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Thursday, March 31, 2011

prayers for love and gratitude to water

if you're on facebook (and who isn't these days?), you've probably received an invite for a global event that will be held today at noon. yes, that's at noon, in your time zone.

just in case you didn't, here it is:

Water Ceremony with Dr. Masaru Emoto (click on the link for the facebook event invite) is a worldwide prayer circle to help heal the water that's been contaminated by the fukushima nuclear reactor leak brought about by the recent earthquake and tsunami in japan. it's based on an appeal that was sent out by dr. masaru emoto at his emoto peace project website: http://emotopeaceproject.blogspot.com/

dr. emoto wrote:

To All People Around the World

Please send your prayers of love and gratitude to water at the nuclear plants in Fukushima, Japan!

By the massive earthquakes of Magnitude 9 and surreal massive tsunamis, more than 10,000 people are still missing…even now… It has been 16 days already since the disaster happened. What makes it worse is that water at the reactors of Fukushima Nuclear Plants started to leak, and it’s contaminating the ocean, air and water molecule of surrounding areas.

Human wisdom has not been able to do much to solve the problem, but we are only trying to cool down the anger of radioactive materials in the reactors by discharging water to them.

Is there really nothing else to do?

I think there is. During over twenty year research of hado measuring and water crystal photographic technology, I have been witnessing that water can turn positive when it receives pure vibration of human prayer no matter how far away it is.
Energy formula of Albert Einstein, E=MC2 really means that Energy = number of people and the square of people’s consciousness.

Now is the time to understand the true meaning. Let us all join the prayer ceremony as fellow citizens of the planet earth. I would like to ask all people, not just in Japan, but all around the world to please help us to find a way out the crisis of this planet!!
The prayer procedure is as follows.

Name of ceremony:
“Let’s send our thoughts of love and gratitude to all water in the nuclear plants in Fukushima”

Day and Time:
March 31st, 2011 (Thursday)
12:00 noon in each time zone

Please say the following phrase:
“The water of Fukushima Nuclear Plant, we are sorry to make you suffer.
Please forgive us. We thank you, and we love you.”

Please say it aloud or in your mind. Repeat it three times as you put your hands together in a prayer position. Please offer your sincere prayer.

Thank you very much from my heart.

With love and gratitude,
Masaru Emoto
Messenger of Water

speaking of healing water, i recently wrote an article for the april issue of LA yoga magazine about singer/songwriter ena vie's latest release, earth prayer. it seems appropriate to share that piece with you right now, especially since the lyrics of her earth prayer echo dr. emoto's wish for healing.

while you're reading it, click here to listen to the earth prayer...

The Earth Prayer Project

It was almost exactly a year ago today, in April 2010, that an explosion rocked the oil drilling rig Deepwater Horizon, resulting in the release of over 200 million gallons of oil from an underwater well at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico. It wasn't until three months later that efforts to cap the well finally succeeded. By then, extensive damage had been caused to marine life, as well as to the fishing and tourism industry of Louisiana, a state that was still recovering from the disastrous effects of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

It was because of this ecological disaster that singer/songwriter Ena Vie decided that something had to be done. How could she, in her own small way, contribute to the clean-up efforts in the Gulf? Through her research, she came upon the studies of Dr. Masaru Emoto which showed that when positive thoughts were directed towards water, the quality of the water improved markedly. If everyone sent healing thoughts to the Gulf, we all could potentially heal the damage the oil spill had caused. We could also undo all other environmental transgressions caused by man. And thus, the Earth Prayer Project was born.

... The time is now to go beyond what has been
What is to come cannot be known...

In the Hawaiian culture, Ho'oponopono is the practice of "making things right" through confession, repentance, and forgiveness. This Ho'oponopono prayer is believed to have great healing powers:

I'm sorry
Forgive me
I love you
Thank you

It is this simple mantra that Ena Vie has woven into Earth Prayer. It is her hope that by chanting this prayer, we will heal not just the oceans but also ourselves, the people with whom we interact, and eventually, the earth itself.

