TETON SPIRIT C O N N E C T I O N ISSUE 3 | 2014 | FREE
HORSES AND HEARTSTRINGS
PARENTS AND CHILDREN BOND THROUGH HORSES
CHAKRAS: SACRED ENERGY OF THE BODY AND SOUL AN INTRODUCTION TO THIS ANCIENT SYSTEM
AWAKENING THROUGH NATURE ADVENTURING IN THE MOUNTAINS LEADS TO DEEPER CONNECTIONS
PLUS: UPCOMING SPECIAL EVENTS & RETREATS
Connecting Body, Mind and Spirit in the Tetons
TABLE OF CONTENTS 5
Accepting Unconditional Love
BY SAMANTHA EDDY
BY LAURA GARRARD
HOW TO READ
BY MICHELLE OHMART
BY MIKE BRESSLER
FINDING PEACE, REDUCING STRESS
Transcendental Meditation Technique BY SAMANTHA EDDY
HORSES AND HEARTSTRINGS BY PRISCILLA MARDEN
HEALING POWERS IN WILSON BY JULIE KLING
Astrological Highlights from June-December 2014 BY LYN DALEBOUT
CHAKRAS: A BEGINNING GLANCE BY DAN ABERNATHY
THE POWER OF SOUND AND INTENTION 42
AWAKENING THROUGH NATURE BY THOMAS TURIANO
OVERCOMING OBSTACLES BY TIM WALTHER
AYURVEDA... AN ANSWER TO ANXIETY BY CAMERON BARKER
Three Different Voices on Yoga in Jackson Hole
UPCOMING BODY, MIND & SPIRIT SPECIAL EVENTS 54
GOT COSMIC QUESTIONS? Carol Mann Answers
Teton Spirit Connection Magazine Issue 3 • Summer/Fall 2014 Publisher Teton Spirit Connection Editors Samantha Eddy Julie Kling Art Director Kristen Joy Advertising Sales Julie Kling Michelle Ohmart Contact email@example.com Website www.tetonspirit.com
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Cover photo: Neesha Zollinger in Natrajasana by Andy Bardon www.andybardon.com Table of Contents Image: Poppies, Jamye Chrisman This Page: Tetons silhouette, Jamye Chrisman
Welcome to Teton Spirit Connection!
hen was the last time you lay down on the green grass, your legs and back sinking into the surface of the cool earth and stared at the clouds amidst a sky of blue? Daydreaming. Making pictures in the sky. Watching the day go by. There is freedom in watching those puffy clouds. When we take the time to let ourselves truly connect with what’s floating above and laying below, when we open our senses and open our hearts, we begin to experience the present moment. Around us, the present moment is happening at all times. The wind blows and tickles the soft green leaves of a tree; a bird takes flight; a ladybug climbs a blade of grass; a child laughs. Yes, children seem to have the gift of living in the present. As adults, we seem to fill up our brains with so many details, responsibilities and chatter that we often forget to quiet down — to look, listen and feel what is really happening all around us. This issue of Teton Spirit Connection is about reconnecting with our inner-child and opening our hearts and minds to the here and now. Whether it is through a walk in the woods, a summit of a mountain, a connection with an animal, a yoga pose, or a mind-quieting meditation, this magazine is filled with articles that are about getting in touch with our experiences and ourselves. Here in the Tetons, we are graced with the ever-changing beauty of our environment. The extraordinary landscape and wildlife are constantly drawing our attention to stop, look, take a breath and appreciate a moment. But even in this amazing place, we can easily find ourselves distracted, in a rush, taking our environs for granted. We can get so caught up in the activity of our thoughts that we forget to experience with our feelings.
“I am alarmed when it happens
Can you imagine letting your thoughts go? Can you let yourself sink into the grass and feel the sun and the breeze on your skin? Can you open yourself to truly sensing life happening all around you in a single moment? I dare you. I dare you to slow down, to start appreciating, to let your heart lead your consciousness. Begin with only a minute a day, close your eyes, take a breath, quiet, feel, be open. There is magic in that moment. Try it. You might just begin to find yourself as limitless as that great blue sky above. I’d love to hear your feedback. Contact me at www.tetonspirit.com. While you’re there, you’ll find many more inspirational offerings for connecting your body, mind and spirit.
With love and gratitude,
that I have walked a mile into the woods bodily, without getting there in spirit.” — Henry David Thoreau, Walking
Samantha Strawbridge Eddy Visionary and Editor, Teton Spirit Connection Owner, Spirit: Books, Gifts, Life
How To Read By Mike Bressler Photo By Jamye Chrisman
Set your books down tonight, books of science, pages of genus and species, chapters on history and religion, the lives and passions of others. Can you remember what it was like to be a child? Walk the forest under full moon. Some things are hidden in darkness but others are alive in the soft light. Do not tell me spirits donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t wander in shadows, casting spells. Why do men suddenly become poets, and women are more easily seduced? See the sparkle of two eyes by the bog? Is it a fairy with silver wings making magic potion for young lovers, or a bullfrog hunting bugs? Is it the warm breeze you hear in the trees, or are the pines humming a tune and the wind feel called upon to dance? Would one be less a miracle than the other? When you go back to your books brush dust from the covers with hands that have touched moonlight and read with the knowledge that everything is possible.
CONTRIBUTORS JAMYE CHRISMAN Born and raised in Colorado, Jamye has traveled the world with her camera in hand. Specializing in photography for passionate and adventurous souls, Jamye is best known for capturing weddings in an intimate and fun-loving way. “Photography has been my greatest joy and biggest teacher. It slows me down, brings me to the present and allows me to appreciate and capture the magic of life. Photography connects me with people and captures moments filled with honest emotion and beauty.” www.jamyechrisman.com
Inspired by the many wellness practitioners and offerings in Jackson Hole, Samantha is the visionary and creator of Teton Spirit Connection. A spiritual seeker all her life and local resident since 1991, she opened Spirit: Books, Gifts, Life, a metaphysical book and gift store located in Wilson, WY in 2011. Samantha is also an energetic facilitator for expanding and clearing consciousness and guides and teaches meditation. A mother of three girls, she is reminded daily why she lives here… to be fully present enjoying this exquisite place. www.samanthaeddy.com
JULIE KLING Julie is a freelance journalist who loves to connect community, explore in nature and share ideas worth spreading through TEDxJacksonHole. When she is not writing or planning events for the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival, you can find her on her yoga mat or chasing her two kids around the soccer and lacrosse fields or down the ski slopes. A transplant from Rochester, NY, Julie lived and worked in Boston, Chicago and New York before finding her place here in the Tetons.
PRISCILLA MARDEN Priscilla Marden is the Executive Director and Co-founder of Horse Warriors™, an equine facilitated empowerment and wellness program located in Jackson Hole. She is a lifelong educator who incorporates the arts, the natural world and interactions with animals into her teaching. She lives on a beautiful ranch nestled at the foot of the mountains with her patient husband, 2 adorable Corgis, a feisty cat, a flock of chickens and 14 very gifted and talented horses. www.horsewarriors.com
DAN ABERNATHY Dan Abernathy is an outlaw poet, artist, and purveyor of words, a Reiki Master, junk yard philosopher, and a vagabond searching for a purely hedonistic meaning for the way of life. Abernathy’s devotion to art, writing and travel continues to lead him all over the world to compose and share. “What best describes an artist is the same thing which describes an adventurer,” he writes. “The longing for something intense, grand, revolutionary, new horizons with different natural laws.” Abernathy widely travels giving readings, and workshops as well as displaying his art, both publicly and privately. www.contributechaos.com
ERIN ASHLEE SMITH Inspired by the endless wonders of nature and graffiti, Erin Ashlee focuses on bold colors and strong emotion in her work. Originally from the hills of Arkansas, Erin followed her love for the mountains to Jackson, Wyoming at age nineteen. A self taught painter, she began drawing at an early age before deciding to pursue art professionally. She learned to paint with oils before transitioning to using acrylics and spray paint. When not painting, she spends time in the mountains climbing, skiing, snowboarding and harvesting herbs. www.erinashlee.com
MIKE BRESSLER Mike is a Jackson native, an electrician and works for JH Fire/EMS as an Electrical/Fire inspector. He’s trying to learn meditation and yoga but in truth he’d rather be backpacking in the desert or Winds, skiing or staggering up a peak. But what do you expect from a Wyoming local? His writing has appeared in outdoor, mountaineering, and literary magazines and anthologies including The Mountain Gazette, Wilderness, Stories of the Wild, The Mountain Yodel, Alpinist, Western Horseman, The Jackson Hole Guide, Caldera, Bugle, among others. He has published two books: Saddles to Sushi, a satirical collection of short stories about life in Jackson Hole, and an eBook, The Philosophy Student. He currently writes a column for the Jackson Hole Weekly called Redneck Perspective.
MICHELLE OHMART Michelle is a nature lover, mother and nurturer to her son. Pulled to the Tetons in 1995, she has created a life full of colorful experiences connecting her deeply to the Jackson Hole valley. Passionate about sharing the beauty of our world, Michelle captures loving moments through her photography and creative writings. Her love for of all things wild and mysterious leads her on diverse adventures exploring ecology, mythology, astrology, numerology and expanding her connection to All That Is. Michelle is the owner and operator of Wholesome Green Living, Inc., offering an array of services, which include listening to clients’ desires and creating a clear path for their vision. www.cocochelle.com
THOMAS TURIANO Whether he is climbing, backcountry skiing, packrafting, or hiking, Thomas Turiano is always seeking deeper connections. He is a father of one, a professional guitarist, a founding board member of the American Packrafting Association, and the author of Teton Skiing, Select Peaks of Greater Yellowstone, and Jackson Hole Backcountry Skier’s Guide. www.tetonskiing.com
LAURA GARRARD Laura Garrard, CLT, CMT, NCTMB, is the owner of Attuned Healing Massage & Bodywork. As a massage and lymphatic therapist and Reiki master teacher, Garrard has assisted others with healing for nine years and facilitates the Teton Reiki Circle. Her bodywork therapies also include CranioSacral Therapy, Thai massage, acupressure, aromatherapy, body treatments and complete decongestive therapy for lymphedema treatment. Garrard holds a master’s in journalism. After a 12-year career in publishing, advertising and graphic design, Garrard became a bodyworker and moved to Jackson in 2005. An artist since youth, she has shown her work in exhibits and galleries in Nashville and Jackson. She will exhibit her most recent works inspired by her writings at Jackson’s Intencions Gallery in September. www.attunedhealing.com; 307-690-5308
CAMERON BARKER Cameron Barker has been practicing, studying and sharing her experience in yoga for 19 years. Cameron’s skills are the on-going result of studies in psychology, neuroscience, trauma therapy, somatics, Greenwich Yoga Center Yoga, Bikram Yoga, Khalsa Way Prenatal Yoga, Samudra School and Gina Caputo Yoga, Functional Yoga Therapy, Integrative Yoga Therapy, New World Ayurveda and a committed daily practice. She enjoys working one on one with a therapeutic approach helping students find unique systems of practice to flow fluidly through life’s everevolving landscape. www.jhyogatherapy.com
TIM WALTHER Tim Walther is an expert in team and leadership development and the President of Grand Dynamics International. GDI delivers experiences with impact as a method for facilitating growth for individuals, teams and organizations. Programs emphasize relationships, change, communication, process improvement, and personal growth. Tim is co-author of Seeking True North: The Pathway to Freedom, Beauty and Success. www.granddynamics.com
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Check out this amazing resource for body, mind and spirit offerings in the heart of the Tetons. One site featuring: • A daily calendar of yoga and fitness classes from many different local studios • Wellness educational programs & workshops • Wellness discounts
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As well as a comprehensive directory of wellness offerings. An easy way to find practitioners offering specialized modalities, including acupuncture, cranial sacral, intuition, life coaching, massage, nutrition, reiki, rolfing, shamanism, and much more.
