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Winter 2013 Yoga Newsletter

  • Yoga Perspective: Goddess Rising, a Renaissance of Spirit
  • Yoga & Mexican Cooking Retreat: Sayulita Mexico, April 15th-19th, 2013~ Register early for a 10% discount!
  • Class Schedule
  • Life Coaching / Personalized Support
  • Suggested Resources

Yoga Perspective: Goddess Rising, a Renaissance of Spirit

All my life I’ve been surrounded by women. I grew up with five sisters and my mother; I had female house-mates, worked with many women; I studied with mostly women while gaining Yoga and Life Coaching certifications; I have been blessed with more than 31 years of marriage to my wife, Bridget; and, indeed, more than seventy-five percent of my yoga students are female. I have to admit it, I have been surrounded by wonderful women and I am captivated by feminine energy and sensitivities. I believe they will save our world.

Ever since an early age I had a lot of feminine energy around me. Granted it wasn’t always pleasant, it was always enlightening. Of course there were family squabbles among the kids but also I witnessed the tension between generations as my sisters, and I suppose my mother too, began to expand the roles and freedoms of women. I believe we were all fortunate to have been born into these times because we are both witnessing and participating in a fundamental shift of global energy: the sacred feminine is arising.

It is my privilege to work in such closeness with so many women. I bear witness to a growing movement of women regaining their power without compromising the best of the qualities of being feminine. Women are diversifying their roles and are demanding a balance of equality; they are even finding new and creative ways to express all aspects of their being, even the masculine qualities. The Taoist symbol of Yin-Yang [ is a perfect symbol for describing the balance of energy that I witness in these wonderful friends and students. Additionally, I get to have wonderful interplay with men who have softened into their feminine side, both on and off the mat. Overall I see more beauty and creative power, more balance and equanimity.

A tenant of my spiritual practice is to strive to “take it deeper.” Yes, I have a lot of women in my life but what is to be learned and shared from this? First, I have to acknowledge that at an early age I also had a powerful image of divine femininity in my Catholic upbringing. The Virgin Mary was greatly honored and was taught that her loving care expressed as unconditional love showered down upon us; a great salve for a young boy who frequently felt lost in the dynamic of living with six females and five other males (four brothers and my dad).

Later in my life as I studied Buddhism. and then metaphysics, I also explored a compelling force within me that drew me deeper into the heart of feminine energy. In time, I identified more with the name “Mother Mary” than the Catholic rendition; it seemed more natural to think of the Divine Mother as a power that actually had intercourse with male energy. Balance seemed to demand this perspective, and opened the door to explore power in the form of creative feminine energy. I recognize that the term “mother” is a heavily anthropomorphic limitation of language and our capacity to conceptualize the Supreme Whole expressing and creating itself as it gives birth to our reality. Regardless, “Mother” works really well for me.

My human mother was a lovely and very strong woman. My observation of women who become mothers is very favorable for within motherhood we can witness a level of love that is powerful in its depth and heart-achingly beautiful in its tenderness; passionate and intense in its nurturing expression. All this sensitivity to feminine energy made me ripe for a powerful ride of personal growth and my own empowerment. The yoga community is, as mentioned above, primarily made up of women. The yoga teacher community is more than ninety percent female. My years of studying with them, and sharing the delight of profound Tantric studies, deepened my respect and admiration for women in a profound way. It also lead me around to a more personal relationship with the Divine Feminine, for which I choose to use the more intimate and affectionate term of “mother.” She becomes the Goddess to me, and I relate personally in a sweet sort of surrender that is experienced between beloveds.

Within Tantra, we hold the concept that the highest most unified Supreme Consciousness—Om, God, Shiva—pours out its creative force—Shakti— for the delight of knowing itself in its infinite diversity, all held within its infinite wholeness. This force is what we refer to when we say “mother nature.” It is the very essence of beingness empowered by the supreme force, expressing itself within a field of infinite love. The Tantric view holds that it is all “mother” pulsing in and out of being. As such this expansion and contraction represents a love that includes the shadow side, the places where the love is diminished and the light is made dark. We grow through trial and error. If a tool is powerful enough to complete a task you put it down and pick up a more useful one for the next task. By this I mean that through the loving application of compassion—for ourselves and others—we grow into our next highest level of being. Most of us could go on and on about how our trials and tribulations have been the very afflictions of love that produced great insight and growth.