... We have a choice to walk in a good way
Make new decisions, pray for peace...

Together with Howard Lipp, who co-created, produced, and arranged Earth Prayer, Ena Vie launched the Earth Prayer Project at the It's About Water benefit for the 1000 Hummingbirds Council in Santa Cruz. The song was performed again at the Maha Kirtan Pre-Bhaktifest Party in Los Angeles. I was fortunate enough to have been at the LA event, and like everyone else around me, was mesmerized and moved by the song's powerful message.

... We have a thousand songs to sing
These ancient sounds, they lift us out of suffering...

The mission of the Earth Prayer Project is to create music to support our healing while simultaneously supporting non-profit organizations who are working toward the betterment of the earth, through clean and sustainable water projects and environmental activism. With the sale of each Earth Prayer song, whether it be on CD or through iTunes downloads, 50% of the net proceeds will go to support socially and environmentally-conscious non-profit organizations, with the other 50% going towards creating music that assists others.

The Earth Prayer Project currently supports Water For People, which helps people in developing countries improve their quality of life by supporting the development of locally sustainable drinking water resources, sanitation facilities, and hygiene education programs.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

make your yoga practice count!

many of us here in los angeles are blessed with what may seem to most as the perfect life. we wake up, still snuggled in our warm bed, go about our errands in picture-perfect weather, grab lunch while checking email at the corner cafe, get through a productive day at work, stop at a nearby yoga studio for a stimulating class with our favorite teacher, then head back home to relax and unwind before having dinner and heading back to bed.

everyone should be as lucky as we are.

but sadly, there are many in the world who go without.

thanks to the many conscientious yogis in town, we are constantly being made aware of those less fortunate and are being given chances to help out where we can.

here are some upcoming fundraisers. please find time in your busy day to join them and make your yoga practice help bring some good into the world!

The South Bay Rocks Operation Shanti!
Saturday, March 19th 4:00-8:00pm
Hermosa Beach Community Center, Clark Building, 861 Valley Drive, Hermosa Beach
Cost: Suggested donation is $35, all proceeds go to Operation Shanti www.operation-shanti.org


Operation Shanti is a local organization raising money through yoga fund raising events to build an orphanage in Mysore, India.

Join us for a FUN donation YOGA CLASS, then an after party with DJ, food, wine, and raffle to follow!

With these amazing teachers:

Level 2-3 Flow with Kyra Haglund for Japan Earthquake and Tsunami relief
Sunday, March 20th 10:45am-12:15pm
Santa Monica Yoga, 1640 Ocean Park Boulevard, Santa Monica
Cost: Regular class pass (value of class will be donated to Operation USA)

Operation USA helps communities alleviate the effects of disasters, disease and endemic poverty throughout the world by providing privately-funded relief, reconstruction and development aid. We provide material and financial assistance to grassroots organizations that promote sustainable development, leadership and capacity building, income generating activities, provide education and health services, and advocate on behalf of vulnerable people.

OM Chant for Japan: a benefit for the relief effort in Japan with Allison McCready
Sunday, March 20th 6:00-7:15pm
Santa Monica Yoga, 1640 Ocean Park Boulevard, Santa Monica
Suggested donation: $10 - please give more if you can


OM has been described as the primordial sound; a sacred mantra representing the absolute oneness of the Universe. By chanting OM we use this sacred mantra to enter into a dialogue with the divine. Chanting helps us clear illusion from our mind and tune our inner being to the frequency of Love. The sweetness of chanting stills the mind, dissolves worries, and opens the heart. In addition to profoundly affecting the individual, chanting OM reverberates through the body of mankind, helping to heal a violent world.

For this OM Chant we will set a collective intention of love, compassion and hope for the victims of Japan's recent and ongoing tragedy. Come join in the loving vibration of this simple and powerful prayer and help bring healing to the people of Japan.