Finding Peace, Reducing Stress Transcendental Meditation Technique By Samantha Eddy
level of experience to access inner peacefulness,” says Lucinda Abbe. Abbe has been practicing TM since 1968 and has been a teacher since 1971. She was in high school taking a class in comparative religion, when she got to a chapter on Eastern spirituality. It immediately resonated with her. “I read that you can have infinite love, happiness, infinite wisdom. It felt to me like a promise.” Abbe, now 64, can’t imagine a day without meditating. TM was first made famous by the Beatles in 1967 and is more popular than ever — on Wall Street, in schools and even in professional sports team locker rooms. Executives in the boardroom and coaches on the field believe that Transcendental Meditation offers them an edge. Others simply appreciate a greater sense of inner peace.
Jamye Chrisman Photo
or twenty-two years, the TM Center of Jackson Hole has been helping locals reduce stress and increase achievement and happiness. Started by Victor and Judy Raymond, the local center is now run by Tom and Roxanne Factor, Lucinda Abbe, and Janet Sluszka. This global non-denominational program was founded in India in 1955 by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi who states “The potential of every human brain is unbounded, infinite. Everyone is equipped with the physical machinery in his brain physiology to experience, through Transcendental Meditation, that level of intelligence which is the ocean of all knowledge, the ocean of all energy, intelligence, and bliss.” “Transcendental Meditation is defined by the word ‘transcending’ which conveys moving beyond the surface
Jerry Seinfeld, Howard Stern, Bridgewater’s Ray Dalio and Dr. Mehmet Oz all speak of the benefits they’ve experienced from Transcendental Meditation. But TM isn’t just for the rich and famous. Catholic priest, Father Gabriel Mejia, talks about how TM is transforming the lives of orphans in Columbia. TM is practiced by U.S. soldiers to help with active-duty stress and PTSD, and by school children here and abroad to improve academic performance and decrease stress. One of the wonderful things about Transcendental Meditation is that it can be learned by and be of benefit to anyone from any walk of life. It is a simple, effortless, enjoyable technique practiced 20 minutes twice a day while sitting comfortably with your eyes closed. It doesn’t require any special ability of concentration or discipline. There is no need to adopt or understand a new philosophy, or change your lifestyle. Even a person with a busy mind can learn TM. “If you can think a thought, you can learn TM,” says Abbe. She believes that TM fits into our corner of western Wyoming perfectly. “I feel that Jackson Hole draws people who love being outdoors, being connected to the natural beauty, the wildlife, the mountains, the silence. This is the same sensibility that allows people to appreciate the inner journey—exploring the qualities of our own inner nature. By taking time each day to meditate, you come to appreciate yourself as easily as you appreciate and admire the beautiful surroundings here in the Tetons.” Because TM has been around so long and has had such tremendous success, the global organization has put forth more
A meta-analysis found that the TM technique is significantly more effective in reducing trait anxiety than procedures of concentration, contemplation and other techniques. Journal of Clinical Psychology 45: 957-974, 1989.
Short- and long-term meditators showed a marked drop in their biological age, as compared to their chronological age, as measured by reduction of blood pressure, improved vision and increased auditory discrimination. International Journal of Neuroscience 16: 53-58, 1982.
Photo courtesy of Lucinda Abbe
Those who practice the TM technique showed more rapid physiological recovery from stress as measured by galvanic skin resistance. Psychosomatic Medicine 35: 341-349, 1973. Charts: from Transcendental Meditation® for Women Brochure, TM.ORG
Left: Lucinda Abbe practicing meditation.
than 600 scientific studies proving the positive effects of the TM technique. It may seem paradoxical that something so simple can have such profound effects. Often people feel that effort must be applied to enjoy positive outcomes. The scientific research on Transcendental Meditation belies this notion. Results of these studies show TM’s wide range of benefits, including:
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• lower risk of heart attack and stroke • reduced cortisol (known as the “stress hormone”) • normalized blood pressure • greater inner calm throughout the day • reduced insomnia • slowing of biological aging • reduced anxiety and depression • improved learning ability and memory Transcendental Meditation is the only meditation technique endorsed by the American Heart Association for its ability to help lower blood pressure. A study of Blue Cross/Blue Shield insured showed a reduction of over 50% in hospitalization for all categories of disease for people practicing TM. Studies on trait anxiety, the psychological measure of the background level of stress that we carry with us, show that TM is twice as effective as relaxation techniques and uniquely effective among meditation techniques in stress reduction. Research on brain function shows that Transcendental Meditation produces coherence between all parts of the brain, a trait associated with increased IQ, creativity, problem-solving ability, and better memory. Janet Sluszka, who has taught TM in Jackson for many years, explains the basis for the scientifically validated benefits. “Since the mind and body are connected, when the mind settles down during TM, the body settles down and we get very deep rest. Deep rest is nature’s antidote to stress.” Research shows that during sleep, the metabolic rate gradually decreases to its lowest level after about six hours. During TM, practitioners achieve that level of rest and even deeper within a few minutes. Adding the deep rest from TM twice a day to the daily routine gives the body a chance to utilize its natural healing mechanisms to restore balance and get rid of deep-rooted stresses that are not relieved by a normal night’s rest. The Transcendental Meditation Center of Jackson Hole offers introductory talks and TM courses of instruction, approximately six hours over four days, at its offices at 350 East Broadway. The Center also offers ongoing support for TM practitioners, including TM checking appointments, group meditations, refresher courses and retreats. “Nothing makes me happy, I am happy. It bubbles up deep within and exudes as an ever-increasing supply wells inside me. I can’t help but smile and share the deep joy,” says Preston Lindsay on the heels of learning Transcendental Meditation. “The effects of TM already bear fruit. I have more patience, more understanding, I am less sensitive to the usual emotional triggers and have an abiding joy and peace that won’t depart.” For more information, visit www.tm.org or call 307.690.4511.
AND HORSES H
By Priscilla Marden
orses can teach us volumes about relationships and healthy social structures. They don’t use words, but they speak loudly and clearly when it comes to telling the truth. And the truth is what we all communicate most effectively when we speak from our hearts. Put a child who weighs 70 pounds in a confined area with a horse who tops out at 1200 lbs. and one of the first things that comes to our adult minds is: DANGER. We start thinking of all the things that could go wrong and we search wildly for prevention mechanisms. But from the child’s point of view the horse is a delightful companion, full of possibilities for fun and excitement.
The child sees that equine partner as a friend and creates a wave of joy that sends a vibration out across the arena. The horse feels that wave, reads the timbre of its intention, and curiously moves forward to make a connection. No fear, no worry, just steps being taken to form a heart-toheart bridge. Enter the Parent: filled with worry, overburdened by the responsibilities of child rearing, besieged by conflicting desires to control outcomes and yet be hands-off, wrestling with feelings of failure about possibly not being the perfect mom or dad. In family dynamics it’s a recipe for mixed signals and misunderstandings.
Jamye Chrisman Photo
Why Horses? The HeartMath™ Institute says: “Horses have what science has identified as a “coherent” heart rhythm (heart rate pattern) which explains why we may “feel better” when we are around them. Studies have found that a coherent heart pattern or HRV is a robust measure of well-being and consistent with emotional states of calm and joy. HeartMath™ has pioneered the research into the energy field of the heart, and recently partnered with a researcher into the effects horses have on the human heart. Their findings include the fact that the heart has a larger electromagnetic field and higher level of intelligence than the brain: A magnetometer can measure the heart’s energy field radiating up to 8 to 10 feet around the human body. While this is certainly significant it is perhaps more impressive that the electromagnetic field projected by the horse’s heart is five times larger than the human one. The horse’s electromagnetic field is also stronger than ours, and can actually directly influence our own heart rhythm.” Horses and humans share some common needs: companionship, social interaction, bonded friend groups, clear leadership, and safety. A horse’s natural state is to be at peace and “get back to grazing” – a horse term equating with a state of calm. They work together in herds to ensure safety and wellbeing. Anxiety triggers a fight or flight response in them,
and when they feel that in their surroundings from other horses or humans, they want to leave. Humans are similar. Worry, anger or hostility, whether outright or suppressed can radiate through our body language as a palpable vibration. It’s as readable as a book, and often unconsciously causes alienation. Although humans design many ways to try to hide the truth of their emotions, others can still pick up on the feelings behind the words. Sometimes they shut down or want to abandon unhealthy relationships altogether. So How Do We Change Those Dynamics? We at Horse Warriors™ believe that horses are masters at reading the underlying truth in social interactions, so we let them be the teachers. One of our favorite activities is the “Heart-to-Heart” liberty exercise, done with parents and kids as a family group exercise. A liberty exercise means that it is undertaken without a halter, rope, saddle or bridle. The horse is free to move around at any time if he chooses. A parent and child team up to work together with one horse, and their directive is to have all three of them stay connected. The parent and child begin by choosing a memory that both of them agree is a ”feel good” moment. Some choose activities they enjoy doing together like camping, cooking, reading aloud, playing games, etc. They focus on the feeling of joy and happiness it brings them and
breathe into their heart centers. As they breathe, they envision a bubble of good feeling between them and extend that bubble outward to include the horse. Once they all connect, the horse is very calm and willing to be with them without being tied. The horse is petted and groomed by the parent-child team. As long as the humans maintain their heart connection and include the horse, he is very happy to stay with them and move around the arena as a small herd. In the Horse Warriors™ liberty exercises the horse has to feel included in order to remain part of the family group. Just like a person, the horse wants to stay connected in order to feel safe. Horses are very social animals and their survival depends on it. They look for leadership. Children look for leadership too. In these activities where force and confinement are eliminated, the fundamentals of good leadership have to be co-created. Conversation that includes checking in with each other, acknowledging when communication has been heard, and sharing positive feedback helps keep the “heart bubble” functioning so the team stays together. Occasionally big emotions come up that may even result in tears. But
Photo courtesy of Priscilla Marden
Mother and daughter leading with love.
guess what? That authentic feeling and connection keeps the horse right there with his human partners. When the connection is from the heart, the horse isn’t threatened at all. And when parents meet that emotional sharing with love and compassion the horse reflects back to them that heartfelt feelings are the best ones to have. Horses naturally seek a state of leadership, and are comfortable following if the leader is clear, fair and consistent. They will even allow humans to take the lead if those rules are followed. Parent-child relationships are similar, especially in the early stages. When children are young, parents are the teachers and leaders. Practicing compassionate, heart-based leadership in our family interactions can help create emotionally safe human relationships. Horses understand boundaries and group dynamics. In the wild herds the strongest leadership doesn’t come from the bellowing stallions. It comes from the older, wiser mares that look out for food and water sources, check for predators, monitor the wellness of individual herd members, and maintain the discipline within the herd. They lead by consistency and are followed because they are
trustworthy. Herd survival depends on their leadership. Effective parenting practices are much the same. High drama undermines stability in horse herds and families, so we help the humans get “back to grazing,” too. The big test in the Heart-to-Heart exercise is the obstacle course. It’s a giant metaphor: how do you navigate life’s obstacles with a heart connection? The arena is set up as a series of obstacles with varying degrees of difficulty. The goal of the activity is to complete a path through all of the obstacles without losing the heart connection and partnership. Partners begin by leaving the herd of other horses and people, and move on to weaving through barrel patterns, walking over low jumps, circling in the “box” and going over tarps. It all flows like magic when the humans consciously connect. But if they get distracted, become so focused on each other that the horse feels excluded, or engage in any kind of conflict that takes them out of their heart space, the horse will turn away. It’s an immediate feedback sign that the energy has shifted. What Happens When it Doesn’t Work? When connections are weak or broken, the horse is the first to say something about it. Horses communicate through their energy fields. They read body language and waves of feeling. If those feelings are life affirming they engage, and if they are life threatening or non-supportive they will disengage. We are much the same. We have “gut” feelings that tell us what is occurring even beneath a person’s words, gut feelings that alert us to danger or reassure us with a sense of safety. Horses remind us about living with a broader definition of “language.” Regardless of which human language we use, the language of the heart trumps any spoken vocabulary. For more information visit www.horsewarriors.com.
