Tuesday February 7th is the Full Moon and Near East Yoga will be closed.
Sunday, February 12th, 5-7PM, is the next meeting of the Yoga Sutra Discussion. My objective is to briefly review a few concepts we have covered then move into sutras 1.12 and 1.13.
I also want people to share some examples of how this info is working out for people in daily life. As the meetings progress I’d like to see them become more of a “philosophical potluck”. So keep that in mind and bring us an anecdote to share.
****This section deals directly with mat storage issues- please read*****
Many of you keep your mat at Near East Yoga- with Ashtanga Yoga being a daily
practice it’s better to not travel with them and I don’t mind storing them. If you are there most days
please continue to store your mat in the place provided. Here are a few guideline to consider.
Please store your mat and rug separately. Folded rugs can be placed on the top and adjacent shelf.
Placing your mat in a bag helps to keep it from unrolling on the shelf and helps you find it.
Write you name on your mat so I know they have an owner.
Taking a moment to roll your mat and storing it properly leaves room for more mats.
Last word on mats-
****If your mat is at Near East Yoga and you are not, your mat will get gifted to a fellow yogi, donated to charity or become a house mat****
Call, Email or text if you think you have abandoned a mat and want it back.- Soon.
Following the Friday 7AM group primary I have been chanting and offering basic ngondro practice at 9AM. A few of you have learned it and can practice. Folks new to the rpactice are encouraged to join in if you have the chance. I offer what insights I have but know well that the practice is the real teacher. It’s a very portable practice once it gets established, you can engange it all day long with great result. Like many things that can only be known by their fruit, insights about ngondro can only come from practice of ngondro, which is a root teaching of Vajrayana Buddhism and essential to the Dzogchen view . With fruit like that the root is especially impressive. The words Vajrayana and Dzogchen might be unfamiliar but be assured that what they represent succinctly corroborates the Patanajli Yoga Sutra logic, practice and result.
Dennis, who taught ngondro to me, after learning it and practicing it with his teachers for many years, will be joining in this Friday. His presence offers a great opportunity to me and others wishing to gain insight into this wonderful practice. For about a year I have been working up a group to have such a meeting so please feel welcome to attend.
I linked to a few pages, the people I received the teachings from. Keith Dowman and Kenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche. I cant be more excited to share this with you and will continue to do so as long as I can.
Like I said you will need the root to get the fruit. Often the fruit and the seed are one in taste so much insight can be gained by simply hearing, reading or reciting the words. We can really only know for ourselves if root is vital and the fruit is there.
Here’s what’s going on for the Yoga Sutra Discussion-
Sunday the 29th at 5PM- A Concise Exploration of Samkhya and Pancha Mahabhuta- Part 1
I gave a major piece of my early study time to Samkhya and Pancha Mahabhuta theory many years back and it gave me a major piece of insight which has supported my continuing study since. With Samkhya study, via the works of Kapila, combined with the work of Rama Prasad in his 1898 text titled Natures Finer Forces I have been supported by original logic and reason in my personal quest to understand Yoga Science and practice.
What I have planned for Sunday will be a combination of these two fields and how they supported the development of Yoga Sutra logic and practice. For instance, Samkhya is the foundation theory from which Patanjali Yoga Sutra is derived and both are included in the six major darshans (philosophical views) of Indian Classical thought. Samkhya is also the framework for the logic and practice of Ayurveda, the ancient healing science of India. In combination I will work in how Rama Prasad outlines the Pancha Mahabhutas or the five great emanations which correspond dirrectly to Samkhya and Yoga Sutra. Specifically Rama Prasad explains the origin and sustenance of Chitta which is especially useful for our understanding of Yoga Sutra. If you are like me and need to obtain the raw elements of the philosophy and construct a personal view and understanding then connecting with this info is for you.
