Note from Clara: How to Change Poison into Nourishment

Hello fellow seekers,

There is a myth about Shiva I’ve been thinking about this week. You may or may not have heard it—It’s the story about why his throat is blue. I will give a quick summary and if you’re interested in reading a full version of his story, click here (start on paragraph 7).

There was a time when the gods and demons were mortal. They had heard that there was an elixir that granted them immortality that could be found at the bottom of the ocean of consciousness known as the Samudra Manthan. As they churned the ocean, many things began to surface, including Lakshmi, gems and a deadly poison, Halahala. As the poison began to surface, everyone drew back, fearful of being touched by the Halahala. Without thinking, Shiva stepped forward and began to drink the Halahala. Parvati also stepped forward and held Shiva’s throat so that the poison would not go into the rest of his body and kill him—this is why in some iconography, he has a bluish tint to his skin.

Why have I been thinking about this myth?

The answer is twofold. First off, there are times when in order to get what we want, we have to swallow/take on/do things that seem deadly. Coming back to my ongoing theme of grief—we have a choice. We can sit back and not participate in what’s going on or step forward and drink what feels like poison for the situation/feeling/relationship to change. Shiva is known as the patron saint of yogis because he does not fear death – he does not fear change – he actively dances the Tandava, the dance of destruction. We yogis aspire and are inspired to do the same. We lean in, step forward and actively participate in our lives—which sometimes involves destroying what no longer serves—what is no longer working in our lives.

Once the dust settles, then comes the grief and the act of mourning the change. This, again, is where we can learn from Shiva. He’s seen dancing the Tandava, or he’s seated in meditation. I’m going to define meditation in this context as just sitting with what is. This is where I am right now—sitting, feeling and observing what is left—within myself and around me—not doing anything about it quite yet, just taking stock with what’s changed from dance.

I ask you, dear friends –

  • How would you describe what’s going on for you right now?
  • Are you dancing the Tandava?
  • Are you a spectator in someone else’s or the global dance?
  • Are you sitting in the aftermath of the dance? If so, what do you see?
  • If you were to close your eyes and ask yourself – How am I right now, what would your answer be?
  • What can you do today to honour how you’re feeling?

Ending with some beautiful words by Elizabeth Lesser:

“The best way forward is to let ourselves mourn what has been lost, to feel our very human vulnerability, to be kind and gentle and patient with ourselves and others so that when the time comes, we can welcome the new, unexplored areas of life.”
— Read the rest of the article she wrote here.

I’m excited to start the live classes again today on Practice With Clara, where we’ll dive into this theme. For more information on the class, scroll down. If you’re unable to join us, you can find the class in the New Releases playlist this afternoon.

My weekly recommendations –

If you have any questions about training, poses, or anything else related to yoga, you can email me, post in the Facebook Group, or write us a review on the apps, and we’ll gift you a month of yoga!

Sending love and a virtual hug,
Clara.

New Yoga Class: Poison Into Nourishment

Join me for a 60-minute vinyasa practice moving towards the arm balance mayurasana, peacock pose.

One of the greatest forms of alchemy is to turn something toxic into something nourishing. Some of the oldest yogis were alchemists, turning metals into gold. They came upon the pranayama, mantra and meditation practices and realized they could change their own alchemy.

Mayurasana is one of the oldest yoga poses. You’ll find it in the Hatha Yoga Pradipika (one of the oldest texts about Hatha yoga) along with paintings of yogis in the pose. It is said to stimulate your Agni (spiritual/digestive fire), help you digest poisonous foods, and help you digest emotional poisons such as anger, greed, jealousy, anxiety, and spiritual ignorance.

We’ll be warming up with forearm and hand stretches. There will be lots of heat with twists and back strengthening poses.

Here’s the link to the Spotify playlist for this class.

Upcoming Events for You

We’ve planned a variety of virtual experiences to support you as we transition into fall. Take a look at our upcoming LIVE yoga classes and virtual events to see how you can reignite your connection to your practice in the coming months!
All members of Practice with Clara may attend all events and LIVE classes
—new members receive an initial 7-day subscription.
Take a tour of your spiritual basement…

It’s an excavation, an unearthing, and a time to decompress and dig deep into the spaces within yourself.

You’re invited to a Virtual Fall Equinox Retreat: Tuesday, September 21st, 2021.

The fall equinox is my favourite time of year. Join us for a day of self-reflection filled with meditation, journaling prompts, recipes, inspirational reads and a day of yoga and community.

Fall Equinox Itinerary

  • 2 LIVE yoga classes
  • LIVE opening meditation
  • LIVE closing circle
  • 3 on-demand classes
  • Recipes inspired by Autumn
  • Books, podcasts, and poetry
  • Journaling prompts
Your Fall Equinox eBook!
A transformative spiritual experience— Sadhana translates as ‘realization’ from Sanskrit.

Join us for a 7-Day Sadhana Series to celebrate the power of mantra and movement this fall.

Monday, September 13th – Sunday, September 19th, take the on-demand classes of your choice!

For the inaugural 7-Day Sadhana Series, we’re featuring mantras and short movement practices for you to feel clear, grounded, and more attuned to those around you.

Mantra is a powerful tool to focus your mind and attention on a specific word or phrase. Chanting mantras help you release positive energies into the universe.

Here’s how you join:

1. Get the Mantra | 7-Day Sadhana Series playlist on your Practice with Clara App.

2. Join the community Facebook Group to connect with yogis worldwide.

Save the Date…
October 1st- October 30th, 2021

Join us for an exhilarating 30-day experience that asks you to make space to surface the subconscious aspects of yourself. You’ll be tasked with tenderly examining the pieces of your persona you avoid or suppress and perhaps unconsciously overlook with yoga, mantra, meditation, and journaling prompts to encourage you through your process.

Here’s what you get when you join:

  • Lila Flow-focused yoga.
  • LIVE yoga every Saturday.
  • Meditations and mantras.
  • Repetition to aid with your learning + development.
  • Support from a community.
  • On-demand content to do the classes at your leisure.
  • Chance to win a gift from one of our partners if you complete the challenge!
Back by popular demand!
 

Back by popular demand!

Join us for the Art of Sequencing from Friday, November 5th – Monday, November 8th!

In this 4-day Art of Sequencing Yoga Teacher Training, we’ll unpack peak yoga postures, do a deep dive into Lila Flow Yoga Wave Theory sequencing, discuss themes, explore subtle body practices, and examine how and why we aim to create balance in the muscle groups and nervous system in a yoga class.

This program features the history and practice of vinyasa yoga, specifically, Prana Vinyasa Flow pioneered by my teacher, Shiva Rea. This style of yoga embodies movement, chanting, music, and breath control to direct the life force/energy (Prana).

Take a 2-hour LIVE YOGA CLASS with me each day of training.

Each LIVE yoga class is accompanied by a 1-hour on-demand lecture that delves into the intricacies and technicalities of alignment, advanced and foundational postures, subtle body practices, and themes.

Participants will have the option to review and reflect on the lectures and additional on-demand content 2-weeks after the training ends to embody the material and techniques.

Join Practice with Clara

New members get 7-days FREE!

Sign up for a recurring subscription and get access to hundreds of different yoga classes and join the weekly LIVE yoga class.

Join me for an experiencial practice!

My favourite thing about yoga is getting to watch people have a connection with themselves.

 

Yoga at Home

Reaffirm your commitment to a home yoga practice!

Read our post on how to set up a home yoga studio and the benefits of joining the Class of the Day.

 

✧ Join the Community ✧

Our community boasts yogis from countries all over the world who gather and co-create the spaces we share on the Practice with Clara platform.

Join a community of over 1.3k yogis from around the world in the Practice with Clara Facebook Group

· Share your feedback

· Seek help and motivation from the community

· Discuss and receive input on yoga challenges and injuries

· Cultivate a global community

· Exclusive access to content and upcoming events

· Bring your ideas and questions to the Practice with Clara Ambassadors 

Take a LIVE yoga class with Clara each week and join hundreds of yogis worldwide. 

