Posts

Fire Puja – what?

Some years ago at the BYC I found the word „Fire Puja“ on the schedule.
It was something that was supposed to be early in the morning around 6:30. I thought it might be a special kind of meditation and since I was in the mood of starting the day early and to do meditation in a group, I decided to go there.

The Sanskrit word for “offering” is “puja” or has also the meaning “to please.” So a puja is a traditional ritual of healing and purification.

A fire puja is more specific and is a buddhist ceremony that is used to cleanse the environment and beings in this environment.
It is said that it grants blessings and done on a regular basis can stimulate peace within and even peace on our whole planet. It also can build up immense merits of wisdom and compassion towards ourselves and others.

The main intention of the offering is to dissolve obstacles to enlightenment and to eliminate imperfections. Imperfections that can be occur by any kind of harmful actions, for example broken promises.
Also I was told it can be an ideal ritual for sick people to purify from decease, negative karma and is also done to receive a higher rebirth.

So generally spoken it can support the prevention of all negative conditions in daily life.

As I approached the yoga village I saw a small group of people sitting already there in a circle. I got more and more curious and joined them silently, not knowing what is going to happen. I can remember that we were sitting and waiting for quite a bit and I decided to meditate on my own until we were going to start.
When I opened my eyes again I saw a man, building up a tiny altar out of sand and flowers in the middle of our circle. I was wondering what this is going to be and stopped my meditation to watch the process.

There were some small bowls and cans with oil and ghee and also a bigger one with brown earth or dust. After the small altar was finished, the guru startet to mix oil, ghee and dust together. The fire was already burning and I remember the smell of a nice but strong incense, I couldn’t define.
Then everything started. We were chanting and reciting mantras in a call and respond way with the guru, while watching the fire. At some point everybody was allowed to throw a little portion of the „oil-earth-mud“-mixture into the fire.

To be honest, it is very hard to explain what we were doing, but I found it very special and yet comforting. Therefore I would highly recommend to visit one of these pujas or rituals if you ever happen to have the opportunity.
I attended some pujas during my travels to India as well and I guess every guru or spiritual teacher has his own way to do it. ?

Find some links here for a short overview what a puja can look like:

Source: BYC Blog

Fire Puja – what?

Some years ago at the BYC I found the word „Fire Puja“ on the schedule.
It was something that was supposed to be early in the morning around 6:30. I thought it might be a special kind of meditation and since I was in the mood of starting the day early and to do meditation in a group, I decided to go there.

The Sanskrit word for “offering” is “puja” or has also the meaning “to please.” So a puja is a traditional ritual of healing and purification.

A fire puja is more specific and is a buddhist ceremony that is used to cleanse the environment and beings in this environment.
It is said that it grants blessings and done on a regular basis can stimulate peace within and even peace on our whole planet. It also can build up immense merits of wisdom and compassion towards ourselves and others.

The main intention of the offering is to dissolve obstacles to enlightenment and to eliminate imperfections. Imperfections that can be occur by any kind of harmful actions, for example broken promises.
Also I was told it can be an ideal ritual for sick people to purify from decease, negative karma and is also done to receive a higher rebirth.

So generally spoken it can support the prevention of all negative conditions in daily life.

As I approached the yoga village I saw a small group of people sitting already there in a circle. I got more and more curious and joined them silently, not knowing what is going to happen. I can remember that we were sitting and waiting for quite a bit and I decided to meditate on my own until we were going to start.
When I opened my eyes again I saw a man, building up a tiny altar out of sand and flowers in the middle of our circle. I was wondering what this is going to be and stopped my meditation to watch the process.

There were some small bowls and cans with oil and ghee and also a bigger one with brown earth or dust. After the small altar was finished, the guru startet to mix oil, ghee and dust together. The fire was already burning and I remember the smell of a nice but strong incense, I couldn’t define.
Then everything started. We were chanting and reciting mantras in a call and respond way with the guru, while watching the fire. At some point everybody was allowed to throw a little portion of the „oil-earth-mud“-mixture into the fire.