I think coming to this particular discussion will be instrumental in bringing light to the ones which follow. Please consider attending- even if you have heard it all before. I always remember that Einstein “imagined” the Theory of Relativity before doing the math and proving it. Samkhya and Pancha Mahabhuta speak directly to that quality of our nature that bring our chitta to bare on the imagined reality- the Sanskrit word bhavana appropriately comes to mind.
Again, please click on the links if you want to read up on any of the teachings and ideas before hand.
Peace and see you at yoga, Casey
Sunday, January 8th 2012 is the full moon. Near East Yoga will be closed for morning yoga practice.
The Yoga Sutra Study group will meet at 5-7PM. Please take a look over the first 11 sutras of the first pada prior to the meeting.
If you have not come to the prior meetings that’s fine- we are moving slowly and you will be quickly brought up to speed.
Everyone who came to the 2nd meeting was given a hand-out of the yoga sutra with devanagri and roman transliteration.
Be sure to bring that. If not I have more. We will be adding definitions to some of the sanskrit words.
If you came to the 1st meeting you were given a “ritual object”- please bring it or bring one of your choosing.
If you don’t have one that’s OK too. We will be doing a fun exercise where we play around with getting to know and understand what
“modifying” (vritti) the mind (chitta) looks like so we can recognize it for ourselves.
See you Sunday and before. Casey
PS- The Friday group primary at 7AM gets a good sized group- if you like that sort of energy, please join in.
Hello Friends and Happy New Year!
New Years Day yoga is “unsupported” practice at 10AM- after, at Noon I’d like to meet at Peet’s on 15th and Broadway to celebrate the New Year!
Let me know if you need more info-
Posted her is the “Official” version of the 2012 Near East Yoga schedule including 2012 moon days.
The moon days are determined by the moon rise in Portland, Oregon. This is also precisely corroborated by the iCal app for Mac. Keep in mind that these dates might be different from your home calender but true to Portland.
The new schedule also reflects the best times for folks not familiar with our community to engage the studio when support is available. I note it as being “Official” because the unofficial times require a certain effort to engage
in which the uninitiated find confusing and possibly daunting.
The times have not abruptly shifted from what you are accustomed but do reflect the “spaces” when I get my practice in and the studio gets cleaned. For those that need it, the studio is always open for practice during times not posted.
Following this email are my observations and reflections on 2011 and ideas for 2012 at Near East Yoga- Thanks for a great year!
PS- New Years Reflection
After failing to keep my words to a few lines and discarding two long winded drafts I will keep it to a few things-
Thanks Guruji, I think of you everyday.
Thanks Dennis, Kathy for the life of works and teachings you have shared with me and the community at Near East Yoga.
Thanks Sarahji and Dena for supporting me and the Near East Yoga Community. You service is wanted, needed and appreciated.
Thanks to all the good people who “authorize” me with your presence. I’d be a lesser person without your acceptance of my service.
I’m excited to be practicing, learning and sharing the yoga. My hope is you are as well.
I’m looking forward to the sutra study group, having Kathy visit in May, Keith Dowman in June and Narasimhan and Jayashri in July.
I’m inspired by all the young folks (babies too!) and old folks getting into ashtanga yoga. May Near East Yoga continue to support all degrees of yoga practice.
May each of you deepen and grow your practice and may it reveal something new and revolutionary.
May your joy increase and your sorrows decrease.
May your work in yoga bring benefit to all beings.
Peace in 2012.
Hello and Happy Holidays,
There will be a special schedule for the week with everything back to normal on Tuesday. I am traveling to Napa with Lily to enjoy the holidays with her family .
I am encouraging all new practitioners to wait until Tuesday the 27th to begin their practice at Near East.
Dena will be a supporting a couple classes and and the un-supported times will be hosted by Max, Stephen, Ben and Liza and all the wonderful people of Near East.
If any questions arise confer with another person or do what you think I would do. Over all enjoy your practice.
Keep in mind that the heaters can stay on but must be pulled away from the walls.
