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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Putting Yourself First
SEPTEMBER 14 2017

Once again we find ourselves coming into the mysterious dark moon period before the new moon on Wednesday 20th September. The time leading up to the new moon can feel more tiring, more emotional and is a great opportunity to hermit out, let go of everything going on in the world and come back to yourself. It's also a really great time to practice being selfish. We have this idea that being selfish is wrong - that we should always put others needs ahead of our own. But that can get messy and doesn't really seem to work. If our needs aren't being met, we get angry, whether it's overt or passive, the anger is still there. It also creates murky relationships because if you are constantly putting other people's needs ahead of your own then it places a weird pressure on the people around you to put your needs ahead of theirs. This creates a lot of guess-work, uncertainty and much wasted effort trying to be polite and do the right thing by everyone else. You don't get very far with that kind of approach and still no one gets what they want or need.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Loving Yourself
SEPTEMBER 7 2017

Sometimes it can be hard to understand what this whole thing (i.e. life) is all about. Things happen and we find ourselves in situations where stuff doesn't make any sense. We strive to find our purpose, our meaning, our reason for being here. We yearn to understand who we are, how we think, what we feel. We want to know what was the reason for this or that. So much yearning for knowledge and understanding to ultimately know why. Why why why. But what if the reason for us being here, the ultimate purpose of our existence is simply to (re) learn to love ourselves?

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Change
AUGUST 31 2017

For about a week now I have had johnny cash's song in my head. Although instead of the correct lyrics, over and over I have been repeating to myself, "I hear the change a-comin, it's rollin round the bend..." Not only is it a bit eerie, it's also a bit annoying. But with the seasons changing, schools and unis starting again, the effect of the eclipses and, well, just because, I have been thinking about change.

Sometimes it's the only thing we wish for.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Intention
AUGUST 24 2017

What is your intention? It's a question I often ask myself. With everything from the mundane - what to eat - to the grandiose - what do I want to do with my life - having a clear intention sets the stage for a positive creation and experience. You can often look back at experiences that didn't go so well and see that the intention behind it wasn't clear or positive. We can have good intentions that go nowhere because they aren't connected with our intuition - our truth. We can also have negative intentions coming from our shadow selves because, whether we like it or not, we are human and are not perfect or good all the time.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Slowing Down
AUGUST 17 2017

We have made it to the dark moon phase of this eclipse month. The next few days leading up to the new moon solar eclipse could be the most intense and is definitely a time for letting go, slowing down and nurturing rather than pushing or trying to force things. Our bodies, minds and spirits need rest and restoration just as much or even more than we need action and forcefulness. We all have tendencies to "keep busy" to look for constant distractions and it can feel really difficult, and even like an effort, to really slow down.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Total Eclipse of the Heart
AUGUST 10 2017

We're right in the middle of the lunar and solar eclipses that are marking the month of August. Eclipses happen at least 4 times a year at the time of the full and new moons, making these already significant lunar events feel even more intense. Eclipses bring change with them; endings and beginnings. The full moon eclipse on Monday seemed to bring up emotions that we were holding on to, thoughts of the past, a heaviness about where we've been and where we're going. It's easy to think these feelings are indicators that our lives are not ok, that we're not ok, that we need to change. But maybe the opportunity to take stock of ourselves, of our lives, is simply that, an opportunity. Less about wrong or right and more a chance to reassess what's important to us, what we want and what we can let go of.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Experiencing our bodies
AUGUST 3 2017

When we feel pain, tightness or tiredness in our bodies it can be really easy to get angry at ourselves. We can feel pathetic, useless and angry. We become furious at our bodies for not working properly and angry at our incapacity. You can feel people's anger and frustration in yoga when they stretch their hips or hamstrings. The tension in class becomes more palpable. You can feel everyone, no matter how flexible they are, start listening to their inner critic that they should be able to stretch further that your hips should be more open, more flexible. If one hip is more open than the other then we are horribly abnormal, imperfect beings. Maybe we are abnormal or imperfect but it's not horrible.

It's really hard to accept our bodies the way they are. They should be more like this or like that and it's easy to compare ourselves with other people who seem to have much easier, lighter or pain free bodies. I really struggle with this. As I write this I have a pain down the back of my left shoulder and its hard not to panic. What is yoga going to feel like this weekend? How am I going to have time to rest it? How could I be so stupid to cause this pain? Anger, blame, resentment, frustration.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
What if there was nothing wrong with you?
JULY 27 2017

It's easy for us to think we need constant improvement. We should expand our mind in this or that way, we should stay on top of current affairs, we should have better bodies, better attitudes, better relationships. We should constantly be improving, increasing our abilities, improving our appearance. We should exercise all the time and only eat clean, green, impossible to find foods. We should also work like super heroes and then make sure we get a solid eight hours sleep. We should go to yoga all the time and meditate an hour in the morning and an hour before bed because on top of everything else we also really need to improve ourselves spiritually. There is always something that we are doing that is wrong and some way we could find to better ourselves. We will never satisfy our exceedingly high expectations. Expectations that we would never hold for any other human on this planet.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Finding the Balance
JULY 20 2017

