dansers, the atmosphere, the conversation with G.. Very good entertainment.

Glow wine or Glühwein

Take a Bordeaux. Meassure it. Pour the Bordeaux in mugs so that you have exactly the amount of Glühwein that you like, ie. for each person 2 mugs.

Why Bordeaux? Of course it can be another wine, too, but it shouldn't be a too bad one (of course also not Bordeaux 1900). Think of your head the next day.

Pour the wine in a pot add 2 teaspoons of sugar for each mug, add grinded cinnemon and also grinded cloves. Use the cloves carefully because they have a rather strong taste. Heat the wine, but do not boil it.

I do not filter the wine. I like it when the wine is a little bit "dirty" because of the spices.

I tastes good. I would say that I will take a bit more sugar and less cloves the next time, but it's fine.

Quick second series

It was late yesterday when I was finally in bed. I saw especially gifted bodies at the German Opera. The spectators are worth some words, too. An extra entry must be done - this evening.

So, back to my favourite subject: my morning yoga practice:
I practiced. I got up at 6 and 5 past 7 I was sitting in front of my mat. I could see me sitting there in the glasses of the balcony doors. As it was still dark outside, my body mirrored itself.

The suryas were pure fun.
The standing sequence were routine job.
Then I switched to the quick version of the second series. That means: pashasans, vinyasa, krounchasana, vinyasa. Then shalabhasana bhekasana in a row, vinyasa, dhanurasana, parswa dhanurasana in a row. Again a vinyasa then ushtrasana. No laghuvajrasana, no kapotasana, but supta vajrasana. Then bharadvajasana, ardha matsyendrasana. I want to remember the names, I need the book by Swenson now. Eka pada sirsasana is indicated, too stiff in the morning.
As I didn't like to fall out of pindasana I omitted this asana in the closing sequence. Salamba sarvangasana, halasana, matsyasana, sirsasana and the three sitting asana were performed.

It was good. Flow was there. I could stay on my mat. Mind was too tired to disturb my practice.

As I observe my practice, I will observe the events at work. No, I won't write annoying details. Why? I don't want to remember anymore to make it even worse. It is an exercise for the mind now to concentrate on pleasant events.

I had only 6 hours sleep and I got up to write and to practice. Guess writing and yoga have some importance to me.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Till janu sirsasana today

I made it till janu sirsasana. Time is short in the morning. I enjoyed the surya namaskaras. These few movements are a perfect start. Standing sequence was really OK, but I didn't go to the edges. It is only Wednesday, but power is already fading. Or was it the result of the sinful life-style yesterday, that made me look a little bit pale on my mat. I was at 2 christmas markets yesterday - a Glühwein, pommes, crepes, that was my dinner. Friday is still 2 days away, but I feel like on Fridays. As always: I was on my mat, and this is what counts. My last asana was savasana today. This says a lot. Most of the time I finish with uttanasana. Uttanasana is relaxing, too, but it shows much more activity than savasana.

This evening I will go to the opera - ballet. I'm invited by G. Her husband has no time, and I'm the lucky one, who shall go with her now. I want/have to put on clothes that fit for the office and the opera. My idea: I will dress a brown pair of trousers, a brown blouse and a black jacket, red jewellry and my almost black winter coat. And of course a lot of parfum, Chanel. Yes, I think this is OK.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Steady, fast, stiff

At 7 p.m. yesterday in the evening I thought a nap could be a good idea. I wanted to relax 20 minutes or so. I didn't set the alarm clock and this was the mistake. Two hours later I woke up and I didn't know anymore where I was. I had to orientate first. Oh, I slept so deeply. I was like dead.

This morning I woke up at 6 a.m., because my alarm clock rang. I got up. For a fracture of a second I thought why I was doing this. But in the morning my mind/will is weak. Routine got already rather strong. Very soon later I found me under the shower. Morning routine had started.

