What’s Missing from Your Yoga Practice?

Yoga is currently one of the most popular forms of exercise in the world. Celebrities tout its benefits on late night TV shows, corporations, schools, and even jails have instituted yoga programs, and there is a whole business dedicated to designer yoga clothes and accessories. There is even baby yoga! But this popularity makes sense when you understand how valuable a tool yoga is for your wellbeing. Yoga improves digestion, immune function, flexibility, strength, joint pain, anxiety, sleep, sex, focus, memory, self-esteem, inner peace, and connection to Source, just to name a few of its dozens of benefits. But if you want to get the most out of yoga, consider adding a missing ingredient that will take your practice to new heights: Ayurveda.

In Sanskrit, the word “yoga” means “to join together” or “union,” and comes from the same roots as the word “yoke,” as in two things yoked together. In yoga, the yoking is in reference to the union of mind, body, and spirit. The word Ayurveda comes from the Sanskrit roots Ayu, meaning “life” and Veda¸ meaning “knowledge” or “science.” So Ayurveda means the “science of life.” Some scholars suggest that Ayu doesn’t just mean life, but even more specifically, the state of being in which mind, body, and soul are joined together and there is total integration. This unity and connectedness is the goal of both yoga and Ayurveda—and energy healing—and every step toward that unity dramatically improves your quality of life.



What Is Ayurveda?

Ayurveda is a system of medicine that’s over five thousand years old, even older than traditional Chinese medicine. This “science of life” originated with ancient seers called rishis. These enlightened men and women sat for hours in deep meditation, communing with what they called the “Cosmic Consciousness,” and what we in energy medicine call the universal field. This unified field or Cosmic Consciousness or Source or whatever you want to call it holds the past, present, future, and all information in existence, and these rishis returned from their meditations with beyond-earthly insight into the world. They turned this insight to the human body and “discovered” the healthcare system of Ayurveda.

The rishis in their infinite wisdom discerned that the energy from the universal field manifests itself in all matter—including humans—as five basic elements: air, fire, water, earth, and ether or space. Within the body, those basic elements come together in different combinations to make up three biological or metabolic bio-energies, which Ayurveda calls doshas. There are three doshas: the space and air elements combined to form the Vata dosha, the fire and water elements combined to form the Pitta dosha, and the earth and water elements combined to form the Kapha dosha. Each person has a unique mind-body constitution, or prakruti, which means “nature,” that is their body type. Your prakruti is based on which dosha(s) are most prevalent in you.

These doshas are super important, as they are the bridge between the body and mind, the spot where your thoughts turn into matter, and here, you can see the first signs of health problems and treat them before they develop. Ayurveda is a lot like energy medicine—it’s why they can work in tandem so well—as it is the imbalances in the energy that cause physical problems. By following Ayurvedic principles and rebalancing the doshas, you can restore your body to health and reestablish the mind-body-soul connection.

How Do Ayurveda and Yoga Work Together?

Just like Ayurveda, the governing principle of yoga is balance, and both traditions have healing properties. They have even been called “sister sciences.” When yoga was first brought to the west, Ayurveda was left out, even though both practices were born out of the larger tradition of Vedic knowledge in ancient India. When you bring these two modalities together again, you’ll understand why they were made to be yoked.

Yoga on its own is not a system of medicine, but rather a spiritual practice and type of treatment. It heals, but does not diagnose. For that, you need a system of medicine which has a clear understanding of how the body and energy field work. That’s what Ayurveda does—allows you to understand the cause of the problem so you can assess, diagnose, and then treat.

Think of it this way: energy healing is a system of medicine just like Ayurveda. An energy healer can sense your problems and chakra blockages and suggest a course of treatment, which can include meditation, journaling, grounding, chakra clearing, etc., but you need that umbrella of energy medicine to first evaluate and diagnose your issue and then recommend the curative measures. Directed efforts are more effective, and that requires a diagnosis.

This is how Ayurveda can take your yoga practice sky high—by tailoring your yoga therapy to address the issues identified through Ayurveda, you turn yoga into a targeted healing machine for your unique constitution. There are yoga postures that correspond to specific doshas, and once you learn those, you will be amazed at how much more you’ll get out of your yoga practice. You’ll come away feeling more refreshed and with a deeper internal peace.

Touch Heaven & Earth

This doesn’t mean you can’t take your regular yoga class. People who have different prakrutis are in classes together every day. What you can do is alter your poses to address your personal needs. Attitude and intention go a long way in all these healing therapies—yoga, Ayurveda, energy healing—and yoga is a place to follow through with your intentions. Your body and spirit are different from everyone else’s so why should you do your asanas the exact same way? Aligning your practice with your Ayurvedic constitution will boost your results tenfold.