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Photo courtesy of Priscilla Marden
Horses are comfortable with authentic feeling. Even if someone is sad and in need of comfort, they are happy to stay part of the horse/human “herd” if the feeling is genuine.
Healing Powers in Wilson By Julie King Photos By Jamye Chrisman
Whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sacred geometry or sheer coincidence, there is a growing web of Body, Mind, Spirit businesses in Wilson. But competition is not a concern, according to Teton Spirit Members who are inviting more and more friends to set up shop in one of the richest zip codes in America. Since 2008, when the Wilson Medical Clinic was built, the 83014 zip code has become a coveted address for ayurvedic practitioners, massage, MELT and cranial sacral therapy to name just a few. Traditional health practitioners support alternative therapies and alternative therapies weave in traditional, Native American and Eastern influences to keep the community healthy and young at heart.
At the base of Teton Pass Wilson Wellness and MELT In the fall of 2013, Laura Simmons and Stacy Fisher opened Wilson Wellness, a studio behind the gas station at the base of Teton Pass. Simmons, a sought after physical therapist who offers hands-on bodywork like CranioSacral therapy, soft tissue and articular balance, and core strength training, finally acted on her desire to move to the Wilson area. She describes her work as full body treatment and maintenance. “I didn’t have doubts about moving here,” Simmons said. “My heart has been drawn here because of the nature of the people and the nature of the geography. My vision is to create a center to help this community grow young.” Now she has a gym with all kinds of props that she shares with Stacy Fisher, the first certified MELT (Myofascial Energetic Length Technique) instructor in Wyoming. Fisher works privately and with groups teaching MELT. She also offers MELT classes through Dancer’s Workshop in Jackson, using body rollers and balls for hand and foot exercises to solve long-term problems, empowering people to self-medicate with core stretches. It is used in conjunction with private physical therapy sessions to improve proprioception, strength and flexibility. At 30, Fisher is half the age of most of her clients. “Every year they are with me, they feel better,” she said. “I’m striving to be more like them. To spend as much time and energy taking care of myself.” Simmons and Fisher were seeing the same client from two different locations in town before they joined forces, but they didn’t know each other yet. “We were working together through our clients,” Fisher said. “Passing messages through their bodies.” It wasn’t until Fisher invited Simmons to come to MELT and a mutual client gifted Fisher a session with Simmons that they discovered
how complementary their work was. With a wellness approach that is half acute and half maintenance, they now share a lot of clients who have tried everything before. “Although we had never met, we could see the positive benefits of each others work through the client,” Fisher said. “Laura has magical hands.” Intuitive Guidance and Light Therapy Kathy Chandler another friend of Simmons offers angel and spiritual readings, reflexology, Reiki and energy work, including a light therapy called Theragem just down the hall from Wilson Wellness. Ever since her near death experience after a head-on car accident 20 years ago, Chandler taps into her inner child and Cherokee Indian roots, which have adopted Lakota shoots to clear energy. Being in Wilson, to her is a gift, because it brings her closer to the people and animals she feels called
to serve. “I love where I am,” she said. “I’ve never been happier. There is such a vortex in Wilson. I was talking to a shaman visiting here and he said he tested the area. We are
Upper image: Laura Simmons (left) and Stacy Fisher, happy to be working together in Wilson. Above: Wilson Wellness training and fitness space.
Upper Left: Kathie Chandler treating a client with light therapy. Above: Scott Mellor Left: Samantha Eddy and Catherine Hunt at Spirit: Books, Gifts, Life.
just off the fault line and right in a healing vortex. I really feel like Wilson is the place of a great heart keeping. We all have the same intent to serve others with all we are. “I like to teach people what I do, to learn how to manifest,” Chandler said. Her suite mate is Scott Mellor who works with quantum physics and offers healing sessions to help flush out neurotoxins. “I work with cellular physics therapy, using auras and the morphogenetic field around people,” he said. “If you turned on a light bulb to create light, it goes through the filament and stops at the wall.” Using the aura to get into the room of the body he places a brass disk on chakras or meridians to re-educate cells. “Energy is light and light is information. They are all interchangeable.” The light information goes down to the cellular level within the body to detect corruption in information your body is feeding itself. “That is often where problems begin,” he said. When the disk spins counterclockwise, it indicates a blockage. His work is to change the direction to clockwise.
He came to this work after studying with his father, Stephen Mellor, a chiropractor and naturopath in Idaho who offers nutrition, herbology, and emotional tools for his patients. “They are clients for me and patients for him,” Mellor said. Central Wilson Metaphysical & Meditation Spirit: Books, Gifts, Life is a metaphysical book and gift store located in the Fish Creek Center next to Wilson BackCountry Sports and Pearl Street Bagels. A cheery little shop filled with words of wisdom, energetic gifts and totems for all ages, it opened on the winter solstice in 2011. It has since become a resource for spiritual seekers and professionals alike. The store is approached on a weekly basis by healers and intuitives coming through town to do workshops, educational programs and offer private sessions in its cozy back room. Owner and Teton Spirit Connection publisher, Samantha Strawbridge Eddy also offers guided meditations, group and private sessions for clearing emotional blocks and limiting belief systems. Spirit is “connecting the dots in Wilson” said Eddy. “Wilson is this little, tiny enclave at the base of Teton Pass. But there is a tremendous energy center here Facing Image: Cameron Barker doing Aerial Yoga in her Wilson studio.
preventative health care options in Wilson. “The work scene is nice and mellow, and the community is really open to the healing arts,” she said. “I feel like the people here really understand me and what I’m looking to do.” In addition to her almost 20 years of yoga experience, Barker is an allopathic and ayurvedic practitioner who works with the elements and offers nutritional and lifestyle advice through breath, mantra, meditation and aromatherapy.
Above: Hayden Hilke doing myofascial bodywork on a client.
that has been recognized since the time Native American Indians were summering in this area. ” Therapy, Men’s Circle Evan Daily, a licensed marriage and family therapist with training in spiritual psychology who has created a stronghold for men, sees clients in his creekside office behind Spirit. Having been there for 14 years, he is a veteran of the Fish Creek Center where he says you get the body, mind, spirit treatment all in one building. His men’s circle, which meets at Teton Healing Arts in town once a month, requires accountability, integrity and telling the truth about yourself. It has a self described “edge to it.” “Men come in kicking and screaming, but 10 years later they are fully into it,” he said. The only requirement is that men do a globally recognized weekend warrior training. The next one is scheduled for August 21 (See the Special Events Calendar on page 50 for details).
East of Fish Creek On the east side of Fish Creek in the twin building next to Wilson Medical resides Peak Physical Therapy and JH Yoga Therapy. Wilson Medical is a traditional practice for internal medicine by Mike Menolascino and other professionals affiliated with St. Johns Medical Center. Upstairs in that same building is the office of Dr. Mark Menolascino, the area’s only MD offering Integrative Medicine. And across the hall from JH Yoga Therapy is the travel medicine office for Dr. David Shlim, who also teaches buddhist philosophy. Yoga & Ayurveda JH Yoga Therapy owner Cameron Barker offers individual and small group yoga therapy classes. She also reads Jyotish astrology, an Eastern practice that uses pulse and tongue diagnosis and recommends herbs to balance subtle energies in the body that are out of balance. After working with many of the doctors in her building complex through the wellness festival, Cameron is excited to expand the
Physical Therapy Barker was lured to Wilson by Peak Physical Therapist Hayden Hilke as well as her desire to be near Simmons and Fisher at Wilson Wellness. Hilke moved downstairs mid 2013 to expand her space, opening up a beautiful upstairs corner office for Barker to set up her ayurveda and yoga shop. Hilke offers myofascial bodywork for sports-specific rehabilitation. “My specialty is back pain,” she said. Having healed herself from a lumbar fusion operation after hitting a tree on her snowboard, Hilke knows what it takes to come back from a traumatic injury. She has been in Wilson for a more than 16 months now and is happy that she played a small role in convincing her friends to join her and set up their practices nearby. “I’ve been shocked at how many young people live in Wilson and how many people take good care of themselves. Physical therapy is the first line of attack for how to age more gracefully.” It seems as if all of the advice on the bookshelves at Spirit is floating off the pages and into the air of this community. “There is something energetically special about this location here at the base of Teton Pass, this opening here in the midst of this wall of mountains,” said Samantha Eddy. Maybe, as Simmons of Wilson Wellness said, it is as simple as
looking out your window and watching a moose walk by. “Wilson, in and of itself speaks of wellness.” “I absolutely feel like I’m on a grid,” Barker said. “We are primed to start a new mentality; let go of the fear of scarcity and create a wellness destination…I think this is the time.”
B F D G
n Squ are
Fish Creek Rd
HHR Ranch Rd
Teton Pass Hwy 22
SERVICES A Cameron Barker www.jhyogatherapy.com
E Hayden Hilke www.peakptjackson.com
B Kathy Chandler 307-413-1349
F Scott Mellor 208-390-4782
C Evan Daily www.evandaily.com 307-732-3230
G Laura Simmons www.laurapt.com 307-690-5558
D Stacy Fisher www.fisherfitness.com 307-733-6398
H Spirit: Books, Gifts, Life www.spiritjh.com 307-733-3382
STAR WEATHER June to December 2014 from Sidereal Astrologer Lyn Dalebout
By early summer, with the completion of both the Mars and Saturn retrograde periods, get ready for rapid shifts in your outer world that were conceived internally this past winter. We will also collectively navigate the 6th of 7 squares of revolutionary Uranus to transformational Pluto. This long-range transit began in June 2012 and will complete in March 2015. This aspect mirrors the chaos of Earth and climate shifts, accelerated awakening, and the remaking of all aspects of society. May you feel grateful you are alive to help make it happen.
JUNE 7-JULY 1
Mercury Goes Retrograde. When Mercury ~ planetary ruler of technology, communications, vehicles, appliances, travel ~ puts the brakes on for 3 weeks, you may experience a breakdown, slowdown, delay in any of the above arenas. Even though Mercury will be transiting sidereal gregarious Gemini, consider taking a break from the never ending news feed of social media. This is a time to self reflect and catch your breath.
Saturn Goes Direct. You may experience a major turning point in your life, like giving birth to something you’ve been conjuring up since Saturn went retrograde last March 2. A weight is being lifted from your shoulders. Since Saturn is in Libra, the sign linked to partnerships, both personal and professional, align in alliances based in joy, creativity, harmony, all qualities of Libra.
Uranus Turns Retrograde. Uranus is often associated with accidents, kundalini awakenings, revolutions, genius and eccentric behaviors. Today some kind of surprise, even upheaval might erupt in your life that forces you to reexamine the choices you’ve made. Embrace the gift of the experimentation. It’s time to be an explorer again.
Sun Conjunct Jupiter. It’s an astrological cornucopia today. The two largest members of our solar system join forces today creating a heavenly, joyful, abundant Field of energy. Jupiter brings optimism and confidence. They are meeting up in Cancer, a sign linked to family, caregiving, remembering one’s history and soul connections. Spend it with your beloveds.
Mars Square Jupiter. This aspect will tend to make you edgy, direct, even combative. Both planets are in astrological signs governing our family patterns and relational commitments. That’s where the fiery aspect of this alignment might ignite. Tread carefully today. Mars Conjunct Saturn. This potent aspect happens once every two years. Saturn rules discipline, and our ability to focus and commit. Mars rules passion, courage, and governs what actions we want to take next. You can feel extremely determined or inordinately frustrated today. Lift weights, climb a mountain. Time to set your next two year plan in motion.
