“A ‘no’ uttered from deepest conviction is better and greater than a ‘yes’ merely uttered to please, or what is worse, to avoid trouble.”
Mahatma Gandhi

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-08-29

  • Living in a house where one person meditates creates tranquility for everyone else #
  • Guided by my Yoga teachers I am beginning a long term exploration of Pranayama, u r welcome to tag along: http://bit.ly/cnUBV6 #
  • @gregorylent thank you and pleased to meet you 🙂 I agree, Pranayama is one of the most potent and least known of the Yoga arsenal in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent I've been practicing Pranayama for years, now have been gifted with a precious opportunity to further refine and develop it #
  • @gregorylent I'm hoping that by documenting it I'll be able to better observe and share some of the knowledge & insights that surface #
  • I say again, in case you missed it: "From bitter searching of the heart, we rise to play a greater part" http://bit.ly/cFx0XD #
  • RT listen with your mind, heart, gut … @gregorylent "chakras" are a great concept 4filtering diffrnt levels of experience #
  • RT hmmm … Ubuntu has taught me the opposite @gregorylent apple has taught me to avoid upgrades of software, apps, and products #
  • a good day is a day that leads me to good Yoga practices: http://bit.ly/cgfXGu #
  • sitting w/Andreea – nice yogurt+fruit+muesli – beautiful sky … and a small venemous snake appears right outside the window – unsettling! #
  • just had amazing experience/insight of resistance – working on algorithms 4 describing movement of body – does anyone care to know more? #
  • my mind is twisted from math & geometry, moving illustrated joints around each other has boggled my mind, off to find mental release 🙂 #
  • @gregorylent then it is also natural that china will suck out of capitalist countries – also just for the bucks 🙂 in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent I believe that higher values have already been mostly lost, which is why the world seems to be shaking of finance: healing!! in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent all that has gone needed to go to make room for something new – eventually something better – such is change in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent have u tasted Robert Pirsig's Metaphysics of Quality? Great/useful tools 2 answer "what is better/best" 🙂 http://bit.ly/cx43tR in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent In my yoga studies, when I encountered ishvara-pranidhana (God) – I replaced it with Dynamic Quality – and it fit magically! in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent The gr8 things about Pirsig's work in Lila, is setting aside "highest" and addressing earthly values with excellent resolution! in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent re words and meanings: Enemy http://bit.ly/bhgfOR in reply to gregorylent #
  • You'll have to talk my word 4it4now – but the yoga illustration stick figure is showing 1st signs of movement via drag&drop! #
  • @gregorylent have care! (1)israel exists in state of war; (2) all non-critical movement is banned; (3) has nothing to do with "human rights" in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent most importantly: israel has no idea what is stands for, 2busy with wars 2address that question. Enemy: http://bit.ly/bhgfOR in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent Israel's momentum of "we deserve country because of holocaust" is wearing out, leaving it lost and increasingly violent in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent in some way Israel is probably grateful for the antisemitism still out there, which continues to be internal excuse 4 existence in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent popular line of thought in Israel: "If Israel didn't exist, Jews all over the world would be in grave danger" … dead end! in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent oh and … most journalism in Israel is poor and sensationalist – feeds on violence and induces fear & violence … sad sad sad in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent I'm involved in a project to create an alternative "who to follow" anchored in eastern philosophy … hope 2start testing soon! #
  • @gregorylent thank you for taking the time to look around 🙂 in reply to gregorylent #
  • @ronenk איפה אני יכול למצוא טורנטים/הורדות של מוזיקה ישראלית? #
  • Yoga practice feels like an opportunity for the forces that I am to play together with a curiosity – lets see what we can do together #
  • @gregorylent when the mind settles (and stays put) it is indeed almost as if Yoga does me 🙂 in reply to gregorylent #
  • @gregorylent 🙂 such practices are a rare gift, and in general as the years go by I feel a need to re-examine what is "practice" in reply to gregorylent #
  • "… Einstein came in and said pleasantly, 'Hello, I'm coming to your seminar. But first, where is the tea?'" Richard Feynman #
  • @Shuliji "malfunction" is actually a function too – usually protective 🙂 in reply to Shuliji #
  • off to a morning practice – calling on chanting http://bit.ly/bSopIK to collect my diffused self #

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Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-08-22

  • "The truth itself doesn’t have any name on it. To me. Each man has to find this for himself" John Coltrane http://bit.ly/cvLG6x #
  • The degeneracy of Yoga is now further degenerating into Yoga Therapy: http://bit.ly/cvLG6x #
  • just been brough to my attention that I put out an incorrect link – so here it is again – degeneracy of Yoga: http://bit.ly/aANML4 #
  • degenerated Yoga is now further degenerating into an risky illusion called Yoga Therapy: http://bit.ly/aANML4 #
  • The soul's yearning to experience is a precursor to the mind's illusion #
  • If you live in the UK/Bristol area, you may want to know about a rare opportunity to study Vedic & Mantra chanting: http://bit.ly/cKAMY4 #
  • strane night, powerful shifting energies, unsettling, woke up with burdened breathing #
  • Great talk by @spolsky on software&design: making decisions that users don't want or need 2 make: http://bit.ly/cglJrP cc: @raymondpirouz #
  • consumer dharma: by refraining from buying junk u r creating an opportunity for the people who make junk to do something better #
  • you never know what is going to find you in the unknown, but if you don't go there it never will #
  • Dear actual people who may actually b reading my twitter updates … &r into Yoga: please meet my Yoga teacher now on twitter: @YogaStudies #
  • RT A delightful and sweet gift to end a saturday @DominicMiller1 Proud Dad moment… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8UnPsLvtiA #

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Welcome to Pranayama Journal


Numerous circumstances have lowered the amount of writing I do here, specifically about Yoga. A lot of my Yoga energy is being diverted to other Yoga activities: I’ve been making an effort to regulate my practices, I’ve been working on an asana illustration and sequence building project and I’ve been supporting my teacher in creating and refining his website.