· Ask Clara questions in the live Q&A after class

· Participate in a class with Clara and the community

· Put in your request for a specific class

· Build to a peak pose in a vinyasa-style sequence

· Learn modifications for injuries

· Receive how-to guides to advance your practice

More Opportunties on Practice with Clara

See the History of Our 30-Day Yoga Challenges 

Take a look at the past 30-day yoga challenges. 

Read the history of the 30-day challenges with the past partnerships, themes, interviews with professionals, and more. 

Join an Upcoming 30-Day Yoga Challenge

See when the next 30-day yoga challenge is hosted to join the LIVE yoga & meditation classes.

Check out the events page to learn more. 

Are you looking for more opportunities to practice yoga, for free? 

Check out our Free Yoga page to see the latest offerings. 

Choose from three unique, free, offerings: 

30-day challenge
7-day series for beginners
7-day series for advanced vinyasa yogis 

✧ Community Feedback ✧

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✧ Frequently Asked Questions ✧

1. What is the Practice with Clara Membership & App?

Practice with Clara is an online platform and Apps that allow you to take your yoga with you anywhere, anytime! With hundreds of classes in various styles, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Restorative, Yin, Prenatal, and Meditation, there’s something for everyone at any level of the practice. The Practice with Clara Membership provides a monthly or yearly subscription package with the first 7-days free for you to experience the courses. 

2. How is the Membership Different from the YouTube Playlists?

A membership to the Practice with Clara Apps provides:

  • Access to the members-only library of yoga classes
  • Weekly LIVE classes with Clara
  • Unique events and workshops
  • Downloadable assets including:
    • Monthly Calendars
    • Journaling Booklets
    • Spotify Playlists
  • Access to a community of yogis worldwide 
  • Q&A sessions with Clara
  • & much more!

Clara’s YouTube Channel provides carefully curated playlists to introduce you to the free programs and yoga challenges for you to get a taste of what’s offered and commit to your wellness!

3. What Do I Get When I Join the 7-Day Program?

The 7-day programs include: 

  • 7-Days of Vinyasa Yoga Intensive
  • 7-Days of Yoga for Beginners

These programs provide a weeks-worth of yoga classes to ignite your yoga practice and cultivate a new, healthy habit. 

When you sign-up for one of these programs, you’ll receive:

  • A welcome email to the program from Clara
  • A class each day for 1-week
  • Curated Spotify playlists to accompany each course
  • A calendar to track your progress
  • Access to the private Practice with Clara Facebook Group

These programs are free with no hidden costs or fees; PLUS, you’ll still receive the 7-day free trial on the Practice with Clara Apps once you complete the series!

4. What Do I Get When I Join the 30-Day Yoga Challenge?

We host quarterly 30-day yoga challenges that are always free for all members of Practice with Clara. Each yoga challenge is themed based on the season. We’ve provided our inaugural challenge, Reconnect | A 30-Day Yoga Challenge, as an email series for you to try to test your physical and mental discipline and endurance!

What you receive in Reconnect | 30-Day Challenge

  • A welcome email to the program from Clara
  • A class each day for 30-days
  • Curated Spotify playlists to accompany each course
  • A calendar to track your progress
  • A journaling booklet to incite self-reflection 
  • Access to the private Practice with Clara Facebook Group

This program is free, anytime, with no hidden costs or fees, PLUS you’ll still receive the 7-day free trial on the Practice with Clara Apps once you complete the series!

 5.  I Want to Try the App, What’s Next? 

Great, we’re so happy to have you join our community!

To set up the Practice with Clara App, here are your next steps:

6. I’m Injured, Pregnant, or New to the Practice—Can I Join?

YES, no matter where you are at in your practice, there are classes for you on Practice with Clara. 

We’ve created playlists for beginners and those who are new to the practice.

we also have the Prenatal Collections with classes from the 1st – 4th trimesters that I created when I was pregnant with my daughter. 

Finally, I offer PLENTY of modifications and suggestions based on injury in all the platform classes. 

The biggest thing is to always listen to your body; your body is the greatest teacher.

Join Practice with Clara

New members get 7-days FREE!

Sign up for a recurring subscription and get access to hundreds of different yoga classes and join the weekly LIVE yoga class.

I want to share 3 Spotify playlists with you

Hello, fellow friends on the path,

This month I’m sharing passages about Tantra to inspire our practices and lives. 

I shared this quote in the live class last week that touches on how we can embrace joy and accept the here and the now: 

Wonder occurs when we succeed in tasting the nectar of the loving relationship that we develop with each thing or person or object that is before us at this very moment.” – Daniel Odier, Spandakarika. 

Tantra has helped me to realize that experiencing DIVINE MOMENTS can happen at ANY TIME. I don’t need to be doing yoga or seeking a “spiritual experience” in order to feel oneness. 

As we know, oneness is a state of mind. As Odier says so eloquently – we can taste the nectar by really taking in what’s in front of us – at this very moment. 

So you’re homework for today is to make a conscious effort to see – really see the divinity that is RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU. AND AND AND to connect to the divinity within you – easy right? heh. 

To get you in the mood, I’m sharing a few music playlists. You can do yoga or just dance your way back into your body.

I invite you to make space to dance, stomp, sing, spin, skip, scream, whatever you need to do to express how you feel and honor your body and what it’s trying to tell you. These three music playlists correlate with classes on Practice with Clara if you prefer a dynamic vinyasa class over dance. 


3 Spotify playlists to get you groovin’: 

  1. Durga Flow | take the class
  2. Take Flight | take the class
  3. Dancing Shiva | take the class


I’ve also added a gentle Hatha class on my YouTube Channel: Yoga from Bed – Morning Stretch for anyone seeking a more subtle expression of intuitive movement if you’re not a member.

This week’s LIVE yoga class I invite you to embrace change and develop inner listening by testing your strength and balance as we progress toward handstand at the wall! 

Constantly Changing

Join me for a vinyasa practice against the wall working towards an L-shaped handstand. 

Please clear space by a wall and put the short edge of your mat against the wall before the class begins. You’ll be walking your feet up the wall, so make sure to take any frames down. 

The props you’ll need: 2 blocks.

> SPOTIFY PLAYLIST

Get Your Astrology Reading 

I’ve enjoyed working with a long-time practitioner, Simone Pinkhasova, to create 🪐 YOGA HOROSCOPE, where we highlight how to create balance through astrology and yoga. 

Each week, readers receive an astrology guide based on the current moon cycle. Your reading includes movement, mantra, & meditation classes from Practice with Clara that balance the energies featured in the atmosphere throughout the week.  

Visit the website and sign up to receive a reading every Monday morning!
 

Choose connection
Dance daily.

Love you,
Clara & the Team. 

A Note from Clara On Celebrating Feminine Energy

Shri Ma!
Blessing and salutations to the great mother!
 
“The maternal or female energy is one of the earliest objects of contemplation and worship. ‘Ma’ itself refers to the universal creative force that’s represented in the powerful feminine deity Shakti.” – Alice G Walton.

 

Tomorrow being Mother’s Day here in the West – this is a wonderful time to honor the Great Mother (divine/Gaia), your mother (biological/spiritual), and Shakti, the feminine creative force of the universe. 

In honor of Ma, I’ve created a Spotify playlist of kirtan music dedicated to her many forms – Durga, Gayatri, and Kali. The intention of this playlist is for you to sing along while you’re creating, having the creative force, Shakti, moving through you. Examples would be cooking, cleaning, making art, or doing yoga. 

Another offering in the spirit of Shakti is a meditation and breathwork practice on fire – the energy of Shakti. This meditation is free for all and can be found on Soundcloud. 

For those of us whose mothers have left the physical world, it can be a hard Sunday to endure. I have found small rituals help me.