Helpful notes:
• No yoga experience is required – all are welcome
• Arrive a few minutes early
• Avoid eating at least 1 hour before chanting
• Leave your cell phone in your car

Core Strength Workshop with Krista Cahill
Friday, March 25th 1:00-3:00pm
Yogis Anonymous, 1221 2nd St, Santa Monica
Cost: By donation

Donations to Habitat for Humanity (for Japan earthquake/tsunami relief efforts) will be collected. We'll be live-streaming this event! Come in person or via internet and let's strengthen the core of our community by thinking and acting globally.

Donation Yoga Class with Stephanie Phelan for Japan Children's Emergency Fund
Friday, March 25th 7:30-8:30pm
Maha Yoga, 13050 San Vicente Blvd #202, Los Angeles
Cost: $15 Suggested donation; check or cash only, please

Please join us for a donation flow yoga class led by Stephanie Phelan with live music by Masood Ali Khan, Sheela Bringi, and Eric Vaughan.
100% of donations will be given to Japan Children's Emergency Fund.
Please open your heart and help the children of Japan during this devastating time of need.

For Tsunami relief in Japan: Donation-based yoga flow with Chaz Russ and Holli Rabishaw
Saturday, March 26th 10:15-11:30am
Yogaworks Tarzana, 18700 Ventura Blvd, 2nd Flr, Tarzana
Cost: By donation

On Saturday, March 26th at 10:15AM, join Chaz Russ and Holli Rabishaw as they host a donation-based Yoga Flow to support relief efforts for Japan through the Red Cross. Any level of donation is accepted. We unite to raise the roof for healing.


Elevate. Celebrate. Liberate. An Inversions & Hip Opening Workshop with Ashley Albrand and Liz Arch
Saturday, March 26th 1:00-4:00pm
The Yoga Collective (formerly YOGAco), 1408 3rd St. Promenade, 3rd Flr, Santa Monica

Cost: $35 pre-registration. $40 at the door

Join Ashley Albrand and Liz Arch for a special inversions and hip opening workshop to benefit women and children who have been victims of domestic violence, sexual abuse, and human trafficking.

In this 3-hour exploration, we will demystify the art of inverting and floating, breaking down advanced postures into simple steps for beginning and intermediate students, while giving advanced yogis the room to spread their wings and fly. Learn to conquer fears, while building tremendous physical and emotional strength in a safe and playful environment.

100% of the proceeds will go directly to A Window Between Worlds (www.awbw.org) - a non-profit organization based out of Venice, CA, dedicated to using art to help end domestic violence, and GEMS – Girls Educational & Mentoring Services (www.gems-girls.org) – an organization based out of NY, dedicated to empowering girls and young women, who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking to exit the industry and develop their full potential.

All attendees will be entered into a drawing to win raffle prizes generously donated by lululemon santa monica.

Japan Tsunami Relief Class
Saturday, March 26th, 2:00-4:15pm
YogaWorks Center for Yoga, 230 N. Larchmont Blvd, Los Angeles
Cost: Regular class price

Please join Sarah Ezrin, Kim Fisch, Jeanne Heileman, Pete Lee, Hazel Patterson, Anne Van Valkenburg, and Maria Zavala for a special class with live music from Rich Fergeson & Jaime Black. Proceeds to benefit tsunami victims.

Rising Lotus Yoga Seva Project Fundraiser
Saturday, March 26th 5:00-10:00pm
Rising Lotus Yoga, 13557 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks
Cost: $20 for class or kirtan, $30 for all events, $10 if only attending auction
Click here to register

Join us for the Launch for our first fundraiser! Yoga, Kirtan, Silent Auction, Food and Fun! In partnership with House of Ruth, assisting families victimized by domestic violence and CAST LA - The Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Human Trafficking.