Pluto Turns Direct. Pluto rules power, willfulness, and oversees the portals of both birth and death. Whenever Pluto shifts directions, we experience major historical turning points in our collective field. Personally you may feel very driven and confident to move forward with your next step. Seize the day!
Jupiter Trine Uranus. When these two planets align in a supportive lucky trine, inventiveness and innovation dominate the day. Doors of opportunity appear magically and open easily. Yet take note: we really do make our own luck. Honor how hard and long you have worked via your intentions and goal setting to get you to this moment.
Jupiter Goes Retrograde. You may have been imagining a new dream for your life in recent months. Now’s the time to realize what you might need to release to fulfill your dream of expansion by time Jupiter turns direct on April 8, 2015. Uranus Square Pluto. We are heading into the home stretch with this historical transformational aspect. Today marks the 6th of 7 tense squares of these two slow moving planets that always bring breakdown and breakthrough, internal and external restructuring to all of Earth’s inhabitants.
MOON CALENDAR New Moon June 27
Full Moon Oct 8
Full Moon July 12
New Moon Oct 23
New Moon July 26
Full Moon Nov 6
Full Moon August 10
New Moon Nov 22
New Moon August 25
Full Moon Dec 6
Full Moon September 8
New Moon Dec 21
New Moon September 23
Mercury Goes Retrograde. Once again Mercury ~ ruler of our minds ~ takes a three week break from pushing us forward and says instead “let’s pause and reflect for a bit”. Since this cycle will span both Virgo and Libra, issues concerning health and relationships will undergo re-evaluation.
Mars Activation of Uranus Square Pluto. This is a risky time. This aspect is the definition of extreme willfulness, power grabs, and also manifests as the determination to take risks and confront what must shift within oneself and in our world.
Neptune Turns Direct. Neptune rules artistic, spiritual and romantic longings. Merge blissfully today with your most expansive Self and with the larger world around you.
Lyn Dalebout is a poet, educator, biologist, sidereal astrologer, Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner who has lived in the Grand Tetons Wyoming for more than 35 years. As a sidereal astrologer, Lyn has developed a unique cutting edge way of understanding the benefit and wisdom of utilizing the astronomical real-time star alignments in working with one’s astrological chart. www.earthwordskyword.com
Chakras A Beginning Glance By Dan Abernathy Artwork By Erin Ashlee Smith In today’s society is it hard to find someone that has not heard of the chakras. Though too often, it stops there. Learning the chakras is a life long study, but one that will truly enhance the person that you are. Chakras are not a new age fad, or trend, but rather an ancient Eastern wellness principle based upon seven energy centers that govern our organs physically, emotionally and spiritually together as a system, yet independent of each other. In the Hindu tradition, chakras are outlets in the human body, major hubs of veins, arteries and nerves, that are the center of all “prana,” life forces and vital energy. The name chakra derives from the Sanskrit word for wheel or spinning. In a yogic context and translation, chakra means vortex. The earliest mention in the Hindu culture of the term “chakra,” comes from the Vedas, the four holy books of the Hindus that date back to before 2,500 BC, when the God Vishnu is described as descending to earth carrying a chakra, a lotus flower, a club and a conch shell. We have seven main chakras, the Root, the Sacral, the Solar Plexus, the Heart, the Throat, the Brow, or Third Eye, and the Crown. Each one is associated to our being on mulitple levels: physical, emotional, and spiritual. On the physical level each chakra governs a main organ or gland, which is then connected to other body parts that resonate the same frequency. Every organ, gland and body system is connected to a chakra, and each chakra is connected to a color vibrational frequency. For example, the Heart chakra governs the thymus gland. It is also in charge of the functioning of the heart, lungs, chest and circulatory system. The heart chakra resonates to the color green. The seven chakras are aligned along the spinal column. Each chakra is not only associated with our physical health but is also connected to our emotional, mental and belief system and therefore experiences turbulence, shifting it out of alignment. To help balance a chakra we need to bring in
that chakra’s color and vibration, which resonate at the same frequency. To begin to understand the chakra system, it is important to acknowledge the aura and the language of the colors expressed through it. The Ancients of the East, who understood the importance of the chakra system, agreed that beyond the material form of the body is a pulsating dynamic field of energy. The concept of an “aura,” is depicted in early paintings as a halo of bright light around the physical self. Pioneering experts in the United States and China have ascertained that the bioelectrono magnetic field, or aura of every living thing, is no longer a mystical concept. Using technology developed from the NASA space program in the United States, neurophysiologist and psychologist Doctor Valerie V. Hunt, has scientifically verified that there are two primary electrical systems in the physical body. The first is the alternating electrical current of the nervous system and the second is a continuous, electromagnetic radiation coming off our atoms, which allows for an energy exchange between individuals and their environment. Every human has an energy field that surrounds them like a cloak and is accessed from a universal pool known as the Universal Life Force, Prana, or Chi. The energy is drawn into the body through each chakra. Experts agree that this field of radiation, which we call the aura, in combination with our DNA, makes up our integrated genetic material. The Ancients believed that the aura embraces the key to a person’s physical, mental,
The 7 Chakras 1ST CHAKRA, THE ROOT Sanskirt Name: Muladhura Meaning: Root or Support Location: Base of spine, between anus and genitals Symbol: Four red petals, around a square containing downward-pointing triangle Associated Color: Red Element: Earth Ruling Planet: Saturn Emotional Dysfunctions: Mental lethargy, unfocused mind, incapable of stillness, difficulty achieving goals Physical Dysfunctions: Osteoarthritis Associated Body Part: Bones, skeletal structure Glandular Connection: Adrenals Archetypes: Functional – Earth Mother, Dysfunctional – Victim
emotional and spiritual states. Scientists working in the fields of energy concur, saying the vibrating energy fields are similar to a magnetic tape recorder, which stores coded information from the past, present and future health of the body. By sustaining an open and flowing channel of energy through our chakras and freeing ourselves of the mental and emotional traumas that can cause blockage, we can avert the onset of many physical diseases. When one part of a chakra center is out of sync—physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually—it can affect the entire system. An out of balance chakra commonly means that it is overactive, underactive, or possibly congested. There is much yet to be understood about the human psyche and its intricate systems. Medical science has proven that toxins, chemical enhancements in our food and other poor environmental factors influence our body’s well being. It is also known that traditional health systems are unable to naturally or totally alleviate symptoms or cure our problems. Negative thoughts and emotions also have significant impact. Endless forms of “pollution” can cause chakra imbalances to manifest, which may affect us on a physical level. It is vital to understand that, “all of you,” has to be addressed in order to keep all of you functioning properly. Understanding your energetic system, your chakra system, is yet another integral aspect toward living life at the optimum level. From The Book of Chakra Healing by Liz Simpson
Associated Animal: Elephant Societal Association: Tribal power, family identity Sacramental Association: Baptism Associated Sense: Smell Foods: Proteins, meats Incense/Oils: Cedar wood, Patchouli, Myrrh, Musk, Lavender Crystals: Agate, Bloodstone, Tigers eye, Garnet, Ruby, Hematite, Onyx, Rose Quartz, Smoky Quartz Goals: Physical health & fitness, grounding, stability, security Life Lesson: Standing up for oneself Main Issue: Survival, physical needs Development Age: 1-8 Years
2ND CHAKRA, THE SACRAL Sanskirt Name: Svadhisthana Meaning: Sweetness Location: Lower abdomen, between navel & genitals Symbol: Six orange-red petals containing a second lotus flower and a crescent moon. Within the moon lies the “makara,” a fishtailed alligator with coiled tail Associated Color: Orange Element: Water Ruling Planet: Pluto Emotional Dysfunctions: Unbalanced sex drive, instability, feelings of isolation Physical Dysfunctions: Impotence, frigidity, bladder & prostate problems, lower back pain Associated Body Part: Sex Organs, bladder, circulatory system, prostate, womb Glandular Connection: Ovaries, testes Archetypes: Functional – Sovereign, Dysfunctional – Martyr Associated Animal: Fish tailed alligator Societal Association: Partnerships Sacramental Association: Communion Associated Sense: Taste Foods: Liquids Incense/Oils: Jasmine, Rose, Sandalwood Crystals: Citrine, Carnelian, Golden Topaz Goals: Allowing pleasure, creative expression Life Lesson: Uncovering motivations influencing choices based on condition Main Issue: Emotional balance, sexuality Development Age: 8-14 Years
3RD CHAKRA, THE SOLAR PLEXUS Sanskirt Name: Manipura Meaning: Lustrous gem Location: Between naval and base of sternum Symbol: A ten petal lotus flower containing a downward pointing triangle surrounded by three T-shaped svasitkas, or Hindu symbols of fire Associated Color: Yellow Element: Fire Ruling Planet: Mars, Sun Emotional Dysfunctions: Need to be in control, oversensitive to criticism, addictive personality, aggressiveness, and low self-esteem Physical Dysfunctions: Stomach ulcers, fatigue, weight around stomach, allergies, diabetes Associated Body Part: Digestive system, muscles Glandular Connection: Pancreas, adrenals Archetypes: Functional – Spiritual Warrior, Dysfunctional – Drudge Associated Animal: Ram Societal Association: Uniqueness & individuality Sacramental Association: Confirmation Associated Sense: Sight Foods: Complex carbohydrates, starches Incense/Oils: Vetivert, Rose, Bergamot, Ylang-ylang, Cinnamon, Carnation Crystals: Yellow Citrine, Topaz, Aventurine Quartz, Sunstone Goals: Purpose, effectiveness, endurance, self-respect Life Lesson: Self-esteem/self-confidence, the courage to take risk, to be Main Issue: Personal power, self will Development Age: 14-21 Years
4TH CHAKRA, THE HEART
5TH CHAKRA, THE THROAT
Sanskirt Name: Anhata Meaning: Sound that is made without any two things striking. Location: Center of chest Symbol: Lotus of 12 petals containing two intersecting circles that make up a 6-point star demonstrating the perfect balance between the downward pointing spirit descending toward matter, and the upward pointing matter rising toward spirit Associated Color: Green Element: Air Ruling Planet: Venus Emotional Dysfunctions: Co-dependency, melancholia, fears concerning loneliness, commitment or betrayal Physical Dysfunctions: Shallow breathing, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer Associated Body Part: Heart, chest, lungs, circulation Glandular Connection: Thymus Archetypes: Functional – Lover, Dysfunctional – Performer Associated Animal: Gazelle, antelope Societal Association: Unconditional acceptance of others Sacramental Association: Marriage Associated Sense: Touch Foods: Vegetables Incense/Oils: Rose, Bergamot, Melissa Crystals: Watermelon Tourmaline, Rose Quartz, Emerald, Green Calcite, Jade, Azurite, Aventurine Quartz, Malachite, Moonstone Goals: Balance, compassion, self-acceptance Life Lesson: Forgiveness and compassion for oneself and others Main Issue: Beliefs about love and relationships Development Age: 21-28 Years
Sanskirt Name: Vishuddha Meaning: Purification Location: Centrally, at base of neck Symbol: Lotus of 16 petals containing a downward pointing triangle within, which is a circle representing the full moon Associated Color: Blue Element: Ether Ruling Planet: Mercury Emotional Dysfunctions: Perfectionism, inability to express emotions, blocked creativity Physical Dysfunctions: Sore throats, neck ache, thyroid problems, hearing problems, tinnitus, asthma Associated Body Part: Throat, ears, nose, teeth, mouth, neck Glandular Connection: Thyroid, parathyroid Archetypes: Functional – Communicator, Dysfunctional – Masked Self Associated Animal: Elephant, Bull Societal Association: Personal Sacramental Association: Confession Associated Sense: Sound, Healing Foods: Fruit Incense/Oils: Chamomile, Myrrh Crystals: Turquoise, Lapis, Aquamarine, Agate, Celestine, Sodalite, Sapphire Goals: Harmony with others, self-knowledge, creativity Life Lesson: The power of choice, personal expression Main Issue: Communication, self-expression Development Age: 28-35 Years
6TH CHAKRA, THE BROW
7TH CHAKRA, THE CROWN
Sanskirt Name: Ajna Meaning: To perceive, to know Location: Above and between eyebrows Symbol: Lotus with 2 large petals on either side, resembling eyes or wings, around a circle containing a downward pointed triangle Associated Color: Indigo Element: Light, telepathic energy Ruling Planet: Neptune, Jupiter Emotional Dysfunctions: Nightmares, learning difficulties, hallucinations Physical Dysfunctions: Headaches, poor vision, neurological disturbances, glaucoma Associated Body Part: Eyes, base of scull Glandular Connection: Pituitary Archetypes: Functional – Psychic, Dysfunctional – Rationalist Associated Animal: None Societal Association: None Sacramental Association: Ordination Associated Sense: Sixth sense Foods: None Incense/Oils: Hyacinth, Violet, Rose Geranium Crystals: Amethyst, Purple Apatite, Azurite, Calcite, Sapphire, Fluorite, Lapis Lazuli Goals: Ability to see with more that just the eyes. Life Lesson: Emotional intelligence Main Issue: Intuition, wisdom Development Age: Any