My mother loved receiving flowers, so each year, I usually make a little altar to her in my house and offer a small bouquet of her favorite flowers, peonies. 

For those of you whose mothers are still with us in the physical realm, here are 3 ways to shower them with appreciation: 

1. Call/write them and express your gratitude. 
2. Feed them – bring them a meal that you have either prepared or picked up.
3Gift a subscription to Practice with Clara 😉

Here’s the info for Saturday’s LIVE class:
 
Taste the Nectar

Join Clara for a rhythmic vinyasa practice inspired by her teacher, Shiva Rea’s, Prana Flow. We’ll start with a classic moving meditation to open the heart and breath then ride a vinyasa wave to Shavasana, corpse pose. 

There is no peak pose for this class.

Props you’ll need 1 block, 1 blanket. 

SPOTIFY PLAYLIST

We’ve created a new playlist for sports lovers!

This playlist features five collections with classes for runners, cyclists, swimmers,  rock climbers, and skiers/snowboarders. Yoga is a great tool to cross-train and recover from strain on the muscles in said sport.

See how you can benefit from the Yoga for Sports playlist on the PWC blog.

Almost 50% Off!

Give the gift of daily ritual by purchasing a year’s subscription to Practice with Clara for $100 (Almost 50% off the regular price!) We want everyone to have access to yoga and rituals that help make the world a better place. PWC presents various styles and lengths of yoga classes, plus mantra and meditation for yogis of all levels—including expecting mamas! 

Mothers Day Special ends Monday, May 10th at midnight. 

 

Learn More About the Mother’s Day Special

 

Sending love and a virtual hug,
Clara & the Team. 

New on PWC: 20-Minute Morning Yoga Series for Members

We’ve wrapped up April’s 30-Day Yoga Challenge—congratulations to all who completed the challenge and WELL DONE! 

FYI- The LIVE giveaway for the challenge will be held on Wednesday, May 5th, at noon PST. To be entered to win a gift from one of our partners, please fill out this survey. The raffle will be held on Instagram and Facebook LIVE, and we’ll personally email all of those who’ve won if you cannot make it to the online event.

As always, it’s bittersweet when we end the challenges. I hope this challenge has either introduced to you the power of a daily practice or re-inspired your home practice. If you’d like to keep going, join us for the Class of The Day starting today, May 1st. 

When we ritualize our day-to-day activities, we have the opportunity to bring more awareness and self-control to the tasks we perform. A routine also acts as an anchor when we feel tired, angry, sad, stressed, anxious, and the many other uncomfortable states we experience that are outside of our control.
Read more on the rituals to create a morning yoga routine on the blog!

The community aspect of the challenge is what lights me up, and I’ve really enjoyed all the comments, feedback, and food for thought you’ve shared on the FB Community page. THANK YOU to all those to posted; please continue to share your thoughts and inspirations with us!

I also want to thank our awesome community ambassadors for sharing their insightful questions and prompts for all to consider throughout the month!


Here are 3 activities to incentives your yoga practice this month:

1. The Morning Series Playlist 
This 5 class series is meant to be done Monday-Friday and tailored to touch upon a different part of your body each day. All classes are 20 minutes – short enough to start the day with!

2. Class of the Day Playlist
If you enjoyed the format of the 30-day challenge, check out this playlist. We’ll be posting a class every day, so you don’t have to waste time choosing a class.  

3. Yoga Nidra for all non-PWC members
I love me some yoga nidra and want to share it with you! I’m adding a new yoga class to my YouTube Channel every other week, so for all non-members, you can find full-length yoga classes if you subscribe to my channel. 

For the month of May in the Live classes, we’re going to dive into the philosophical world of Tantra.

Here is tantra defined from its Sanskrit roots:
tan – “to extend, stretch, spread, shine,” and tra – “skill or instrument.” 

To practice tantra is to stretch ourselves, to extend our capacity for attention to the utmost. Tantra is also the pattern of interconnectedness we discover when we practice”. – Lorin Roche, The Radiance Sutras.

I’ll be drawing from three of my favorite books on Tantra:

I’ve had the pleasure of studying with both Lorin Roche and Daniel Odier in person and cannot wait to share their teachings with you. 

Here’s the info on SATURDAY’S class:

Carried by the Rhythm

Join Clara for a rhythmic vinyasa practice inspired by her teacher, Shiva Rea’s, Prana Flow. We’ll start with a classic moving meditation to open the heart and breath then ride a vinyasa wave working towards ustrasana, camel pose. 

What to expect: front body opening and back body strengthening. 

Props you’ll need: 2 blocks, 1 blanket. 

SPOTIFY PLAYLIST

Save the date; I’m hosting a 4-day Sequencing Training in July! 


This event is geared towards those interested in advancing their knowledge of vinyasa yoga sequencing. I’ll be going over the Wave Theory from Prana Flow Yoga and how-tos for creating sequences that build to a peak pose/flow, adding philosophical themes to classes, holding space for online classes!

This training will be online and open to teachers and students. 

The dates for this event are Friday, July 16th – Monday, July 19th. 

More details coming soon! 

If you have any questions, feedback, requests, or inspiration you want to share with us, feel free to drop it in the PWC Facebook group. The support from the community has been outstanding—I love seeing all the book, music, podcast, and movie recommendations, so keep them coming!

Sending love and a virtual hug,
Clara & the Team. 

Join Me for LIVE Yoga Class: Into the Darkness

To sing means to use the soul-voice. It means to say on the breath the truth of one’s power and one’s need, to breathe soul over the thing that is ailing or in need of restoration.
– Clarissa Pinkola Estes – 

Hello, fellow friends on the path,

As we enter the last week of the challenge, we are shifting into the final layer of the cosmos: the world of the self and home of the individual.  In today’s Live class, I will share a Mexican myth told by Clarissa Pinkola Estes in her phenomenal book, Women Who Run with the Wolves. The above quote inspires and reminds me that we can channel our soul through our voices to heal ourselves. May we remember that through breath and intention, we can connect to our power!

The yoga challenges are an invitation to take care of yourself and show up for a few minutes each day to honor a ritual that makes you feel grounded and calm. Yoga is one of the vehicles on the road to self-awareness; it is a tool to help us hear the voice within.

I hope you’re enjoying the month of movement and making space to reflect on all the ways you interact with the inner and outer worlds.

Yoga isn’t what you do on your mat; it’s a mindset. It’s a way of being with the world. It’s a practice of compassion for self that resonates and radiates out into the world with all living beings. 

The best way to extend kindness to others is to develop a practice of compassion towards ourselves. When we take care of ourselves, we feel better, and we’re better able to be of service and tend to those around us. 

Rituals and habits that help you take better care of yourself also act as an anchor on the days when we experience disruptions, such as chaos at work, over-tired children, inclement weather, or an argument with a loved one.  

Ways we take care of ourselves:

  • Eat nourishing foods.
  • Drink lots of water and fluids. 

  • Be active and exercising our bodies.

  • Be still and exercising our minds.

  • Express emotion and allow feelings to flow. 

  • Get enough sleep and rest.

  • Spend time with loved ones.

  • Listen to the messages of the body (hunger, discomfort, joy, longing). 

  • Contribute to the community. 

  • Spend time outside in nature.

  • Play and making space for hobbies we enjoy. 

  • Create through forms of art or investments. 

 A big thank you to all of you who’ve participated and shared your process on the Apps or Facebook Group. It has been a joy to read and share this experience with you!

Here’s what’s coming up at PWC: 

·  Fill out this survey to be entered to win the giveaway if you completed the month of yoga. 
·  We have a final LIVE class of the month on Wednesday, March 28th, at noon PST. 
·  The Class of the Day playlist will be LIVE Saturday, May 1st, for those of you who want to keep with a daily ritual of yoga. 
· We’re launching a Morning Yoga Series in May with 20-minute energizing classes to fire up your day! 