To be honest, it is very hard to explain what we were doing, but I found it very special and yet comforting. Therefore I would highly recommend to visit one of these pujas or rituals if you ever happen to have the opportunity.
I attended some pujas during my travels to India as well and I guess every guru or spiritual teacher has his own way to do it. 🙂

Find some links here for a short overview what a puja can look like:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C1gJDuWoJhwhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJLozFoO6_Uhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6A-q-vQPPI

Source: BYC Blog

The day I fell in love with Kirtan… <3

The first time I came in touch with Kirtan and Bhakti Yoga was in 2016, which was also my first time at the BYC.

To be honest before that, I thought singing mantras is not for me. I thought it doesn’t fit to my yoga approach, which I to that time considered as „very modern“, „not very spiritual“ and „more into fitness“.

My friend suggested to visit one of the Kirtan workshops with him and since my body was already a little bit tired of practicing asanas for so many hours, because I didn’t want to miss out on anything, I agreed to join.

I was sceptical. Really sceptical. Doubting if I would stay there more than 10 minutes, but I still wanted to give it a try and be open for something new.

There were two people sitting on the floor on yoga bolsters. A woman and a man… I am not sure if he or she played the harmonium, an instrument I maybe had seen before once or twice, but I had no idea how it sounds or how to use it. The other person had a guitar and both of them were equipped with microphones.
Next to the couple there were 2 or 3 other guys with drums and percussion instruments and also two small children were playing on the floor next to the musicians.

I started to observe this group of people… eager to hear them sing and play, eager to find out about what we will be doing next.

After some time more and more people joined and when the workshop started, there was a nice group of maybe 20 or 30 people sitting in front of the musicians.
They started with a short explanation of what Kirtan and Bhakti Yoga was. I knew a little bit about it from my YTT, but it was nicely explained and made me want to know more and dive deeper.

After that we started singing … actually they started singing, because first I was not sure if I would sing too. But 5 minutes later I joined the choir. I simply couldn’t help. I stopped thinking and started feeling.
I was just caught by the music, singing the Sanskrit words and sharing energy with complete strangers and it was beautiful.
So beautiful that I found myself crying. That was the last thing I would have expected, but I was not the only one, so I told myself I don’t have to be embaressed and kept singing. I felt so cleansed and happy afterwards, that I just was wondering what kind of magic this group of Bhakti yogis just did to us.

After that beautiful workshop I decided to learn more about Mantras, Kirtan and Bhakti. I joined the concert of Jai Uttal the night after and I promised myself to keep joining workshops like that. The next year I attended a Krishna Das concert in my home town Vienna and was so happy to find him at BYC again and enjoyed a wonderful Workshop with him as well.

Playing the harmonium, singing mantras and attending kirtans now has become a part of my yoga practice.
I stopped consindering my yoga practice to be a certain way and started to enjoy the wonderful journey.

Thank you BYC.

Source: BYC Blog

The day I fell in love with Kirtan… <3

The first time I came in touch with Kirtan and Bhakti Yoga was in 2016, which was also my first time at the BYC.

To be honest before that, I thought singing mantras is not for me. I thought it doesn’t fit to my yoga approach, which I to that time considered as „very modern“, „not very spiritual“ and „more into fitness“.

My friend suggested to visit one of the Kirtan workshops with him and since my body was already a little bit tired of practicing asanas for so many hours, because I didn’t want to miss out on anything, I agreed to join.

I was sceptical. Really sceptical. Doubting if I would stay there more than 10 minutes, but I still wanted to give it a try and be open for something new.

There were two people sitting on the floor on yoga bolsters. A woman and a man… I am not sure if he or she played the harmonium, an instrument I maybe had seen before once or twice, but I had no idea how it sounds or how to use it. The other person had a guitar and both of them were equipped with microphones.
Next to the couple there were 2 or 3 other guys with drums and percussion instruments and also two small children were playing on the floor next to the musicians.

