The Adventure begins…flowing energy towards a higher purpose.

Brahmacharya is one of the Yamas, a way of right relationship with the outside world, in the Yoga Sutras.  Brahma means “God or Creator”  and  Charya translates “to follow” ~to follow God!

Common understanding of Brahmacharya comes from classic  Vedic teachings –  celibacy or restraint.   In Tantra teachings, the householder remains in the world and integrates spiritual practices like Brahmacharya into daily life.     Utilizing and directing our vital energy/life force for our highest purpose is also the practice of Brahmacharya.  This higher purpose comes in many forms, one being  service.

My immediate family leaves Sunday July 6th for India.  We are excited for this adventure together which will take us from Delhi and then to the foot of the Himalayas.  However, meeting the beautiful little souls and the teachers  at The Children of the Ganges School in Rishikesh and uncovering ways we can help serve this mission in the future is our “higher Purpose”.

Things have been shifting in our lifes and we are so intrigued to see what beauty and insight India will show us.    We go with open hearts, immersed in Durga’s love and energy.

Om Shanti – Laura, Greg, Alanna, Noa , Scott and Troy

July Subject of the Month ~ Brahmacharya ~ Having Enough

bramacharya

Brahmacharya

Christina L. Kaplan

 

Bramacharya, yoga’s sacred, ethical practice of non-excess: Taming our overindulgence in the name of satisfaction. We, as human beings in our modern society, are known to overdo everything in almost all aspects of our daily lives. We seem to follow the phrases, “The bigger, the better” or “The more, the merrier.” Why must we feel the need to want MORE?

Food, sex, alcohol, even exercise, work, etc; these everyday aspects of our lives all hold a place of pleasure, satisfaction, comfort, ease, stimulation, and power; however, too much of these external sources often surpass that sense of pleasure and suddenly, we find ourselves in a difficult place of feeling “full.” So full that we feel almost numb or even dull at times. One of the greatest challenges we face in our world today is recognizing when enough is enough. In order to avoid this sense of overindulgence we must truly be present in the sensitivity of our desires. Notice that sacred pleasure in that space of enough, in that state of pure satisfaction, non-excess, Brahmacharya.

 

Food for thought~

Maybe, we don’t indulge in that extra scoop of ice cream on top of our apple pie after Thanksgiving dinner. Maybe this time, we just watch ONE episode of Orange is the New Black tonight to catch up on Piper’s life instead of re-watching a few episodes of that Breaking Bad series (which we actually already have finished in it’s entirety this past December), and we don’t try to finish off this bottle of wine just because we worked overtime today and we feel the need surpress, yet, overindulge in our guilty pleasures. Tomorrow, we may feel hungover, and heavy like we gained 8 lbs overnight, but on the plus side, we would then finally understand what REALLY happened in that episode of Breaking Bad that we didn’t seem to understand the first time AND we would be caught up on the life of Piper Chapman. Would it be worth the excess, would we be truly satisfied, would that extra scoop of ice cream, television episodes, hangover, and extra weight gain genuinely serve our lives for the better?

10th Anniversary Special on Private/Semi- Private Sessions!

We love to celebrate our community and see our students grow!
Introducing a 10th Anniversary special offer on private/semi-private sessions to assist you in finding your yogic groove! New to yoga and want to learn the basics in a personalized, friendly way to have your questions addressed? Been practicing a while and have that pose that is always challenging? Trying to figure out how to smooth out your vinyasa, steady your breath, or take special care of your back, knees, wrists or any sensitive area? Or just want a specialized session with a Yogasphere teacher to receive individualized instruction, assists and attention? Here’s your chance to explore!

