Category Archives: Anjali Mudra

Yogic Hearts Together by Swami Nirmalananda

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Your yogic heart continues to amaze me. While I’ve seen many of you at your best, I’ve also seen you at your worst, facing your fears, slaying your own inner demons. I hear the stories of what you have faced and are facing in your life, and still you do yoga. In fact, it might be that those things are what drive you to yoga! Your heart had the strength of a survivalist long before you began yoga. But what you’ve gotten from yoga is the growth in your resiliency (your bounce-back) and generosity. They physical opening automatically makes you more resilient and generous. It’s reliable! And our Thanksgiving fundraising campaign has shown that to be true – again. Thank you.

I’m happy to report that your generous gifts, and the monthly donations that many of you are offering, are supporting a newly reorganized structure, with a few finishing touches to complete before the new year begins. The cleanup after the storm of Reawakening has been arduous, supported by many sevites in addition to our admin team. We’re almost ready for the 2014 Initiatives to fulfill their promise: an enlivened and exciting place to study the Svaroopa® yoga sciences.  Whether working with your body or mind, all the practices are guaranteed to give you svaroopa – your own Self. All of them are guaranteed to improve your life. All of them make you feel better, look better, and be better, within yourself and in your life.

A few weeks of gathering heart-and-hand photos as well as receiving regular updates on the donation stream have propelled my own heart deeper into gratitude. Long ago I made the shift into continual gratitude to my own Guru, who gave me all I’ve got. Now I find myself in perpetual gratitude to you, to each of you and to all of you, for making this yoga organization a place that I can do my work. A Yogic Heart just keeps expanding!

OM svaroopa svasvabhava.h namo nama.h

Resounding Support from Your Yogic Hearts! by Marlene Gast CSYT, MYF Board VP Communications, SVA Board Asana Committee

Marlene Gast

Marlene Gast

Your yogic hearts have responded to our Thanksgiving fundraising!  We have received many messages of  gratitude for Svaroopa® yoga, accompanying gifts expressing the generosity of the season, as well as photos of your hands and hearts [click to see our slide show].

We are grateful to announce an increase in monthly donations as well as the generous, total dollar amount of $18,401.  Your gifts beautifully support us in the lean months of November/December, when we cannot run any programs, while helping us prepare for the new year: 2014, a pivotal year for us! A consolidated year!!

Clearly each donation received was a holiday gift wrapped in love for your Svaroopa® Sciences practices — and for all of our teachers.  We are blessed by wonderful teachers, beginning with Swami Nirmalananda and spreading out through our Teacher Trainers, through local Svaroopa® yoga teachers and Meditation Group Leaders worldwide. With every donation that you make, you support this whole, wondrous network. In turn, all of us support the expansion of Consciousness through the unswerving avenues of the ancient teachings.  This is cause for great jubilation and heartfelt congratulations!

Thus I write today with gratitude on behalf of the SVA Board and the MYF Board.  A great deal of the Board’s responsibility is fiduciary: A board of directors is responsible for ensuring the availability of adequate financial resources, an essential part of keeping any organization robust and vigorous.  We are grateful to you for helping us fulfill this responsibility.  Your donation and commitment support the organization, which supports Swami Nirmalananda along with our Teacher Trainers as well as administrative staff that bring the teachings into the world.

Yet the organization is simply a part of the whole.  You are the essential element that completes the whole. It is you, centered in your yogic heart; you are precious and indispensable. In the words of SVA Board President Amala Cattafi, you are more precious than gold, whether or not your personal circumstances allow for financial support of the organization.

The personal pronouns of English — you, I — divide us into individual units. “Us” is the closest pronoun to present us together as community — and “we”: We are yogic family.  You are — we are — wondrous, shining threads in the imperisable fabric of essential connection.  Our connection is the relationship in consciousness, the being of consciousness, but the being of consciousness-together while being consciousness individually.  We are individual persons, choosing to be in community, as yogis who can feel the presence of one another in the depths of Consciousness to which our practices open us.  Thank you.

The More I Give, the More I Receive by Louise Davis, MYF Board Treasurer

louise

Louise Davis

I recently received a thank you note from one of my students. She thanked me for bringing yoga to our city and shared that it has changed her life. I was so touched, and so grateful to read her words. More importantly, I was so grateful to be able to share this amazing yoga with such amazing people. This student, let’s call her Lucy, is a true karma yogi: not only at our yoga studio, but in all parts of her life. She is always looking for ways to help and give back. This got me thinking about giving: do we feel more gratitude because we give, or do we give because we feel gratitude? My short answer is yes!

Svaroopa® Yoga and Meditation has changed my life as well, in ways too numerous to mention. And I feel such deep gratitude for its presence in my life. I serve on the Board of Master Yoga, in part, as a way to give back for all that I have received. And the more I’ve given, the more I seem to receive.

