• Wellness

    The Coronavirus: A Yogic Perspective

    This post was written on March 3, 2020. I’ve updated it as of April 4, 2020. The theories around the three minds remain the same, but the data has changed.   The coronavirus (CO-VID19), which originated in 2019 in Wuhan, China, has been spreading globally.  It is a serious threat with over 1,100,00  known infected cases as of April 3. The trajectory is dangerous, the spread is exponential, and the growth occurs very quickly. The virus contained would not have been that big of a deal. The virus spreading is a big deal. It is now clear the virus is rapidly spreading far and wide, and nearly half of the…

  • Kundalini Yoga,  Wellness

    Why Meditate?

    Lots of people ask “why meditate?”  I’ll give a more scientific answer below, but I’ll start by sharing my personal experience.   I had been taking Kundalini Yoga classes for several months before I did my first 31-minute meditation. Most of the meditations in my regular Kundalini Yoga classes were three to five minutes, and I was curious what would happen if I tried to go longer.  When I saw that Akiva Satnaryan was offering a class with a 31-minute meditation at the Hayes Valley Yoga Tree near my house, I decided to sign up.   The class started in the regular sequence: we tuned in, we did a short…

  • Uncategorized,  Wellness

    What You Might Not Know About Weight Loss

    It’s that time of the year when we set out with our New Year’s resolutions and since the #1  New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, I thought we’d start there.  Last year I wrote “How to Lose Weight in Four Steps” and while it still applies, for the month of January, I’m including a tip per week of something you might not know about weight loss.   Installments #1: Understand the Math Behind Weight Loss (below) #2: What should I eat? A review of the current diet trends #3: So…what do you eat? #4: Exercise   #1: Understand the Math Behind Weight Loss While there are hundreds of diets…

  • Wellness

    Health Hacks: Simple Things to Improve Your Health

    Hack #1: Probiotics, prebiotics and microbiome: what they are and why they matter   When I started my functional medicine program a year ago, one of the things my doctor “prescribed” as part of my supplement regimen was a good probiotic. They aren’t the first to talk about this–the wellness and nutrition circles have been promoting the benefits of probiotics for many years. The general idea is that over 70% of your immune system resides in your gut, and you can fast-track your way to better health by taking good care of your gut’s microbiome.   The quick summary is that you can give your immune system a big boost…

  • Enneagram,  Kundalini Yoga,  Uncategorized,  Wellness

    Excerpts from The Aquarian Teacher

    In this series, I’m excerpting sections from The Aquarian Teacher, by Yogi Bhajan. This is the book we used from my Kundalini Yoga teacher training. During Kundalini Yoga teacher training, we were introduced to the five stages on the path of wisdom. These stages are excerpted from page 218 of “The Aquarian Teacher” by Yoga Bhajan.   The Five Stages on the Path of Wisdom   Saram Pad The “honeymoon period” when we consciously enter a relationship with our spirit and our spiritual path. We are happy. We have left the pain of the past and feel the freshness of a new life on the spiritual path. We have found…

  • Kundalini Yoga,  living in Greece

    What Homeless Shelters and Refugee Camps Have Taught Me About Seva

    As originally published by 3HO. The word “seva” means selfless service, but when I reflect on it, I think I get as much out of my acts of seva as the people I’m serving. Some of my first volunteer positions were in homeless shelters in San Francisco, and today I volunteer to support the refugee population here in Greece. The benefits I’ve gained from seva are many and long ranging. I’ve included three below with the hope you might consider doing seva yourself.   1) My Comfort Zone Expanded When I graduated from Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training in 2009, I didn’t feel like a “real” teacher so I started volunteer…

  • Kundalini Yoga,  living in Greece

    Connecting the Dots: How I Went from Being a San Francisco CFO to an Athens Yoga Instructor

    This is a series describing, dot by dot, how I went from being a San Francisco CFO to an Athens Yoga Instructor.  You can read individual installments below or scroll down for the entire series.   1.0-1.1:  My Boyfriend Walked Out and My Teacher Walked In (Sept 2007) 1.1-1.2: White Tantric Yoga (March 2008) 1.2-1.3: A Death in the Family (June 2008) 1.3-1.4: 40 Days and 40 Nights of the Cleanse (Winter 2009) 1.4-1.5: The Burning Man Bumblebee Incident (Spring 2009) 1.5-1.6:  A Festival in a Field in France (August 2009) 1.6-1.7:  How I Crafted My Own “Study Abroad” Program (May 2011) 1.7-1.8: How My Dog Launched My Yoga Career…

  • Kundalini Yoga,  living in Greece,  Uncategorized

    I’ve Practiced Kundalini Yoga Daily For The Last 9.5 Years. Here’s What I’ve Learned…

    People sometimes ask about my personal yoga practice, and they are often surprised to hear that I‘ve been maintaining a daily Kundalini Yoga practice for 9.5 years. It’s surprising to me too when I do the math, but in 2009 when I finished Kundalini Yoga teacher training, my teachers were clear that if we planned to teach, it was important to have a daily practice. I took this advice seriously and with the exception of maybe 2 days in the last 9.5 years (roughly 3,465 days), I’ve done Kundalini Yoga every day.   What’s a daily practice? A daily practice is different things for different people. For me, it means…

  • living in Greece,  Uncategorized,  Wellness

    What I Learned From the Project 333 Fashion Challenge

    What Is It? I first learned about Project 333 when we screened the movie Minimalism on the Acropolis Roof Deck this summer. The movie is all about how simplifying your life makes you happier. One of the trends that it featured was Project 333—a fashion challenge that dares you to narrow your wardrobe down to 33 items for 3 months. The challenge is designed to raise awareness around consumerism and to illustrate how you can actually be happier with less. Most of us conceptually understand we have more than we need. This challenge sets out to prove it. The trend started in the United States, but it’s gaining momentum worldwide.…

  • Kundalini Yoga,  living in Greece,  Wellness

    An Open Thank You to Snatam Kaur and all the Kundalini Yoga Musicians Worldwide

    Today I want to take an  opportunity to post an open thank you to Snatam Kaur and all the Kundalini Yoga musicians worldwide. Your music has made all the difference for me and many of the people I teach.   In November, I started teaching yoga at Skaramagas, one of the biggest refugee camps in Greece. I first got involved in the refugee situation back in 2015 when I went to Lesvos for a weekend. In 2016, I briefly taught at another refugee organization in Athens, but then I got busy writing my book, and since that time, I hadn’t been involved at all. Last fall, when I saw a…