Yoga Body, Buddha Mind

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The private retreat room has twin beds, a private bath and complimentary wifi. The shared retreat room has twin beds, a private bath and complimentary wifi. Up to two more people of the same gender will share the room with you. We hope you enjoy your stay with us at the Art of Living Retreat Center.

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While here, we invite you to immerse in the quiet peace of the Blue Ridge Mountains and connect with yourself. Apart from the activities in your program schedule, there are also opportunities to join daily yoga and meditation classes, restorative Ayurvedic spa treatments, guided hiking trails, pottery classes, evening Kirtans, the outdoor labyrinth or the weekly Bonfire.

Here are more details for your stay:. We invite you to also make reservations at our award-winning Shankara Ayurveda Spa before arrival, in order to ensure availability. Please call for details. Clay pieces can be glazed and shipped back as well.

Please contact our front desk to make an appointment. Please use the directions provided on this site. To encourage a healthy environment we ask that guest to not consume alcohol or meat in our public spaces, however, guests may enjoy these items in their rooms. Yes, we ask that guests with food allergies simply inform us so we can communicate those needs to our chef. Typically, we label potential allergens such as gluten, dairy, and nuts. It is possible to regain a life with happiness, clarity, and emotional stability.

Here in this vast mountain range under serene blue skies, you will find beauty to feed your soul and peace to ease your mind. Rather than bore you with some marketing talk, here are actual guests sharing extraordinary moments from their stay. Learn more about upcoming workshops to help you towards deep rest and rejuvenation in the pristine natural setting of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Boone, North Carolina.

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Yoga Body, Buddha Mind. Bringing Body and Mind Back into Balance. Aug Cyndi Lee. Add 2 nights of lodging and meals. August 18, pm. Retreat Type Featured Presenters. Private Hotel Room. Strength, stability, and clarity of mind are said to be the fruits of mindfulness meditation. Yoga is a path to these same fruits, but when your mind is jumpy, sleepy, or full of angry thoughts, your body will reflect that with a tight jaw, saggy shoulders, or a knot in your belly.

The body and mind need to work together in order to fully experience clarity of mind and radiant health.

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One of the wonderful aspects of Buddhism is that there is a whole range of meaning to the most basic teachings. The most profound instructions are often concealed in the introductory teachings. Our program on Yoga Body, Buddha Mind breaks the practice into four main sections:.

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In our workshops, David presents the basic theme of each section, as well as how it applies to formal and in-the-field meditation practices. Cyndi follows this with a yoga session in which she weaves these ideas into how we work with our body, and elaborates on how to explore these principles in the movements and relationships of our daily lives.

We will follow that structure in this article. Get even more Buddhist wisdom delivered straight to your inbox! Often, without even realizing it, we avoid getting to know ourselves because we think we might not like what we find. Mindfulness provides a way to take a gentle and friendly look at oneself. Meditation practice teaches us to recognize when our mind and body are dis-integrated: the body is right here but the mind may be far away.

We practice bringing mind and body together to develop a more harmonious, efficient, and creative relationship with ourselves and our world. Since this process involves uncovering layers of discursive thoughts and habitual patterns, an important ingredient is to take an open and nonjudgmental attitude toward whatever we discover.

Whatever body we have, whatever mind we have, we look at it with an open heart and a spirit of exploration. David: Taking a look at our mind begins with our body—taking a strong and stable seat on our meditation cushion.

Generally we take a cross-legged posture, but this can be done in a variety of ways, based on our flexibility and comfort level. One can also take a kneeling posture or even sit upright in a chair, with feet flat on the floor and the back upright and unsupported by the back of the chair. We can simply rest our hands palms down on our knees or on our thighs just above the knees.

Now we can pay attention to the position of our spine, stacking the vertebra one on top of the other so that we have a good upright posture without straining. Our back is strong and stable and our front is soft and open. We can feel uplifted and dignified by sitting this way. Our chin is tucked in slightly. There is a sense of containment and relaxation at the same time.

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The jaw is relaxed. The eyes remain open in a soft, downward gaze, focusing three to four feet in front.

There is a feeling of relaxed awareness: we are seeing without looking too hard. We are awake and alert, but in a very peaceful and open way. Having established our posture, we simply continue to breathe normally. There is no attempt made to manipulate the breath.

Yoga Body, Buddha Mind by Cyndi Lee | Waterstones

Then we place our attention on our breathing in a very light and uncomplicated way. When our attention wanders, we simply bring it back to the breathing, time and time again. Rather than creating an idealized or dreamy state of mind, we start with what we actually have, working with our thoughts and emotions as they arise and accepting the situation as it is. This is why we talk about making friends with ourselves. We start by accepting ourselves as we are, and gradually and peacefully bring our attention and breath together.

This practice naturally creates more focus, clarity, and stability in our state of mind. Cyndi: Yoga is an ideal bridge practice between formal meditation sessions and the rest of our life, when we move through the world, interacting with others. So much of what we fear, love, crave, push away, and ignore is stored in our physical body. Practicing yoga with a sense of alertness and curiosity can offer a complete program for getting familiar with our habits, creating space between stimuli and response, cultivating skillful means such as patience, and doing all this in an environment that includes other people.

But my observation is that this process does not automatically unfold through yoga practice. Without infusing friendly mindfulness into yoga practice, it is typical for overachievers to bring their aggression to the mat, while chronic underachievers wither from the required exertion. Both extremes are framed by a goal-oriented mentality focused on endpoints such as toe-touching.

But once these postures are achieved, then what? Am I holding my breath and grasping? Or through full breathing, open eyes, and patient heart, could I slow down and wake up enough to create the conditions for fingers to touch toes? Whatever we notice is fodder for further exploration, both on the mat and after class.

This exploration offers us a non-judgmental method of communication within our most primary relationship—that of our own mind and our own body. Just as we place our attention on our breath in meditation practice, we can do the same thing in yoga. This is how yoga practice becomes fertile ground for cultivating a friendly attitude as we move through our day.

Yoga Body, Buddha Mind

So why am I still having so many thoughts? Never, no way! These are all examples of how we can over-exert or under-apply ourselves in these practices. In order to have a balanced approach towards our effort, we need to recognize that equilibrium is dynamic and fluid, not at all a static process. As we go deeper with our practice, we can begin to let go of what we think we are supposed to experience. Many students can do a full backbend after six months, but others—perfectly happy people—never do a backbend. Every meditation session is going to be different.

The key is to cultivate discipline and exertion, and at the same relax our agenda. David: Once we have started on the path of meditation, there are further refinements to the practice as we go along.