Sanskirt Name: Sahasrara Meaning: Thousand fold Location: Crown of the head Symbol: The 1000 petal lotus flower Associated Color: Violet Element: Thought, cosmic energy Ruling Planet: Uranus Emotional Dysfunctions: Depression, obsessive thinking, confusion. Physical Dysfunctions: Sensitivity to pollution, chronic exhaustion, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s Associated Body Part: Upper scull, cerebral cortex, skin Glandular Connection: Pineal Archetypes: Functional – Guru, Dysfunctional – Egocentric Associated Animal: None Societal Association: None Sacramental Association: Extreme unction Associated Sense: Beyond Self Foods: None - fasting Incense/Oils: Lavender, Frankincense, Rosewood Crystals: Clear Quartz, Amethyst, Diamond, White Jade, White Tourmaline, Snowy Quartz, Herkimer Diamond Goals: Expanded consciousness Life Lesson: Selflessness Main Issue: Spirituality, selflessness Development Age: Any
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TRUE JOY: Accepting Unconditional Love By Laura Garrard
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Their decisions reflect the confidence that comes from being loved. Clients walk into my office with an increased, more grounded energy and exuberance, lilts in their steps. Their countenances appear lighter and relaxed, with their facial expressions and postures less drawn and more open. They begin to smile more easily and genuinely. They also express that they are feeling better and that they are happier as they cultivate opportunities in their lives. I am honored to assist them with the energetic and physical shifts that occur with their inner transitions. Personally, my mind understood unconditional love exists for all of us, but I admit that I did not fully and confidently accept this type of love within until I saw the transformation in my clients. As their acceptance of eternal love grew, and they let go of feelings of unworthiness, I experienced the reality of eternal love for myself. It became difficult to refute repeated evidence of
Jamye Chrisman Photo
o you know that you are completely loved? I am not referring to being loved by others or even yourself. I am referring to eternal love that is offered freely and is our rightful inheritance. Right now, you are loved fully. As an energy and bodywork practitioner, I often learn from my sessions with clients. A common challenge as clients work to heal their mental, emotional and physical selves is accepting that they are fully loved, right now, just as they are. Realizing it or not, they may hold insecurity or feelings of unworthiness deep within. Outwardly some clients appear fulfilled, strong, even joyful. Still, feelings of inadequacy within their cores diminish their full light and potential. It may take time for the acceptance of eternal love to come, unfolding and expanding in a subtle â&#x20AC;&#x153;ah-ha.â&#x20AC;? When it does, they begin to flourish as never before.
“Close both eyes; see with the other one. Then we are no longer saddled by the burden of our persistent judgments, our ceaseless withholding, our constant exclusion. Our sphere has widened and we find ourselves, quite unexpectedly, in a new expansive location, in a place of endless acceptance and infinite love.”
eternal love’s existence for us all, including me. Many of our struggles evolve from deeply rooted insecure feelings, which grasp externally for reassurance. However, no matter what positive messages we receive, no matter what we achieve, our cores may remain unchanged. We feel unworthy, not good enough and unloved. The idea to “love yourself” isn’t sufficient. I suggest that loving oneself is an important but secondary action that stems from acceptance—acceptance that we are already fully loved for who we are no matter our imperfections or mistakes. The acceptance of unconditional love is a deep shift for most. It’s not cerebral really. It’s a heart and soul matter. Our brains may understand the concept that we are perfect creations on paths of purpose, but until we receive the truth about being fully loved and let go of the sad, shrinking self within—let go of the lie that we are unworthy and must keep searching outwardly for love,
acceptance, knowledge and perfection—we cannot evolve and contribute our given gifts as we are meant to do. We are distracted by our mistakes, and we waste time and energy. I believe self-worth cannot depend on the opinions of self or from others and it is not within our control to affect or earn; ultimately, it must depend on unconditional love. We are all worthy, utterly loved and born on the same playing field. For more than 20 years, Gregory Boyle has run a successful gang-intervention program in Los Angeles. In his award-winning nonfiction Tattoos on the Heart, Boyle writes: “Compassion is always, at its most authentic, about a shift from the cramped world of self-preoccupation into a more expansive place of fellowship, of true kinship.” In our humanness, however, we may cling to disapproval and keep doing and doing. My Thai massage teacher, Pichest Boonthumme, says we Americans “do and do and
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do,” while carrying heavy “backpacks” or personal burdens. We carry chips on our shoulders and take temporary escapes that provide Band-Aid healing. Our guts tend to be tight, protecting “the child” within: the shameful child or the hurt child. Yet, what really releases and cultivates our wonderful assets is freeing the inner hopeful child who already knows how to love and let go of outward responses. The fully loved child within easily expresses joy, courageously progresses and shines light in the world. With the loved child within, we judge others less. If expectations of others are too high, due to our own feelings of inadequacy, of course others will fall short. Taking things less personally not only allows us to love others more freely, but it also permits us to receive love more readily. Secure, we no longer spend time and energy seeking assurance in others or accomplishments. We can then use our energy for more important matters, mainly loving and evolving into our best selves, full of light and love, and sharing our gifts with the world without need for return on our investments. Boyle writes, “Close both eyes; see with the other one. Then we are no longer saddled by the burden of our persistent judgments, our ceaseless withholding, our constant exclusion. Our sphere has widened, and we find ourselves, quite unexpectedly, in a new expansive location, in a place of endless acceptance and infinite love.” With love as the core experience, responses to life become less tedious. We are less triggered and blindsided by external forces and more confident to express our vulnerabilities without creating walls or armor to protect sensitive hearts. We ebb and flow gently, and temporary feelings such as sadness and happiness have less impact on self-worth. Life seems easier and less contingent on outcomes. The bigger picture remains in view and puts into perspective life’s challenges. Human imperfections are forgiven and accepted. As we understand that we are fully loved, our eyes open more broadly. We experience people and situations as true observers. And when we discern closely, we see our own struggles in others’ lives and don’t feel alone in ours. We understand that a confusing action on someone else’s part may represent an internal struggle and a need for love. When life brings challenges, sometimes unconditional love is difficult to access. In these times, we can assist and remind each other of this deep love. It’s there, no matter what happens to us and our loved ones. It’s at our core and connects us, as Boyle suggests, in a broader and true kinship. As more of us fully accept this ever-presence of unconditional love, it’s easier for others to recognize and feel it and, ultimately, find their way to joy. We are united in unconditional love, which doesn’t seek to measure unworthiness. Though love may ultimately shape you into your best self, you are loved just as you are, right now. Take a deep breath, accept your inheritance, and let eternal love flow through you and from you in all that you feel and do. It’s there ever waiting, ready to assist you in living, and in forgiving. Let it sustain you, from now into forever.
MEDITATION Sit comfortably in quiet solitude, and place your hands on your belly. Pay attention to your thoughts and feelings as you consider the question: Am I fully loved for who I am, no matter my faults, circumstances or mistakes?
Meditation: Here is an exercise to take you away from your thinking self and to bring your attention to your feelings deep within your core. On an average day (not on a day that is particularly stellar or challenging), find a quiet, safe place and sit comfortably. Take some deep breaths, close your eyes and place your hands on your belly. Let your gut feelings float forward toward your hands. In your mind, ask yourself with openness: Do I feel that I am unconditionally loved for who I am now—completely loved with my present and past choices, with my positive and negative traits—and for what I have and don’t have in my life? Take some additional deep breaths and wait. Be honest. How are you feeling, emotionally and physically?
With this question in mind, does your belly feel relaxed, open or warm? Does an inward joy or sense of peace and security fill you, releasing bodily and mental tension? Do you feel whole or connected in this quiet time with yourself? Or, does your belly tighten? Do you feel uneasy, doubtful or even silly? Do your thoughts dwell on relationships and circumstances? Are you becoming impatient or upset, or feeling emotionally exhausted, misunderstood or taken for granted? If you are feeling sad, insignificant, tense or shut down, or your thoughts focus on certain events or on changes you need to make, perhaps you haven’t yet accepted that you are unconditionally loved. Above: In this acrylic painting, Garrard expresses what it feels like to hold unconditional love deep within. Notice how open and warm the belly is, and the heart fully expresses itself, radiating loving energy. Energy strongly flows through the mind-body-spirit. Left: Here Garrard portrays an internal experience of feeling insecure and not good enough. The body is more closed off, tense. Darkness shadows the mind and causes physical imbalance; the heart’s expression is weak and the energetic connection wavers.
The Power of Sound and Intention By Michelle Ohmart Photos By Jamye Chrisman
o you take the time to listen, to receive and to perceive the gifts descending upon us at all times? It seems to be human nature to get caught up in the details of life as well as the challenges, but truly, all is well. Love and grace surround us always. If we listen, we can receive and perceive the magic and love gifted to us at any moment. One of the ways to connect to this abundant grace is through the healing power of sound. Music connects us all. Certain tones and notes can take us deeper into the infinite realms within ourselves and outside through dimensions of space, raising our vibrational frequency to foster creativity and authenticity. I vividly remember my first experience with crystal sound bowls. It was a special day, December 21, 2012, a day that was regarded as the end-date of a 5,126 year long cycle known as the Mayan Calendar. In honor of this extraordinary winter solstice, Diana Walter, a local astrologer and counselor, put together a special event called Five Wise Women at the Old Wilson Schoolhouse. The place was packed and full of energy and excitement. Daniela Botur opened the program with a sacred crystal bowl ceremony. The very first sound immediately rooted me to the earth to the point that I could not, nor did I want to, move my feet. As Daniela continued to intuitively raise the vibration in all of us, I felt the sensation move spirally up my chakras and expand my heart into a space of infinite love while being connected to everything. It was truly a beautiful experience. As a group, the energy was clear and intentional – I could feel we were all operating on a higher vibrational frequency. This incredible feeling has stayed with me ever since that day. Six months later, Daniela Botur and Frank Marinaro opened Intencións Gallery and Studio in downtown Jackson on the corner of Broadway and Millward. Intencións is a soulful, high vibrational healing arts gallery dedicated to raising consciousness with intention. “Intention is the starting point of every dream. It is the
creative power that fulfills all of our needs. Everything that happens in the Universe begins with Intentions.” —Deepak Chopra The gallery is a lovely, bright space, free of clutter. Each white wall in the front room highlights intentional and mind expanding art. As I went deeper into the studio, I experienced the sacred quality of the space. Filled with crystal sound bowls, aromatherapy and flower essences, it is clearly a sanctuary designed to enhance wellbeing. All of these tools resonate a high vibration and restore balance to support our subtle fields of energy. Daniela and Frank have created the space at Intencións for all to experience. They share this message: “There is a space to come to here in Jackson that provides not only the unique experience of listening to crystal sound bowls but of receiving these vibrations that can bring harmony, a sense of wellbeing to pretty much anyone willing to receive. Step out of your regular boundaries and try something new. We feel like everyone that walks in here will walk away with a different perspective of the power of sound.” Daniela has always been a creator of sacred spaces. As an intuitive healer, she holds circles and honors the divine feminine. While many women are drawn to her ceremonies, there is an increasing number of men who frequent her twice weekly sound meditations. Every Tuesday and Thursday Daniela offers a soothing harmony from her crystal sound bowls from noon to 1pm. On Wednesdays, she offers an evening meditation at 5pm. These relaxing one hour meditations offer lavender eye pillows, flower essences and aromatherapy to balance the energetic body in a space of love, joy and gratitude. “I am a woman inspired to live to my highest potential through expressing my joy, love and importance of our interconnection through my art and wanting to bring people together,” Daniela said. “I am a weaver of dreams. And my loom is spiritual.” Frank supports the spiritual work Daniela creates every
Facing image: Sacred sound studio in Intencions’ back room.