So if you’re a Vata, try practicing more slowly and deliberately; if you’re a Pitta, try to relax into your asanas and avoid overheating; if you’re a Kapha, challenge yourself! Go for those tough poses. If you don’t know your dosha, consider working with a spiritual teacher or taking healing courses or an online quiz. And if you don’t already practice yoga, I encourage you to start! Like meditation, it’s most effective when done regularly.

Let me leave you with this idea: Ayurveda is the physical health counterpoint to the spiritual act of yoga. Yoga is for reaching higher states of consciousness and Ayurveda is for reaching balance on the physical plane. Done together, you can touch heaven and earth and heal yourself in the process.


Yoga and Energy Healing: Friends With Benefits


Nearly everyday, it seems like there is some new health fad or alternative therapy saying they can help you lose weight fast or detox your system in twenty-four hours or make you happy with a pill. These quick-result claims are usually bogus, and are often actually harmful, because the way you heal yourself is not quickly, but sure and steady like the turtle. Your health is not worth risking for a magical overnight cure, and all true, effective, lasting healing takes some time and effort. But if you want to get the most healing bang for your buck, there is one healing practice that has stood the test of time and is the closest thing to a magical cure you will find: energy healing.

Health Is a Balancing Act

The mind-body-spirit connection has been well established by studies and research that illustrate that your system is a balancing act: each aspect of your being—mind, emotions, body, and soul—affects the other aspects directly. Unprocessed emotional trauma can block your chakras, disrupting your energy flow, and those distortions in your chakras can cause physical illness or injury. Spiritual depression, too, can cause physical depression—an experience you may have gone through before finding the right spiritual path—and physical pain can cause spiritual pain or lack of faith.
Think of each element of your being like a support beam in a house. When one beam cracks or fails, the whole building is weakened and becomes more susceptible to additional problems. You are like that house; when your chakras are blocked or your body is ill or any foundational part of you is somehow not functioning properly, it throws the whole structure—you—out of balance, and leaves you open to further harm.

How Many Ways Is Yoga is Good for You?

This is where energy healing can come in and save the day. As an energy healer and spiritual teacher, I introduce my students to many techniques that clear, charge, and balance their chakras and energy field and therefore heal the rest of them: journaling, meditation, being of service, forgiveness, shamanic breath work, Ayurveda, and many more. Today, I’d like to focus on one technique that is nearly as old as energy medicine itself: yoga.
This ancient Indian practice has soared in popularity, with yoga studios everywhere and yoga clothes as their own fashion trend. This spiritual practice is now done by everyone from celebrities to businessmen to schoolchildren, and most people know at least a pose or two. There have been many studies and plenty of evidence to support the wide range of positive results attributed to yoga that it’s now well known for its myriad health benefits.


Physically, yoga improves flexibility and muscle strength, aids digestion, helps you sleep better, lowers blood pressure, ups your immune function, decreases pain, and even increases sexual performance! Mentally, yoga helps you focus, releases stress, reduces anxiety, and calms your thoughts. Yoga has also been linked to higher self-esteem, amplified inner strength and power, deeper awareness, and more peace. Plus, it can help you tone your body and lose weight. And this is just the tip of the yoga iceberg!

Yoga’s Spiritual Side

At its core, Yoga is a spiritual practice, passed down from yogis who devoted their lives to spiritual pursuits, and “yokes” the body and the soul energetically, just as does the practice of energy healing. Yoga uses movement or postures, called asanas, to revitalize your nervous system, your circulation, and your flow of prana, positively affecting your personal energy field. Yoga also emphasizes the breath, or pranayama, and uses the breath to move prana in and out from your body during the movements. The asanas and breathing are done together in a specific way to soothe and link your body and mind, clear and balance your chakras, and bring you in touch with Source.

Yoga makes a great complement to your energy medicine practice and any of my healing courses. Yoga is not just about stretching your mind and body, but about really connecting to yourself on a deep spiritual level, grounding you to the Earth and your physicality so that you have roots from which to grow your spirituality, and increasing the flow of energy within you. Yoga and energy healing both strive for harmony and balance, clarity of thought and intention, and a deeper understanding of your higher self.

In its own way, yoga is a type of energy healing, so when you practice yoga and energy healing together, the results will multiply exponentially. They’re like friends with benefits, each helping to boost the effectiveness of the other, and working toward the same goal of healing and transforming your entire being.


You Are More Loveable Than You Know

Yes, it’s that time of year again, when the romance industry bombards you with commercials for
Valentine’s Day, but if you don’t have someone who will send you flowers and chocolates or take you on a romantic sunset cruise, you may not be enjoying this week very much.

