Our Summer Science Project!

During our last trip to India in April, we visited Clement Town, a small Tibetan enclave in northern India and the home of Tibetan refugees who settled there after they were exiled from their country. A number of people at BTY have sponsored children through TCEF and they had the chance to meet the children they sponsor. It was a moving experience that none of us will forget.

I learned on this trip that the Tibetans have been incredibly successful at building and educating children. Their goals now are to improve the quality of education so our kids can thrive as adults.

I’ve been working to sponsor Tibetan children’s education. The Tibetan culture has contributed to my understanding of our yoga practice. Through the Tibetans, I have learned fundamental principles that are simply part of their daily lives, such as loving kindness, compassion and mindfulness.

Every few years we take on a project to improve the lives of these kids, step by step. What we learned this trip is that their science program is run by Rekha Gupta, who has been teaching inside these walls for thirty years. She has no equipment whatsoever to teach science. She teaches scientific principles by telling stories. Her dream is to have an actual lab.

Because we have such a strong affiliation with TCEF and we are in Silicon Valley, I’d like to build a science program. I can see taking groups from our home to theirs, contributing first hand to their education.


The school has assembled a thorough list of supplies, which includes shelves and counters, that in total, comes to $6,000. If you feel moved, would you consider donating to TCEF? You can help in a number of ways.

  1. Write a check directly to the Tibetan Children’s Education Foundation or contact Karma@tibetchild.org to make a tax-deductible contribution.
  2. Make a cash donation of any amount you like at the front desk. We have a big bowl out.
  3. Sponsor a child’s education. It’s incredibly fulfilling, it costs $45 a month, and Karma Tensum will match you up with your child.

Thanks to those who have over the years, supported this mission and changed the lives of these children and their families.


84 Postures in 84 Days

Join our Summer Instagram Challenge from June 3 – August 25.

Follow our Instagram (@breathetogetheryoga) and Jennifer Prugh (@jennprugh).

Yoga- asana has a long standing history of creating systems of 84 postures. But historically, most systems are of seated postures. So Jennifer Prugh weighed the history of yoga with yoga-asana of today and created a system of 84 postures that address the body of a modern yoga practitioner while still retaining a connection to early yoga. Learn the system, learn how to safely sequence your practice, deepen your understanding of yoga, share what you are learning with others and have fun doing it!

Each week we will post seven postures for the week. You post yourself in the posture, or a variation or modification of that posture each day. Hashtag us so we can find you!

Post daily for prizes or a chance to be featured!

To win the grand prize of a gift box full of items totaling $500, complete all 84 postures within June 3 through August 25. Be creative, show us whatever expression or modification that you wish. Let’s play!



The Backpack Project

Perhaps like you, I have been sitting with how to evoke change in our world around us, as well as the world at large. Two rather “yogic” phrases have been on my mind lately: “meeting the moment,” and “meeting people where they are.”
As I listen to many of you, I’ve realized that so many at Breathe have found unique ways in which to practice both of these ideas by regularly effecting change. As our studio looks forward to year 6 of being a community, we’ll begin to feature in our newsletters what our staff, members, teachers and students do to “live their yoga” as a means of continually inspiring all of us to “be the change we wish to see in the world.”
I recently discovered that our tea house manager, Jennifer Dong, is teaching her children about how to give. As a family, they prepare backpacks for the homeless filled with anything you might need if you were living on a day to day bases without shelter.  As a family, they shop, pack, find homeless or homeless encampments, and give the backpacks directly as a year round “practice.” She always has backpacks in her car, ready when she sees someone in need.  Her young children are learning what it means to provide direct support and comfort to those around us. Her actions have inspired me to share this “practice,” with my family.
I’m inviting the entire Breathe community to participate as an extension of our practice. Would you buy a few backpacks, pack them and give them away to people who need them? I’m especially interested in this project because it offers us the opportunity to practice “meeting the moment” and “meeting people where they are” directly and with compassion. We’re all learning how to make the world around us a better place, and evidence suggests that we’re most effective when working together.
Thankfully, Jennifer Dong has provided the list of supplies she generally purchases and guidelines for how to put the backpacks together below. Let’s see what we can do!
Wishing you and for your family comfort and joy during this holiday season,