Upper Left: Frank Marinaro and Daniela Botur in the front gallery. Upper Right: Daniela’s seat and sound bowls. Lower Left: Participants enjoy a relaxing midday crystal sound bowl meditiation. Lower Left: Meditations include intentional oracle cards and eye pillows.
day. “I built a container for Daniela to practice and share her high vibrational work whether it’s through her jewelry, sound therapy, aromatherapy, or in a circle of women,” Frank said. “I am here to uplift and uphold my beloved.” Intencións is expanding its mission as a sacred sound studio by bringing Kirtan music to Jackson Hole. Kirtan is a form of chanting mantra, an ancient Indian practice that is at the core of bhakti yoga, the yoga of devotion. It is a means of transforming consciousness and creating a shamanic doorway between worlds, invoking beings of higher consciousness and evoking our own divinity. As yoga practices expand across the West, the interest in the ancient practice of kirtan is growing as well. The practice of kirtan promotes community, peace and conscious living. Daniela and Frank hold a vision of hosting small kirtan gatherings at Intencións, evolving into larger events and
expanding into an annual kirtan festival where people can celebrate the body, mind and spirit community with higher intentional consciousness. They believe that “kirtan will bring all the yoga communities together to meet in a mission of sound, vibration and mantra. It’s very aligned with what Intencións is already doing—a very intentional practice that will take the efforts of our holistic community to create a real vision,” said Frank. Intencións is a fresh and beautiful venue for exploring the very deep and extraordinary power of sound and its tremendous healing potential. By anchoring this method of conscious vibration and heart expansion it is opening us up to infinite possibilities. Mitchell L. Gaynor, M.D. states in The Healing Power of Sound that Pythagoras, the Godfather of Sound Medicine, spoke of how sound functions in relationship to the universe. “Each celestial body,” he said, “in fact each and every atom, produces a particular sound on account of its movement, its rhythm or vibration. All these sounds and vibrations form a universal harmony in which each element, while having its own function and character, contributes to the whole.” Stay tuned to upcoming happenings at: www.intencions.com
through Nature By Thomas Turiano
t was a cold, clear morning in April, and I awoke feeling pretty down. I won’t go into the details of why, but after wallowing around the house dabbling half-heartedly into a handful of unfinished projects, I realized that a dark cloud had settled heavily around me. Captain Ego was in full control, and I had been listening to his terrible lies. I soon realized that unless I changed something, I was destined for wasting a day in that torturous limbo between action and inaction, enthusiasm and boredom. There were things to do on my list, but I wasn’t sure why those things were even on the list in the first place. Just then, I put on a Greg Brown album and tuned right into one of my favorite lines in the song “Every Street in Town:” “We spent all our time outside, because people say small things when they stay too long in little rooms.” Greg Brown’s words rang through my being. I could feel how the narrow walls of my house, chock full of items that reflect the constructs of my personality and past, contributed deleteriously to the breadth and creativity of my thoughts. Yet, even with this awareness, Captain Ego would not abandon ship easily and I continued to fart around the house. As the eleven o’clock hour passed, the
sun shined brightly into the house, and tipped the action-inaction scale just enough. Under my ass, a fire was lit. I filled a water bottle; slapped together an almond butter, jam, butter, and banana sandwich; threw on sunglasses and cap; packed my boots, skis, and poles into the car; and by noon I was driving up Teton Pass. It had been a frigid night, and despite the bright sun, I knew my timing would be perfect for exceptional corn skiing conditions. And I knew just where I would go to find pristine, smooth, untracked snow with nobody around. I had turned my day around and was headed for a spiritual awakening… Wait! Don’t put this magazine down. I know what you’re thinking…“Yah right! That’s no spiritual awakening. It’s just another adrenalinehyped hedonistic adventure story that belongs in Powder Magazine, and certainly not anywhere near my sacred backyard.” It seems to me that spirituality is much less complicated than we often think. It is simply about making a move with awareness from a more muffled and padded state of being to a more spacious and vivid one. What this means varies from person to person and from moment to moment, but it all leads to greater and greater feelings of Oneness.
Facing image: Thomas Turiano at Crystal Creek, The Thomas Turiano Collection
Photo courtesy of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
For me, on that day, awakening meant escaping my dull dwelling, working hard to climb a mountain, breathing clean cold air, contemplating complex horizons between blue sky and familiar mountain profiles, and finessing a graceful and effortless dance down an untracked carpet of corn snow with a pair of long blades strapped to my feet. All of that would have amounted to nothing more than rote hedonism but for the simple fact that I was aware and appreciative 44 |
Thomas Turiano Photo
Wes Bunch at Crawfish Creek in Yellowstone National Park.
Jacqueline Ra Photo
Thomas Turiano at Lewis River.
of how I was feeling and growing. I could then reflect back on my small thoughts from earlier that day and laugh at them. Instead of feeling isolated, I now felt connected. Some people achieve this by freesoloing 5.10 climbs in the Tetons, some by running 50 miles of trails along the mountain’s crest, others by watching wildlife through a lens from the roadside, and still more by spending an afternoon in the garden digging up weeds. We all are forever
searching. Experiment with colors, shapes, sounds, seasons, weather, levels of action, surroundings, and times of day. The possibilities are endless. The key is learning to listen to your body to truly determine if you’ve found the activity or place that is your own special bliss. If you are anxious or freaked out, you haven’t found it yet. Spiritual places vary depending on the experience, input, and sensitivities of the individual. Backcountry skiing brings me bliss in the winter, whenever and wherever, as long as I can see the surroundings and the snow is pristine. In the summer, I am most blissful wandering with a light backpack on open hills and mountains, particularly where I can feel a connection to ancient people. One such place is a walk along the ridge east of Crystal Creek, where animal trails lead past ancient trees and Native American flaking sites, where weapons and tools were made from stones, to a high prominence of red rock that overlooks the Gros Ventre valley and the Tetons. Another is Blacktail Butte, where a steep craggy trail guards a precious wildlife microcosm, Native American medicine wheels, stunning grasses and trees, and an unbelievable view of the Tetons from the top. In southern Jackson Hole, one of my favorite places is to make a loop hike up Palmer Creek to Grayback Ridge, and come back to the car by circling around via Deer Ridge or Palmer Creek Ridge. The spaciousness of nature invites us to open our hearts and tune into all of our senses. Depending on our willingness to listen and receive, Mother Earth provides us with an environment where we can experience who we truly are and feel completely accepted. It is wild, free, and limitless; where everything is possible. As such, the relationship you have in nature is yours to create and experience. Awaken to these messages and you will reap what you sow.
Favorite Place in Nature GAVIN FINE
Latham Jenkins/Circ.biz Photo
“When I moved here in my 20s, the Old Pass Road was the first place I felt connected to nature. Now that I’m a dad, I love going out to Jackson Lake with my family and friends. The calmness of the water, the towering mountains that lead to the edge of the lake all contribute to the incredible experience.” Gavin Fine is the owner of Fine Dining Restaurant Group, which operates Bin 22, Rendezvous Bistro, The Kitchen, Q Roadhouse & Brewing Co., and Il Villagio Osteria.
STEPHEN AND ANNA SULLIVAN “Cloudveil Dome, Mount Oliver, Nez Perce, Mount Owen. For me, it’s about getting up high; reaching your goal whatever it might be. I like the effort it takes to get there and the calm you feel once you are there. You can see for miles. It gives you another perspective about the landscape around you. It’s such a great feeling when you reach the summit.” – Anna
Julie Kling Photo
“My favorite place in nature is the trailhead. It has always had powerful symbolism to me as it serves as both the start of an adventure and the finish. I love arriving for an adventure yet to be had, knowing I’ll always return with a sense of renewal. I’ve never encountered a trailhead I didn’t like...” – Stephen Stephen Sullivan is the owner and founder of Stio outdoor apparel company and was the co-founder of Cloudveil Mountain Apparel. Anna Sullivan is coowner of Rodeo fashion boutique in Teton Village.
SARA FLITNER David Swift Photo
“In all my years of walking, skinning, skiing or biking on the Snow King trails, there isn’t a single time I didn’t hit the bottom feeling better. It’s such a gift, to have this mountain in the heart of the town, and so accessible for all of us. It’s my go-to, when I need a guaranteed attitude adjustment.” Sara Flitner owns Flitner Strategies, a communications consulting business, and is running for Mayor of Jackson, WY. www.tetonspirit.com
OBSTACLES By Tim Walther
Photo courtesy of Tim Walther
an Answer to Anxiety By Cameron Barker An overwhelming period of anxiety took over my life a year ago... the gut wrenching, breath stopping kind, absolutely paralyzing both mentally and physically. If you haven’t, probably someone you know has experienced this kind of despair. Perhaps you’ve had times in life where you felt safe, stable and then the earth shattered beneath your feet (a landslide?!): your mind suddenly turned into a night-long, everworking entity that would not shut off; your bed was the only world you could deal with. Welcome to my life! In the space of one year I went through the death of a dear friend, job-loss, financial hell, an attempt to launch my own business and a relationship headed for the rocks. Because I found an answer to what was behind this
Jamye Chrisman Photo
Most personal growth comes from overcoming a challenging experience. Like the most intriguing books we read, movies we watch or stories we hear, our lives are a series of obstacles waiting to be overcome. These obstacles are what creates a deeper connection with ourselves, others and the force between us. We trigger some of these growth opportunities we as we challenge ourselves to achieve bigger or better things, whether it’s a difficult rock climb or a new business venture. As an entrepreneur, I seem to always be seeking this type of growth and developing strategies for overcoming difficulties. I believe that living with challenges is where the optimal state of consciousness is. If we are not seeking new challenges, life is not only boring but it keeps us from living our best. Seeking out new challenges can help develop resiliency and prepare us to overcome unexpected obstacles. Have you experienced an unexpected obstacle recently? Maybe you have had an illness, an injury, lost someone close or know someone who has been through something similar. In about a years time, I ended a long term relationship, had a major injury, my dog died and a best friend and long time climbing partner died. Experiencing tragedies like this has done two things for me. First it has created a greater degree of empathy for others who have gone through or are going through something similar or difficult. That empathy has created a greater connection to spirit. The other thing that it has done for me is to create a need for a recovery strategy. Necessity is the mother of invention, right? For example, when my arm was nearly ripped off in a climbing accident, I got very clear about who and where my best resources were to fix my arm. I left California and returned to Jackson where
there was an incredible resource of professionals that I knew would do the best job. Dedication and persistence were critical to overcoming my major challenge. My persistence came from a vision of the person I wanted to be in the future. And at the foundation of it all was the belief that I could do what I was setting out to do. As I began to learn strategies of recovery from many challenges, I decided that I wanted to forge these lessons in an ultimate experience to share with people. So I created the Ultimate Towner Obstacle Course Race with an event celebration theme of overcoming your obstacles. While the story of that event is for another time, ultimately there are lessons in every obstacle. And the bigger the challenge, the bigger the opportunity to embrace a deeper connection with yourself, others and the spirit that connects us all.