I grew up in a Christian church, so I was very familiar with the concept of tithing, or donating to the organization (church) which sustains you spiritually. In the last few years, I’ve noticed that much – even most – of my spiritual nurturement was coming from yoga. Why couldn’t I divide my tithe to support this organization as well? Such a simple solution!

I invite you to consider doing this as well. In this season and spirit of Thanksgiving, would you open your yogic heart and make a one-time or monthly financial donation – or increase your current gift? Even a small monthly donation of $5-10 will make a big difference. And your giving will continue to give back.

Click here to give from your Yogic Heart.  A one-time gift or monthly pledge in any size that works for you makes a difference in our ability to serve you; thank you.  Monthly donors receive our new Namaste poster as a thank you gift, for a new or increased monthly pledge.

Luxuriating in the Gratitude, by Swamiji

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On the day after the orgy of gratitude that is our national holiday, I am grateful for the Thanksgiving holiday itself.  I am deeply grateful to see and feel the world slow down a bit. Even in their rush to go see loved ones, there’s another motivator under the hurry.  Even in the early morning lines for Black Thursday, the gratitude they formally celebrated the day before still leaves an imprint on their heart – a perfect introduction to the holiday spirit that infects the airwaves and even people’s hearts. 

These are sweet times every year, the shortening of the days, the cuddle-into-your-covers nights, the choosing to slow down a bit.  That’s one of the reasons I left southern California:  there are no snow days.  They don’t know how to turn the switch off.  That took me a long time to learn, too.

It snowed.  The afternoon before Thanksgiving, it came drifting down outside my window for a couple of hours.  Two miles away, at Downingtown Yoga it was wet and rainy, but this hillside home got big puffy flakes.  It melted on contact, making it all rather easy — beauty without the hassle.  Another thing to be grateful for.

Today I’m still luxuriating in the gratitude.  Now that I think about it, that’s every day for me, for I revel always in what my Guru gave me – a gift beyond comparison, the gift of Self.  It was the only thing I ever wanted.  And now he lets me serve Him by serving you.  Thank you for wanting the only thing I ever wanted.  It gives us a starting point, a common cause, something you’ve said matters to you too. It’s really easy to make progress — just do more yoga!

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Thank you to the many of you who sent me birthday gifts, over $1,500 in donations to honor the day I was born into this world.  I must say I enjoyed this birthday more than any in the last few decades – the bliss is growing!

Our Thanksgiving fundraiser has already achieved $15,330 in financial offerings, but we only have one more week to go – Click here to send your gift, or to send your heart photo for our slide show and poster.

With love and blessings, Swami Nirmalananda

2 Thank Yous: for Monthly Donors and from a Board Member

Namaste Poster

NEW! Monthly Donor Gift – see info below…
Send us a photo of your hands for our online gallery (to jennifer@masteryoga.org), include your name and zip code.

by Peter Gallagher, Board Member

Thirteen years ago I went to a local massage therapist to relieve the tension and feeling of compression I had in my back. At the conclusion of the appointment, he told me that he was unable to tell the difference between muscle and bone in my body. He sent me to Tarlika Margery Anderson for a class in Svaroopa® Yoga.

After three classes I went to a weekend workshop given by Rama Berch. Rotated stomach pose required her personal touch to get the apparent 90 degree angle just right. The power of asana for me was the relief of my physical pain. The unexpected bonus was the relief of my mental and emotional pain.

Asana remains the steadiest, most reliable easiest practice for me. Yet something “more” continues to show up. I experience the Self in my family, work and casual relationships. I am more open, trusting and joyful.

It is natural for me to be thankful at this time of year. I was born on Thanksgiving. A few years ago I began making small, safe monthly donations to Master Yoga because I was thankful for what I had received. Sometime later, I thought I could be a little more thankful and I increased my monthly donation.

Peter

Peter in Anjali Mudra
Send us a photo of your hands for our online gallery (to jennifer@masteryoga.org), include your name and zip code.

Two years ago I was asked to do seva. I agreed and promptly put it off for a year. Last year I joined the Master Yoga Foundation Board because I was thankful for the gifts I had been given. This year’s increased monthly commitment of time and money has propelled me into fears. As promised the container has gotten larger. I can be present even during a storm. The unexpected benefit is a growing sense of community and gratitude.

I invite you to participate in your own experiment. Make a one-time or a monthly financial gift from the abundance of what you have received from your asana practice. Increase your current gift to sustain and grow this practice for others. Sit back and observe how your gift continues to give to you.

Click Here to Give a Gift From Your Heart!

Hands & Hearts – irresistible!