5pm Yoga Class
8pm Kirtan
6-8pm Silent Auction

Rising Lotus Seva Project is a not profit organization providing weekly pro-bono yoga classes taught by our volunteer instructors for various organizations of people in need, to outreach in aiding in the healing of the environment, to hosting fundraisers to garner awareness and support for the organizations we work with.The Rising Lotus Seva Project moves forward with the deep intention of bringing consciousness, freedom and the open-heart practice we cultivate on the mat out into our world.

Ecstatic Chanting with Steve Ross ~ Red Cross' Japan Relief Effort
Saturday, March 26th 8:00-11:00pm
Maha Yoga, 13050 San Vicente Boulevard, Second Flr, Los Angeles
Cost: By donation

Open your heart and discover a deep feeling of bliss.
Join us for a beautiful evening of chanting with Steve Ross.
Donations in cash or check for Red Cross' Japan Relief Effort
Wear comfortable clothing and bring a cushion to sit on.

Sahaja Flow + Yoga Trance Dance Benefit with Shiva Rea
Saturday, March 26th 8:00-10:00pm
Exhale Center for Sacred Movement, 245 South Main St,Venice
Cost: $20

In this moving meditation, we will dive into the power of free-form movement for liberation, communion, and collective resurrection as spring brings the creative power into our bodies and into our lives.

All proceeds from this evening will go to the Japanese Red Cross in support and global unity.

108 Sun Salutations with Live Mantra Chanting ~ A Fundraiser for Victims of the Recent Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan
Sunday, April 3rd 3:00-5:00pm
Sivananda Vedanta Yoga Center, 13325 Beach Ave, Marina del Rey
Cost: $20 Minimum donation

This special event includes:
- Preparation for the practice
- 108 rounds (one round is 12 poses) of Sun Salutations
- Deep, full relaxation and short meditation

Even if you are not going to participate physically in the practice, you are welcome to come and meditate or chant with us. Be part of the energy and support the event.

Yoga Gives Back Night with Chaz Russ and The Cosmic Kirtan Connection!
Friday, April 29th 7:00-10:00pm
YogaWorks Tarzana, 18700 Ventura Blvd, 2nd Flr, Tarzana
Cost: $15 for yoga or kirtan ($25 for both)

Join us as we raise our voices and open our hearts and pockets in support of Yoga Gives Back.org and the empowerment of women in India!

7:00-8:15 PM Yoga with Chaz (all levels, fun flow)
8:30-10:00 PM Kirtan with The Cosmic Kirtan Connection
Yummy food compliments of Whole Foods Tarzana

Step out of your mind and into your heart with the Cosmic Kirtan Collective! Featuring:
Stella Davis (lead vocals)
Marty Alan (sitar)
Arielle Silver (vocals and harmonium)
Darby Orr (bass)
Greg Klimuck (tabla and percussion)
Jeffrey Harris (guitar)

Monday, March 07, 2011

it's mesheeky monday!!

i spend most of my days -- as well as some of my nights -- in yoga pants.

they work perfectly for what i need to do, be it riding my bike to yoga class, to lunch, or to run errands around town. and of course, i wear them while practicing yoga, which, as you know, i do quite often :)

it also happens to be acceptable attire for my job at the LA county bicycle coalition in downtown LA; since most everyone bikes in to work, we're all usually dressed in something comfortably bike-y (even if i usually take the bus instead because of the time and distance involved).

the problem is there are times where i don't necessarily want to walk around looking like i'm headed to yoga class. while it's pretty acceptable on the westside where almost everyone is carrying around a yoga mat anyway, i tend to get odd looks from motorists and pedestrians making their way around downtown. so what to do? should i carry around a change of clothes just so i don't look out of place? there has to be an easier solution...

and there is, thanks to my new mesheeky skirt! all i have to do is pull it over my yoga pants, and voila... i'm dressed in a hip-looking top and skirt with capris or leggings underneath! and when i get to yoga class, all i have to do is pull the skirt off and i'm back to looking like all the other yogis in the room. magic!

and even more magical is that i managed to score a discount code for all of us to use for ONE WEEK ONLY so we can all stock up on this awesome find! by the way, they also sell yoga tanks and pants, so you can be dressed from top to bottom in total mesheekiness!

visit http://www.mesheeky.com/, shop like crazy and fill up your shopping cart, then enter the code AYOGISHEEKY20 to get 20% off everything you buy! and when asked how you heard about mesheeky, i'd love it if you could click on "friend" then specify "accidental yogist" just so they know i sent you :)

fyi -- the code is only valid from monday, march 7th thru monday, march 14th so shop NOW!!