1 Private Session (1 person, 1 hr)plus 3 classes
Newtown or Doylestown ~ $75
Richboro (Hot Yoga) ~ $85
Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga ~$90

1 Semi-Private Session (2 people, 1 hr) plus 3 classes/each
Newtown or Doylestown ~ $100
Richboro (Hot Yoga) ~ $115
Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga ~$120

Offer may be purchased for yourself, or as a gift for a loved one, friend, coworker, teacher! Perfect for Spring Holiday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Graduation or Teachers gifts.

training

How to register: Purchase the desired package online at www.yogasphere.net (https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/classic/ws?studioid=867&stype=41&sTG=3), or by calling or stopping in any location. Once purchased, schedule your session by emailing cathyyogasphere@gmail.com, or calling 215-579-6130 and leaving a message for Cathy. Please indicate the location/days/times that work best, and also specify if you would like to request a specific teacher, and we will do our best to accommodate. As a gift, purchase a gift card in the desired amount, and have the recipient email or call as above to schedule.

The small print….These sessions are offered by select Yogasphere teachers, begin March 20 and must be scheduled by June 21. All sessions and classes must be used by July 15. Classes will be added to class cards for class card holders, and 1 week added to the next month’s expiration for unlimited memberships in lieu of 3 classes. All others will have 3 drop-in classes added to account.

Illuminating your Hearts Longing

May our lights shine so bright that they light the paths for all beings.  OM Shanti and Happy New Year!

When the mind begins to still, it gives the heart an opportunity to open.   “Dropping” the thinking mind into the heart mind is the first step towards cultivating  a life that is guided by compassion, love, and gratitude.   We practice moving from the heart mind each time we step onto our mats, coming back into our bodies and connecting to our deeper self through mantra, breath, meditation and asana.   Yoga is a felt experience of deep listening where sensations are met as they arise emotionally, physically and spiritually.    Through feeling and listening we can begin to see what it is we truly value that serves the higher self.    This is the space where our heart longings begin to be revealed and more often than not the path of service is some capacity begins to be illuminated.

Through our donation classes and workshops, we are looking forward to continuing down this path of service to others throughout 2015.

May our lights shine so bright that they light the paths for all beings.  OM Shanti and Happy New Year!

 

 

 

 

 

 


Raw Hemp Spirulina Bars

bars

Ingredients 

 

1/2 cup pistachios
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
3/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 tsp spirulina
3/4 cup dates, chopped  (or 1 cup, depending on taste)

 

Instructions

 

1. In a food processor, process the pistachios, pumpkin seeds, shredded coconut and dates until the mixture is crumbly but beginning to come together.
2. Remove to a medium mixing bowl and stir in orange juice, coconut oil, hemp seeds and spirulina.
3. Press into an 8-inch square cake pan or glass dish.
4. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour, then slice and serve.

 

Notes :
-You can choose to add more dates if you prefer your bars to be stickier rather than crumbly.

-Will keep if refrigerated for several days (air tight container)

 

Recipe & Photo credit : GrokGrub.com

Street/Underprivileged Children of the Ganga –

building-a-bottle-wallI wanted to take a moment to let you know about a global seva(service) project my family has recently made a commitment to.  Truike Boekholt-Daly’s founded “Children of the Ganges” after experiencing first hand the plight of the orphaned and homeless children on the banks of the Ganga in Rishikesh, India. “Children of the Ganga” mission includes providing free quality education, for street/ underprivileged children in Rishikesh, promote the qualities of kindness and compassion, ethical behaviors and a sense of universal responsibility, and to inspire children with the qualities of leadership and the motivation to bring peace, happiness and well-being to their communities and environment.  “Children of the Ganga “also provides a hot meal to the children every evening.

Recently, an initiative to build a “bottle school” on the roof top of one of the Ashrams in Rishikesh has become a main focus. Bottle schools are built using tried and tested post and beam construction. The foundations, columns and beams are made from concrete reinforced with iron. The difference with traditional construction is that instead of cinder-blocks or bricks, the walls are made using “eco-bricks”. This is in the beginning stages of gathering information and finding volunteer experts including engineers and architects and of course fundraising.