I started to observe this group of people… eager to hear them sing and play, eager to find out about what we will be doing next.

After some time more and more people joined and when the workshop started, there was a nice group of maybe 20 or 30 people sitting in front of the musicians.
They started with a short explanation of what Kirtan and Bhakti Yoga was. I knew a little bit about it from my YTT, but it was nicely explained and made me want to know more and dive deeper.

After that we started singing … actually they started singing, because first I was not sure if I would sing too. But 5 minutes later I joined the choir. I simply couldn’t help. I stopped thinking and started feeling.
I was just caught by the music, singing the Sanskrit words and sharing energy with complete strangers and it was beautiful.
So beautiful that I found myself crying. That was the last thing I would have expected, but I was not the only one, so I told myself I don’t have to be embaressed and kept singing. I felt so cleansed and happy afterwards, that I just was wondering what kind of magic this group of Bhakti yogis just did to us.

After that beautiful workshop I decided to learn more about Mantras, Kirtan and Bhakti. I joined the concert of Jai Uttal the night after and I promised myself to keep joining workshops like that. The next year I attended a Krishna Das concert in my home town Vienna and was so happy to find him at BYC again and enjoyed a wonderful Workshop with him as well.

Playing the harmonium, singing mantras and attending kirtans now has become a part of my yoga practice.
I stopped consindering my yoga practice to be a certain way and started to enjoy the wonderful journey.

Thank you BYC.

Source: BYC Blog

Lucid Flow with Daniela

The most difficult part of attending Barcelona Yoga Conference is deciding which class to take. With over 25 diverse classes a day and an endless array of interesting and qualified teachers, deciding my schedule for the weekend was the most intensive effort of the day. So after about 20 minutes of debating and researching and trying to find the exact class to join, I just let go a little, looked at the schedule and thought the name of a particular class sounded pretty badass- Lucid Flow Yoga… seems trippy and mystical! I imagined my body warping through a flow with two feet on the ground while my head suspends in the clouds in lucid yoga flow bliss! Yea, that sounds like my vibe- sign me up.

Lucid Flow Yoga is a vinyasa style class that also incorporated a “Mandala” sequence. Mandala means “sacred circles” and mandala yoga guides your body to create a 360-degree rotation during the sun salutation and subsequent flow as if your body movements were painting a mandala onto the floor and the space around you. A main component for Mandala Yoga is the pulsating movement present in the asana, thus eliminating any static energy and encouraging your skeletal and muscular system to be in a steady rhythm of fluidity and flow.  Its actually quite beautiful to imagine your limbs gliding through space and leaving an imprint, culminating into a imaginary self-created mandala circling your being.

Lucid Flow was taught by Daniela Garza and this was my first class with her so I went in with no expectations or preconceived notions. Daniela is tiny but fierce, focused yet fun. Honestly, she just has a cool vibe- this blend of playfulness yet discipline that I cherish in a yoga teacher. And once Marvin Gaye started seeping out of the speaker mid-way through the sun salutations, I knew I had found my yoga teacher spirit animal.

I grounded, I flowed, I laughed, I cried, I shook my booty up, down and allllll around. But above all, I felt fun, vibrant, open energy surrounding me the entirety of the class.

If you want to take a little piece of the Lucid Flow class home with you, the playlist can be found here on Spotify titled ¨Byc¨ by Daniela Garza Ríos. It combines modern electronic-infused influences like El Búho and St Germain with more traditional and soft meditational songs and brightens up with punches of just pure musical magic such as Sun Is Shining by Bob Marley and Got To Give It Up by Marvin Gaye.

It was a lovely surprise to be introduced to Lucid Flow and Mandala Yoga and even more of a blessing to connect with Daniela. It was the little spark of inspiration that set the tone for the remainder of my time at the Barcelona Yoga Conference. I hope you too can cross paths with her and experience the flowing, grooving, uplifting practice of Lucid Flow. So to learn more about Daniela and future classes and workshops, visit her website at danielamandala.com or on Instagram at DanielaMandala.