My personal practice is to keep an on-going awareness of my presence within the presence of the Divine Mother. I love to sense her flowing around me, in me, and from me. I offer my gratitude as often as I can, for even the smallest things such as the abundance of dirty dishes and clothes that I can launder. Blessings abound. I have a twice-daily practice in which I love to sit and just feel, without thinking. These meditations take me deeper into relationship to the presence of that which is holy already within me. When I get out of my mental-dominated state of being (masculine?) I experience this loving energetic embrace in a ever-more-sublime way. I find it to be most nurturing. It becomes a salve for my soul and helps me to feel more connected to others and my world.

What really floats my boat is seeing the unfolding of this feminine power and consciousness all around us. This is a multi-generational and non-gender specific pulse of connecting with new and higher levels of feminine qualities. I see them being implemented throughout our society, relationships of all sorts, and even our business and government. Qualities such as mutual cooperation and communication, tapping into the power of diversity, making contributions for the greater good, showing mutual respect and a willingness to help others succeed, are all being explored and implemented in new and wonderful ways all around us. The practical Tantrika side within me also recognizes that the shadow still exists as well. We can gain strength and perspective from recognizing that we build upon the base of what has come before us; life and evolution is a spiraling assent from the base level of existence to the more sublime being we can aspire to become.

The path of growth I choose to follow is the path, or better yet, dance, with the Goddess. I seek to expand my capacity to love and interact within the kindness of others. I seek to be creative and appreciate the creativity of others. I revel in the wonder of the differences and similarities between men and women; in learning the ways of women and their powerful contribution to our social evolution. The feminine power is rising around, and within us, and it makes me very optimistic about our future. In short, we are experiencing a renaissance of Spirit, and that spirit has a distinctly feminine face to it.

Yoga and Mexican Cooking Retreat ~ April 15 to 19, 2013

Come join me this Spring in a Yogic exploration of delights in Sayulita, Mexico. Our theme while visiting tropical lands is experiencing the diversity of creation through the eyes of the divine feminine. We will be staying right on the beach as we weave a practice of yogic play, cooking and feasting on delights as we learn from a wonderful Mexican chef. We’ll practice a gentle flow of yoga and deep meditations appropriate for all levels of experience. Come and enjoy opening into a yoga practice of intimacy and play with our surrounding world bathed in the temperate tropical heat of Mexico!

Find more information at my website www.TheYogaCoach.com and take advantage of a 10% early registration discount. Prices start at $895 and include room, board, three cooking classes and yoga. Extended stays before and after retreat dates are available.

Class Schedule and Services

         Sunday: 11:15 am – 12:30 pm at Olympic Athletic Club in Ballard    6:30 pm – 7: 45 pm at Olympic Athletic Club in Ballard

Monday: 12:00 noon to 1:15 pm at Olympic Athletic Club in Ballard

Thursday: 7:30 pm to 8:45 pm in my home yoga studio – Space now available     $12 drop-in fee, mats and blocks provided. This is a class for students looking for an  intimate and personalized community class exploring the playful joy of a strong practice.

Friday: 12:00 noon to 1:15 pm at Olympic Athletic Club

Saturday: 10 am to 11:15 morning class at the Phinney Neighborhood Center                           $10 drop-in class fee. Mats and blocks provided.

Inquire about these other services I provide:

~ Private Yoga Instruction and/or therapy

~ Special group Yoga and meditation classes at your location

~ Wedding ceremony officiating

Life Coaching / Personalized Support

I am a certified Personal Life Coach and can help you transform your life, work and personal relationships into the most vibrant image you can create for yourself. You can learn the skills to achieve goals, make profound changes and cultivate the wisdom to live at ease and empowered. Give me a call (206 861-2775) or check out the details at www.TheYogaCoach.com. First trial session is FREE!

Suggested Resource:

Book: Proof of Heaven, A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife,

by Eben Alexander, M.D. This book is a scientific exploration of a near death experience and how a medical professional came to peace with the spiritual aspect of our humanity and its transcendence beyond death. A powerful read for the skeptic who prefers the scientific perspective and yet wants to make peace with the concept of an after-life.

May your heart be filled with peace, joy and light.

Namaste,

Will

PS. Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to your friends. A link to archived issues can be found at http://www.theyogacoach.com/. You can reach me at wjddoran@comcast.net or call me on my cell phone at 206 861-2775. ____________________________________________

If you wish to be removed from this list send a blank message with the word “REMOVE” in the subject line to wjddoran@comcast.net .

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