Testimonials

Yoga practice with Nancy is wonderfully relaxing. As I grow older, I’m more careful, and Nancy’s gentle ways help me avoid overdoing it.

-Carol

 

I love the way Nancy organized her Restorative Yoga book into sections that explain exactly what props are needed for each
pose, the suggested time frame to practice each pose and the mental and physical benefits that can be achieved by practicing
with her thorough and gentle guidance. Thank you, Nancy, for all of your efforts to create this wonderful book!

– Barb A.

 

Whether you are experienced at restorative yoga or a novice, or if you have never practiced yoga at all, Nancy Long’s book, Restorative Yoga, is a wonderful guide to the practice of restorative yoga. I have been practicing yoga for 17 years and I am constantly looking for new material and books to deepen my practice. Nancy’s book and the oral version on CD have given me new poses for my practice of restorative yoga which benefit not only my physical being, but my spiritual being as well. I highly recommend this book and CD for anyone interested in calming the mind and body.

Tina Biderman

 

 

Quiet… Patient… Open…

The quieter we are, the more patient and open we are in our sadnesses, the more
deeply and serenely the new presence can enter us…
~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~

That deep sadness is back. I feel it moving through the internal organs of my body. It doesn’t actually stay in my heart; that’s where I think it should be found. But no, it’s in my stomach and my kidney and even moves into muscles, like my calf, or deep fascia, like my foot’s plantar.

Under the sadness is something so real it is beyond expression. Maybe it is my essence. I’m not sure, but it feels unchanging and truly is always there. It brings comfort and certainty. Each moment simply unfolding…

Life feels unsteady, even rocky; and sharp edges are everywhere. I’m not sure of where I’m going or what lies ahead. But if I can remain in presence, the sense of well being restores my body, my inner strength, and my mind’s clarity. This presence reminds me life is good.

It SImply is…

 

Make everything in you an ear,

each atom of your being,
and you will hear at every moment
what the Source is whispering to you,
just to you and for you,
without any need for my words or anyone else’s.

You are– we all are– the beloved of the Beloved,
and in every moment,
in every event of your life,
the Beloved is whispering to you
exactly what you need to hear and know.

Who can ever explain this miracle?
It simply is.
Listen and you will discover it every passing moment…
Rumi

In Yoga Nidra we practice the art of blissful relaxation. Last month, I chose this Rumi poem to begin the meditation. Rumi has the amazing gift of reaching over centuries of time and mountains of cultural differences to touch me with the perfect word or idea. Exactly what I need to hear or know.

Yoga Nidra offers the gifts of deep relaxation and profound inquiry. As the body/mind softens and releases tension, effort, thoughts, emotions and images, the practice begins its magic. Travelling inward this journey explores the inner realms of consciousness.

Peeling back layers of habits and thought patterns, moving through emotions and deeply held beliefs, we settle into that sacred space, the spiritual heart. From the vast inner place we find comfort, healing, nourishment, joy, acceptance, loving kindness and compassion.

This is where you connect with that eternal being ~ who you really are. From here you know, without knowing, exactly what you need to know as each moment of life unfolds.

Cherish Ordinary Days…

It has taken a while, but I certainly do know it now-
the most wonderful gift I had,
the gift I’ve finally learned to cherish above all else,
was the gift of all those perfectly ordinary days.

~Katrina Kenison

 

Lately I’ve been struggling with a severe case of plantarfasciitis in
both feet and tendinitis in my ankle. The doctor said it might take
six months to heal. I’m faithfully engaging in various stretches
incorporating them into my daily Yoga practice. I’ve curtailed my
walking, apply ice and sometimes heat to tired, sore feet and spend
more time with my feet up.

More than one friend has suggested the universe might be sending
a message to slow down. I’ve certainly received that message before
and it usually comes more than once (stronger each time) until I
listen. I’m listening, I promise!

Ordinary days, everyday moments fill our lives in ways that often go
unnoticed. As a longtime meditator, I like to believe I pay attention.
That I really notice things around me. But the reality is mindfulness
and being present are lifetime practices. Like chopping wood and
carrying water, we put one foot in front of the other, moment
after moment and wonder, “can we stay alert, awake, alive to
all that is?”

It’s a practice and each time I miss the mark, I feel gratitude for
the chance to try again. Don’t be discouraged if you are forgetful or
thoughts take you away from what is here in the present moment.
Just allow the realization of not being present to be a pointer back
to presence. Remember even our forgetting is perfect. Let go of all
expectations and appreciate the gift of ordinary days.

My Mantra…

 

“I want my life to be my calling. I don’t want to waste another moment. Every choice, every conversation, every breath. I want them done with awareness. I devote my life to being awake and awakening others.”
Laurel Schwartz

This quote has become my mantra. You know that mental loop endlessly repeating itself over and over inside your head. I have had so many different loops during my life and most have not been particularly helpful or encouraging. But this one is different. This one rings out to every cell of my being. It makes me smile. It reminds me life is perfect in every moment. It brings me into a deep understanding of life and an appreciation of everyone I encounter.

The Buddha said suffering is inevitable. It is simply part of the experience of being alive on this earth. There are three kinds of Buddhists: ones that wish to eliminate all suffering and enjoy life; those who want to go beyond the suffering of this world and reach nirvana; and the third group who devote each breath to relieving the suffering of all beings. They understand how interconnected we all are. They know that as long as one being continues to suffer, we all suffer.

Although I have not reached this third elevated state, I know we are One. And I do sincerely want to be awake in each moment. More importantly, I want to use every breath, every conversation to offer what I have experienced to others.

Sanskrit mantras are ancient and powerfully charged with the energy of Yoga masters and practitioners from thousands of years of chanting. The sacred sounds contained in mantras vibrate in ways that change the structure of your cells. They provide a deep tune-up and help dissolve old patterns of thought and being that no longer serve you. This new mental loop I’ve been repeating isn’t a classic Sanskrit mantra, but I’d like to believe it is my sacred sound carrying me into a place where I can truly serve myself and others.