Source: BYC Blog

Lucid Flow with Daniela

The most difficult part of attending Barcelona Yoga Conference is deciding which class to take. With over 25 diverse classes a day and an endless array of interesting and qualified teachers, deciding my schedule for the weekend was the most intensive effort of the day. So after about 20 minutes of debating and researching and trying to find the exact class to join, I just let go a little, looked at the schedule and thought the name of a particular class sounded pretty badass- Lucid Flow Yoga… seems trippy and mystical! I imagined my body warping through a flow with two feet on the ground while my head suspends in the clouds in lucid yoga flow bliss! Yea, that sounds like my vibe- sign me up.

Lucid Flow Yoga is a vinyasa style class that also incorporated a “Mandala” sequence. Mandala means “sacred circles” and mandala yoga guides your body to create a 360-degree rotation during the sun salutation and subsequent flow as if your body movements were painting a mandala onto the floor and the space around you. A main component for Mandala Yoga is the pulsating movement present in the asana, thus eliminating any static energy and encouraging your skeletal and muscular system to be in a steady rhythm of fluidity and flow.  Its actually quite beautiful to imagine your limbs gliding through space and leaving an imprint, culminating into a imaginary self-created mandala circling your being.

Lucid Flow was taught by Daniela Garza and this was my first class with her so I went in with no expectations or preconceived notions. Daniela is tiny but fierce, focused yet fun. Honestly, she just has a cool vibe- this blend of playfulness yet discipline that I cherish in a yoga teacher. And once Marvin Gaye started seeping out of the speaker mid-way through the sun salutations, I knew I had found my yoga teacher spirit animal.

I grounded, I flowed, I laughed, I cried, I shook my booty up, down and allllll around. But above all, I felt fun, vibrant, open energy surrounding me the entirety of the class.

If you want to take a little piece of the Lucid Flow class home with you, the playlist can be found here on Spotify titled ¨Byc¨ by Daniela Garza Ríos. It combines modern electronic-infused influences like El Búho and St Germain with more traditional and soft meditational songs and brightens up with punches of just pure musical magic such as Sun Is Shining by Bob Marley and Got To Give It Up by Marvin Gaye.

It was a lovely surprise to be introduced to Lucid Flow and Mandala Yoga and even more of a blessing to connect with Daniela. It was the little spark of inspiration that set the tone for the remainder of my time at the Barcelona Yoga Conference. I hope you too can cross paths with her and experience the flowing, grooving, uplifting practice of Lucid Flow. So to learn more about Daniela and future classes and workshops, visit her website at danielamandala.com or on Instagram at DanielaMandala.

Source: BYC Blog

Krishna Das íntimo

En la conferencia tuvimos el enorme regalo de contar con la presencia de una de las figuras más importantes del Bhakti yoga de nuestro tiempo: Krishna Das dio no solo un concierto espectacular de unas 3 horas de alta vibración musical sino también dos workshops magistrales donde tuvimos la oportunidad de conocerlo de cerca, preguntarle nuestras inquietudes y cantar juntos bellísimos mantras .

Cuando uno esta cerca de estos maestros, algo mágico sucede en el ambiente. El tiempo se detiene y nos sumergimos en el más intenso y placentero de los presentes.

Cuando llegamos al workshop, no sabíamos muy bien que esperar , por su puesto sabíamos que íbamos a cantar con el pero quizás no esperábamos que nos dejaría abrir las puertas de su corazón y nos regalaría decenas de anécdotas sobre su maestro, viajes a india, historia, filosofía, muchísimas bromas y la más cruda verdad que un ser puede compartirle a otro.

Uno sentía estar en la presencia de alguien que realmente vivió su vida a pleno, y que jugó sus fichas a todo o nada, y esa forma de vivir la intensidad de la vida es el alimento que ahora el nos comparte con su música y sus palabras motivadoras . Todo el tiempo el nos animaba a a vivir al 100% nuestra vida, a que soltemos las cadenas de la mente y a que vayamos tras nuestros genuinos deseos.