Details for the upcoming LIVE classes:

Here’s the info on SATURDAY’S class:
 
Bag of Bones

Our last myth comes from Mexico. It is a story of death, initiation, and rebirth. The myth is of the Bone Women or as Clarissa Pinkola-Estes names her, Wolf Woman.

The asana/physical part of the class will peak at Birds of Paradise which is a standing leg balance, hip opener, and twist.

We’ll be opening inner thighs, hamstrings, chest, and shoulders. We will be strengthening the legs, back, and core.

**This is a 90-minute practice**

Props you’ll need: 1 Blocks, 1 Strap.

Here’s the info on WEDNESDAY’S class:
 
Into the Darkness

Join Clara for a 30-minute restorative practice to help relax and soften the body.

Restorative yoga is a form of conscious rest. When we rest while still awake, we have the ability to go into a meditative state.

Let’s take a quick break from the To-Do lists and connect to that which is not seen, but felt.

Props you’ll need:

  • 2 Blocks
  • 1 Bolster
  • 1 Eye pillow

For your Seva this week, we invite you to examine how you show up for yourself and all the ways you might treat yourself with loving kindness.
 
Our partners for the challenge, Woodlot and Joiful Masks are brands from Vancouver, BC, that create products and rituals for you to enjoy. 

CLASS OF THE DAY PLAYLIST

Get your calendar for the Class of the Day playlist for May! We’ve created another month of classes for you to do with plenty of options depending on your preferred class level, style, and length. 

Self-Reflection on the Energies Within:
How the Hindu Deities Relate to Individual and Collective Consciousness

The Gods and Goddesses of the Hindu Pantheon are symbolic of the energies present in our inner and outer worlds. Each God and Goddess represent characteristics and qualities of human behavior and exemplify various elements and stages of human culture. 

Deities are often used as a theme to anchor yoga classes and meditations. By moving, meditating, or reflecting on a particular God/Goddess, we channel the necessary or lacking qualities within that deity we hope to embody.

For example, if you require courage, you might call upon Durga Maa. When transitioning through a phase, you might call upon Shiva. To invoke abundance, you might invoke Lakshmi, and for perseverance, you might call Vishnu. 
 

The Hindu deities express masculine and feminine qualities and express a shadow side, unlike the Gods and Goddesses of other cultures. The deities’ stories are a way to explore the values of Hinduism and demonstrate ways to be in the world and achieve enlightenment.  

Here are 12 of the most common Hindu deities
(& classes that feature the God/Goddess) 

▴ Durga ▴

Durga Maa is known as the Mother Goddess or the Goddess of Protection and Strength. Durga rides a lion or tiger and carries various weapons in her eight hands to destroy human forces such as jealousy, greed, hatred, and prejudice. 


 

▴ Brahma ▴

Lord Brahma is the God of Creation and Knowledge. Brahma is shown with four hands representing unique aspects of the human personality: the mind, intellect, ego, and consciousness. 

 


▴ Sita ▴

Consort to Brahma, Sita is the Goddess of Undying Devotion. Sita represents fidelity, loyalty, sacred marriage, and surrender. Sita is often depicted sitting beside Rama or in the forest; she symbolizes empathy with suffering and non-violent resistance. 


 

▴ Vishnu ▴

Vishnu is the Sustainer and Lord of Preservation as he adheres to principles of order, support, and truth. In many depictions of the god, Vishnu takes his seat upon a coiled snake to illustrate how to remain at peace in the face of turmoil. 

 

 

▴ Parvati ▴

Parvati is the Goddess of sacred marriage and consort to Shiva. Through Parvati, we discover the power of partnership, commitment, willpower, and devotion to the divine. Parvati is the force of creative action and uniting the masculine and feminine qualities within the self. 


 

▴ Krishna ▴

Krishna is the embodiment of love and compassion; he is a role model for all as he embraces joy despite experiencing pain and hardship. Playful and compassionate, Krishna is loved by all and is celebrated most famously for his role as Arjuna’s charioteer in The Bhagavad Gita. 


 

▴ Saraswati ▴

Goddess of Language, Knowledge, and Insight, Saraswati is the muse of creativity and creation. Divorcee to Brahma and Vishnu, Saraswati symbolizes the dedication to one’s craft and embody’s themes such as music, intuition, speech, technology, and spiritual discrimination. 
 



▴ Rama ▴

Rama is a King and husband to Sita. Rama is the God of Virtue and Fortitude. He carries a bow and arrow in many depictions to represent his combat against evil to protect righteousness. Rama is one of eight incarnates of Lord Vishnu. 
 



▴ Lakshmi ▴

Lakshmi is the Goddess of Abundance and Beauty. Symbolic of fertility, wealth, and generosity, Lakshmi appears as the energy of balance in giving and receiving. The shadow side of Lakshmi binds us to material goods and distracts us from our deeper, intrinsic values. 

 



▴ Ganesha ▴

Ganesha is the God of good fortune; one would pray to Ganesha when starting a new project or venture. The remover of obstacles, Ganesha is a trickster in that he also places obstacles in our path to teach us a lesson or widen our perspective. 

 
 

▴ Shiva ▴

Shiva is the Lord of Destruction. Typically seen deep in meditation or out on the battlefield, we call upon Shiva’s energy when we want to shift from one state to another and transform our inner world or outer surroundings.

 
 

▴ Kali ▴

Kali is the Goddess of Revolution, also known as the Dark Mother. Kali’s Shakti energy transcends and liberates; she is the dissolver of outworn structures and symbolizes radical purification and destruction. Kali is depicted wearing a necklace of human skulls and a skirt of human arms.

Join Me to Explore the Origins of Love and Sirsasana

when the world comes crashing at your feet
it’s okay to let others 
help pick up the pieces
if we’re present to take part in your happiness
when your circumstances are great
we are more than capable 
of sharing your pain.

 

– rupi kaur – 

Hello, fellow friends on the path,

Wow, we are a little over halfway through our month of yoga together! YIP YIP!!

Well done to those who are showing up to their mats every day!!! As we know, the hardest part is making it to the mat, so good job, friends!!

I can’t believe it’s been almost a year since we launched the first virtual challenge. I can believe it’s been a year since we went into lockdown. Vancouver is back on semi-lockdown with new restrictions. Who’s over this?? ME ME ME. You? You? I’m looking forward to when we get to look BACK on this. 

This week’s theme is community – heh – as of now, it’s still virtual, but we can still be here for each other. I hope you’re reaching out to your peoples, getting outside, and doing things that feed your soul and keep your spirits up. Me, I’m trying. Cooking, taking care of my house, going for walks with Alejandro and Karmen, and enjoying the sun we are blessed with lately. 

I love coming together as a community; Kula is my dharma, and it’s something I’m very much looking forward to when things eventually shift and reopen.


Community may be the very thread that holds the fabric of our lives together; it’s a space we may rely on with the support of like-minded people of similar interests. Coming back to the quote at the beginning of this email – it’s important to talk, express, and share how you’re feeling with your inner circle/support network – both the highs and lows. 

Questions to marinate on: 
  • For those of you in the challenge: what has changed in either your body, mind, or life since we started the challenge?
  • If you could describe how you feel right now in one word, what would it be?
  • How are you feeding yourself today?
  • Who is in your inner circle/support network? When was the last time you reached out and had a catch-up?

See the details for the upcoming LIVE classes:

Here’s the info on SATURDAY’S class:

The Origins of Love

This week’s myth comes to us from Greece. Clara first heard this myth in the play “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” and loved it. It is Aristophane’s theory of the origin of love. Clara loved the perspective it gave on why so many of us don’t feel “whole.”

After the myth, we will work towards the inversion headstand, Sirsasana.

The class will work on opening shoulders, side waist, and hamstrings. We will strengthen our chests and core.

Props you’ll need 2 Blocks, 1 Blanket.