despair, I want to pass it on. I began to realize I was allowing something other than myself to control me. As my friendships and work suffered, I remember walking by myself in the mirror and thinking ‘who the hell is that?!’ - I needed to take back control. With a background in yoga and mindfulness I decided to dive deeply into Ayurveda. Ayurveda is a 5,000 year old medical science developed in India. Sometimes referred to as the sister science of yoga, it identifies tools in everything around us and within us to treat illness and imbalance. At its core are the five elements: air, water, fire, earth and ether (or space). Untied to any religion or belief system, Ayurveda offers a road map to our own unique wisdom and vitality. “(Ayurveda,) It’s like the friggin’ handbook to living!“ –Suzanne Leusch Air and Ether go wandering when anxiety takes over. When they work together we call it Vata. When they don’t, we call it Vata imbalance. When we are out of balance we crave things that increase imbalance. The answer? What follows are three gems of Ayurvedic wisdom almost guaranteed to get you back on track. These simple things have changed my life. ROUTINE, ROUTINE, ROUTINE. I was teaching 20 yoga classes a week at various times. I was anything, but consistent. I started small. Ate breakfast at the same time every day and made sure it was nourishing and warm (Vata likes cold). I added consistent work and exercise schedules. I now wake every morning with a daily plan; keeping me centered, calm and focused. MASSAGE, MASSAGE, MASSAGE. Self massage, because I can’t spend money every day, but I do allow myself one or two professional ones monthly. Since Vata governs the nervous system, not the digestive system, massage grounds, comforts and nourishes. MEDITATE, MEDITATE, MEDITATE. I sit for 20 minutes twice a day. It’s similar, but safer, than Xanax. Through this stillness and presence I can literally feel my nervous system let go. I actually crave it now! I still experience anxiety, though the gravity diminishes every day. My focus on the moment, consciousness, rest and inner wisdom has taken the forefront of my life. I still plan ahead, but I create space for myself, my goals and time with loved ones. Ayurveda has altered my life... and it can alter yours. Even better, Ayurveda will give you a map back to yourself ...safe again, free again and you again.
MODERN TIMES FOR THE YOGA SUTRAS PATANJALI
Akasha Yoga owner, Neesha Zollinger, writes on integrating the deities into your yoga postures. Her studio is at 150 E. Hansen, Jackson. www.akashayogajh.com and www.neeshazollingeryoga.com I was fortunate to be able to dine with some of my oldest friends recently. We discussed a modern book that was providing guidance for our children. As we talked about it, I realized that one aspect of the book was a teaching the same lesson as the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, which reads: “When afflicted by a negative thought, cultivate the opposite.” This is a gorgeous teaching and practice from a book written about 1600 years ago. It is so obvious and yet so potent to remember on the path of mindfulness and evolution. As a child with an active imagination and wild dreams, my mother taught me this. I was lucky to learn to work with my mind at an early age. I remember the force that I had to use to actually make the beautiful thoughts win. The practice became more skillful over time, carving a valuable path as I grew up. I still work with the practice as an adult, as it can be so easy to go down paths that delude you of the truth. Often it can be difficult to recognize, or it turns up in relationship. Then the inner wrestling match begins again, working with thoughts and beliefs. Sometimes jumping straight for a positive thought is impossible. For example, if one of your parents passes away unexpectedly, you might experience loss, grief, anger and sadness. Perhaps as the initial emotions have space to be, you might find the next step away from grief is the only place you can go. Instead of being angry at life, you wrap yourself around the glimmer of an idea that this is part of the cycle. Then, over time you will find the positive peaceful thoughts and deep bliss of abiding in the cycle of life. This practice, known as “pratipaksha bhavana,” does not usually happen in a flip of a switch. Now, you might wonder why this is in a yoga column? What comes to your mind when you see and hear yoga? Bending, sweat, therapy, mats, breathing, strengthening and stretching, sure. Yet, “pratipaksha bhavana” too, is yoga. Actually, the main objective of the teachings of the Patanjali is
to get out of this world of suffering, moving beyond isolation, or transcendence. If I were living in the time these teachings were written and had access to them, I would likely want to get out of life as well. Can you imagine going to a watch gladiators tear each other apart for entertainment? I digress. In modern times, many of us are seeking a deeper way to integrate the physical and meta-physical, to bring the evolving trajectory of spiritual potential into our relationships, communities and to the world. Although we turn to the old teachings as a map, we see them shifting to fit the modern people and their goals. My own offering of yoga is to integrate spiritual and physical life. To that end, I blend these teachings into the physical practice as a means to get a deeper embodiment a shift, an up-leveling of the way that you are in this world. Yoga then and the yoga now have such different faces, yet there are these amazing nuggets that have stood the test of time.
RELATIONSHIPS Louise Sanseau, owner of Inversion Yoga, speaks on parallel methods for finding your inner divinity. Her studio is at 290 N. Millward, Jackson. www.inversionyoga.com Every sunrise is an invitation to bring something new into our lives, and every sunset is an opportunity to let go of something old. Every day we are able to re-create ourselves and grow into the person we want to be. In relationships, it is important to cultivate space for each other to change, to work to repair past injury, to practice forgiveness, and to allow one another to aspire to new heights. One of the ways Patanjali, a great sage who wrote the Yoga Sutras, offers advice on how to establish purity and stability of the mind, is through “cultivating feelings of friendliness towards those who are happy, compassion for those who are suffering, goodwill towards those who are virtuous, and indifference or neutrality towards those we perceive as wicked or evil” (Yoga Sutra 1.33, translation from Swami Jnaneshvara). From this advice, we can learn how to create space in all relationships for shift, growth, and change. It is easy to be friendly towards those who are happy. Happiness is contagious. When someone is smiling and laughing, we share in their joy and welcome their presence. It requires sensitivity to offer compassion to those who are suffering. Perhaps someone is having a
bad day because of the loss of a loved one, they got laid off at work, or someone cut them off in traffic. If they act out at the grocery store, we must recognize they are suffering and respond with compassion rather than react with frustration or anger. It is natural to desire goodwill towards those who are virtuous, as we want them to succeed. The virtuous conform to ethical principles, strive for moral excellence, live with integrity, and stand by their beliefs. It is counterintuitive to offer indifference and neutrality to those we perceive in the moment as corrupt or evil. Our instinctual reaction is to dislike these people and bestow ill wishes upon them. However, Patanjali suggests that we respond with acceptance and equanimity. Some people are corrupt and intend evil with their actions. Others’ principles simply may not be in line with our own. Sometimes our perception of someone’s actions or a situation is incomplete or flawed. To coexist, we must cultivate feelings of neutrality toward these individuals. Through kindness and patience, we may help them let go of their negativity. Through acceptance, we hold the space for them to shift their ways. In family, friendships, politics, work, and all relationships, let us work to let go of judgment and scrutiny. Let’s work to establish the space for one another to re-create ourselves daily. Through cultivating the four attitudes Patanjali gives us on how to treat others, we enable each other to grow into the best expression of ourselves and we find great stability and clarity in our own minds.
FOR THE LOVE OF YOGA Angela Tong, co-owner of Teton Yoga Shala, offers reasons for yoga and Yoga Sutra Wisdom. Teton Yoga Shala is located in the Aspens behind the Aspens Market, upstairs in the MedTech building at 3510 N. Lake Creek Drive, Wilson. www.tetonyoga.com Q: How do the spiritual and contemplative aspects of yoga resonate with and affect you? (real answers from real yoga students) A: The physicality of breathing and intentional movement grants me access to the meditative mind. A: Making the mind/body connection grounds me. A: When the yoga class is over I am more in touch with mine and others’ energy. A: Yoga heals me on all levels. A: Yoga focuses and quiets my mind. A: I am exposed to myself, ugh!!! You mean that’s all me?! A: Practice helps me to shed the angst and feel more peaceful. A: Everything looks, feels and tastes brighter.
A: It’s sooo interesting when physical things going on in my body correspond with issues and emotions I’m struggling with. A: I am able to surrender, to let go and gain clarity more easily. A: Wow! The emotions that bubble up sometimes are intense and amazing. What a relief to let that stuff come up and out! A: Yoga provides me with the tools to find the calm on and off the mat. A: Yoga brings intention and awareness into my actions and into my life. A: I can remember and feel the giggles when I unshackle my soul. A: The issues in my tissues are such a reflection and metaphor for the rest of my life. A: Yoga helps me to face that which I have been consciously and unconsciously avoiding. A: I realize and can’t deny how it’s all connected!!! A: I love savasana;)) What is the “Yoga Sutra?” Yoga teachings that were passed down through the Oral tradition and finally compiled and Written in the form of Sanskrit Sutras in 200BC by Patanjali. For the yogi on the path, the Sutras are a psychological “roadmap.” A sutra is a compressed and simple statement of just a few words which imparts profound meaning, like poetry. The yogi contemplates and meditates upon the sutra, over time, to fully extract the deeper and personal meaning. This meaning evolves as the yogi evolves II.46 SthiraSukhamAsanam sthira - steady, stable, firm, steadfast, strong sukham - (from the same root as sucrose) sweet, joy, delight, ease asanam -posture, seat Definition: The refining and perfection of the asana comes from a fine balance of stability and yet ease in the body, steadiness and yet calm of the mind and joy of the spirit. This sutra is one of the most popularly used in Hatha yoga classes. It is one of the only three yoga sutras out of 196 that refer to asana, the physical practice of yoga. In a simple and profound way Patanjali describes the perfect asana and the intention of asana practice. We are asked as students of Hatha yoga to bring incredible effort and intelligence into the asana without aggression and to remember ease and joy without avoidance, complacency or dullness. When we apply the principles of sthira/steadiness and sukham/ ease together, the practice of asana becomes a tool for transformation and healing. It helps us look at the “issues in our tissues” and return to balance and health. Our asana practice also becomes a vehicle to directly experience the union of mind, body, breath and spirit. As we strive for sukham/ease and joy, we might notice our gripped effort and unconscious tendency to create tension, aggression and anxiety. We relax the intensity of our effort, unclench the jaw and forehead and remember to breathe and smile. As we cultivate sthira, the effort to be steady, we might see that we can’t balance on one leg, the arch of a foot is collapsing or the quadriceps muscle doesn’t fire. We might see that we like to space out or that we fidget endlessly in the posture to avoid the discomfort that arises. It takes steadiness of mind and discipline to do the work which returns alignment and balance.
UPCOMING Body, Mind & Spirit Special Events For a comprehensive and up to date calendar of Wellness events including: yoga and fitness classes, wellness education, meditation, and more, check out www.tetonspirit.com.
HEALTHY BEING JUICERY
Kinesiology Stability Yoga with Rebecca Evans from Chicago
First Friday Healthy Happy Hour
Saturday June 21 from 11-12:30pm Tuesday June 24 from 6-7:30pm Breathing techniques, mudras and mantras taught with a meditative focus to discover reservoirs of dormant energy, become attuned to your energy rhythms, mind state and innermost potential. All levels welcome. $20
First Friday of each Month 5:30pm - 7pm Complimentary Juice + Raw Food Samples Different entertainment or speaker each month www.healthybeingjuice.com
HEALTHY BEING JUICERY Saturday Mornings Yoga on the Lawn Saturday mornings, 9am
Asymetrical Backbends a la Natarajasana and Solstice!