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

let the shivaratri celebration begin!

all over the world, the coming new moon will usher in shivaratri, the great night of shiva.

for those who are unfamiliar with this annual celebration, i thought this was the perfect explanation, courtesy of the astroved.com website:

Maha Shivaratri means "The Great Night of Siva". The night of Shiva falls on the eve of the New Moon. The night is symbolic of a condition prior to creation and refers to the chaos that existed before light. But this chaotic darkness is not a negative condition. It is pure consciousness without the pollution of knowledge. In the Buddha's terminology it is the Emptiness of Nirvana.

Every year during The Great Night of Shiva, Lord Shiva incarnates in the form of the Shiva Lingam. Maha Shivaratri is the prime time for every soul to get into the primordial consciousness of non-existence or Nirvana. One is required to keep vigil during the night in order to receive Shiva's grace and assistance.

As you keep vigil this night, you become aware of your life and karma. It is a great opportunity to connect with the divine formless form of Lord Shiva, the Lingam, who symbolizes 'all-auspiciousness', and to invite these energies in your life. In essence, Maha Shivaratri signifies the transition from the darkness of gloom and ignorance to the dawn of divine joy and knowledge.

here in LA, there will be many events that will focus on shivaratri itself. and because anything that gets the yoga community together is a celebration in and of itself, i'm going to go ahead and list those, too:

Wednesday, March 2nd 7:30pm
Maha Shivaratri, a Celebration of Oneness
Art of Living Los Angeles Center
948 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles
Cost: FREE!

Join us for an evening of Kirtan, Meditation and Knowledge, delicious food and celebration!
Everyone is welcome to be a part of this very special night.

Wednesday, March 2nd 7:30pm
Snatam Kaur & Guruganesha Live!!
Wilshire Ebell Theater
4401 W 8th St, Los Angeles
Cost: $35-$55 (Click here to buy tickets online - enter code AYOGIST5OFF to get $5 off!)

Concert, chantfest, musical group meditation, a yoga class in melody . . . how best to describe a live performance by Snatam Kaur and her band? It’s all of these things and more. Crystalline and radiant, Snatam’s voice is redolent of the simple yet powerful truth of the heart.

Snatam’s divinely melodic songs based on traditional Sikh mantras are augmented by simple, heartfelt English verses that express the meanings these sacred syllables hold and help the audience forge their own emotional connection. Snatam is ably supported by devotional music stalwart GuruGanesha Singh, who handles the guitar with effortless grace, slipping easily between chordal rhythms and mellifluous leads.

Thursday, March 3rd 7:00pm
SPRING ALIVE with Spring Groove
Santa Monica Playhouse & Group Theatre
1211 4th St, Santa Monica
Cost: $10


Show begins 8:00pm
Pre-Reception 7:00pm

Dave Allen
Joni Allen
Mark Gorman
Jason Paige
Michelle Pereira
Deepak Ramapriyan
Eddie Young

(Due to an overwhelming response we are currently overbooked for the SPRING ALIVE show THURSDAY MARCH 3rd. We would like to strongly encourage you come to our pre-reception at 7pm since we will be forced to distribute tickets on a first come first serve basis. Also we are shooting to have an invited run thru rehearsal of the show Weds. March 2nd at 4pm. If this time/date would also work for you as another option kindly let us know asap. and we will contact you. This might help better facilitate an opportunity for all who want to attend.)