A common theme that has been coming up in classes is the balance between softness and hardness and balancing that strong, supportive earth energy with the light bright energy above us. Thinking about a yoga pose like triangle pose, your feet are firmly planted on the ground, leg muscles stretching, strengthening and engaging with your tailbone. And then in your upper body your heart is open. The strength in your legs in your lower half allows your upper half to be soft to turn upwards. In a pose like pigeon which can feel tough, stretchy, tension-y, it's important to soften where you can, your face, your heart, the palms of your hands, your belly. In mindful meditation practice with a focus on the breath, the trick is to see how soft you can be with yourself when your mind wanders. How soft you can gently guide your focus back to your breath without criticism or judgement. That moment in the guiding back to the breath is all that meditation really is. When you feel awful or down about yourself how soft can you be with yourself, with your feelings and situation? How much compassion can you give yourself? The hard strong powerful feeling in our legs, in our focus or anger isn't bad and the soft, fuzzy gentleness isn't bad either it's just about balance between the two.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
The Weekly Prayer
JULY 13 2017

I - with the help of a very kind friend - recently updated the likeaprayeryoga.com website. Included on the website are each of these weekly emails, the weekly prayer. At first I was a bit nervous to title these pieces a prayer - any mention of religious words like prayer or God, or images of crosses can get a bit awkward. It's hard to know where someone else stands on different religions or being spiritual and conversations trying to understand viewpoints around religion can open up a lot of passion, aggression and hostility.

A big part of what attracted me to yoga in the first place was the spiritual aspect and the idea of it being a moving prayer. In sun salutations, you start with your hands at your heart, in prayer, and after various flowing postures and movements, end in the same place. In this action, depending upon the individual, you might be praying to God, the universe, possibly ourselves or maybe a mixture of all three.

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     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Giving up
JULY 6 2017

The idea of giving up or to stop striving or trying to make things happen seems like an anathema in this uber-positive, must-do-my-mantra-every-morning age.

Whether it be to do with our career, relationships even our health and fitness; if we are constantly trying to make things happen or to change things and it feels like our efforts aren't going anywhere, it's rational to feel really disappointed, powerless or at a complete loss. It's then really easy to turn this frustration with a situation into self blame. We tell ourselves that it's our inadequacies that are holding us back - but what if it is that, some things at some times, are just simply out of control? Maybe there is a divine rhythm to timing that we can't understand from where we sit right now, frustrated and impatient that we can't get the perfect job, partner or lose 5 more kgs.

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     NEWS
July 6th 2017

Thursday classes are now at 8am and 4.30 pm.

If you are new to the studio and there is a special intro pack of 3 classes for $30 - Thank you to those who have recommended the school to their friends, it's exciting to see it grow.

For those interested, Carthage Must Be Destroyed has brought back the highly salacious sea salt chocolate coconut caramel slice. It is as delicious as it sounds and could be just the thing we all need to get through the full moon coming very early morning on Sunday in New York. This particular full moon is in Capricorn with Pluto - the planet of transformation - playing a role.

Full moons are traditionally a time to let go and this one suggests change could happen very swiftly and profoundly. The energy out there could feel quite intense and people could be more volatile so keep your energy protected, keep grounding, finding your feet and find time to think about what you want to let go of this lunar cycle.

Have a lovely week and full moon xx Heidi

 
     THE WEEKLY PRAYER
Energy
JUNE 29 2017

Whether you believe it or not, you are an energetic being. You, like everybody around you, have your own energy and it is uniquely, perfectly yours. Your energy existed before your physical body was created and your energy will continue to exist once your body no longer can.

There is a quiet peaceful clarity that comes from feeling our own energy. We are in flow, are connected to our purpose and feel powerful. Not that ego-centred, combative, f**k you-sort of power but the quiet, gentle strength that comes from knowing who you are.

Sometimes it can be difficult to stay in our own energy. We deviate from our energy when we take on energies that are not ours.

Living in a city like New York we can feel like sponges picking up the energies of the people we live with, commute with and work with. And because it's hard to find space for yourself it can be difficult to know what's yours and what is someone elses.

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     NEWS
June 29th 2017

Meditation class
I'm very excited for the very first meditation class at like a prayer yoga, which is happening this Sunday at 4.30pm. Classes are by donation. Prepare to go deep, let go and chill right out. Book in by emailing info@likeaprayeryoga.com

Ps there's a lot of Mars energy going on this week, which can be great for channeling into action and generally getting sh*t done.

 
    

NEWS
June 22nd 2017

MEDITATION CLASSES AT LIKE A PRAYER YOGA

I am very excited to be offering a regular meditation class at like a prayer yoga on Sunday afternoons at 4.30, this will replace the yoga class. We will do 2 or 3 very restorative and gentle yoga poses which will allow for more concentrated energetic clearing. The class will focus on clearing your mind, deepening your breath and connecting with your heart. It can be hard to give yourself space for meditation and what ostensibly looks like lounging around for an hour. Giving yourself space for deep, healing and active rest can have so many benefits, mentally, physically and spiritually. Meditation is also a great way to reconnect with ourselves. For sensitive beings who pick up other people's energies at home, in the workplace or on the L train, it can be hard to know what is going on for us, have clarity about how we feel about situations or be connected with our truth, purpose and intuition.

These classes will be about letting go of what's not you and reconnecting back with that universal truth that resides within each of us.

Meditation classes will start from 2nd of July.

Email to book in or if you have any questions.

Finally, I wanted to share with you this new (well old) song I am loving and will be overplaying this week.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-STFyfsdoVA

Have a great week,

Heidi.



222 Bogart Street East Williamsburg Brooklyn NY 11206    |    info@likeaprayeryoga.com