Spotify Playlist

Here’s the info on WEDNESDAY’S class:

Better Together

Join Clara and guest for a partner yoga class focused on the lunar/cooling part of the class.

You’ll learn how a few hands-on assists support your partner in exploring the stretch in their bodies.

A partner is not necessary for this class; you can still participate if you’re practicing solo.

We’ll be exploring 4 poses that include a twist, hip opener, and forward fold.

The class level will be open, but I will always offer modifications to make it accessible.

Props you’ll need: 1 Block.

There is no Spotify playlist for this class.

Three New Classes on PWC:

Modifications for Common Injuries & Sensitivities

MODIFICATIONS FOR SENSITIVE KNEES

 

In this short tutorial, learn the various modifications for knee sensitivity or knee injury in a vinyasa yoga practice. Our knees take a bit of a beating in our day-to-day, so be conscious of the flexion and internal/external rotation around the knee joint to preserve longevity. Happy knees = happy people! 

WRIST MODIFICATIONS & STRETCHES 

 

In this short tutorial, you’ll see how to modify for a wrist injury and sensitivity in a vinyasa yoga class, plus some great wrist stretches to warm up your hands and forearms for arm balancing practices!

LOW BACK MODIFICATIONS 

 

Protecting and preserving the spine is one reason we practice yoga; this tutorial features the modifications for low back injury and sensitivity in common poses offered in a vinyasa yoga practice. 

The Various Lenses to Perceive the World:
An examination of systems that classify behaviors and energies. 

The way we view the world is subjective and assumed from our perception. Perception is the process of making sense of the various stimuli we encounter combined; interpretation is based on the meaning we assign to each event. How we form and apply meaning depends on our experience, cultural and socioeconomic context, upbringing, trauma, education, and inherited beliefs. 

No two people share the same sequence of experiences. Even twins, who’re conceived simultaneously, have unique experiences of being in the womb and are brought into the world at different times. As a result of the vast and diverse events we experience, perception, interpretation, and meaning are distinct to the individual. 

The way individuals assign meaning may seem confusing, eccentric, or upsetting to our own methodologies and may disrupt how we communicate and resolve conflict. 


When two people, or groups of people, do not see eye-to-eye on a subject, it’s usually a result of two opposing viewpoints of the world coming into contact. Our belief systems are a significant contributor to how we see the world and are generally linked to politics, culture, social structures, and religion. 

When our beliefs are challenged, we’re tasked with developing confidence and clarity in communicating the intentions behind our thoughts. Adversity may be a great teacher in showing us where our passion and principles align. Disputing the ideals and refuting the ideas of others may strengthen the bond we share with our tribe’s mythologies.

We may also use these experiences to practice radical acceptance for the alternate views and realities of others. 


Ahimsa is the Indian principle of non-harming or nonviolence, and it also relates to the concept of radical love towards self and others. From Patanjali’s Eight Limbs of Yoga, Ahimsa is one of the five Yamas, which governs how we integrate with others and act with integrity. 
 

A practice of radical love towards self and others can be as simple as a practice of acceptance for how others live, act, think, feel, perceive, and assign meaning to the world and events. 

 

Throughout the centuries, humankind has created numerous methods to classify human personalities and recognize the various energies present in the world. An example of such classification would be the generations. Millennials and Gen Z belong to different ages marked by distinct personality traits; such concepts are devised by humans and don’t exist outside of the rhetoric we provide. 

Classification provides us with information to better understand ourselves and all the unique personalities we encounter. It’s a way to learn and appreciate all the qualities we perceive globally, especially the qualities we find upsetting or outrageous.

Here are a few of the methods used to determine a person’s personality and preferences:

Astrology 

 

A natal chart explains where the planets were in the sky when you were born based on your birth time, date, and location. Each planet symbolizes sets of characteristics that influence the individual depending on the planet’s position. Your natal chart is a more in-depth reading of your zodiac sign and goes into the planets’ features and their degree of impact. 

Zodiac translates from Greek as ‘cycle’ or ‘little circle of animals’ and is divided into 12 signs that correspond to the sky’s constellations. The Earth’s rotation at the exact time of your birth determines your zodiac. 

 


Jungian Archetypes 


Carl Jung used archetypes to express the qualities of the human psyche. According to Jung, every action and impression in the psyche is influenced by our ancestors. Jung believed that human behavior is a direct result of the efforts of our primates. The Jungian archetypes are universal models that represent patterns and symbols of innate human knowledge. 

Of the 12 archetypes, Jung focused on four: the Self, the Persona, the Shadow, and the Anima/Animus. Jung refused the idea that the human mind was programed solely by personal experience. Instead, he believed that every mind retains our ancestors’ unconscious aspects, primarily the primordial images that set the foundation for human existence. 

 


Enneagram Personality Types 

 
The Enneagram is a popular system of classifying personalities that share how people manage their emotions and interact with their environments. Nine personality types in the Enneagram illustrate how each of the types relates. Each type is attached to a core belief concerning how the world works, which drives the essential fears, motivations, and values of a person. Enneagrams show how different personality types react to stress and share distinct core beliefs and patterns upheld in society. 

 


Myers-Briggs Personality Types
 

Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother Katherine created the Myers-Briggs test based on the basic preferences of dichotomies described by Carl Jung. The purpose of the test is to identify the four primary cases devised by Jung and categorize 16 unique personality types that result from the individual’s unique preferences. 
 

The four dichotomies are:

  • Favorite world: inner versus outer worlds, classified as extroverted or introverted.
  • Decisions: based on logic or special decisions, classified as thinking or feeling.
  • Structure: a preference for decisions or the desire to stay open, classified as judging or perceiving. 
  • Information: based on how you take in information, classified as sensing or intuition. 

 


Ayurveda and the Doshas 

 
Ayurveda is an ancient Vedic practice and one of India’s oldest medicines, originating more than 5,000 years ago. In Sanskrit, Ayurveda means ‘The Science of Life’ and is the sister science to yoga. Also called the Mother of Healing, Ayurveda’s practice is rooted in preventing the prevention of illness through balance and reflection on each individual’s diet, thoughts, relationships, environment, and activities of each individual. 

Ayurveda focuses on three energies that make up everything we see and every living being. In Sanskrit, these energies are called Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Each person has a unique blend of these three energies. The three energies are made up of the five great elements: air, ether, fire, water, and ether.

  • Vata: air and ether, governed by movement, creativity, flexibility, vision, space, and sound. In harmony, Vata is inspired and inclusive. Out of balance, Vata is anxious, fearful, and flighty. 
  • Pitta: air and fire, governed by digestion, metabolism, direction, absorption, assimilation, and intelligence. In harmony, Pitta is a leader and advocate. Out of balance, Pitta is angry, resistant, and jealous.
  • Kapha: earth and water, governed by structure, stability, patience, compassion, nurturance, and immunity. In harmony, Kapha is loving and vulnerable. Out of balance, Kapha is lethargic, withdrawn, and greedy. 
 


Joseph Campbell’s Character Archetypes


Campbell’s eight character archetypes are from his prolific novel, The Hero with A Thousand Faces, and outline archetypal character stages in well-known mythology. For creatives, the roles serve to create memorable literary figures. Similar to Jungian archetypes, the characters represent popular motifs exemplified in society and may inspire readers to apply similar characteristics to their own lives. 


 

Native American Totems 

First Nations tribes use totems to represent a sacred symbol, tribe, or individual. Some tribes connect the individual with spirit guides who act as protection. ToteTotems serve as physical reminders of the totems that are alive in the spirit world that act as guardian spirits of the individual or clan. 

Animals are often used as characters that present the qualities of the innate human process. Spirit animals are used to provide inspiration, counsel, and protection. 

A birth totem is assigned to your birth chart based on the moon and where and when you were born, similar to the zodiac signs. 