If you light a candle, put it out or tell someone about it before you leave.
Don’t leave the studio unlocked and empty.
Everyone is welcome to get their practice in so please feel welcome to do that while I am away.
I can be reached at anytime to help you get access to the studio by calling me at 503-890-2212.
The schedule for the week- Please sign in.
Wednesday 630-9AM- Mysore followed by open practice
530-730PM open Mysore
Thursday early open Mysore followed by 9-1030AM Mysore with Dena
530-730PM open Mysore
Friday 8-10AM Group Primary with Dena (please come to this, it’s better with a large group. Note the time change for this week only)
Saturday New Moon- No Yoga
Sunday Open Mysore- (Christmas Yoga)
Monday Open AM and Open PM
Tuesday- Normal Schedule.
See you all after tomorrow in a week. Casey
This email includes an invite to a Fall Potluck on the 13th after Mysore. All are welcome even if the workshop is not your thing.
Please RSVP if you are coming to the workshop. Please pay in cash whenever possible.
Many of you have been asking when and if Kathy will visit this Fall. (Because I said she was coming a couple months back) It’s a pleasure to say yes and welcome her the week of Monday November 14th through the Friday the 18th. Some of you have made lasting connections with Kathy by now and will be looking forward to re-connecting with her. She is a wonderful teacher and I always feel renewed during and after her visit.
The fee for the workshop is a sliding scale of $50-$75 dollars. As usual All the fee’s go direct to Kathy. Everyone in the NEY community is welcome even if you need assistance with the fee. Donations are welcome.Some scholarship has already been promised. It’s a benefit to us all that she can come so please participate even if you are short on funds. It really makes a difference to you, me and everyone when we all get a chance to connect with such a strong teacher. She is interested in seeing all of us so please come out.
The class schedule for her time will be something similar to her previous visits-
Sunday Potluck on the 13th- After the Mysore class. Randi, please bring chai. Everyone else do as you normally do- it’s always awesome.
14th Monday- 8-10AM and 530-730PM
15th Tuesday 8-10AM and 530-730PM
16th Wednesday 8-10AM only
17th Thursday 8-10AM and 530-730PM
18th Friday 7-9AM Group Yoga Talk and asana practice followed by a bon voyage breakfast, location TBA.
Possible Saturday Mysore at 9AM
This schedule might be altered in the next week to meet Kathy’s requirements. All the details will be sorted long before she arrives.
Thanks Kathy, can’t wait to see you. Casey
Thursday October 10th is a Full Moon and Near Easy Yoga will be closed.
Thursday evening from 630-830PM a small group is meeting at Near East Yoga for a dzogchen meditation. Everyone is welcome to attend. The time will be spent both sitting and reflecting on a method put forth by Keith Dowman when he visited a few weeks ago. If you want to know more please attend the meditation. This work is very suitable for the ashtanga yogi.
Our good friend Kathy will be in Portland in under a week. Many of you have let me know you are coming. Please continue to do that and at this point every class is open. I will let you know if they begin to fill up. She agreed to add Wednesday night and Saturday Mysore to her schedule. Friday morning at 7-9AM will be special as well so please try to attend.. This event will be a great opportunity to get some intimate teaching time with her. Thanks Kathy.
See you all soon and often, Casey
Near East Yoga is now carrying T-Shirts! Screenprinted in town by Robin Forsythe, we have a rainbow of colors, sized for men and women, for a price of $20 each. Next time you come to the studio, come pick up a shirt for yourself. To truly feel “one” with the studio, wear your new shirt while practicing. Near East (the shirt) is on you, and you are in Near East…you are one with yoga…Ommmm….