Community Yoga Class, all levels, donation based Healthy Being Juicery Lawn, 165 E. Broadway, Jackson www.healthybeingjuice.com
To register or more information: www.akashayogajh.com
SPIRIT: BOOKS, GIFTS, LIFE
June 22 , 3:45-5:45pm, with Neesha Zollinger
IDAHO TETON YOGA CO-OP Women’s Empowerment & Healing Retreat June 28-30 (Monday is optional)
A weekend of hiking, paddleboard, yoga, contemplation and empowerment with yoga instructor, Daysha Hampton, Carolyn Caputo from Free to Be Naturally Me, and Megan Lovell. To register or more information: www.idahoyogacoop.com
HORSE WARRIORS™ Cancer Kickers™
Saturdays Beginning June 21, 2014 A Healing Program: Restoring joy and hope to participants in different stages of their cancer journey. Open to those in the process of healing; caregivers; and hospice. Call to enroll: 307-733-7464. Free. www.horsewarriors.com 50 |
Writing Wild, Book Signing, Inspirational Talk & Workshop with Tina Welling Book Signing and Talk, Thursday, July 10 Writing Workshop, Sunday, July 13
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 307-733-3382.
TETON YOGA SHALA Bhavani Maki Yoga Philosophy Workshop July 11-13
Join Bhavani in the weaving of yogik practices with Pantajali’s teachings and the fascinating journey of meta-physical transformation. To register or more info: email@example.com or call 307-690-3054 or 307-690-4201.
SPIRIT: BOOKS, GIFTS, LIFE
BHUTAN HIMALAYAN TREKS
Developing Your Intuition & Clairvoyance with Belinda Grace, author of You Are Clairvoyant
August 1, Deadline to Sign Up
July 17, 6pm-8pm
Private Readings with Belinda Grace by appt. July 18-19
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 307-733-3382.
DANCER’S WORKSHOP Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company July 16-July 20, Center for the Arts
Progress performance by the company known for its American contemporary dance, experimenting with story, kinetic poetry, and pure entertainment. The work incorporates social issues and narrative threads, often collaborating with visual artists and musicians. Wednesday, July 16 4:30-6PM Free Open Rehearsal with Q & A 6-7:30PM Master Class ($25) Friday, July 18 4:30-6PM Free Open Rehearsal with Q & A Saturday, July 19 10-11:30AM Master Class ($25)
Jomolhari Trek – 14 days, October 17-30, 2014 Explore the Himalayas and cultural highlights in Paro and Thimphu. We’ll start off with three day hikes to acclimatize, then head out for eight amazing days on the Jomolhari Trek. Peaceful Kingdom Personal Journey & Cultural Tour – 14 days, November 2-15, 2014 Experience the synergy of life in the peaceful Kingdom of Bhutan. Explore nature, hike at a moderate level in the Himalayas, immerse yourself in ancient traditions, and visit the cultural highlights including the BlackNecked Crane Festival. To register or more information: www.bhutanhimalayanexperience.com
IDAHO YOGA CO-OP Advancing Your Yoga Path
Six Sundays in August & September, 7:30pm An in-depth yoga series and training for interested, current students, advanced students, yoga instructors and aspiring teachers. A rare experience to learn about yoga in India with yoga and meditation instructor Daysha Hampton. To register or more information: www.idahoyogacoop.com
Sunday, July 20 6-7PM Final Work-in-Progress Showing ($20)
Friday August 8 at 8pm Saturday, August 9 at 1:30pm & 8pm
TETON COUNTY PARKS AND REC
47th Annual Snow King Hill Climb Saturday, July 26
New York City Ballet Moves
TETON YOGA SHALA
To register or more information: www.tetonparksandrec.org or 307-739-9025
Maya Yoga Inversions and Back Bending Workshop with Eddie Modestini
IDAHO TETON YOGA CO-OP
Eddie Modestini is what is known as a teacher’s teacher. He has been a yogi and yoga teacher since 1983. Certified in Iyengar yoga, Eddie has also spent many years studying with Pattabhi Jois, from whom he received blessings to teach Ashtanga yoga. He is well versed in both systems, has an amazing eye, holds the ability to read students’ bodies, and is a master of yoga therapy. To register or more information: email@example.com or call 307-690-3054 or 307-690-4201.
July 25-27 (Monday is optional) • “Ride Teton Dirt” Moutain Biking Clinic led by Mitch Prissel • Paddleboard the Teton River led by Daysha Hampton • Fly Fishing Day guided by Mitch Prissel • Teton Valley Hike with Active Yoga Strectching with Daysha Hampton To register or more information: www.idahoyogacoop.com
IDAHO YOGA CO-OP
New Warrior Training Adventure
Fri Aug 22-Sun 24, near Sun Valley/Ketchum ID. The ManKind Project helps men make the difficult transition into a new sense of purpose and healthy mature manhood. At the NWTA, you’ll be challenged and supported to learn more about yourself in 48 hours than you’ve probably learned in the last 20 years. Contact Evan Daily 307-732-3230 for additional information about the adventure or a local Men’s Circle, which meets weekly. www.intermountain.mkp.org
MEMBER PROFILE: Casey Stout – A Ray of Light
Photo courtesy of Casey Stout
Like a ray of sunshine, Casey Stout lights up a room with her vibrancy. Whether she is networking at a Chamber mixer, singing to a newborn in the hospital, or painting body art, she has a strong presence, a soft spoken nature and get-it done demeanor. Her long strawberry blond hair is the external expression of her inner light. A painter and a musician, Stout co-mingles her artistry with a professional career at the Jackskon Hole Chamber of Commerce where she has put out the travel and tourism barometer every week for 5 years now. Her office off the town square is adorned with images of sunflowers and painted vases from interns who have admired her. Slogans like “Live, Work, Create” – “Experience, Grow, Connect” – “Tell your story, change a life,” surround her. Soul Spot, her henna and body painting business, drew her to become one of the first Teton Spirit Connection members last summer.
Art & Contemplation Retreat
August 23-25 (Monday is optional) Enjoy an art and contemplation intro with classes in drawing, sculpting, and plein air painting with Pierre Bombardier. Also including a special Intuitive Art Class with Marinna Elinski, as well as yoga, and guided meditation activities. To register or more information: www.idahoyogacoop.com
“I was so excited to have a place for the body, mind, spirit community online, I had to jump on it right away. It was about time,” she said. “What’s nice is I get to see what it is like to be a member.” Stout sees Teton Spirit Connection as a different kind of chamber, which offers a place for people who are embracing a new kind of creative economy to find with like-minded businesses. “It can be overwhelming to know where to go for massage,” she said. “I go to Teton Spirit Connection because it is someone who shares the same values as I do.” When she paints, Stout tries to express where people are in their journey. In the past year, Stout has added another title to her resume — a Certified Professional Coach. She approaches this job as a student as well as a teacher who wants to help people “get organized from the inside out.” This winter she did a 40-day immersive program with students to help each other figure out what they want to do with their lives. How does she find the time? I asked. I was surprised by the answer. “My day job allows me to be more creative,” she said. “I’m really proud of my work at the Chamber,” Stout said. “I like to share my work at the Chamber with my art and share my art experience with the Chamber. Our members know me as an artist.” Teton Spirit Connection members know her as a ray of light. Look for Stout at the Farmer’s market this summer. - Julie Kling Soul Spot Business Services: Body Art, Coaching, Music, Design Soul Spot inspires others to step into their greatness through coaching, music, painting and design. www.facebook.com/soulspot
FALL SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER AKASHA YOGA The Yogic Life Intensive Studies and RYT200 Teacher Training with Bridget Lyons and Neesha Zollinger Fall 2014
Complete info at www.akashayogajh.com/pgs/ teachertraining
TETON YOGA SHALA 200 Hour Yoga Alliance Accredited Yoga Teacher Training with Angela Tong and Adi Amar Level 1 October 5-16 (100 hours) Level 2 October 17-29 (100 hours)
To register or more info: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 307-690-3054 or 307-690-4201.
TETON SANGHA Vipassana Residential Retreat with John Travis October 10-19, 9 or 5 day option available.
For more information: www.tetonsangha.com
IDAHO YOGA CO-OP Yoga Retreat to India October 18-28
Journey to Rishikesh, the heart of yoga in India, with Daysha Hampton. Experience the ashrams and meet with yoga teachers in what will be an unforgettable spiritual yoga-driven journey. To register or more information: www.idahoyogacoop.com
Got Cosmic Questions? Carol Mann answers your questions in this column in every issue of Teton Spirit Magazine. Email her what you’d like to know! email@example.com She will answer. Plants Have Feelings, too. Here is a summer related question from Susan: “I recently heard that plants are intelligent and have feelings, so now I am a bit freaked out wondering if plants feel pain when I am cutting flowers, pruning trees, mowing the lawn or crushing things underfoot all summer when hiking off trail. Please tell me more about plants and their perceptions.” Many decades ago, Cleve Baxter had a random idea, which became the defining moment for the discovery that plants communicate, remember, feel and react to human thought, emotion and actions. Baxter, who loved plants and was a police lie detector specialist, was curious one day to see what might happen if he hooked up the polygraph electrodes to one of the many plants in his office. He then walked over to another part of the room, picked up a pack of matches and thought to himself, “Maybe I’ll burn the plant to see what happens.” The moment he had this thought, (just the thought) the polygraph registered a huge spike of alarm from the plant. In another experiment, Baxter hooked up all the many plants in his office to the polygraph machine, and then had a person intentionally walk into the office and kill one of the plants. Later in the same day he had a variety of people walk into his office one at a time and pass by the surviving plants to see how the plants would react. Nothing of note happened until
the “plant murderer” walked into the office. Then all the plants registered huge distress on the polygraph. They remembered! In the years since then, Baxter and many others have created and replicated scientific experiments showing that plants respond to who and what is going on in their environment. Specifically, they are aware of people’s positive and negative thoughts, emotions, intentions and actions. Plants react with most agitation to lack of love and the intent to harm. There is a qualitative difference in the plant’s experience of ripping off its leaves or branches and someone lovingly pruning for the wellbeing of the plant. In research studies, plants “scream” in fear when someone approaches with negative energy. And, conversely, plants literally sing and create music (Google this to hear recordings) when someone who genuinely likes them and appreciates them approaches! This happens both in the wild and with indoor plants. One more amazing discovery: House plants, indoor and outdoor gardens and trees in your immediate environment take only a few hours to calibrate to you as their “owner”. Once that connection is made, the plants will remain attuned to you wherever you go. All these studies further demonstrate that all life is interconnected, and are Stewards of the Earth. Our choice to cultivate care, gratitude and appreciation for all forms of life (including each other) has a huge impact on whether everything flourishes as a collective expression of love…or not.
Carol Mann is a long time resident of Jackson Hole. She is a Harvard University trained educator, whose life-long study of things spiritual and talent as a clairvoyant give her a unique set of skills and perspectives. She offers sessions in person and by phone to help you connect with the wisdom of your soul. Ready for a Soul Reading, a Channeling Session or Life Coaching with an intuitive edge? Log onto www.yourcosmiccafe.com for Carol’s full Menu of Services, books and CDs.
REHAB • FITNESS • PERFORMANCE
Specialty Classes ■
Back, Knee & Total Body Rehab & Conditioning
Yoga - Foam Roller Fusion
AIS (Activated Isolated Stretching)
Tranquility Room ■
BioMat™ Far-Infrared Therapy
Wellness Boutique ■
Opedix Kinetic Health Gear™
doTerra Essential Oils™
Gia Wellness™ Products Located inside West Pearl Wellness 120 West Pearl Avenue | Jackson,Wyoming 307-699-7480 | www.studioxjackson.com
C O N N E C T I O N WWW. TE TON S P I R I T .COM An online resource to connect your body, mind and spirit.