Practice was in the flow. I practiced rather fast, the body was stiff. For a long time I haven't experienced my body so stiff. Why? I don't know. Too much sleep? I had no Glühwein yesterday. With every movement my body got more flexible. It was one of the practices that I should cherish the most. They seem so modest, but they build the foundation. Nothing special is to report, except that it was a practice, that I was on my mat. It is an exercise in self-discipline to be on the mat even though it is not that excited. I assessed that I practiced. I know that it will help my practice tomorrow.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Lauren, you are fantastic, hit Ctrl and F5

That was it, and everything is as it always was. All my problems for this evening are solved now. I can highlight what I wrote and I can upload pictures again. Perfect.

It will be a reading evening. It is cold and rainy outside - a November evening. Some yoga on the bed - leg behind the head, i.e., a nap, pranayama? Who knows. I felt fresher in the morning.

3 hours, only 3 hours to waste.

The Moon and Me

Me: Moon, you are shining in my room. You are so beautiful today.
Me: Moon, it is said, that I shouldn't practice on those days when you are especially beautiful and round. It is said that there is the danger to get injured while doing Ashtanga yoga.
Moon: Little darling, there is no danger, you can practice.
Me: Oh.
Moon: But promise, when you are exhausted and depleted that you take a day off. But today you are recovered after the weekend. Practice.
Me: Promised, beautiful full moon.

Practice was excellent. I was on my mat a little bit earlier (5:50) than usual . I did all the vinyasas and all the asanas. I didn't ran away. I inhaled pure life. I exhaled what I had inhaled. I was concentrated. Only in pindasana I fell out of the position. At the end of the practice I was like speedy ganzalez as a lack of time. I would have missed something if I hadn't practiced.

Feeling: I feel good, the weather is fine (by the way it is raining, but it doesn't matter)

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sunday morning holy Ashtanga practice

It was not as I visualized it yesterday. I needed too many breaks and during these breaks I strolled around in my rooms. I didn't omit a vinyasa nor an asana. I liked this.

Leg behind the head was possible, but I have to hold the leg very strongly, otherwise it finds a way to get out of this unconfortable position as soon as possible.Body is rather cramped in this pose. Too high expectations don't let me enjoy the practice as I would, if I had no expectations.

I need from time to time a led class or a CD to see how it is when I'm focused.

Reflections on the mind: The mind has too much power. It is better to consider the mind as an instrument that should help performing the specific goals and not the one who decides what to do. My mind is a distracted, jumping monster.

On writing

I started writing exactly the 1st Jan 2000. I was inspired by one of the books by Julia Cameron. She recommends in all of her books the so called "Morning pages". Morning pages mean that I get up in the morning, one of the first things is to write these exactly 3 pages. Most of the time it is really 3 pages, then I stop, almost compulsatory. Sometimes I write less as a lack of time. Sometimes I write more, because I was not able to write everthing I wanted within these 3 pages.

The pages are recommended as a sort of creative writing. That means:
- I do not filter, I write everything which comes in my mind.
- I do not want that anybody reads it.
- I do not care about correct spelling, I just want to write.

These morning pages have changed my life, because I made some discoveries, more accidentally:
Before I write a few of these discoveries, I want to emphasize that writing a jounal can have therapeutical effects, but it is not a therapy (a slight, but an important difference).

- I noticed, that if I was angry about anything or if I had fears, or generally spoken, if I had strong negative emotions, I could write and write, 3 pages were not enough, I remembered every detail. When I experienced something very nice, take a nice evening with E., I just wrote: it was a nice evening. I could be more detailed as well, but I wasn't.

Why is it so: I read a lot, so let me quote an author: Mr Klein, who wrote about Glück (luck) I think this book exists in English, too. He is a scientific, the book was a bestseller here in Germany, in case this is of any importance for you. He wrote, that people were very interested in bad news. I think this is true, I only have to open the newspapers, or to switch on the TV, or to listen to conversations. I could go on and on. But why? People want to survive. That's why they are looking for bad experiences other people made in order to avoid it for themselves, to make sure that they would survive. Our interest in shocking news is really high, because of it. Knowing this, it is possible to question it. Not every bad news is important for my survival. I can shift my perception to more funny pleasant events. And this happened with me. Always more often I did/do not want to write about a "bad event" of my life, because I do not want to relive it. I'm bored. I prefer to write about things that pleases me. The consequence is that I see more nice aspects of my life than bad ones, which makes me happier.

- I do not bother friends anymore via phone calls with the daily "suffering".