Some days inspire me a lot and today is one of them. I happened to encounter Heather, my boss from Maverick Sports from 10 years ago when the place was first opening. It was nice to see her and we had a chance to reminisce about that time. It was fun to think back to 2001 and have 10 years of perspective to view those times. Maverick Sports was instrumental in the establishment and survival of Near East Yoga. Although the place was a roller coaster ride in general the 6.5 years I was there gave me a chance to learn how to support other yogi’s, make and income and know what it means to hold space for yoga. It also kept alive a tradition of ashtanga yoga in Portland that has been quietly going on for 2 decades. In the time since Maverick’s, Near East Yoga bubbled along and in June 2012 will be ten years running. Maverick Sports is now LA Fitness and the space that housed it on 20th and Overton is empty and idle. It was an exciting time and I am grateful for what I gained and retained from a place that is now a memory.
An element that carries on is the friendships made back then that have lasted till now and continue. I want thank all of those folks. Jenn Christianson took my second ever yoga class there with only one other person in the class who I only met that one time. On the 18th we will have practiced together for 10 years. I always remind and thank her in this season, just not so publicly. Josh, Ngan, Piper, Brett and Melinda are all from Maverick’s. Charisse was too. Jason served his time there as did Jen and Alice from Yoga Pearl when Maverick’s was just a temporary sheet rock box built in the middle of a construction zone, while they waited for their own shop to be completed. Had I not gone for the Maverick’s position I was going to take the job they had offered me at “Yoga in the Pearl” as it was called then. This would be an entirely different letter, relating the results of entirely different karma. That would have been fine too but it never happened.
What has happened is fantastic. On Thursday I am going to Fargo to present a workshop at Ecce Yoga in Fargo ND operated by old friends and Maverick’s alum Brenda Weiler and Derek Harnish. They started in ashtanga yoga Fargo 4 years ago and are doing well supporting the method. I recently had the pleasure of serving a fine and well trained ashtangi visiting from their school. Of course I was thrilled to meet her. In October Charisse opened Near East Yoga Spokane and has done a marvelous job capturing the spirit of Ashtanga Yoga and offering it to the yogi’s in her community. There are others of course involved in the growth and support of this yoga and they know I am thinking of them. Those names will be named but will have to wait until June 14th 2012 when we celebrate 10 years of Near East Yoga. For now I want to just savor that the support and encouragement we received from Dave Fox and Heather. Without them it would not have happened.
Happy Full Moon, Casey
Attached to this email is a flier for Jacob’s upcoming Acro Yoga preview for his workshop at Breightenbush in October . It’s on Sunday from 4-6. He has been traveling the world for a year learning all kinds of new stuff do do check it out. These events are very fun and I wish I was around to enjoy this one. Your non-ashtanga friends and family will love it.
Tuesday September 27th is the new moon and Near East Yoga will be closed.
On Wednesday the 28th following the 5:30PM Mysore class a couple who has been traveling the US by bike will be teaching an impromptu yoga class at NEY. It’s based on donations which I believe help them continue their odyssey. Check out growyogafarm.org for details on what they are up to and definitely stick around for the class. I am sure they have plenty of stories to tell and insights to share after coming from the east coast by bike. Stephen and Jacob will be the hosts for this event. Tell your friends!
I am going out of town early Sunday Morning with Lily (Napa, family time, Wine tasting) and will be away till Thursday’s Mysore class. The studio is open for practice but the Monday and Wednesday morning instruction will only be from 8-10 AM. Sarahji, Dena and Allyson will be covering for me. Thanks you guy’s. One day is a moon day so It wont seem like I was gone at all.
Enjoy the last days of summer and be enchanted by the ever shrinking circle of light. The Fall will soon burst forth with all our sweaters and pies. Peace, Casey
PS- Dena will be coming on to support Thursdays at 9AM and Sarahji will be moving to Wednesday night. With luck we will have Dena one other day as well. I am really happy to have such able people supporting the studio and my personal practice.
PPS- If I signed Near East Yoga up to be on a bowling league would any of you be interested? Haha, I hope so. Im thinking Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday night and Grand Central or Hollywood.