newsletter archives: read our monthly letters to the shala community

August 2018

Dear Shala students,

We hope you are having a great summer and that you are able to lighten up your schedule in favor of taking slow walks in the city or elsewhere, and spending more time with family and friends.

This month we’ll focus on handstands and—important for handstands!—abhaya, or freedom from fear, so we hope you’re able to carve out some space and energy for practice, too. Be on the lookout for some upcoming schedule changes, including classes that focus more on strengthening, alignment, meditation, yin, and more.

This past Friday was the full blood moon, lunar eclipse (the longest of the century), and guru purnima, a day that marks the annual thanksgiving for our teachers and gurus. Astrologer Sherene Vismaya filled us in on the significance of this cosmic convergence—see below for more details. In case you missed Sherene’s wonderful summer astrology workshop, she will be back in September to tell us what to expect for autumn. 

Enjoy these precious warmer days. Know that if you are ever feeling lonely or alone, you can reach out to us at info@theshala.com. The world is big, fast, and complicated. Being with and connecting to others is so important. A major aspect of practice is learning how to take care of ourselves so we can take care of others.

All our love,

Kristin + Barbara

Autumn Breathe-Ins

 

Two back-to-school breathe-ins: September 29 in Fort GreeneOctober 27 in Union Square

With Annie Piper, Paul Weinfeld & Leslie Erin Roth.

 

Meditation

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….in countries like India or Burma or Tibet, where meditation practice is more widespread, practitioners are counseled to look for qualities like kindness and compassion as the metrics of whether their practice is proving effective or not. And, as I was taught in each of those places, look not towards your formal period of practice — your retreat experience, or the time you might put into meditation each day, however long or short — look to your everyday life to see signs of the possible efficacy of the practice: How are you with yourself when you’ve made a mistake? How attentive are you when meeting a stranger? How rigidly do you categorize people, and then cease to pay attention to them altogether? How might you be creating an “other” that you then discount or disdain?

Read more from Sharon Salzberg’s weekly post on On Being.

http://onbeing.org/blog/exploring-lovingkindness-in-the-lab-and-in-the-heart/7778

Oprah Winfrey interview with Thich Nhat Hanh

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Thich Nhat Hanh has been a Buddhist monk for more than 60 years, as well as a teacher, writer, and vocal opponent of war – a stance that left him exiled from his native Vietnam for four decades. Now the man Martin Luther King Jr. called “an apostle of peace and nonviolence” reflects on the beauty of the present moment, being grateful for every breath, and the freedom and happiness to be found in a simple cup of tea. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJ9UtuWfs3U

for full interview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2PCXeHNL3s8