Deceptively Simple

This morning I was seized by this deceptively simple offering.

The More You Are Motivated By Love The More Fearless & Free Your Action Will Be – Dalai Lama | Spiritual | Forward this Picture

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Night Shift is Here

Last time I reported about the availability on the iOS App Store, of an app that would shift the temperature of one’s iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch to warmer temperatures at night, so that one could sleep. Well, I hadn’t realized that at that point the app had been pulled.

But Apple has made TimeShift available as a part of iOS 9.3, available yesterday, with the introduction of an new iPhone SE and 9.7-inch iPad Pro.

So have at it, and come in, the water’s fine.



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Apple Approves ‘FlexBright’ iOS App That Adjusts Display Temperature [Update: Pulled] – Mac Rumors



You may recall that back in December 2014, I wrote to you about f.lux, which allows one to change the temperature of your Mac screen, so that its brightness does not keep you up all night, and you can observe dina charya (the Ayurvedic daily rhythm) for better sleep.

While this is available as an app for iOS (for iPhones and iPads), one would have had to “jailbreak” the device, undoing all its security. Until now.

FlexBright, an app that allows the user to manually adjust the display temperature of an iOS device, was recently approved by Apple, marking one of the first third-party apps that’s able to function in a manner similar to the company’s own Night Shift mode, set to be released in iOS 9.3. The only catch is it must be triggered somewhat manually in response to a notification, rather than continuously, like Night Shift or f.lux.

I look forward to trying out this app, until the next point release of iOS becomes available with Night Shift.

via Apple Approves ‘FlexBright’ iOS App That Adjusts Display Temperature [Update: Pulled] – Mac Rumors.

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My very serious and deeply spiritual guide in Bikaner

I know the people who will not give money to the homeless because they will just spend it on booze, or because they see it as prolonging this “lifestyle.” I have no time for absolutes, seeing everything as dependent on context. I think this story is instructive.

Beyond that, I am impressed with the reverence for life even among the poorest people. We should be taught by this.

Essentialyogastudio's Blog

bikaner tour guide (2) (533x800).
Cow Sanctuary
We were talking about the sacred cows of Bikaner and the history behind it.  I told my guide what my friend said in Pune; that once the cows/buffalos got too old to be useful they were sold to Muslims for slaughter.

Maybe that happens in large cities like Pune and Mumbai where people have lost their faith, but that would never happen in Northern India.  Here we have veterinary hospitals and sanctuaries for them.  When they get too old they go to the sanctuaries so they won’t die alone.  Some are blind, deformed, sick, some are dying.  If they can walk, they walk the fields.  If they are blind, we put a male and female together so they can comfort each other.

Each morning I get up my wife makes chapati. The first one goes to a cow.  Every morning a large bull knocks on our door with…

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Open to Grace: Launching the Considered Kula

From the archives. Five years ago today.

The Considered Kula

You have arrived at the inaugural post of “The Considered Kula.” Breathe, and Open to Grace.

From “About” this blog

“Kula” is a Sanskrit word meaning “family” or “intentional community” that has taken on the meaning of “community” within Anusara Yoga™, which I practice. It seems to be a distinctive characteristic of the style, evoking its emphasis on “heart opening.”

The project of this blog, the sense in which kula is “considered,” is that in addition to being an eager student of this style of yoga, I am by training a sociologist. I hope to write creatively about the tension of these apparent opposites, which are both a part of who I am.

I launch this blog now, because it has been about two years since I have been on the path of Anusara Yoga. I had two key struggles in my life at the time. One was…

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A new cycle

I’m happy to report my return to regular yoga teaching! I will write more backstory here, soon.

Wholehearted Yoga

Which way do you run to
Are you coming out or in
When one cycle goes around
Another one begin, begin, begin

This song by Trevor Hall is my “ear worm” right now, because it speaks of change and its cyclical nature. As surely as the seasons, we will pass this way again. A little over two weeks ago we observed the cross–quarter day between the Winter Solstice and the Vernal Equinox (Imbolc). We’re more than halfway to astronomical spring. The moon, after having been full on Presidents’ Day, is waxing to fullness.