Thursday, March 3rd 9:00pm
Mahasivaratri Festival
Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Center
13325 Beach Ave, Marina del Rey
Cost: FREE

All are invited to celebrate Sivaratri, the Night of Siva, one of the most auspicious events of the year in the Hindu calendar.

It is said that Lord Siva protects the world throughout the year but this is his one night to rest. It is our duty to watch over the world for him. This all night vigil with continuous chanting of the names of Siva, Lord of Yogis, will tune your mind to the highest spiritual vibrations.

Festivities and Chanting starts at 9:00pm. Stay for the first puja (devotional worship), which begins at 10:00pm or all through the night.

Offerings of fruits, sweets and flowers are welcome. The festival of Sivaratri will end with a feast at dawn.

Friday, March 4th 8:00-10:00pm
Ananda Kirtan + Maha Shivaratri Celebration with Saul David Raye
Exhale Center for Sacred Movement
245 S Main St, Venice
Cost: $15 in advance; $20 day of

Come together as one and join in celebration during this auspicious time.

With Saul David Raye and special guest musicians: Deepak Ramapriyan, David Watts, Christo Pellani, Marla Leigh, Frank Fitzpatrick and Marti Walker

We live in a powerful time in our earths history. Ancient wisdom teachings have long recognized that life is a circle, inter-conneted, that all of life is sacred. Each one of us, is an important center point within this circle, as we awaken and raise our consciousness we reflect that energy back to the whole. This high energy, ecstatic evening will be a joining of the sacred circle through the power of sacred music, chanting, meditation and heart wisdom teachings. Singing and Dancing have long been sacred healing practices to awaken the life force, connect us to Spirit and embody an ecstatic connection to the Divine force that sustains all life. Join us for this wonderful celebration of life.

Friday, March 4th 8:15-11:30pm
Group Howl at the Moon! ~ SHIVARATRI
Aanand Saagar
606 Venice Blvd #H, Venice
Cost: By donation

ॐ Shiva, the transformative force of the Universe, powers the dance of creation. ॐ

ॐ Come out and celebrate Shivaratri... lead a chant (to Shiva or to anyone you wish), play an instrument, or just kick back and soak up the vibe... everyone is welcome to participate ॐ

ॐ hot chai, great sound system, free parking, no donations or money exchanged. The only currency is what you bring to the Table... ॐ

Saturday, March 5th 6:00-11:30pm
Maha Shivaratri Pre-Bhakti Fest Party
Art of Living Center
948 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles
Cost: $20 pre-sale, $25 at door (Pre-sale tickets available at http://www.prebhaktifest.com/)

Sacred mantras in a sacred space. Immerse yourself in the joy of kirtan in a majestic santuary filled with the shakti of 100 years of prayer and chanting.


Saturday, March 5th 7:00-9:00pm
Art of Living Kirtan & Meditation
Yoga Desa
120 N Topanga Canyon Blvd, Topanga
Cost: By donation

Art of Living teachers Michele Krolik and Andrew Behla offer a monthly kirtan. Singing traditional sanskrit mantras have a profound effect on the environment and consciousness, helping to quiet the mind and open the heart. No experience is necessary, just a willingness to participate with a beginner’s mind.

Saturday, March 5th 8:30-11:30pm
Maha Shiva Ratri Kirtan Celebration with Govindas & Radha and Special Guests
Bhakti Yoga Shala
207 Arizona Ave, Santa Monica
Cost: By donation

Govindas and Radha
Andres Salcedo
Sita Devi
Ashley Wynn & Lisa Florine
+ other Special Guests

Shiva Ratri is the night dedicated to honoring Lord Shiva, commonly described as "Lord of the Yogis". All over the world Shiva Ratri is celebrated with much of zeal and enthusiasm. Shiva Ratri literally means ' the night consecrated to Shiva'. On this auspicious nite, we will only chant mantras dedicated to Lord Shiva ...