Sin duda tocó de cerca el corazón de todos los presentes que escuchaban sus palabras como quien escucha a un sabio, con respeto y admiración. Su visita por el Barcelona Yoga Conference fue realmente una fiesta donde todos fuimos invitados a participar en un viaje a lo profundo de nuestro ser, con alegría, paz , humildad y amor.

Gracias a la hermosa familia de organizadores por este inmenso regalo…

Namaste.

Source: BYC Blog

Krishna Das íntimo

En la conferencia tuvimos el enorme regalo de contar con la presencia de una de las figuras más importantes del Bhakti yoga de nuestro tiempo: Krishna Das dio no solo un concierto espectacular de unas 3 horas de alta vibración musical sino también dos workshops magistrales donde tuvimos la oportunidad de conocerlo de cerca, preguntarle nuestras inquietudes y cantar juntos bellísimos mantras .

Cuando uno esta cerca de estos maestros, algo mágico sucede en el ambiente. El tiempo se detiene y nos sumergimos en el más intenso y placentero de los presentes.

Cuando llegamos al workshop, no sabíamos muy bien que esperar , por su puesto sabíamos que íbamos a cantar con el pero quizás no esperábamos que nos dejaría abrir las puertas de su corazón y nos regalaría decenas de anécdotas sobre su maestro, viajes a india, historia, filosofía, muchísimas bromas y la más cruda verdad que un ser puede compartirle a otro.

Uno sentía estar en la presencia de alguien que realmente vivió su vida a pleno, y que jugó sus fichas a todo o nada, y esa forma de vivir la intensidad de la vida es el alimento que ahora el nos comparte con su música y sus palabras motivadoras . Todo el tiempo el nos animaba a a vivir al 100% nuestra vida, a que soltemos las cadenas de la mente y a que vayamos tras nuestros genuinos deseos.

Sin duda tocó de cerca el corazón de todos los presentes que escuchaban sus palabras como quien escucha a un sabio, con respeto y admiración. Su visita por el Barcelona Yoga Conference fue realmente una fiesta donde todos fuimos invitados a participar en un viaje a lo profundo de nuestro ser, con alegría, paz , humildad y amor.

Gracias a la hermosa familia de organizadores por este inmenso regalo…

Namaste.

Source: BYC Blog

Dear BYC… Thank You

Dear BYC,

A week ago I didn’t know you but now I feel like we are dear friends. Thank you for filling me with light. And for making my muscles sore, then relaxed, then sore again, all accumulating in an expansive exhalation of release. Ahhhhh.

And thank you for holding my heart in your hand. I was feeling a little empty and lost when I arrived. But here I am on the last day, feeling more vibrant than ever. Thank you for creating this space, this home, this sanctuary of peace. Thank you for bringing together so many different cultures and languages and wisdoms- all pulsating together in unison.

This is what we are searching for when we roll out our mats. This is the nectar we seek to sip. So until we meet again, my sweet kindred friend, I will keep you in my every step…

Shine on, Analisa

Source: BYC Blog

Dear BYC… Thank You

Dear BYC,

A week ago I didn’t know you but now I feel like we are dear friends. Thank you for filling me with light. And for making my muscles sore, then relaxed, then sore again, all accumulating in an expansive exhalation of release. Ahhhhh.

And thank you for holding my heart in your hand. I was feeling a little empty and lost when I arrived. But here I am on the last day, feeling more vibrant than ever. Thank you for creating this space, this home, this sanctuary of peace. Thank you for bringing together so many different cultures and languages and wisdoms- all pulsating together in unison.

This is what we are searching for when we roll out our mats. This is the nectar we seek to sip. So until we meet again, my sweet kindred friend, I will keep you in my every step…

Shine on, Analisa

Source: BYC Blog