F.lux for Mac Adds Yosemite Support

F.lux Adds Yosemite Support

Anyone who has done a cleanse like Charlotte Clews’s seasonal cleanse has learned about dina charya, the Ayurvedic daily rhythm. The trouble is that today’s computers can interfere with our sleep cycle. Charlotte is a big fan of F.lux, which dims your Mac screen at sunset and at bedtime in case you have to be up working, so that you aren’t kept awake by the stimulation. Now there is a beta version integrated with Yosemite (Mac OX 10.10).

Mac: F.lux, the app that automatically dims your screen at night, has released a beta version that includes OS X Yosemite support. This includes a few new integrations with Yosemites Dark Mode.

With F.lux, you can now turn on Dark Mode automatically at sunset. It also comes packed with a new Dark Mode icon so it doesnt look to bad up in your menubar. If youre a fan of Yosemites Dark Mode, the new integration with F.lux is pretty handy.

via F.lux for Mac Adds Yosemite Support.

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Light on Yoga: Cracking the Code – christina sell

It was nearly a year ago that I took a workshop with Christina Sell at Lila East End Yoga in Portland, ME. I loved that so much that I signed up for the Winter Session “Asana Junkies” Webinar in January, before it was cut short by my shoulder injury. So I am excited to have just signed up for her webinar “Light on Yoga: Cracking the Code.”

Light on Yoga, by BKS Iyengar, is often touted as a definitive resource for yoga teachers and practitioners and is  even hailed as The Bible of Modern Hatha Yoga.  And yet, this gem of a book is often hard to penetrate, difficult to understand and even more challenging to apply our own practice and  the students we see right in front of us in our classes. The forms seem archaic, the order illogical, the variations outdated and the images are hard-to-relate to for many.  However, all that being said, Christina Sell believes Light on Yoga is one of the most valuable resources we have for practice, sequencing and developing our postural knowledge and insight and she wants to help you Crack the Code! This webinar  is designed to give practical access into Light on Yoga, the book,  as well as to create an ongoing contemplation of what it means to live the Light of Yoga both personally and in community. A perfect way to return to the basics of posture and to the heart of ones love of practice and teaching, this web-based course is designed as a collegial discussion in a collaborative learning environment.

via Light on Yoga: Cracking the Code – christina sell.

We used Light on Yoga as reference in teacher training, but found can be so difficult to use it as a reference. It’s as if asana were a genre of writing, and one had access to the Oxford English Dictionary, but none of the entries were alphabetized.

Moreover, I have had a love–hate relationship with Iyengar instruction. At one time I had found all of the discrete postural instructions too confusing and strict. But I have loved many of the Iyengar instructors and I am more amenable now to the style’s precision. While I had sworn off them, I now readily return to Iyengar classes.

And how can anyone give anything but homage to the master so soon after his leaving this form? So for all these reasons, because I have learned from Christina Sell, because I do acknowledge Light On Yoga to be an invaluable if someone forbidding guide, and because I have a certain sentimental feeling in celebrating Iyengar’s life and contribution that I am excited to engage this experience at this juncture.

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Yoga’s more than a workout (without getting too “woo” about it)

Recently I was part of a dialog about the appropriate place on a university campus for yoga to be practiced. For many reasons, a fitness center could make sense, if it was accessible to all, and the yoga was taught with regard for its ancient roots.

But how does one argue that without making it sound too “woo”; that is, without mystifying those roots, thereby making yoga less accessible?

The answer came to me in a physical therapy session. My sessions are in a big room with other patients, and the therapist was working hard to explain to someone a particular movement she wanted him to make. While her knowledge of anatomy and movement were far superior to mine, she struggled, as we yoga teachers do, to explain to him how to move.

In addition to clear instruction, our training may have focused on helping our students to develop body awareness. This is arguably connected to mindfulness practices, which are gaining greater acceptance  in the mainstream medical community. Further, we empower students to develop an awareness of the aspect and orientation of their own bodies in space, “from the inside out,” possibly to cultivate greater awareness of the orientation of their whole selves to their lives. At least, this last, greatest cultivation might be an incremental effect of continued practice. But we try to shift ownership of that awareness from the instructor to the student. I don’t think that an instructor–centered yoga is in the proper spirit of these practices.

I don’t know enough about fitness training in various styles to claim that they don’t cultivate body awareness and empower students to own it. My impression, which you are welcome to correct, is that few practices are as holistic as yoga in the cultivation of this body awareness. In any case, fewer others are offered as a means of taking this awareness to other aspects of one’s life: for example, how we stand in line at the grocery store, how we respond to and approach people in our lives, and how we extend the kindness we show ourselves into compassion we show for others.

My view, in short, is that yoga is more than a workout simply because activity shares a place with awareness. Even if we take that awareness no further than our own bodies, that’s still a “value add” for yoga. We can state this with conviction without getting into debates, as valuable and interesting as they might be, over yoga’s provenance.

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Roasted Coconut Sesame Oatmeal – Ayurvedic Diet & Recipes

Richard Hudak:

Here’s a recipe I shared with my students on my yoga teaching blog. I thought you’d appreciate it, too.

Originally posted on Wholehearted Yoga:

Perhaps knowing I’ve been having a pretty stressful week, or perhaps simply because we are likely to have this foundation of exchange, a dear friend shared this recipe with me yesterday afternoon. I made it this morning. I won’t say that it has made all the difference, but it makes enough so I’d notice, going about my day. Please enjoy, and comment to share about your variations.

