Summer is just starting to hit me! I was starting to worry I wasn’t going to be able to get into the summer spirit, but luckily my seasonal enthusiasm came just in time. I love putting together images of what is currently making me happy. So here are some of the things that I’m looking forward to and are inspiring me this summer.
-Watching Noah and Allie’s complicated, summer romance in The Notebook for the gazillionth time-
-Reminiscing of sunny days in Catalina-
-Tulsi mala beads: believed to have strong healing properties that bring peace and harmony to one’s life-
-Old-timey circus photographs-
-I like to imagine I’m in Bali when I’m practicing yoga-
-Eating mint-chip ice cream; my favorite!-
-Wishing I owned all of Reese Witherspoon’s costumes/outfits from Water for Elephants–
-Listening to “Harvest Moon” on a balmy summer night-
-Watching Sandlot! S’mores would be an appropriate viewing snack-
-Experiencing the Perseid meteor shower in August-
Photos from Google Images
I’m just now realizing how powerful mudras can be in my yoga practice and even in my everyday life. Mudras are hand postures that help direct prana, one’s life energy, throughout the body and evoke certain emotional and mental qualities. Particularly, I have been focusing on and experimenting with the Jnana Mudra, or the Knowledge Mudra, in which the tips of the thumb and index fingers come to touch, as the rest of the fingers gently extend outward. It is considered the mudra of concentration and mental peace, but I had never noticed any effects it had on me until I had a paper to write last month and decided to strike a mudra during my morning pranayama (breathing) practice, in hopes of sharpening my focus for my task ahead. So I softly concentrated on the way the energy flowed through my fingers and hands for about 5 minutes, all the while breathing. And honestly I’ve never experienced myself so focused, yet so calm during the day! It was shocking that I was capable of that. I usually have a subconscious fist-fight in my head, while trying to get things done and by the end of the day I feel exhausted, like I was literally fist-fighting somebody the whole day! So I want to choose a more sane way of going about my everyday life (no more metaphorical black eyes and bruised fists) and this mudra seems to be doing just that for me. I now sometimes strike this lovely hand pose while driving (with one hand, of course). That’s what I like about this mudra; it is accessible anywhere I go, when I’m in need of a bit more focused and calm energy. It’s all right there in my hands.
Photos: by Sam
Mudra Sources: 2nd Star to the Right, Healing Mudras: Yoga for Your Hands by Sabrina Mesko.