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A Yoga Class that Explores the Cosmos

The cosmos is a vast living body, of which we are still parts.
The sun is a great heart whose tremors run through our smallest veins.
The moon is a great nerve center from which we quiver forever.
Who knows the power that Saturn has over us, or Venus? But it is a vital power, rippling exquisitely through us all the time.
– D. H. Lawrence – 

Hello, fellow friends on the path,

We’re three days into Energize 30-Day Yoga Challenge! I’ve themed the month of classes and content to explore various aspects of the universe, including the cosmos, Gaia (the earth), community, and the individual experience. 

Each week is based on one of the four aspects; the class offerings will include an origin story, themes, and postures to connect you to the concept. 

If you’re not participating in the challenge, I hope you take a little extra something away from the LIVE classes and the content we share this month.  

A few things to note for April:

  • I’m offering two LIVE classes all month. You can join me every Saturday at 9 AM PST for a 60-minute vinyasa practice and Wednesday at noon PST for a 30-minute slower-paced practice
  • All LIVE classes will be available on-demand within a few hours after the event. 

  • We’re tracking our progress all month by typing YES after each class. You can participate by adding your comment to the class on the Apps or to the Facebook Group, where we upload the day’s class. 

See the details for the upcoming LIVE classes:

Here’s the info on SATURDAY’S class:

 

The Golden Egg – King Pigeon 

This creation myth found in the Rig Veda, one of India’s most holy and oldest books, states that the universe was born from a golden egg. Clara will begin by telling this myth and tying it into the practice working towards the backbend, Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (King Pigeon).

This physical practice will open all front and sides of the pelvis, chest, and shoulders.

Props Needed: 1 Strap/belt, 1 Block 

Spotify Playlist

Here’s the info on WEDNESDAY’S class: 

Into the Stars

Join Clara for a 30-minute Slow Flow practice themed in the element of Space/Ether. This practice has no peak pose but instead focuses on creating more space in the body and mind.

Props Needed: 2 Blocks. 

Spotify Playlist

Develop Strength in Mind & Body:

Three New Core Yoga Classes on PWC 

SIMPLE CORE 

A short and simple core class targets the four core muscles, the rectus abdominous, transverse abdominous, and internal and external obliques. A strong core assists in supporting a strong and healthy spine and prevents lower back pain. All movement comes from our core center, so developing the muscles to support movement is essential to our overall health and well-being. 

GOOD TIMES IN PLANK 

A quick session to ignite the core and strengthen the abdominals, this class is great to do as a warm-up before your workout or on its own. Core strengthening exercises bring awareness to the muscles that support the spine and enhance our ability to engage in activities. In this short class, explore plank sequences to develop strength in the core, arms, and back body. 

DANCING CORE 

An energizing core class to fire up your day, Ana Forrest Yoga inspires this class with abdominal strengthening exercises to target the deep core stabilizers. Do this class before your usual practice, workout, or on its own to build heat, strength, and clear static energy. Move through six core exercises and five poses to release the abdominals and create mobility in the spine.  

Ω  
Astrology: Scientific Myth or Madness?

An Approach to Stargazing in the 21st Century

Humankind has been seeking answers about the universe since the beginning of time. We’ve begged questions, created mythologies, and hosted experiments to understand better what the galaxies are made of. Philosophers, scientists, and artists all contribute to the vast narrative of what it means to be human and how we came to be. 

The study of astronomy has helped define our relationship to outer space and celestial objects. Astronomers use mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology to explain the origin and evolution of the planets, moon, stars, nebulae, and other celestial phenomena. Astronomy has helped us track the seasons and establish when to plant crops, measure time, prolong our species’ survival, and respond to potential threats from outer space. 

As we broadened our lens to take in the stars, we discovered that we are made of the basic elements of the universe. As Carl Sagan once famously said, The cosmos is within us. We are made of star stuff. We are a way for the universe to know itself.

Astronomy is where the practice of astrology seeks its foundation; entirely different studies and conversely compared, astronomy and astrology have common roots in the investigation of the cosmos. Where astronomy fails to provide an answer, as modern science and technology go only so far, astrology attempts to provide the answers. 

Astrology considers celestial bodies, planets, and the movement of objects in space and their relationship to humankind and events on Earth. The earliest evidence of humans tracking the moon’s influence on the tides was recorded 25,000 years ago. The Babylonians were the first to create a system for astrology around the 2nd Millenium BCE. The Egyptians developed a system of time measurement based on the constellations they called the decans.   

Alexander the Great introduced the Greeks to the cosmological ideas of the Babylonians, and the theories of astrology were eventually passed on to the Romans. Astrology influenced Medieval Europe until the end of the Renaissance with the breakdown of Aristotolein physics; by the 17th Century, Astrology was considered divination. 

From India, the earliest mention of astrology is in the Vedas, one of India’s oldest texts containing Sanskrit literature and scriptures of Hinduism. 

Astrology is held in high regard in China thanks to Confucious, who once said, “Heaven sends down its good or evil symbols, and wise men act accordingly.” 

The Maya, Mixtec, and Aztecs utilized calendars linked to intricate astrological systems to answer questions of day-to-day life. Evidence shows that the Mayans also tracked planets’ movements, including Mercury, Mars, and Jupiter. 

Considering how past civilizations have examined the stars and identified with the universe’s fluctuations, how do you regard astrology? Is it best considered a scientific myth established in astronomy, or is it madness? Should we refine our decisions based on the moon’s fullness or a shooting star?

Here are a few quotes from infamous philosophers, scientists, and artists that seek to resolve the mysteries of the universe.

We have peered into a new world and have seen that it is more mysterious and more complex than we had imagined.
– Vera Rubin, astronomer.

 

It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves; we are underlings. 
– William Shakespeare, playwright. 

 

We have to be very careful not to impose our hopes and desires on the cosmos, but instead, in the scientific tradition and with the most open mind possible, see what the cosmos is saying to us. 
– Carl Sagan, astronomer. 
 
About astrology and palmistry: they are good because they make people vivid and full of possibilities. They are communism at its best. Everybody has a birthday and almost everybody has a palm.  
– Kurt Vonnegut, writer.
 
Science, like every effort of thought, consists in interpreting experience… all human thought, including beliefs which appear completely absurd, is experimental and claims to be based on and confirmed by experience.
– Simone Weil, philosopher. 
 
Do not look at stars as bright spots only. Try to take in the vastness of the universe.
– Maria Mitchell, astronomer.
 
The universe is made of stories, not of atoms.
– Muriel Rukeyser, poet. 
 
Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another. 
– Plato, philosopher. 
 
Space is for everybody. It’s not just for a few people in science or math, or for a select group of astronauts. That’s our new frontier out there, and it’s everybody’s business to know about space.  
– Christa McAuliffe, astronaut.
 
And what if the sky here is no different
And it is my eyes that have been sharpening themselves?
– Sylvia Plath, poet. 
 
A physician without a knowledge of Astrology has no right to call himself a physician. 
– Hippocrates, physician. 

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