Enjoy the satisfying creaminess of piping hot oatmeal topped with the nutty aroma of roasted sesame and coconut. As the weather turns cool in early fall, your body seems to crave the hearty warmth of roasted nuts & grains. Here the bold & flavorful crunch of roasted coconut & sesame adds more than adventure. Sesames natural warming properties make for a robust start to a hectic day, while coconuts sweetness is a stress-soothing balm on busy, bustling mornings. Life seems more comfortable after…

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October Desktop Calendar from Kripalu

Originally posted on Wholehearted Yoga:

Here is this month’s peaceful landscape for your computer’s desktop. I like mine with a calendar. Your mileage may vary.

Taking a moment to arrange your electronic environment in this way can be reminder to breathe and enjoy the natural beauty which may be lurking just outside your door, wherever you work.

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Ferguson and Beyond: Next Steps for Justice « Standing On The Side Of Love

SSL Ferguson Montage

I found helpful these advocacy tips from Standing on the Side of Love.

People of faith are called to hold Ferguson, MO, in our hearts and minds as events continue to unfold following the death of Michael Brown last Saturday. Ferguson is not an isolated incident but part of a much larger legacy of violence and criminalization of Black people in the United States. We say the names of those we know but recognize many other people go unnamed.

Unitarian Universalists are taking action in Ferguson and around the country to advocate for justice and love. All of us are needed. During time of trauma and frustration, let us continue to explore ways to learn more, grow, heal, and take collective action. Use the resources below to take your own next steps and encourage others in your life to join you.

via Ferguson and Beyond: Next Steps for Justice « Standing On The Side Of Love.

I like the positive and interfaith foci of this organization.

Standing on the Side of Love is an interfaith public advocacy campaign that seeks to harness love’s power to stop oppression. It is sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Association and all are welcome to join.

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How You Can Respond to Ferguson

Richard Hudak:

“Be a light.”

With latent social conflict becoming manifest in Ferguson, MO, I found it helpful to read this positive, firsthand, Unitarian Universalist perspective. I offer it for your consideration.

Originally posted on Rev. Thomas Perchlik's Weblog:

This week I have gotten many requests to help us here in the Saint Louis area. Often the offers have been for donations of food. This is my response.

Thank you so much for your compassionate outreach. You may be happy to know that First U took a food collection last Sunday and all our baskets were filled. We took our collection to St. Stephens and they were very appreciative. Other sites, outside Ferguson, in Saint Louis City and in the city of Florrisant have been selected to receive donations of food, and supplies are being distributed from those places. Another collection of non-food items has been initiated and UU congregations are joining in that.

Yesterday (August 21), all local UU clergy went to a Community Center that is just north of where all the violence took place. It was a crowded, but very mellow, scene. We offered counseling, care…

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Fall Teaching: Noontime Nourish

Richard Hudak:

I’m so excited for my return to teaching in the fall. I’m busy recovering from shoulder surgery so I can resume public classes of my own, and this vital practice of teaching yoga.

Originally posted on Wholehearted Yoga:

noontime nourish

Thursdays at noon, starting 9/18/14

I am pleased to announce that after a long recovery from rotator cuff repair, I will be returning to teaching yoga at Sangha Yoga Collective on September 18. On many levels, my injury has been my teacher. I hope to bring to you an enhanced knowledge of shoulder alignment, and an appreciation of the tools yoga may afford for dealing with life’s little surprises.

I am trying something new this fall, a one-hour noontime class I’m calling “Noontime Nourish,” for nine Thursdays beginning September 25, with a free preview on the 18th. The idea is that we’d practice some yoga at noon, and then whoever was available could hang around with a brown bag lunch to talk about yoga philosophy, Ayurveda, or conscious eating.

Personally, I always find Thursdays to be the most difficult day of the week to get through. It has all of…

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Making Sense of Rampage School Shootings

Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings by Katherine S. Newman

In this blog, I have written a great deal about rampage school shootings, mainly prompted by the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT. But I have been teaching about them for nearly ten years. When I was an the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association last month, we adopted an Action of Immediate Witness “Affirming Congregational Commitment to Gun Violence Prevention.”

A few years ago, one of the members of our congregation led a service that was essentially a lecture from one of his courses. I thought that I could probably do that.

Summer Service: Making Sense of Rampage School Shootings
Sunday August 3 at 9:30 am: A few weeks ago, the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association adopted an Action of Immediate Witness that called for “congregational commitment to work for gun violence prevention initiatives.” The Fourth Principle of Unitarian Universalism is “A free and responsible search for truth and meaning.” What does the academic discipline of sociology have to contribute to our understanding of rampage school shootings?

Richard Hudak, President of the UUCiA, will share a close reading of Katherine S. Newman’s Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings, which he discovered on a shelf in Memorial Hall Library in Andover. This close reading is informed by nearly ten years of teaching this book to classes in complex organization, introductory sociology, the sociology of war and peace, and death and dying. Learn how this research monograph is a well-executed and important piece of public sociology, what five factors are “necessary but insufficient causes” of rampage school shootings, and what policy options may make rampage shootings less likely.

Please join in dialog about preventing gun violence.

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Midsummer Blessings

Solstice stones on Holt Hill, Ward Reservation

“Solstice Stones” on the top of Holt Hill, Ward Reservation, Andover.

Today is the Summer Solstice, the stillpoint of summer, the longest day in the Wheel of the Year. A few years ago I wrote a stanza of this poem, and I have since “finished” it, by adding a stanza that was missing. (The first stanza appears in a post on Mabon, the beginning of autumn “Tumbling Toward Mabon.” 9/17/12) Please enjoy this time to pause, but also celebrate abundance with abandon.

Surya Namaskar

This time of year I
Like a bit of dry tinder
Easily woken by the birds
Who themselves
Crackle in a blaze of

No creature anchored to this
Blue orb
Can choose but to
Lean toward that fire
Greeting its moist green gifts
Where it kisses the earth.

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