One day I realized that I filled my morning pages with yoga, yoga, yoga (good subject). I discovered the and found like-minded people. I pondered to write about yoga in a blog. I do it since half a year now and it became a passion. I like to write in a blog. I like it that others read what I wrote. I feel connected to a group.

The blog is different to my morning pages:
Only my readers can judge if this is correct what I write:
- I want to make as less spelling and grammer mistakes as possible.
- The focus is yoga.
- The blog has another intention than my morning pages. My private journal is supposed to clean my soul. The blog shall keep me motivated doing yoga. This blog is a great support to keep me motivated.
- I limit myself: I do not write too much about other people. I try to avoid too negative entries, what is not always possible, as anger, fears, tiredness, dissappointments are also part of my life.
- I also write about other subject from time to time, but then these other issues are so strong, that my mind is occupied with these events. But as Sigmund Freud said: It doesn't matter if you talk about dumblings or yoga or sex with a person, he/she will reveal his/her personality no matter on wich subject one talks.

To write publicly:
I remember that I was very excited when I published my first entry on my blog. Questions like, who will read it came up. Samasthithi gave me the information how to put stat counter on my blog. Now I know how many readers are on my side on a daily basis. Curiously I check it. I found out that only 8 readers were on my blog in the beginning. What for a shock. The whole world could read my blog, but actually only 8 people did it and from these 8 people a few were only for a few seconds on my blog. This gave me the courage to write more freely - only 8 readers. But like always in life, not the quantity counts, but the quality of the readers. I cherish my readers very much.

Then I wrote about the death of my grandma and suddenly I had so much more readers. Till now I don't know how surfers find entries with "bad" news. Do you remember my sentences about bad news.

On comments: I love them. Finally a dialogue can start, I get feed-back. Sometimes commenters console, give hints, new ideas and so on.
Of course I moderate. But I do not recommend this, because I like the comments on the blogs which are not deleted, which I would delete. Why do I moderate? I didn't fear that much that somebody could insult or injure me, I feared rascist, sexist, fascist comments,and I didn't like to have them on my blog, not for a second.

All the time when I show stronger feelings than usual, I'm thankful to those people who provoked me. Who tells the truth nowadays? Not so many people. Feeling injured, provocated, I ask me why. Why am I so touched? Is something true, perhaps only a small aspect? If someone insults me a woman with ugly black hair, I think the insulter is crazy, ready for hospital, because I'm a blonde. I'm not at all really touched. I can see that someone wanted to insult me, but it has nothing to do with me. But do I want to publish this. For me the answer is no, but I'm learning from those comments that I do not publish.

I will go on writing my journal, it is for my mental well-being, I will go on blogging. It is fun, it supports my yoga practice.

Ashtanga yoga now: second series.

Ahhhhhh, to write is pure fun.

These things I would take on an island: my yoga mat, a pen, lot of journals and the book by Marcel Proust " Auf der Suche nach der verlorenen Zeit". Oh damned I almost forgot my boyfriend.

Saturday, December 02, 2006


I practiced. The asanas were rather well performed.

I needed one break after the other. I paused after almost every asana. During these little breaks I walked around, I looked into the mirror, I changed the radio programme, I did supta kurmasana on the bed first, then on the mat. Breaks were so nervous.

I was flexible. I could even hold my wrist in left side mari D. Dhanurasana gets better and better. So it was with paschimottanasana. I consider paschimottanasana as a difficult asana. Most people round the back and then the asana is not beautiful anymore.

It was so good that I had so much time.

I plan the breaks for the practice tomorrow: I don't want to walk around anymore, I want to stay on my mat in order to use a positive sentence. I will concentrate on the breath as long as I want instead. Then I will go on. I can visualize the next asana, I can try to remember the name of the next asana, but no radio programme changing and other distractions.

Focus is needed again.

Use it or loose it

I got to know a person who is not able to speak one language correctly, not even the mother tongue, even though this person is not silly. This is rather shocking for me. She came to Germany 15 years ago and "learned" German here. This woman cannot say one correct sentence in German, not even one, after 15 years. She does not really like to speak English, because it is too bad, even I can hear it. Nor does she like to speak French, her mother tongue.

