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Hearts Open for Healing * Issue #4 * April 2006 Mary Yoga E-News

Healing, Compassion, Self-Acceptance, Forgiveness, Balance, Giving and Receiving Love.

Sounds good, right? These are the qualities of an open Heart Chakra, flowing with a green background color, a blue six-pointed star centered in the chest, one triangle pointing up toward three higher chakras and one triangle down at the lower three; balanced, regulating the immune system through the thymus gland, balancing the element of air through lungs and colon, its two most affected internal organs. Its releasing vowel sound is a long "a", its energizing mantra is the yummy sounding "yam". Shoulder openers and heart-opening backbends, particularly restorative passive long held backbends, help to soften Anahata Chakra. The Buddhist Loving-Kindness, or Metta, Meditation, and the Tibetan Giving and Taking, or TongLen, Meditation, are also particularly healing for this chakra that governs the right to give and receive unconditional love.

The side articles contain several wonderful Karma Yoga, or service yoga, organizations where the hands, the action organs of Anahata, can exercise the selfless service aspects of the 4th, or Heart Chakra.

International yogis note: my teacher Rachel Zinman teaches ISHTA worldwide and is based in Australia. She is a delight earn from and practice with and her site is below.

Global Ishta with Rachel Zinman


My Schedule; Workshop; Retreat

My NYHRC Vinyasa Flow class is Mondays 1:15-2:30 at the Chelsea location; my Yoga Works Level 1 Classes are Thursdays 12-1 and Fridays 10:45-11:45 at East Side. I'd love to add a Thursday Restorative 1-2 ES and if you'd love that, put a Suggestion in the studio's Suggestion Box!

My Saturday June 10 Chakra Tuning Workshop is coming up fast - so check it out at the website below, where you can pre-register. Email me for a color flyer; they should also be at the studio soon!

I am looking at three exciting locales for a Tropical Yoga Retreat week of Feb. 17-24, 2007; believe it or not, they book now for February groups! More will follow as I discuss details with the providers, but the short list is three sites in: St. Lucia, Costa Rica, and the Amazon Rainforest!! So, mark those calendar dates if you, like me, will badly need to escape the NYC winter blasts after the New Year!! And let me know of your interest. St. Lucia can take 14 guests maximum; the Amazon eco-tour is 5 days vs. 7, and costs more; Cost Rica's nature reserve is lush, but a 4-hour drive from airport, and vegetarian only, with fish option.

June 10 Chakra Workshop


Metta Meditation Made Simple

Metta which means Loving Kindness is practiced at four levels of compassion. Interestingly it begins at the core, with compassion for ourselves. Recently I realized it requires at least an equal amount of practice to receive the compassion as to give it. We have two ears and one mouth: we need to hear twice as much as to speak, to receive twice as much as to give, when it comes to the gifts of the spirit.

Here, then, a simple Metta:

#1, May I be safe, may I be healthy, may I be happy, may my heart be light.

#2, the Beloved: May you be safe, may you be healthy, may you be happy, may your heart be light.

#3, the Stranger: May you be safe, may you be healthy, may you be happy, may your heart be light.

#4, the Enemy: May you be safe, may you be healthy, may you be happy, may your heart be light.

Same blessings repeated in four outward ripples. Choose any blessings that move you. Make them simpler. Make them more resonant for you. Change the designated Beloved, Stranger, and Enemy often, to exercise the "compassion muscles" of your Heart Chakra. And practice accepting your own blessing, the core, first level of Metta.

T'ai Jamal, my student at Health and Racquet, once said, "I feel like you give us permission to try harder." That may be, but I'd also like to give permission to try less hard. I'd like to learn permission to receive the many gifts offered us.

Alan Finger, ISHTA Yogiraj


Permission To Receive

On my weeklong family reunion in San Francisco, I felt like my sister-in-law Lily's two cats, Marco and Polo; well-fed, sleeping late, taking pleasure trips with husband, son, and two brothers. Touring the Berkeley campus with my niece Monica, who perches on campus selection. Biking the Golden Gate Bridge. Playing frisbee golf. Riding Santa Cruz bumper cars. Ok, maybe the cats' day-trips were different, but we probably purred and preened an equal amount.

To give or to love, we need to pay attention to our own spiritual renewal. Recently Jean, a favorite teacher, surprised me by saying to a noontime class: "I encourage you to come in late and to leave early. Half a class is better than no class. A little yoga in your day is better than no yoga." Such permissiveness! Such permission! Shocking to some teachers and studios. Knowing Al felt the same way, the next day between clients I gave myself the gift of class and came to our teacher Alan's class 15 minutes late. Delight and refreshment! Thanks Jean, thanks Al, thanks Mary! for granting permission to receive.

In our splendid New York Springtime I recall Rumi's words "there are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground." I stroll through Central Park between classes, taking in the gift of the sunbathed bench, of tulips, jasmine, lily and crocus, of birdsong, of solitude, of greenness and quiet. Of purposelessness for a spell of time. Of occasionally surrendering an earning opportunity, Wordsworth's ceaseless "getting and spending," and instead taking down a musical instrument and strumming a prayerful hour. Finding that still center from which we ripple outward.

William Wordsworth


Sangha: Community; It's Why I Write

Pass on this email to a friend using the Forward button, pass on it for future using the Unsubscribe; but I'd prefer your interaction and suggestions and I'd welcome your request for back issues if you are receiving this #4 as your first issue. Peace, Shalom, Shanti,

Sufi poet Rumi

Read to Hospitalized Children

Reach Out and Read has programs throughout NYC hospitals. My friend Sara reads one afternoon a week to kids in the pediatric ward at Bellevue. There is a carefully selected library, and the children receive book gifts. For Bellevue, contact Linda Von Schaik at 212-562-3165 or 212-562-2540. Or, find your nearest ROR hospital through the website, below. "We always need community volunteers." Weekdays only; no evenings or weekends.

Reach Out And Read


Kids Helping Kids

Do you know a child who might benefit from volunteering time to help other children in the community? Channel their compassion for service. You're building the heart and character of tomorrow's leaders. Search by location, area of interest, and child's age for appropriate projects: "We currently list 298 youth volunteer opportunities!"

Children For Children


New Yorkers Give Back

For 19 years New Yorkers wanting to "give back" have found this group a great, non-sectarian way to find long or short term ways to give of their talents and time. One day, half a day, or ongoing projects of every kind.

New York Cares


Give A Goat or Goose

Or a rabbit, a llama, a chick or a cow . . . . Select a beautiful gift card honoring a beloved, and benefit a needy family and community around the globe. Heifer trains families in caretaking and farming, and follows up with the entire community.

Heifer International


Healing Heart Mantra

"Om Sri Ram Dhanvantre Namaha" means "Welcome to the healing forces present and shining within me." Dhanvantre was a beloved Indian physician in history whose gift of awakening the healing within his patients has equated his name with the very presence of healing. Chant the above, directing the word "Dhanvantre" as healing vibrations toward an affected area for healing - for yourself or for another.

"Mantra Man" Ashley-Farrand's Site

New York Cares

Children for Children

Reach Out And Read

Heifer International

Yoga Works New York

New York Health and Racquet Club

Ishta Yoga

Ishta Around the Globe

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