Maybe you’re sitting on your couch at home in front of the TV watching all those gorgeous stars strut around in designer gowns and jewels on the award show circuit, and you’re comparing your body—without the help of personal trainers and home chefs—to theirs, and your life—not rich or glamorous—to theirs. You see the winners thank the magnificent love of their lives, the one without whom they never could have won this award, and you sigh over their perceived happiness—which you, in your not-even-designer bathrobe, believe you will never have, because you’ve decided that you are somehow utterly unlovable. But that belief is so wrong! You are more loveable than you know, and can become more loveable to others with a little shift in perspective.

Society teaches that your worth as a person, as a human being, is based on youth, beauty, money, power, romantic relationships, and status. After years of internalizing these messages, you may feel that your self-worth truly is based on these external factors, and when you don’t have all of them—because, honestly, who does?—you will constantly feel as if you are not good enough; as if your body and soul are not enough for you to deserve love and happiness, while everyone around you seems to have met their perfect match. With this perspective, you’ll find that the grass will always be greener in someone else’s yard, and the major source of green in your life will be envy.

Perhaps envy is not new to you. Did you grow up with siblings who were better at everything than you were? Or with parents who belittled your actions or ideas or dreams? Were you teased or bullied at school? Did your friends have all the things you didn’t? Did you think you were somehow unlovable and alone? And did all these slights carry over into your adult life with your business or romantic partners? Sometimes it’s easier to believe all the negative things you think about yourself than to appreciate yourself and believe you are worthy of love. As a spiritual teacher and energy healer who deals with thousands of broken hearts I can tell you the good news is that when you change the way you think about and treat yourself, the rest will simply fall into place.



So it’s time to get emotionally honest with yourself. If your relationships have not been turning out the way you wish, maybe it is you—but not that you’re unlovable. Maybe you seem unlovable because you are not loved by the most important person in your life: you.

But what exactly does it mean to love yourself? Here’s what it doesn’t mean. Loving yourself does not mean that you will be forever happy and never experience sadness or despair or anger again. It doesn’t mean that you act like you are better than everyone else. You are not loving yourself if you become so self-centered that you go after what you want without caring who gets hurt along the way. Acting out of ego is not the same as loving yourself; ego is false love, and satisfying the ego with status or money, a new car or a fancy wardrobe, is never going to nurture your soul. Self-worth cannot be bought or forced, it must be earned with patience, kindness, and getting in touch with your true emotions.

What loving yourself does mean is that you stop berating yourself for who you are not. You stop judging yourself so harshly, and stop the constant criticizing of what you look like, who you are, and the life you lead. Loving yourself means living your truth, which of course means you have to first find your truth, which can be done with energy medicine or energy healing courses and workshops. When you finally accept yourself, you understand that feeling your own pain is a major step in healing, and that it is good work to cry and process that pain in order to move on. Journaling, meditation, and other techniques that help to clear your body and chakras of negative energy can also help you move toward discovering and loving the real you.

When you love yourself, you also realize that it’s time to sever any damaging relationships. You gain the strength to finally divorce or break up with someone who is abusive to you, or confront someone who has hurt you, or look for a job that validates your talents, or start a recovery program for whatever substance you might be abusing. When you love yourself, you also become better at trusting your instincts, so there will be fewer of those negative relationships and unsatisfying jobs in the future.

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be about red roses and heart-shaped boxes of candy—it can be about getting to know yourself so you can learn to love yourself. As long as you continue to berate yourself for not being perfect even though no one is perfect; as long as you spend your time being convinced you are unlovable; as long as you feel that you are not good enough, you will never find love outside yourself because it has to first exist within you.


Meditate Like a Star

Have you ever wondered how celebrities do everything in their lives? How do they have the time and energy to work long hours, strive to have a relationship, and get in time every day at the gym to keep their bodies red carpet ready? Most of all, how do they cope with the stress of their jobs, the ups and downs of their reputations, and the fact that they will soon be replaced? It’s simple… the ones who aren’t drowning in drink or drugs hold themselves together by meditating!

If it’s good enough for Oprah, who runs an entire media empire, it’s probably good enough for us! I’ve always found it truly amazing how big a difference meditation makes in my onw life, and how much more ready I am to tackle my insane schedule after I’ve spent time meditating, going deep into inner realms.

You can read more about celebs and meditation in a blog I’ve just posted on HuffPo


Waiting for Spring?

Punxsutawney Phil—the famous weather-forecasting groundhog in Pennsylvania who appears on February second—has been shown to be about forty percent accurate in predicting whether we’ll get clear skies or six more weeks of winter.