Everything get lost if not exercised, refreshed, enjoyed or whatsoever, even the mother tongue. It's a good lesson for me: Everything I want to know, be able to do has to be done on a regular basis.

This was the word for the weekend. My break is over now. Floor in the kitchen is waiting. Probably my last cleaning act for today.

Hectic Saturday morning

I knew that it would be a hectic Saturday morning. Ans so it was. E. and E's mother are now on the way to Dubai and I will enjoy my time here.

And now I'm in a cleaning mood. I'm back to marathon cleaning during the weekends. During the weeks my cleaning routines are rather weak. The only chores I do regularily is making the bed, doing the dishes and doing grocery shopping. But now, I'm really in the mood to clean. Radio is switched on. I'm active, fast and I see progress. I throw away a lot of things. To make life easier is the goal. Back to the basics. And then, when everything is done or when I'm fed up with these session.

My camera is now on the way to Dubai. I think I have to buy another one. I like to take pictures and I need it to take pictures for my online shops (Ebay and 1&1). People in Germany are in buying mood as the Value Added Tax is going up from 16% to 19% next year. The VAT on food remains at 7%.

The Greece restaurant was full yesterday. We didn't get a seat there. So we went to an Indian restaurant (food was excellent). But I regretted this, because I like to see the owner of the restaurant. He is a man, about 60, smoking secretly at the bar between his activities running from table to table in order to satisfy the needs of his guests. He loves his job. I never saw him in a bad mood. He is so present, he sees everything, he knows a solution for every problem. I like to see this man.

Break is over now.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Pranayama after work

I found a new method not to be totally depleted after work: pranayama.

At first I sat on my bed, but I needed the hard floor. So I sat down on the floor and started with ujayi pranayami, then nadi shodhana (alternate nostril breathing) and I finished with kapala bati. It took me about 5 minutes or so. I feel refreshed now, I'm ready for life and not for my sofa.

Somebody wanted a yogi joke. Here is one, that I found in one of my favourite yoga books "Happy Yoga" by Steve Ross:

Three yogis are sitting in a cave. They've been sitting in there for ten years meditating. Ond day a donkey walks by, looks in, and keeps walking. Five years pass, then one yogi says, "Did you see that?" Another five long years go by and the second yogi says, "What?" Another five long years go by and the third yogi says, "If you guys don't shut up, I'm leaving.

This evening I will be out with E. and his mother. We hope to get seats at the Greece restaurant, but it isn't sure. It will be fun.

My body likes it

It was late yesterday. My first christmas party in the tent "Deep in the forest" was with Rock'n Roll. A great party. It was crowded, band was present and strong. Later in the evening they all put on cowboy hats, atmosphere was pure fun. I went to bed late, with 2 Glühwein in my stomach.

The practice was good. But I only came till navasana even though I did not make much breaks. I need more time. I don't want to omit my morning pages. They are very important for my soul. Will I be able to get up earlier? At the moment I cannot practice faster. I need some time to get into the asanas. My body loved it, to be treated how I treated it today. Mind was still sleeping, so thinking was not existent. Yipeee, I did it again.

This evening we (G. and E. and me) will go out again. It is our last evening before they (G. and E.) will leave for Dubai. Bf will come back after 10 days, he will change clothes, then he will go to Russia, then to America - one business trip after the other. And I will practice, this is travelling, too. Travelling, but I don't know the destination.
Picture: part of the Sendlinger Tor, Munich, downtown.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

After work - before Tollwood (best christmas market)

I'm in an internet caffee close to the station. I like the atmosphere here. I have still some time till I will meet E. and some collegues of him and then we'll pick up E.'s mother from the station. She is coming from the North of Germany today.

I guess I have a new role model to fight my after work tiredness. G. is coming from the North of Germany, I already mentioned this. She left home this morning. In the middle of Germany she had to change trains. She missed her train and so she had to wait. It is November and it is cold here. She is on her legs since the early morning, carrying heavy suitcases.

When she will arrive E., her favourite son takes her to the Tollwood (very good international christmas market). There she has to walk around. The whole program includes eating food, drinking Glühwein, going from stand to stand, buying things, chatting. We will be at a tent where they will play life music later. Probably the music that is played is not her favourite music as the clients of those parties are young people. Tiredness. Have I heard the word out of her mouth. No. She is over 75 years old, whatever is the suggestion she will be a part of the group.