Similarly, the Hindu, Greek, Roman, Egyptian, Norse, Aztec pantheons reflect energies present within the cosmos and the individual. The gods and goddesses are a way to perceive, receive, and channel the energies we wish to embody. 

 

These systems provide a way to examine others’ unique behaviors, intentions, preferences, and interests; some may consider such classifications solely for entertainment purposes, as generalizations and stereotypes are prevalent.

Or, we can recognize these systems as a method to develop a deeper understanding of the multifaceted personas and tastes we encounter in the world and means to create more awareness, compassion, empathy, and acceptance for diversity. 

More Opportunties on Practice with Clara

See the History of Our 30-Day Yoga Challenges 

Take a look at the past 30-day yoga challenges and discover more reasons to join us. 

Read the history of the 30-day challenges with the past partnerships, themes, interviews with professionals, and more. 

Join an Upcoming 30-Day Yoga Challenge

See when the next 30-day yoga challenge is hosted to join the LIVE yoga & meditation classes and connect with thousands of practitioners worldwide.

Check out the events page to learn more. 

Are you looking for more opportunities to practice yoga, for free? 

Check out our Free Yoga page to see the latest offerings. 

Choose from three unique, free, offerings: 
30-day challenge
7-day series for beginners
7-day series for advanced vinyasa yogis 

Join Me for Live Yoga Classes to Salute the Earth

You carry Mother Earth within you. She is not outside of you. Mother Earth is not just your environment. In that insight of inter-being, it is possible to have real communication with the Earth, which is the highest form of prayer.

– Thich Nhat Hanh – 

Hello, fellow friends on the path,

We’re heading into week two of the 30-Day Challenge, which means we’re shifting our focus from the cosmos to the earth. With that, we invite you to examine all the ways we nourish and nurture Mama Earth.

Some cool facts to consider: 
  •  The Earth and the human body share many similarities, so in this way, you could say that how we treat the Earth is a reflection of how we treat ourselves. 
  • Earth and the human body are made primarily of water, and the body’s circulatory system mirrors the process of the rivers and streams that carry water all over the world to sustain life. The other way Earth and the body are similar is in how they present various ecosystems; the Earth is home to over 8.7 million species, and our bodies host roughly 10,000 species.
  •  The human body and planet Earth are also made from the same elements. In fact, we share 97 percent of our atoms in common with the rest of the galaxy. Oxygen accounts for more weight than any other element in both Earth and the human body.

To geek out even more on these fun facts, click here.

If you’re participating in the month of Seva, in the 50 Simple Acts booklet, you’ll see some of the ways we’re encouraging participants to give back to Mama Earth. Reducing our carbon footprint and examining how our actions impact the environment and all living beings on the planet is one way we send and receive compassion.  

 Questions for you to consider: 

  • When was the last time you convened with nature? Please take a moment to be grateful for its beauty.
  • Make a list of all the ways the Earth supports and nourishes you, then make a list of all the ways you reciprocate.
  • In what ways do you give back to the planet? 
  • What action will you take today to support sustainability for our planet?
This Saturday’s class was inspired by a creation myth I read in Braiding Sweet Grass.

A big thank you to all who recommended books a few months back in the FB group – I’m plowing through the list and enjoying the broad range!!

Sending love and a virtual hug,
Clara & the team. 

Saturday’s LIVE Class
April 10th at 9am PST
 

Turtle Island

This week’s creation myth comes to us from the First Nation communities of North America, specifically the North East.

We will begin the class with the myth of Turtle Island, then move into an open level vinyasa practice moving towards the forward fold & hip opener, turtle, kurmasana.

The physical practice will focus on opening the inner thighs, hamstrings, upper back.

Props needed: 2 Blocks.
 

Spotify Playlist

Next WEDNESDAY’S LIVE class
April 14th at 12pm PST

 

Earth Mandala

Join Clara for a 30-minute Hatha practice focused on opening all sides of the pelvis while moving through a sequence inspired by Shiva Rea’s mandala namaskars.

Great for after a run, bike ride, or a day of sitting.

Props required: 2 Blocks.
 

Spotify Playlist

🌎 
 

For your Seva this week, we invite you to examine the products you use daily and consider how they impact the planet we share. 

 

Two of our partners for the challenge, Tru Earth and Supported Soulfeature eco-friendly, biodegradable products to reduce our ecological footprint. 

Cosmic Influence of the Planets
(According to Astronomers & Astrologers)

The Greeks derived the word ‘planet’ from ‘planetes,’ which translates as ‘wanderer.’ Before 1543, when Nicolaus Copernicus produced the theory that the Earth and all planets revolve around the sun, the Earth was believed to be the center of the universe.

With advancements in technology, we’ve more data and details to enhance our understanding of outer space and how the Earth relates to the neighboring planets, stars, moons, and atmospheres. 

In 1992, the discovery of a new world named Eris caused astronomers to question the qualities of a planet and redefine the context of what makes a planet, a moon, and a star. Eris caused astronomers to strip Pluto of its label as a planet; Pluto is now a dwarf planet. 

In astronomy, there are eight planets. This consideration is based on mass and atmospheric gases. In astrology, there are ten planets. Astrology uses the planets as symbols of the different qualities and driving characteristics that govern various aspects of our lives. Each planet rules with unique energies, directives, interests, shadows, and values. 

The ten planets used in astrology include the seven planets considered by astronomers plus Pluto. The sun and the moon are known as the luminary planets. Earth is not considered as one of the governing planets in astrology as humans live on Earth. Astrology studies the movement of planets and how they affect our lives, and because we live on Earth, it cannot be considered. 

The ten planets of astrology make up the 12 Houses of the Zodiac. To know how the planets affect us and events on Earth depends on where they’re located in the zodiac at any given point in time. 

Here’s how it works: as the planets move, they orbit through the different zodiac constellations. A natal chart expresses where each of the planets were located when you were born. Understanding the planetary influence over the zodiac is one lens to examine how you interact with the world and express energy. 

☄︎ The Symbols and Characteristics
of the Ten Planets of Astrology ☄︎

☉ Sun ☉
Represents: ego-self
Rules over: Leo 

 

The sun represents our ego. As the center of the universe, it represents the core of who we are and our conscious mind. The sun is the driving force and light behind our personalities and reflects what gives life to the world around us. Sun signs are the most commonly known of the zodiac as it captures our passions, inner motives, and ultimate desires. The sun represents a more solar, active, masculine energy and is expressed in our public personas. Leo’s, ruled by the sun, love being in the spotlight and sharing their gifts with all those around them. 

☽ Moon ☽
Represents: emotional-self
Rules over: Cancer

 

The moon is our inner world. How we process emotions and intuit events is linked to the energy of the moon. The moon represents the private side of ourselves, the inner and hidden realms we explore alone. Moon energy is feminine, receptive, soft, and empathetic. The moon may also present the shadow side of ourselves that we do not want or allow others to see. Cancer’s ruled by the moon are often very in touch with their emotions and attune with ease to others’ feelings. 

☿ Mercury ☿
Represents: communication
Rules over: Gemini and Virgo 

 

Named for the Roman messenger god, Mercury affects how we communicate, express ideas, and reason. How we transmit, process, and assimilate information is affected by Mercury, which is why Mercury in Retrograde disrupts the flow of information and throws everything off-kilter. Gemini and Virgo, as ruled by Mercury, are intellectually sharp, witty, and capable of carrying on in diverse social groups and relationships. 

♀ Venus ♀ 
Represents: romance
Rules over: Taurus and Libra

 

Named for the Roman goddess of beauty and love, Venus reminds us to exalt in the world’s aesthetic pleasures through sound, touch, taste, sight, and smell. Luxuriating in romantic relationships and sensual pleasures is the typical style of Taureans and Libras. This planet also manages our finances and material possessions and how they relate to our values. 

