An open letter to the LOVE of my life

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To the LOVE of my life,

We’ve been together now for almost 15 years. By far my longest relationship.  I met you when I was 17, at the community center in Kailua, Hawaii.

I didn’t think much of you AT THE TIME. In fact I didn’t like you very much at all.

A year passed and I ran into you again in Northern California. There was still something that agitated me about you, however, you gave me this unique feeling, it was something I’ve never felt before. I wanted to understand you more.

I soon became engulfed in you, wanting more, and more, and more.

We bonded and became extremely close. We soon became inseparable. We’ve traveled many places all over the world together.

Years passed.

You’ve seen me as my strongest self. You’ve seen me as my weakest self. You are always there for me, especially when I need you most.  Remember that YEAR LONG  break? Your name would come up here and there.  People would ask about you.

You didn’t give up on me, you didn’t judge me. You accepted me back with open arms. For this I am ever grateful. 

You are always what I need, and most of the time what I want.

You bring out the strength, courage, compassion, patience and serenity in me. You’ve been my greatest teacher and inspiration. You’ve helped shape me into the woman I’ve become.

I have dedicated my life to you, and I couldn’t be more sure of our bond.

I will never quit you. You have my heart and will for many lifetimes to come.

It’s hard to imagine my life without you, my dear yoga practice.

Thank you for all you have given me.

Namaste,

Brianna

Taking your yoga practice off the mat

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Monday morning in San Francisco, can be a bit grueling. Most people seem to be rushing and there is little time for an exchange of smiles. Before I had to go move my vehicle for street sweeping purposes, I decided to grab a delicious latte from the coffee shop, to add a bit of sweetness to my day. With my beverage in hand I crossed the street and headed towards my car. As I got a bit closer I noticed that someone had smashed in my rear window, and glass was shattered everywhere! A bit of a damper for Monday. As I  examined my car closer, I noticed that not much was missing, if anything at all. I began to feel a wave of gratitude and compassion wash over me. My brain then thought of the tormented soul that committed this act. May they find guidance and peace in their hearts.

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I’m giving all the credit for this reaction or nonreaction to my 12 year journey of practicing yoga. Yoga postures are but a fraction of what yoga practice is. Look no further than the 8 limbs of yoga. The first limb of yoga is Yamas (universal morality) within the yamas you’ll find 5 principles, the first of which is 1. Ahimsa compassion for all living things.  The word Ahimsa literally means not to injure or show cruelty towards any creature or any person in any way whatsoever. Ahimsa is, however, more than just lack of violence. It means kindness, friendliness, and thoughtful consideration of other people and other things. It has to do with our duties and responsibilities too. Ahimsa implies that in every situation we should adopt a considerate attitude and do no harm.

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It is within this first sprig of the first limb of yoga, I found compassion and understanding for this situation. I find life to be much more peaceful as I dive deeper into the teachings of yoga and very sweet when I am able to recognize and apply these teachings to my busy american life in San Francisco, California in the year 2015.

Namaste.

Meditation: My First Time

Ever since I can remember all I’ve ever wanted to do was explore.

Discover New places, ideas, routes, lands, and cultures.

The first time I stepped foot on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, I turned to my auntie and said, “This is where I want to be buried when I die.”

It was during that trip that we were so graciously invited into a buddhist monastery by a monk in the tropical rainforest of Kauai. I remember distinctly the sweet smell of incense and the peaceful feel when I entered. Beautiful statues of deities adorned with flowers and tapestries hung all around.There was a wall of burning candles and the faint sound of baritone chants.

This feeling was a new one to me.

I wil never forget the gift of incense that the monk gave me that day.

It was such a special gift to me, I still have some left from 20 years ago.

When I returned home to San Diego, I would lay out my hawaiian sarong, light a candle and some incense, close my eyes and place myself back in the temple.

At the young age of 10, this experience was fascinating to me.

I found this practice especially helpful when the household was stressful. I felt as if I had discovered a new superpower.

It is through this practice that I learned the art of meditation.