A Poet’s Journey through a Chinese Prison
By Liao Yiwu
In the ’90s, I had an inner opening that shifted my entire worldview. Though I’d not been drawn to poetry for years, I found myself turning to Rumi, Kabir, and Mirabai. But I hungered for poems that spoke to the stuff of the world I was living in as well as the timeless truths of the mystics. Luckily, I discovered the work of Jane Hirshfield.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the ways in which my work as an artist and my work as a yoga teacher are really just exactly the same.
By Sheri Reda
We’re savvy, right? We post our thoughts on blogs, our invitations on Evite, our ideas on Facebook and Pinterest. We text, tweet, and email until we’re surprised when we look up and see a flesh-and-blood face. But my cousin in Portland tells me another kind of posting has sprung up and flowered like mint along the streetscape there.
Yoga is a good thing to have in your pocket.
I’m writing this from the hotel restaurant in Charlotte, North Carolina, where I’ve spent the past week at the National Poetry Slam competition, in which poets from all over the world come together to share their art and compete on world class stages. It’s basically Comicon for poets.
How words can save your life.
One of the reasons we practice yoga, in my opinion, is to become better translators.
Our bodies have a complex language, and they are talking to us all the time. Our guts are receiving signals from our brains that we don’t consciously process, and our bodies will manifest pain and symptoms in response to stress our minds may not have even noticed. The body and the mind have a complex relationship, and the awareness and sensitivity we cultivate in yoga helps us to understand that relationship better.
The poems of Naomi Shihab Nye have an uncanny way of showing up at exactly the right moment to summon you below the surface of your life.
I have a mantra. I say it to myself daily, in many situations, and it helps me immensely in my life. It’s this:
Why am I doing this?
I don’t even think the answer to that question is particularly important. I just think it’s important to ask. Your intentions may change, they may shift and grow, but as long as you have an intention, any answer to why you are doing what you are doing is great.
It’s Spring 2012, and we just had a super full moon: The moon was closer to the earth than it’s been all year. Here in Vancouver, it’s just starting to get warm, though the cherry blossom trees have been undressing for weeks. Spring has always felt like a transitional season for me, but this year is special.