♂︎ Mars ♂︎
Represents: action and assertion
Rules over: Aries  

 

Mars represents raw, passionate, determined energy; those with mars in their chart are natural-born leaders. Named for the god of war, Mars shows us how to pursue our wildest dreams and aspire to goals others wouldn’t dare leap for. Mars is our inner, primal instinct; it screams loud and clear from the depths of our bellies to tell us when, where, and how to act. Aries ruled by mars have the potential to become great and fearless leaders. 

♃ Jupiter ♃
Represents: opportunity
Rules over: Sagittarius

 

The largest of all the planets, Jupiter, is the symbol of abundance and growth. Sagittarians with Jupiter in their chart are naturally lucky, prone to take risks others wouldn’t, and typically herald good fortune for their efforts! Jupiter also represents healing and expresses the contraction and expansion that occur when we push past our comfort zone and test new boundaries. 

♄ Saturn ♄
Represents: discipline
Rules over: Capricorn 

 

Saturn is most widely known for the Saturn Return that occurs for individuals in their late twenties. Saturn Return refers to the moment when Saturn completes its cycles around the sun and arrives in the exact place in the sky that it was when you were born. Saturn is the disciplinarian. Setting boundaries, maturation, responsibility, and questioning one’s motives are the general themes for Saturn’s energy. Capricorns ruled by Saturn might use this hard-edge energy to pursue challenging aspirations and develop their higher self. 

♅ Uranus ♅
Represents: awakening
Rules over: Aquarius

 

Uranus is known as the Awakener for its ability to shake things up and invent new modes of power. This planet presents us with the unusual, the absurd, and the chaotic; riots and revolution occur through Uranus. Aquarians ruled by Uranus energy are quick-witted, inventive, direct, and utterly unique; you might call them the mad scientist.  

 

♆ Neptune ♆
Represents: intuition
Rules over: Pisces 

 

Neptune was the god of the sea, so it’s only natural that this planet governs Pisces. Neptune guides the world’s more subtle forces that diminish the ego and other superficial boundaries associated with dreams, intuition, and mystery. Neptune seeks and leads the individual toward fantasy; it’s the planet of escapism and exploring spiritual depths. Pisces are known for being dreamy and super sensitive to things others do not experience, which is Neptune’s influence. 

♇ Pluto ♇
Represents: the subconscious
Rules over: Scorpio 

 

Pluto represents the depths of the subconscious and hidden desires. Named for the god of the underworld, Pluto also symbolizes the power of transformation, regeneration and helps individuals shift their perspective to see events or themselves in a new light. Scorpios ruled by Pluto likely experience things in extremes; balancing light with dark, birth with death, and being an individual with joining the collective. 

Join Me for 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 better understand 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 fullness of the moon 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. 

Shiva’s Gift & Detox Yoga Classes to Remove Toxins

Wellspring of energy 
Rises in the body’s core
Tap it and be sustained.
Channel it, and it will speak. 

– Deng Ming-Dao – 

Hello, fellow friends on the path,


We’re closing out the month honoring the Hindu god, Shiva, Lord of Destruction and Transformation. 


Shiva is the patron saint of yogis as his practice is that of meditation and dancing the tandeva, the dance of destruction. Yogis seek to connect with the Oneness of the universe – through meditation and are interesting in transforming themselves – doing their own tandeva.  

What Does Shiva Mean? 
Shiva = Sha + ee + Va
Sha stands for Shareeram or body
ee stands for eeshwari or life giving energy
Va stands for vayu or motion

Thus, Shiva represents the body with life and motion. 

This analysis brings us to the deeper understanding that Shiva is life, Shiva is potential for life, Shiva is all-encompassing – the universal soul or consciousness.

You can read more about Shiva and what he stands for, in this article

We call on Shiva when we want to transform and shift our current state—as the God of Destruction, Shiva is the warrior who appears when we need to let go, surrender, or fight to release whatever it is we’ve been holding on to. 

Questions to Consider:
✺ Are you seeking connection or transformation?
✺ How would you like to go about this, quietly or with a roar? 
30 day yoga challenge

In other news, the class playlist for Energize 30-Day Yoga Challenge live!

For all those who are joining us on this epic exploration into the cosmos, you can preview the classes of the month in the playlist on the PWC apps. 

It’s never too late to join us: all non-members can sign-up for FREE with the coupon code ENERGIZE2021

Invite your friends, family members, coworkers, and anyone you know who would benefit from the motivation and inspiration we share in our 30-day challenges!!

Here’s the info on tomorrow’s class:
 

Shiva’s Gift

Shiva is the Hindu god of destruction, transformation, and dissolution. A more primitive form of Shiva is Agni, the god of fire. 

Join Clara for a fiery 60-minute practice focused on twists and arm balances. The peak pose we’ll be working towards is Koundinyasana 1.

What to expect: Outer hip opening, lots of twists, and core integration. 

Props you’ll need: 1 Block.

 

SPOTIFY MUSIC PLAYLIST

The Benefits of Detox Yoga
(and classes for you to enjoy!)

Your body has all it needs to invigorate processes that aid in detoxification. The yoga poses stimulate the circulatory system, endocrine system, and associated organs to cleanse the body of unnecessary toxins and tension. Adhering to a specific diet and taking supplements are associated with a detox, though not necessary to feel rejuvenated and get the results you crave to restore your body to its optimal health.

Detox yoga stimulates three primary systems through specific yoga poses to detoxify and rid the body of waste. The three systems targeted in detox yoga classes include the digestive system, the lymphatic system, and the integumentary system (the skin).  Poses such as twists and inversions, increasing the heart rate through vigorous movement, and pranayamas that shift the body from fight or flight to rest and digest mode help detoxify the body.

Read on for a closer examination of how specific poses and pranayamas benefit the body through detoxification.

TWISTS 

The digestive system is affected when we twist. Twisting affects the large intestine and stimulates blood flow around the muscles of the abdomen. The large intestine is where your body forms feces to excrete from the body. 

B.K.S. Iyengar referred to twists as the squeeze-and-soak action as the twist creates an intra-abdominal compression. When the twist is released, the digestive organs receive blood rich in oxygen and nutrients. Twisting to the left compresses the descending colon, which pushes everything in the direction to relieve digestive stress and assist in the digestive process to remove waste and excrement. 

INVERSIONS

The circulatory and lymphatic systems are affected whenever we invert. Inversions allow fresh blood to be transported to the liver and kidneys to shift the blood cycle to the body’s tissues and organs. Inversions also change the flow of cerebral spinal fluid, stimulate the lymph system, and flush the adrenals to promote the release of endorphins and neurotransmitters that make you feel good.  
 

VIGOROUS MOVEMENT

The circulatory and lymphatic systems are affected by vigorous movement. The circulatory system consists of the heart and blood vessels. The lymphatic system consists of the spleen, tissues, and organs that remove toxins and transport white blood cells throughout the body. Lymph nodes are points in the body that filter the lymphatic fluid. 

Through vigorous movement, the heart rate increases and stimulates blood circulation, including blood and lymph fluid. As our heart beats faster, we may begin to sweat. Sweating is the release of toxins exiting the skin. Muscle contraction also triggers the lymphatic system to move fluids to remove bodily waste and carry white blood cells that fight and prevent infection. 

The integumentary system, the skin, is cleansed through sweating. As we sweat, hopefully, we drink more water to produce urine and clear the kidneys. 

PRANAYAMAS 

When the body is in a constant state of fight or flight, aka stress, this is very hard on the systems that promote good health and vitality. The digestive system, circulatory system, and immunity are all affected by hormones released when we’re feeling stressed. Cortisol is the stress hormone we experience during fight or flight and triggers the release of more glucose (sugars) into the bloodstream when we may not need it. 

Stress shifts our energy and refocuses the body’s vital processes on keeping the heart rate elevated to keep us alive when we’re in fight or flight.
Shifting the body’s energy into rest and digest mode benefits the digestive, circulatory, and lymphatic systems and maintains proper function. Focused pranayamas (breathwork) in yoga shifts the body into rest and digest mode. Deeper breaths slow down the heart rate and the body’s essential systems. Focused pranayamas such as kapalbhati, ujjayi, and 4-part breathing have a specific purpose and benefit overall relaxation. 

