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Posts Tagged ‘Lesbian’

With everything that life has sailed my way the past few months (most notably new work in addition to teaching), it’s been hard to keep this blog current.

Still, the essays in the archives on YLS continue to have relevance. Rest assured I haven’t abandoned the site.

Earlier this week, while enjoying the Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon, I learned that one of my favorite “end of class” poets, Kay Ryan, has been named the next Poet Laureate of the United States. I call her an “end of class” poet because — as my students know — I like to read a poem at the beginning of savasana. Her short, tight poems, which one critic likened to mousetraps, are clever, thoughtful, and inspiring.

This is what she had to say to The San Francisco Chronicle (read the story here) in the wake of her appointment:

“Poetry should leave you feeling freer and not more burdened. I like to think of all good poetry as providing more oxygen in the atmosphere. Poems just make it easier to breathe.”

How perfect is that for yoga?

Here is an essay I wrote last year about opening the heart center. It was inspired by Ryan’s poem “Chinese Foot Chart”.

Namasté.

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wpopu0708192.gifA friend of mine – one who obviously knows me well – emailed me this cartoon yesterday…

I found it so funny, I thought I’d share it with you. It’s an “Opus” panel by Berkeley Breathed, and it seems like the perfect follow up to my post about the death of Jerry Falwell. I sincerely hope Mr. Breathed won’t mind the use of his image here.

Namasté.

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It’s funny how once I start thinking about something, the theme seems to reappear throughout my daily experiences.

Not long after I started working on my last post about the western feminine gender polarity of yoga, I was in a class with Tony Briggs at Turtle Island Yoga in Marin County. (more…)

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Historically, yoga has belonged in the domain of men. It was developed by and for male bodies, and often draws on the language of male experience.

Consider, for example, the Virabhadrasana, or Warrior, series of poses, which depict bodies in battle poses. (Click here to see Warrior I, II, and III.)

Yet in the United States yoga studios are overrun with female practitioners. As teachers we are taught to expect less than 20 percent of our students to be men in a general, public class. It would seem that part of the westernization of yoga has been the feminization of it, as well. (more…)

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