Suggested Items for Backpacks

Toiletries & Miscellaneous

  1. Shampoo
  2. Travel Toothpaste
  3. Travel Toothbrush
  4. Deodorant
  5. Comb or Brush
  6. Chapstick
  7. Gloves or Mittens
  8. Small First Aid Kit
  9. New Socks
  10. New Underwear
  11. Emergency Blankets
  12. Disposable Rain Ponchos

Food & Drink

  1. Small Gift Cards (Mcdonalds, Panera, etc)
  2. Ready to Eat Cans with Easy Open Lids
  3. Soft Foods (apple sauce, puddings)
  4. Lightweight Snacks (trail mix, granola bars, dried fruit, crackers)


  1. Words of Encouragement
  2. Eye Contact
  3. Smiles
  4. A Listening Ear
  5. Conversation
  6. A Moment of your Time

A Letter to California Yoga Studio Owners, Yoga Teachers & Workshop Presenters

California yoga studio owners, yoga teachers and workshop presenters: 

 My hope in writing this is to educate yoga professionals at all levels in California.

 Have you heard that the California Employment Development Department is targeting yoga studios and yoga teachers trying to make the teacher the employee and the studio the teacher’s employer regardless of how many different studios you teach? Do you understand the financial and life changing impact this may cause?

 Historically, most independent yoga studios have operated under the private or independent contractor model with the premise that yoga teachers are running their own business, teach or run their workshop without any supervision, are compensated in a variety of negotiated ways, chose their own schedule, etc. The EDD does not care about these and other legal “independent” factors. The EDD wants studios to be employers and teachers of all varieties to be in an employment relationship.

 We built our studio business model on the private contractor legal foundation; we wanted yoga teachers to have the freedom to create and follow their own initiative. A few years ago the EDD’s actions became obvious to yoga studio owners. Breath Los Gatos was one of those studios. So we consulted a lawyer in case we would be audited. We have never dictated or supervised yoga teacher actions. We contract with professionals on various discussed and agreed terms and conditions. We believed we created a very good private contractor business model.

 The EDD has audited two studios in our area that we knew of; both lost their cases. Two years ago, the EDD sent a notice of “employment tax audit” to Breathe Los Gatos. 

 We wanted assistance, so we contacted Yoga Alliance. Since teachers at Breathe Los Gatos have paid thousands of dollars in dues, many for over a decade, we hoped that they were working to protect yoga studios and teachers independent status within our California government. The YA President returned our email saying YA offered an online course to determine if your studio should consider switching to the employer/employee model. Not much assistance. 

 So we contracted with an attorney specializing in independent contractor issues to present our case to the state. We and our attorney have analyzed our business model: Breathe Los Gatos contracts with teachers performing a variety of styles of yoga, tai chi and chi gong. The teachers contracting to work through Breathe Los Gatos create and manage their own businesses, are highly trained (at great expense), knowledgeable and experienced, most have been teaching close to ten years, and they teach through contracts with a variety of venues (corporate, private, other studios) throughout the Santa Clara, Santa Cruz County area, and the peninsula, and many teach workshops and at conferences in and outside of the United States. They teach patients in hospitals, the Veterans Administration, and work with prisoners in state prisons. Our model stresses contracts with highly trained professionals.  We purposely do not supervise or direct the manner and means they chose to teach. All these factors support independent contractor status. Also these factors allow us to offer the public a more complete expression of yoga and to a very wide demographic. From the beginning we have aimed to offer “yoga for everyone,” and this model makes that possible. 

 We know of no state wide professional organization addressing these issues. If you are interested in starting or joining such an organization, let us know. With enough positive response, maybe we could start something in that area.

 In the meantime, we’re writing from our own experience. Hopefully the above information and the below suggestions may save you and your studio(s) from our suffering and exasperation. 

 If you are a teacher bidding or contracting for scheduled times at a studio, you may want to consider:

·      Create a fictitious business name for your business. (Go on line and check with your local County Clerk. Find how simple this is.)

·      Read enough about your (any) business so you understand the basics. (Every business makes profit or loss. Keep records [revenue and business expenses] and have your tax preparer complete a Schedule C for your Federal 1040.)

·      Every scheduled class you accept creates a contract for you to perform your professional services timely during that short time. (Failure to perform is a breach of your contract and subjects you to damages you cause.)

·      You may perform your services at many different studios (including your own – privates or whatever) when you want.