The most external reason for that has to do starting a new regular class at what is for me a new studio. While I have been subbing since my second shoulder surgery in March 2015, this will be the first time I’ll be on a studio schedule. I’m pleased to report that beginning tonight (Thursdays), at 5:30…

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Sleepless, Night Traveling, and Tejas in the Tamas

From the archives. Some nights, one must simply be “a wakeful candle in a golden dish.”

The Considered Kula

Tonight, for the second night in a row, I am uncharacteristically sleepless. I don’t know what’s up with that. Maybe that’s what I’m supposed to find out. I am certain that being on the threshold of a new year has me reflecting on the past year and the one to come. To the extent that people come together in a special way around this time of year, things may be arising from some essential conversations that I have had.

Particularly since participating in Cate Stillman’s Yogidetox, I have been very attuned to Dina Charya, or the Ayurvedic daily rhythm. This means getting to bed at a decent hour. That time is past, and when that happens, energy rises.

Normally, I might view this as a…

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How creating art helped me.

I know people for whom art is very therapeutic, and it has been suggested by at least one of them that yoga is my art. And now, to that I add the study of bhakti yoga, as I am learning how to play the harmonium and sing kirtan.



 I have always had an interest and appreciation for art. Although I was a very depressed child I recall getting excited for art class. I felt safe. I expressed my darkest feelings. I noticed how calm I felt after I completed a painting. I wasn’t talented but I was passionate. With time and practice I become a better artist.

As an adult, I’ve realized how beneficial art is for the mind. Creating art was a very effective way to stimulate my brain. I developed certain habits of thinking. I managed to cope with life’s challenges. I also started thinking outside the box .

Through personal experience these are some benefits I gained from creating art.

Communication- As a shy child I had a very hard time communicating my feelings. Art made me communicate in a different more personal level. I didn’t have to say much. My art work said it all.

Therapeutic – Art…

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Mindfulness-based meditation to decrease stress and anxiety in college students: A narrative synthesis of the research

My yoga practice grew up alongside my return to teaching. This fall, I attended the annual conference of the Association for Contemplative Mind in Higher Education. It’s good to see this go from anecdotal evidence to a review of many studies. My vocation and avocation are close enough to wave at one another.

More importantly, how wonderful to have support for colleges and universities to offer such programs, as has been done in K-12.


The primary purpose of this paper was to narratively review the research testing the effects of mindfulness meditation on stress and anxiety in the college students; reviewing the inclusion of mindfulness was a secondary purpose.


A literature search resulted in 57 studies on the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation in reducing stress and anxiety in college students.


Researchers examined anxiety in 40 studies, self-reported stress in 34, physiological stress in 11, and mindfulness in 24. Thirty-three of 40 and 25 of 34 studies showed significant decreases in anxiety and stress respectively; 22 of 24 showed an increase in mindfulness. Physiological stress had inconsistent results indicating a need for further research. Overall, mindfulness meditation shows promise in reducing stress and anxiety in college students. Additionally, there are a number of differences in mindfulness interventions including frequency, duration, instructional method, and inclusion of yoga, that need quantitative examination (meta-analysis) to determine which is most effective.

Mindfulness; Mindfulness-based stress reduction; Stress; Anxiety; College students

via Mindfulness-based meditation to decrease stress and anxiety in college students: A narrative synthesis of the research.

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Good News

This is a somewhat longish post for my teaching blog, and it really belongs here. But practically speaking, it is the “heads up” that I am working on a return to teaching yoga on a regular basis.

Wholehearted Yoga

I have some good news to share on what is a snowy and reflective day for me. I am fortunate not to have University classes to teach on Fridays, and I decided to forego traveling to my “goto” Friday morning public class because of the weather. Home practices are in order.

One of the most delightful practices I engaged this morning is to prepare a yoga class for a studio to which I am applying to teach on a regular basis. I haven’t been on the schedule at a studio for a year. When I haven’t been recovering from a second shoulder surgery, and rebuilding my own practice from it, I’ve been mainly subbing for Roberta Dell’Anno and Linda Moran.

I get to prepare this class…

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