An international college of yoga & ayurveda

3 reasons to do a Yoga Teachers Training and how it can transform your life

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Weather you are planning to teach yoga or not, taking a yoga teachers training program and be very rewarding and life changing. Part of why I love teaching yoga and made it my full-time career and life path is that I get to learn about people on all levels – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

Being able to guide others and share the wisdom of Yoga and Ayurveda brings me great joy. Yoga trainings and courses are great because the students and teachers work together to create more strength, flexibility and balance both on and off the yoga mat. Yoga gets integrated into everyday life activities and creates more happiness, health and harmony.

I have participated as a student in many yoga teacher trainings over the past 20 years and each one of them have been extraordinary, blessing me with many benefits and positive transformations. Yoga has allowed me to connect with myself and others more deeply resulting in happier and healthier relationships with myself and others. Below are 3 insightful reasons why one can benefit from taking a yoga teachers training.

1. Get to know your body on a deeper level: “The physical body is not only a temple for our soul, but the means by which we embark on the inward journey toward the core.”

― B.K.S. Iyengar

Being in our body and learning how to manage our physical body is one of the first steps in yoga. Our body is like a machine, you could say like a car if you will, that needs to be taken care of in a proper, logical and functional way. It needs to be aligned properly, well lubricated and adjusted accordingly. A good yoga teacher in a way is like a well seasoned mechanic who know all the parts of a car and how they work. Similarly, a yoga teacher knows the anatomy of the body, the bio-mechanical movements of the body and how to address the trouble spots in a yoga pose as well as give good adjustments, modifications and variations for each and every student. The experienced yoga teacher also knows how to deliver this information to the learning student in a simple, easy to understand and systematic way. Getting to know your body on a deeper level also involves spending sufficient time learning Ayurveda, the sister science of yoga, from a knowledgeable practitioner. Ayurveda reveals the secrets to longevity. Ayurveda prescribes specific practices including diet and herbs to help heal and prevent disease. Healing and health of the body is part of that important inward journey toward the core.

2. Get to know your mind on a deeper level: When the ancient yogis and rishis (great seers) peered into the depth of the mind through introspection, contemplation and meditation, they codified their conclusions on life. They discovered and revealed infinite possibilities and potentialities that lie dormant in every human being. They learned and taught how to deal with thoughts, feelings and emotions. Thus yoga and anyone who teaches this profound science and depth of knowledge should help one to see and cultivate the mind for it’s highest purpose and potential. The great scriptures such as the Yoga Sutras, Bhagavad Gita and Hatha Yoga Pradipika can be our guide on our inward journey for studying the mind. These and other books constitute for what we call the philosophy and psychology of yoga. Only when we can learn how to cultivate equanimity of the mind through presence, patience, playfulness and peace, can we really practice yoga. This is something that can truly be embraced and learned by experienced and knowledgeable teachers facilitating yoga teacher training programs. A common statement we hear from students when they finish their yoga training is, “This training changed my life! I have discovered and learned so much about myself I never knew existed”.

3. Get to know yourself on a deeper level: Hidden in the mass of a rock, and visible only to the awakening vision of the sculptor, is the exquisite form of the sculptor’s creation. Only an artist with a clear vision can bring this beauty out of a common piece of rock. He has the profound intuition to see the splendor and perfection of the form within. His attention is fixed upon this beauty, which is not perceived by the ordinary eye, and he strips the rock of the gross and dense portions that conceal this beauty within. Finally, it is done; the finished product emerges in all its perfection. The artist has added nothing of his own to bring about or enhance the beauty. This beauty was always pulsing in the secret womb of the rock. The sculptor only removed and released it from the encircling mass of formless rock. Getting to know yourself on a deeper level involves letting go of specific conditions, beliefs and patterns that no longer serve you. A genuine and brilliant teacher helps to awaken the student to see his or her higher potential and the ultimate vision of truth and beauty that lies within. Thus a yoga teachers training program should indeed have these necessary teachers who can and will inspire students in this way.

If you are a serious student looking to create more strength, flexibility and balance both on and off the yoga mat, then please consider the Sacred Seed Yoga Teachers Training Program. We have only a few spots available beginning this January 2017.

This Yoga Training Course goes beyond just the asanas (yoga postures). It will allow you to connect with yourself and others more deeply resulting in happier and healthier relationships with yourself and others.

We also have a brand NEW Ayurveda Wellness Certification Course beginning January 2017.

 

 

 

8 Ayurveda Food Tips For Eating Healthier And Preventing Disease

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In the ayurvedic tradition the taking in of food is considered a sacred act, an act in which the food that is consumed literally becomes the body that you inhabit. Hence the phrase “you are what you eat”.

So according to Ayurveda, to prevent illness, it is essential to practice proper food preparations when cooking and mindful eating habits when consuming your food. In this article I have composed a list of 8 ayurvedic food tips to practice in order to nourish your whole body and mind. Here they are:

1. Shop and eat local as much as possible.

The ayurvedic diet suggests eating foods that are available during their natural season of growth. Visit your local farmers market for your selection of whole foods and choose organic if possible. Local foods are grown and suited to the environment in which we live and thus filled with life force needed to sustain us.