Wrap up your month with detox flow yoga to remove physical, emotional, and energetic blockages before we start the 30-Day Challenge in April!

For deep twisting to cleanse the digestive system, check out the Twists Collection.

Build a sweat to remove toxins and stimulate the circulatory and lymphatic systems in the Get Strong Collection.

Go upside down to recirculate blood, lymph, and spinal fluid flow in the Inversions Collection.

Shift the body into rest and digest mode to come back to neutral if you’re feeling stressed with the Mantra & Meditation playlist, where you’ll also find a selection of pranayamas to practice.

Did You Know…

You can develop the power, strength, and discipline to build towards a peak pose on Practice with Clara!

Choose from a selection of classes that scale to a peak pose or flow:

▴ Visvamitrasana ▴

▴ Dancing Shiva ▴ 

& More!

For more peak pose focused classes, check out these collections:

5 Ways Meditation Promotes Good Health & LIVE Meditation

meditation

“You dream of a new world to come, a new world to be birthed, a new dream to be dreamt.
In the dream, a flower grows, a lotus from which the creator and the creation will unfold.
From which light will begin to shine upon this vast dark sea, unveiling all the magic sleeping within.
From this flower, infinite worlds and universes will be born.
Each will contain a seed of light.
And these seeds will light the heavens for all to guide their journeys by.”


― Thomas Lloyd Qualls, Painted Oxen

Happy Spring Equinox, friends!

Tomorrow marks the halfway mark between the winter and summer solstice. The seeds we have planted in the winter months are beginning to surface from our interior universe into the material world. 

This is an auspicious time to set intentions, think about what you want to bring forth into the world and what you want to shed in the process. 

This weekend we’re hosting a special Spring Equinox Retreat to celebrate the shift of seasons.

In addition to the weekly LIVE class on Saturday at 9 AM PST, I’ll be hosting 2 LIVE meditations to open and close the retreat. 

You can see the full retreat schedule here and preview the list of activities, yoga classes, and yummy recipes we’ve planned for the weekend!

The vision for this retreat is to provide a space for us to reflect on what’s happened the past few months and what direction we’d like to go in the coming months; as we open to the warmth and abundance of springtime, now is the moment to cultivate the habits and rituals that will inspire us daily. It’s also a great time of year to clean and rearrange your house to help shift the energy of winter and call in spring.  

Questions for you to consider:
▴ What has happened in the past few months? What have you learned?
▴ What would you like to manifest in the physical world?
▴ What are three things you can do to change the energy in your house? 
▴ What daily ritual or habit can you start to help inspire and connect you?

The retreat is an offering, so feel free to attend as many or as few of the activities that suit your schedule. One of the benefits of online yoga is the freedom to choose where, when, and how you show up for practice. 

I cannot wait until we can come together and share physical space, and this spring equinox retreat is my way of gathering with the community we’ve created worldwide.

I hope you can join me for a live meditation or live yoga class. 

The retreat is FREE for all PWC Members, and you can always join for the 7-day free trial if you’re a non-member and want to join us.  

How You Can Make Meditation A Daily Ritual

A daily meditation practice doesn’t have to be complicated—even a short 2-5 minute meditation performed each day has many benefits that compound over time.

There is no prescribed way to meditate. For beginners, it’s best to start by focusing on the breath and breathing into all parts of the body to create space and calm. There are many different methods of meditation to accommodate individual preferences. 

Meditation is a state of mind, not an activity. Meditation may be performed sitting, laying down, walking, reading, writing, or performing other tasks that help calm the body and mind. Meditation doesn’t necessarily mean sitting on your yoga mat; we can meditate while washing the dishes, picking our kids up from school, waiting in line at the grocer, or taking out the garbage. 

How long you meditate each day depends on your level and the style of meditation you choose. If you’re tight on time, 10-minutes of meditation is better than skipping it altogether. If you’re new to meditating, start with 5-10 minutes and add a minute or two each day. Ultimately, it depends upon the practitioner. 

If you’re not convinced that meditation is something you should include in your daily routine, read on to see the mental, physical, and emotional support meditation provides.

5 Reasons Cultivate a Meditation Practice
for Your Body, Mind, and Spirit:

1.

Meditation works with the vagal tone, which is the activity of the vagus nerve.
The vagus nerve connects to the body’s principal organs, including the stomach, liver, heart, lungs, and brain, and is responsible for controlling the heart rate. By breathing deeply, we influence the vagus nerve and slow down the heart rate. A slower heart rate slows down the body’s vital processes, including the busyness of the mind.

2.

Theta waves, which are the brainwaves associated with healing and the subconscious’s powers, are released during meditation, dreaming, and deep sleep.
When theta waves are more active during meditation, it’s possible that the mind and body experience rejuvenation and growth. Theta waves help prevent burnout and healing from mental and physical stressors and are the source of our more creative and intuitive processes. 

3.

The release of feel-good hormones serotonin and dopamine during meditation may help manage anxiety and intense emotions. The lessening of the stress hormone cortisol reduces tension and angst.

4.

Meditation boosts the immune system by decreasing the stressors on the body.
When we hit the burnt-out zone, our immune system takes the hit and causes the body to become inflamed as a means to protect itself. Stress causes the body to stay in fight or flight mode, which takes its toll on the mind and body. Meditation shifts the body from fight or flight, the sympathetic nervous system, into rest and digest, which is a function of the parasympathetic nervous system. It’s in rest and digest mode that we can recover and restore to a more balanced state. 

5.

The muscles relax when we meditate. Deeper breathing and stillness slow the body’s processes down, so we might passively release any tension we’re holding in the body or mind. Where yoga actively stretches to release the muscles, meditation creates space for muscles to soften and relax.

New to Meditation? —Here’s where to start!

⭐️ Open-Level Meditations for beginners:

Durga Meditation is a <5-minute meditation that focuses on the strength and power of Durga Maa. 

Use this meditation to connect to your inner warrior.

Mudra Meditation is a <10-minute meditation that includes Bhramari breath and two mudras to ease you into a meditation practice.

⚡️ Meditations for those who have a practice:

Ocean Meditation is a 15-minute meditation that features the rhythmic waves of the ocean. Take this meditation laying down or supported by a wall if you need to. 

You Who Has Been Seeking is a 12-minute meditation that asks you to sit with the simplicity of The Radiance Sutras. The offering of this meditation is to allow the poem’s words to wash over you and breathe into the feeling that the poem invokes in your body.

🕯 Meditation & Visualization practices:

Expand Visualization is a 15-minute meditation that taps into the expansiveness of the heart to bring more awareness to the breath, how you feel, and how you relate to the environments and individuals in your life.

Light Meditation is a 15-minute meditation that that moves through a body scan and visualization to help calm the nervous system.  

💫 Meditation & Movement practices:

River of Prana is a 20-minute class that features a moving meditation to connect you to your body and breath. This meditative flow class provides the space to ground through deep breathing and fluid movement from Shiva Rea’s Prana Flow, a rhythmic style of yoga that links the body to the breath to directly influence Prana (life-energy) through the body.

Pranayama Meditation is an 8-minute class that features a variety of kriyas (purification practices), pranayama (breathwork), and meditation.

If you know first-hand how good it feels to meditate and revel in the benefits, share your wealth with a friend—all new members of PWC get 7-days free!

Here’s the info on tomorrow’s class:
 

Vishnu is the Hindu god known for bringing balance back to the world. Join Clara for a 60-minute practice working on balancing on our hands.

What to expect: Core, chest, and glute strengthening. Hamstring, tricep, and shoulder opening. 

Props you’ll need: 1 Block.

 

SPOTIFY MUSIC PLAYLIST