This reminds me of my grandma. She was ready to do anything, too. Only between 1 p.m and 3 p.m. she wanted to sleep, her afternoon sleep.

As soon as I hear the word tiredness in my mind after work I will change it to excitment. Life is excited, no after work depletion anymore from now on.

Report from the mat

I did 5 surya a's and 5 surya b's. Often I only do 3 surya b's as a lack of time (and energy). It was a fast practice. Flow was there. I was too tired to think a lot, wich is good. I was on my mat and did what I always do at that time between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m.. I practiced. I know that progress is marginal if I practice that fast. But to move the body is good for the body. I can notice how much more flexible I am after that short hour.

After 2 months of practice in the morning I got some confidence that it is doable to practice so early in the morning, also for people like me, who like to sleep a little bit longer, because the nights are considered more beautifully than the mornings (so it is difficult to go to bed). I start loving the mornings like the nights. And it was too late yesterday again.

We were out with some collegues of E. The gf of the collegue joined later. We had this already last week with other people. She, the gf, came rather late. I think it was because she needed time to put all the make up on her face (not because she was running). Oh, I like make-up, but I didn't like to wait that long. I like to meet new people. It is interesting how much one learns from someone new in only 1 hour. Oh, it does not make the best impression to talk badly about former lovers or to complain honestly that bf does not buy enough flowers. It is easier to be with people who talk about such things than to spend an evening with people who say nothing at all. I guess my bf was happy that he is with me after that evening. It seemed so, when we walked home, holding hands, as usual.

Leg behind the head is almost not possible in the morning. I regularily fall out of pindasana. It is impossible to hold this asana in the morning.

I'm looking forward to my practice on Saturday - finally I will have all the time that I need for a long practice.
Picture is from Munich from one of the christmas markets.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

My blog reminds me of the internet hype

Some years ago I got up, switched on my TV, n-tv (the German CNN) and checked the shares. I bought shares and expected within a few days a double of what I bought. I watched the news from the morning till late at night. Some friends did the same, we had long phone calls and every little information was interpreted. Every news, every second was interpreted.

So it is with my yoga practice at the moment: a good practice and I think from now on it is getting only better. A bad practice and I see no progress anymore. I think now, from time to time it makes sense to see a week, or a month, or even two. The perspective changes at once. I was not sure if I practiced every day while working. Since 2 months I manage to get up at 6 a.m. every day and I practice. Sometimes it is better, sometimes it is not so good. But when I look at the 2 months, one bad practice does not count so much.
The longer I practice the better my practice gets in the long run (that's unfortunately not the case with my shares).
Picture: another christmas market

My picture is on the cover

That's fantastic. This summer I found a very good idea on ebay. 2 women offered empty pages in a cooking book. I bedded and for 15 Euro I got one page. I had to send a recipe and a picture for that book. I could also promote my online-shop on my page. That was it, what I wanted to do. I liked the marketing idea at once.

Today the cooking book arrived and what can I see: my picture is among a few others on the first page. I love it.
I have to offer now new products on my online shop. I have to.
Here the picture: I don't know how they made it, but on the cover it is sharp.

Difficult, difficult

I ran away from my mat several times, but I returned. Then I practiced fast: one asana, one breath. This helped for a while. I made it till mari a, then I did salamba sarvangasana and then halasana. My last pose was lying on the floor today - dead woman. It is so arbitrarily how the practice will be. I thought the practice would be good today, I was in bed on time, but....

I need focus, to concentrate is the challenge now, not the "difficult" asanas. There are no difficult asanas, by the way. Goals for my morning practice are low, I only want to be on my mat. I was on my mat. Later it turns out that there are hidden expectations. I would have liked it if the practice was good today. It wasn't, but I was on my mat. To focus, to focus, this is the challenge.

My blog represents the same mess: pictures from South Africa, stories from my mat, where my body is, mind is somewhere else.

So let's bring it together. Body on the mat, mind on the mat, stories from the mat, pictures from Munich.