Over the next 7-8months, I will be holding donation based classes and workshops(Nov 19th and 16th are the first two). Sometime during the summer of 2015, my family plans to travel to India to work with the children of Rishikesh and gain a better understanding through direct experience of what is needed at the school.  None of the money raised will go towards any of our personal expenses. 100% of the funds raised will go directly to the “Children of the Ganga”.

Six yrs ago, I traveled to Vizag in the state of Andhra Pradesh India with my teacher Parvathi Nanda Nath and my husband has traveled to areas around Mumbai years ago as well.   The country is beautifully peaceful and wonderfully chaotic all at the same time.   My vision is to create an easy roadmap of sorts that includes contacts, ashrams, hotels, transportation information etc.. so that in years to come perhaps those interested in seva in our community ( not necessarily Yogasphere only) can become more involved and possibly one day travel to Rishikesh with me and my family.

I want to thank Stanely Currier, a yogi with a beautiful soul, for introducing and inspiring me to become involved in this program!   Much grattitude for introducing me to Truike and setting the wheels in motion.

Om Shanti – Laura

September Focus of the Month ~ Muladhara Chakra

IMG_3854The Chakras are invisable energy centers that align from the base of the spine to the crown of the head. There are 7 basic Chakras.   The chakras are similair to emotions whereas we cannot see them but we know that they are there.  We can think and meditate upon the chakras to affirm and connect with our subtle body.

 

The Muladhara Chakra ~ The root energy vortex at the base of the spine is responsible for grounding and stabilization.  It allows us to be in the here and now.  I AM. Without this grounding we lose our center, we are unstable and easily swept off our feet and have a tendency to live in a dream world.  Although, this may sound tempting, almost inviting and seem like a nice escape from our daily busy lives we can find ourselves feeling lost or not rooted or unstable.  Perhaps dizzy, flightly or seemingly uncaring may be considered when not grounded.

Exploring the Muladhara Chakra ~

Sitting up in a comfortable position with the spine long and lengthened following the natural flow of your breath. Begin to breath deeply and inhale fully relaxing the belly.  Slowly exhale, releasing your breath completely. Gently draw your navel to your spine and bring your attention to your pelvic floor.  Continue breathing in this way focusing on lengthening the exhalation and contracting the perinium at the end of the breath. This is the area of Muladhara Chakra.  In this grounding exploration we feel close to the earth.  When we are close to the earth we cannot fall.  We embrace stillness, solidity and clarity.  We know where we stand and it feels safe and secure.  Allow yourself to become familiar with this area as it anchors and nourishes the body mind and spirit.

 

The Muladhara Chakra is located at the base of the Spine.

The root chakra is associated with the color red.

The function of this energy is survival and grounding.

The understanding of this chakra is “ to be here” and “to have”.  I AM.

The element of this vortex is the Earth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GROUPON

Attention Groupon Holders! Please bring printed or e-copy of your voucher in for first class at Yogasphere. Online registration before your first visit will not be active. Groupons are valid for the location that is stated only, are non-transferable and non-extendable, and are for either brand new students or those who have not attended any class at Yogasphere for the last year. Thanks!

June Pose of the Month ~ Svarga Dvidasana ~ Bird of Paradise

Svarga Dvidasana ~ Bird of Paradise

  • From Tadasana.
  • Have feet as wide as outside hips.
  • Fold forward.
  • Bring left arm behind back.
  • Bring right arm through legs and bind arms behind back.
  • The right arm will grab the left.
  • Shift the weight to the left side of the body slowly freeing up the right leg.
  • Peel the right foot off the floor as the whole left heel presses into the earth.
  • Begin to lift up and once upright, extend right leg out.
  • Hold for 5 breaths and repeat other side.
  • Feel free to work on this posture in increments to get the feel of strength and balance.

GROUPON

Attention Groupon Holders! Please bring printed or e-copy of your voucher in for first class at Yogasphere. Online registration before your first visit will not be active. Groupons are valid for the location that is stated only, are non-transferable and non-extendable, and are for either brand new students or those who have not attended any class at Yogasphere for the last year. Thanks!