As I recall, last week I was complaining about a lot of things—the “artic winter” of Encinitas, the defective heater in the yoga studio, respiratory distress, my injured shoulder, and “vata derangement”. I apologize for being such a whiner--perhaps I was suffering from SAD (seasonal affective disorder). Sometimes when my wife is complaining about things that seem relatively insignificant to me, I say to her, “You need to get some real problems”—thinking of all the people in the world who don’t have enough food or a place to live, or who are suffering from some horrible and painful disease, etc. It’s never what she wants to hear and I always regret saying it, but sometimes I can’t help myself. Now it’s payback time so I am saying it to myself, “You need to get some real problems!”
The days are getting longer and warmer, my cold is gone, the shoulder is better, the heating guy finally showed up today, and I’m on my way to the “Mayan Riviera” on Friday. Things are definitely on the upswing. An added bonus is the full moon on Saturday in the nakshatra called Pushya—“The Nourisher.” Pushya lies within the constellation of Cancer, where the Moon is “exalted”. The Moon is associated with the Mother, and within the lunar mansion of Pushya it finds its most nurturing expression. One of the symbols for Pushya is a flower, symbolizing the blossoming of latent faculties. Another common symbol for this nakshatra is the udder of a cow, representing the giving and nourishing aspect of the Divine Mother—the “milk of human kindness.” Pushya magically transports us back to the state in our infancy when we are safely nestled in our mother’s arms. This is the most loved and benign of all the 27 nakshatras. The energy of Pushya is described as “brahmavarchasa shakti”—the power to harness the creative powers of Brahma. It is a very auspicious time for undertaking all new activities--in the realm of material, emotional, or spiritual development.
Looming on the horizon is the “Ashtanga Yoga Confluence” of 2013, February 28th-March 3rd. Last year’s confluence sold out within weeks and we ended up with a waiting list of 500 people. This year, inexplicably, with the confluence just five weeks away, there is still space in the event! For 2013 we have added a couple of my dear friends to the dynamic mix of great teachers—Dena Kingsberg and Dominic Corigliano. Dena is an inspiring practitioner and teacher who I first met in Mysore in 1992. We have cultivated a strong friendship during many subsequent trips. She brings the no nonsense sensibility of a strong, self-reliant woman who lives off the grid, in the “Bush” Down Under. Dominic and I go back over 30 years. We were even roommates for a short time in the early nineties when we were between marriages, and my old house on La Veta Avenue became a temporary “sanctuary for men in mid-life crisis.” Together, we were able to make it through that challenging time of our lives and eventually both of us remarried and began second families in our 50’s. In fact, Dominic was my best man when I married Carol in 1996. He lived in Encinitas for over 20 years and began to hone his craft as a yoga teacher through many years of teaching at the Ashtanga Yoga Center and at Frog’s athletic club. During the last decade of Guruji’s life, Dom spent a lot of time with him, both in Mysore and traveling throughout the world, documenting his teaching on film and learning through his example. Dominic is an extremely intelligent individual with a curious and penetrating intellect. He will be the moderator for the panel discussions this year at the Confluence and I’m sure he will keep things lively and interesting.