And now I have to concentrate on fixed assets - 8 hours.
Picture is from the center of Munich. On the picture one of the small Chrismas markets is to be seen. From today or tomorrow on it will be open and I will stand there drinking Glühwein, I know me.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

This and that

Self-practice group: Unfortunately D. didn't answer to my email, which means, that we have no room to practice tomorrow. So it is with the passionate beginners. Passion is forgotten very fast. E. already asked me if I'd like to go to a Jivamukti class instead. I think this is a good alternative.

Here and now: I will post pictures from Munich now. I'm not on vacation anymore. Where I am it is good and beautiful, too. Munich is my here and now, now.
Evenings: It needs attention. I had spent my evenings already more interesting than I do it now. I feel depleted when I come home, depleted and hungry. My best evenings happened when I went to Aikido just after work. After Aikido I felt so good again. I was in the mood to do something. It was that easy. And that's what I should start again: some surya namaskaras, not too ambitious, without any expectations. Perhaps it is good just to sit for a while, a break. I have to find out.

Picture is taken in Munich. It is a nice shopping street close to the office where I work.

Never in the here and now

I asked myself how it would be if I went to an Iyengar class. I asked myself where my neighbour was today, there was no light today. I thought of the lecture yesterday. I asked myself if I was good at yoga. I asked myself what to do at work today and if it would be boring, I thought of the pictures I'd like to have taken when I do yoga, I thought of what I'd write in my blog today and so on and so on.

I practiced. Another plateau - another preparation for the next highlight.
Picture: end of the world - South Africa

Monday, November 27, 2006

Love it or leave it

I almost left the lecture. This header of the speaker inspired me to leave - almost. B. und I were sitting in the first row, but the lecture was boring. My neighbour even slept. The speaker was a prof from the university - what he said was theory and old, even though he was young.

As always it was nice to meet B., I like her humour. During the lecture I exercised my bandhas.
Picture: Somewhere in South Africa

Monday started well with primary series

OK, the main problem is the time now. I came till navasana, added supta konasana and then I went to dhanurasana (which was ashtonishing very good). I need more breaths as scheduled. I know now, when I practice as today, I need more time, which means that I have to get up earlier. I didn't omit the vinyasas between sides. I stood on my head, which shall prepare me for a crazy day. I only thought of my asanas and what I would write in my blog today. I forgot the work totally, now it is in my mind.

This evening I will meet B.. She invited me to a lecture, but I think the most important thing is that we will meet each other.

At the end of this week the salary of November will be on my bank account, this should bring me through the week (with a smile on my lips).
Picture: Somewhere in South Africa

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Glühwein time began

Glühwein time began here in Germany. Everywhere are little Christmas markets with presents, food (mainly meat of course) and Glühwein. I'm part of the Glühwein fans: it is hot wine with different spices. If it is very cold it can be ordered with a shot of hard booze. I had one of these hot wines today without booze. It is not that cold here.

I did a few other attempts to take the leg behind the head. It is easier when I lay on the floor doing it, instead of sitting on the mat. Bathroom is cleaned, floor is cleaned, clothes are washed and I had time where I did nothing but reading and the weekend is almost over. Nothing special - almost a Zen weekend, if I only were more attentive and in the here and now.

Picture: a bird in South Africa

Pure silk

Quality: that's the right word for my practice today. It was a long practice, the quality was best. I concentrated on my breath. The breath gets excited when I enter a new asanas. It is shorter than usual in the beginning of every new asana. I tried to calm the breath, make it longer and relax. I could do it. I remained longer than usual in the asanas. It was wonderful.

I enjoyed the asanas. It was pleasure. I took a lot of breaks, I needed them, so flow was not really there, too many breaks, too many stops. But this allowed me to concentrate more on the asanas. The breaks recovered me and then I had fresh power, fresh concentration for the next asana. I didn't omit anything till leg behind the head. This is where I stop when I do the second series.
Leg behind the head could be performed. It is not really good. My body is too cramped, I do not feel well in that asana, but it is slight progress that I can see now.

Dhanurasana was great, too. I sense now how it can be when my upper body opens up more. A wonderful pose, too.
Picture is taken somewhere in South Africa.

Ashtanga yoga - that's it.