A new Yoga thread has now graced my life. I am beginning a process, guided by my teachers, of exploration and refinement of Pranayama. It is intended both to address my current being and to be a systemic process of inquiry into potential qualities of Pranayama practices.

I subscribe to my teacher’s view that of all the tools of Yoga, Pranayama is one of the most effective and useful tools for practitioners of this day and age. Yet is it one of the least known and most neglected teachings of Yoga. Pranayama is a subtle and refined practice, it takes consistent long term effort to experience and appreciate – one can almost see it as a teaching of subtlty. Practicing Yoga asana without a consequent Pranayama practice is like cooking a great meal and then not eating it.

Though I have written about the basics of breathing and Pranayama practices I have not yet gotten around to writing about the process of developing a Pranayama practice. Not for lack of wanting, but rather because I couldn’t find a point of origin nor envision a good path that I felt would be useful in this technological medium. I am therefor happy to share and document my personal experiences as this new personal journey of exploration presents new momentum. The Journal can be accessed using the new “Pranayama Journal” content category.

Point of Origin

Over recent months I have managed to create a fairly regular day-to-day existence. On top of it I have managed to stabilize a highly regular morning practice which includes 40-60 minutes of asana practice followed by a Pranayama practice and a short meditation. I am also looking to create a window for a regular evening practice of similar length (though different qualities) followed by an additional variant of Pranayama.

During my first years of quality practice I had easy access to Nadi Sodhana. Yet after a few years my nostrils developed a regular kind of congestion which prevented me from experiencing a quality NS practice. For many years this led to frustration (on numerous levels) – until at some point I came to peace with it. Some years ago I consulted with a medical specialist who said that my nasal tissues (which act as a natural air filter) are slightly inflamed. Her suggestion was an invasive procedure in which these tissues would be trimmed to re-enable a regular flow of air. She could not offer any insight as to what may have cause this. I didn’t go through with the procedure.

The primary Pranayama technique I currently use is therefor Anuloma Ujjayi. I practice with a 10 second inhale with a crown practice formula of [ ] – which translates into [ ]. Generally my practice is 30 breaths long – 5 sequences of 6 breaths each. My observation has been that when qualities of focus, quiet and physical vitality are present – I can comfortably contain this practice, otherwise it may lead to exertion and tension. I usually don’t approach this formula in my morning Pranayama – I do so in the evenings if I feel that I have successfully created the conditions for it.

My overall objective in practice is to maintain a soft, open and faith-filled heart, sustain a sense of health and vitality in the body and a quiet and fear-free mind.

First Steps

The first steps are about observation:

  • Create a month long journal of observation of my Pranayama practices and their relationship to other movements in my life.
  • Replace my evening Pranayama practice for 10 days with a simple, continuous, steady and accessible practice of for 40 breaths and to observe the qualities of breath in this setting.
  • Start oiling my nostrils with almond oil in the mornings.
Posted in Pranayama, Pranayama Journal, Yoga, Yoga & I, Yoga & Life | You are welcome to read 1 comment and to add yours

Design is about Making Good Choices


When I was closer to the world of creating software I used to be an avid reader of Joel Spolsky. I have since placed more distance between myself and software – though it’s still a part of my life. One of the unique things about Joel is that he comes from a dominant engineering background but also sensitized (in practice and theory) with user experience and design. I have recently, on a whime, begun following Joel on Twitter – and this great lecture appeared today.

Though it is offered in the context of software (which is only mentioned for 2 minutes towards the end of the lcture) – it is a great talk about a wider concept of design. It is an accessible and enteraining talk – and if you are a computer user may be able to relate to the suffering inflicted on you by poor software design (which is abundant).

Oh … and if you noticed Joel mentioning Kathy Sierra and wondered who she is – here is a great talk she gave at a WordCamp SF 2008 and these are the remnants of ber blog.

Enjoy 🙂

Posted in AltEco, Business, outside, Tech Stuff | You are welcome to add your comment

Myself – July 2010: Regular


July was thankfully uneventful.

The summer heat was not as intense as it could have been – living at this higher altitude in the north means pleasant air throughout most of the day and low humidity. Evenings are a pleasure. Still spending most of the time at home, except for shopping or going out to eat once a week in a neighbouring village.

My practices are finding a new regularity and stability. I was able to gain momentum into experiencing a wholeness and focus in practice. I am practicing almost every morning. Pranayama is also becoming a more regular practice. There have even been days where I’ve been on the mat more than once. I have also tasted again the sweet intensity of an evening practice.

There was one defining event in July. I had the honor and pleasure of helping my teacher migrate from three outdated web-sites to one integrated modern, easy to manage website. The work itself was extremely rewarding (still ongoing) – there was plenty of motivation, excellent and open communication and rewarding results. But even more so was having the opportunity to be in touch with my teacher – it confirmed and reinforced my presence and my direction, it affected the quality of presence in my practices, it gave me an opportunity to gain a deeper perspective into the work and the questions that my teacher faces – a very grounding experience.

Though I can’t place a finger on it, I feel that Andreea and I have created new subtle links between us – that our relationship has been somehow refined. We have separately and together found a way to transform our fears, tensions and uncertainties into appreciation, embracing and growth. There has been a subtle but clear shift in my perception of our relationship and relationships in general. I see better.

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