2. Shop at food stores that specialize in organic foods or have a natural and organic section.

Ayurveda suggests eating foods in their purest form. This is because food is considered to be a form of medicine. A popular ayurvedic proverb states “when diet is wrong medicine is of no use. When diet is correct medicine is of no need.” Therefore, choosing foods that haven’t been treated with pesticides, herbicides, synthetic preservatives and hormones are best. The chemicals and food additives used are often unnatural and contain toxins that can lead to various diseases.

3. Reduce the amount of meat you consume.

The ayurveda diet is often best as a vegetarian diet and promotes the absence of meat altogether except for some extreme case where meat, poultry or fish is needed to treat a condition. If you are a meat eater and new to the ayurvedic diet, you can start slowly and reduce the amount of meat you eat so your body can adjust to a vegetarian diet. Science and tests have proven that eating meat can cause many serious health conditions and diseases. Also, in Ayurveda it is believed that animals slaughtered under stressful conditions contain many negative emotions which are then passed on to the one who eats the animal.

4. Don’t keep your cooked foods or left overs for over 24 hours.

Once cooked, leftovers begin to loose their nutritional value as time passes. Ayurveda says that any food that is reheated or eaten after 24 hours is devoid of nutrition and life force known as “Chi” or “Prana”. As a result, they are not able to give your organism vitality and strength. Try not to reheat your food but rather keep left overs out and sealed for a few hours between meals. If you are refrigerating left overs, take them out and leave them on your kitchen counter for an hour or so before eating- if possible. Vegetarian meals won’t generally spoil if they are left out at room temperature for a few hours.

5. Cook in the simplest and purest way possible.

If you can cook using a fire such as a gas heated stove, this is optimal. If not use an electric stove. Never use a microwave as it will destroy the vital energy or life force (prana) of the food. Avoid using any unnatural chemicals in the cooking process.

6. Don’t over eat.

This may seem like a simple and easy one to follow, yet in fact this is one of the most difficult things for people to do. Enjoy the taste of your food and the pleasure it gives you, while your stomach is being filled but do not fill your stomach completely The key is to savor each bite and let the taste buds enjoy all the different flavors, textures and juices from your food. Chew each bite until it is liquefied in your mouth and then swallow. Eating in such a way also adds to the fullness both mentally and physically and thus you become full on less food. Again, it is very important to leave a little space in your stomach as though you were leaving some room for dessert. Have discipline and skip the dessert, but enjoy it occasionally too.

7. Eat with no distractions.

Turn off the T.V., internet, radio and all things that draw you away from yourself and the moment. Let the act of eating be scared, becoming one with your food without the other unnecessary stimulants. The impressions that you put into your mind while you eat can disturb the digestion process which can result in a build of toxins within the body.

8. Say a Prayer.

Last but not least, appreciate your food. The best way to do this is to say a prayer of gratitude before the act of eating. May the life given to me through food nourish all and may my actions, speech and thought be harmonious. May all beings live in peace.

 

 

Ayurvedic Nutrition – The importance of Food in Ayurveda

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When embracing an ayurvedic lifestyle and ayurvedic nutrition program it is important to consider some very important things. Ayurveda uses food as medicine and even goes to prescribe various ways for preparing and consuming food.

A proper functional diet regime is a very critical for keeping the body and mind healthy.  In the Charaka Samhita an ancient ayurvedic text it states that a living being is made up of the food that it consumes and diseases are also caused by food that it consumes.

In ayurvedic nutrition, one needs to consider the effects of both the purifying and rejuvenating qualities of food. It is important to remember that both of these are needed to maintain health and longevity but purification must be done before rejuvenation. In our ayurvedic cooking course and retreat, we unfold the proper means of establishing this. This involves selecting the right foods for your constitution and preparing and cooking them in the right way – using the right herbs and spices.

Another important thing is that one must cultivate a positive mental attitude in selecting whole foods to ingest. This requires one to leave consumption of harmful foods that causes ill effect on one’s total well-being.

Generally, people have much resistance to this based on their attachment to certain foods and often at times, the attachment is related to a feeling of pleasure that the consumption brings. The habits of poor diet intake can be a difficult to surrender, but once a conscious choice is made for change an opportunity presents itself as a manifestation for physical and mental harmony.  The means for this harmony can be brought up through adopting a sattvic diet –  one that does not over-stimulate, aggravate, and make the body dull and heavy.

A sattvic diet should be one that is also suitable for your dosha and current state of well-being.  The food should taste good and would be more beneficial to body and mind if were organic and free of toxins.

The beauty about an ayurvedic diet program is that it is allows you to make small adjustments and keep track of the foods that best suit you at particular phase of your life.  Taking this into consideration is important when undertaking a change in diet and lifestyle.

From my own experience I have come to know that when my mental resistance and physical addictions to certain foods were broken, I came to relax my notions about a healthy diet and truly felt happy and good about myself.  Everyone is unique, with their physiology, so after a period of initial detoxification, it is important to regularly assess how your food is affecting your health and well being.  You may end up changing your program and eating different foods with different tastes as a result.

Our rejuvenation Ayurveda cooking and Yoga Retreat in Hawaii incorporates a sattvic and organic vegetarian diet where you will learn all about the nutritional properties of food and herbs in relation to Ayurveda. You will also experience hands on cooking and learn recipes for healing and health.

Stay tuned to my next article when I will give you 10 Ayurvedic Food and Diet Tips for optimum health.