Your photos are irresistible!  The online slide show gets a little longer every day, but you lose track of time watching it, so it doesn’t matter.  Time doesn’t count if you’re not counting it.

Now we’re making it into a poster, to say thank you for your donation at this Thanksgiving time. New monthly donors will receive a free 16”x20” poster of many yogis’ hands in Anjali Mudra, with Swamiji’s hands in the center (at the “heart” of the poster).  If you are already a monthly donor, simply increase your monthly gift and you will receive this wonderful thank you – our “Namaste” poster.

Choose any category for your gift, dedicated to supporting meditation programs (SVA) or asana programs (MYF), our Ganeshpuri Music School or a general donation that empowers the Board to determine where your generosity will best serve.  Click here to make a donation – choose “monthly” instead of “one-time”, and set up the amount you desire by changing the “quantity.”

Swamiji

Swami Nirmalananda’s hands

Thank you for your heart-felt practice of yoga.  That’s what makes serving you such a pleasure for us!

OM svaroopa svasvabhava.h namo nama.h

Seeing, Caring and Sharing by Rudrani Nogue, Board Member

Rudrani

Rudrani in Anjali Mudra
Send us a photo of your hands in Anjali Mudra (prayer position). Please include your name and zip code. We’ll add your heart-full hands to our online gallery – click the picture above to see it as it grows

A Yogic Heart is big and open because it is filled from our inner infinite Source. A Yogic Heart provides us with an opportunity to live our lives with an expanded capacity to see, care and share.  We are able to see people and situations at a deeper level and to understand what is really going on. A Yogic Heart allows us to care about ourselves, and to share with and support others in an easier and bigger way.  A yogic Heart keeps you engaged in your life without becoming caught in the drama of your life.

I learned at a very young age to do whatever was expected of me. For decades I did whatever I felt I “should” do, by going through the motions, but my Heart wasn’t in it. I was pretending and I wasn’t being who I really am. In hindsight, I realize living this way separated me from my Heart, including my inherent joy and my ability to sing. It made life much harder than it needed to be.

Through practicing the Svaroopa® Sciences and through the Grace of the Guru, I have found joy, my singing voice and my Yogic Heart. As this Svaroopa® path and practices have so generously been shared with me, I joyfully and gratefully share them with our Svaroopa® community and beyond.

Some ways I gladly share my Yogic Heart’s growing capacity are by chanting daily, supporting students in and after class, supporting students to become teachers,  co-hosting weekend workshops, leading group meditations as seva, co-editing “Tadaa!”, serving on the SVA Board and supporting the Svaroopa® sciences through monthly donations.

The ways that I am able to see, care and share now would not have been possible without uncovering my Yogic Heart. And, as I recognize and honour my true Heart I also recognize and honour the true Heart of others.

On this path your yogic Heart is ever expanding in its capacity to see, care and share. I invite you to show your caring through a generous donation, supporting our teacher and the Svaroopa® path.

What is a Yogic Heart? by Amala (Lynn) Cataffi, SVA Board President

Amala

Amala in Anjali Mudra
Send us a photo of your hands in Anjali Mudra (prayer position). Please include your name and zip code. We’ll add your heart-full hands to our online gallery – click the picture above to see it as it grows!

For me, a yogic heart is an ongoing love affair with Grace. That flow of Grace is the essence of Svaroopa® yoga. I have chosen to partake of all of the limbs of yoga that the Svaroopa® sciences offer: asana, meditation, seva, and gladly, boldly, into the deepest teachings of all.  Whether you choose any or all of these limbs, the Grace is always showering you and aiding your personal process. My love affair is expressed outwardly through my giving (dakshina) and my giving back (seva).

During the last India trip this was so vivid for me. We had just finished the Maha Abishek at the Nityananda temple. This ancient ritual honors Nityananda as a form of the Divine – the formless in form. As a Board member, I helped perform the ceremony, but I had a strong sense that the experience was not about me.  It was not even for me, but was about giving and service.

When we left, we were given fruit and flowers that had been on the huge murti (enlivened statue) of Nityananda during the ceremony. There were 2 Indian women outside who had obviously not eaten well in some time, and I gave them the fruit, even though I secretly wanted it. Immediately, I was propelled into a state of peace and love that I had never before known or experienced. It was so overwhelmingly beautiful that I could almost not move or speak! I could have stood there in bliss all day!

Every time I donate money or time, I open myself further to that flow.  It does not always manifest in such a “POW!!” experience, but giving is something that opens you up like nothing else… Talk about core opening!

Come and share the experience of a deeper core opening than you have ever known. Give to support that which has given YOU so much to be thankful for!

In service and gratitude…Amala

Click Here to Give a Gift From Your Heart!