·      Negotiate your compensation; even rent a studio’s room for your own students.

·      Keep track of the amount you earn from each class. Then prepare and send your business invoice to the studio.

·      Advertise by word of mouth, website, flyers, newsletters, etc.

·      Remember you are not an employee – do not act like one.

 If you own a studio and contract with yoga teachers as independent contractors, look at the above and treat those independent contractor businesses like a business/independent contractor. If you treat them like an employee, you will be their employer.

 If a studio faces an EDD employment tax audit: you need an attorney who knows that special law and the EDD; you will pay exorbitant legal fees, live under the stress of a long drawn out audit process. (And likely lose the audit according to the EDD anyway. They do not necessarily follow that law. There are appeals.) That whole audit process and with ultimate assessment could cost tens and sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars. Our advice is do not pretend that this issue doesn’t affect you. You will eventually be audited. Talk to an attorney about either converting to the employer/employee model or strengthen the studio’s independent contractor relationship with its yoga teachers in case of an EDD employment tax audit. Whether or not you’ve known about this, we highly recommend not pretending this issue is just going to go away. Many studios will not survive once they are audited. The process, assessment and aftermath is expensive. 

 Special words for workshop presenters or teacher trainers: Take heed of the above. While you are the most likely yoga teachers to be found by the EDD as independent contractors, there are no guarantees. Ask the studio owner where you contract whether or not that studio is following the hiring employees model or contracting with independent contractors model. Be sure you are filing invoices in order to be paid. Be sure the independent contractor relationship between you and the studio is clear. 

 Generally speaking, evidence suggests the California EDD wants to convert yoga studio/teacher relationships to employer/employee regardless of what the studio/teacher may want and may think they have created. While I can understand their impetus, (i. e., easier to collect taxes) and we may be able to live with that, we do object to the way the EDD is implementing their change. Make the rules clear and allow the companies that follow the rules to maintain independent contractor status. Don’t penalize all yoga businesses, including those that do follow the rules.

 A new highly reputable study was published last week stating that yoga was an effective anti-depressant in relieving depression. Yoga and mindfulness based practices save all of us millions of dollars in taxpayer money. We have high hopes that those running the EDD and overseeing the EDD auditors get to know the industry and the benefits it bestows on the yoga public. Perhaps then EDD could lighten up by applying the law to yoga businesses that effectively benefit thousands of residents at relatively low cost and no tax dollars. California could actually decrease medical costs while benefiting thousands of resident yoga students and teachers by following the law.  

 Breathe Los Gatos is well within the EDD audit process and will receive word soon – assessment or no assessment. So it’s too late for us. But it’s not too late for you. If you know yoga teachers or studio owners, please send this to them. I’d love to save anyone from having to go through this experience. 

 Jennifer Prugh

Owner, Breathe Los Gatos 

Baked Purple Potato Dollars with Raw Butter

I am quite fond of sweet potatoes, especially the purple ones. They are less sweet than their orange family members, with a delicious flavor. Like all sweet potatoes they are not part of the nightshade family (Solanaceae) but belong to the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae). My favorite one is the Stokes Sweet Purple Potato, particularly for this recipe. They got their name because they were first grown in the Stokes County in North Carolina. In California organic ones can be found in many stores. Their purple color indicate a high content of flavonoids known as anthocyanin which is a powerful antioxidant also found in blueberries, acai berries, black currents, or red cabbage.

Freshly baked these potato dollars are crisp outside and soft inside. Their taste and the sugary smell when they just come out of the oven remind me of cookies! Yummy and nutritious cookies, though! The next day they are more moist. To make them crispy again they can be toasted. We often have them for breakfast, together with raw cultured butter.

Why organic raw cultured butter? Butter from grass fed cows is a veryimportant source of fat soluble vitamins such as true vitamin A (retinol),Vitamin D, and K as well as trace minerals like manganese, zinc, chromium and iodine, especially when the cows feed on green grass. Weston A. Price writes about this in his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration where he emphasizes that adding green pasturage yields in higher amounts of these fat soluble vitamins.

Butter from grass-fed cows has a good amount of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) which has strong anticancer properties. Other fats in butter are lauric acid which is a medium chain fatty acid and known to be antimicrobial and antifungal, otherwise only found in coconut oil, as well as butyric acid (a short chain fatty acid) which has antifungal properties as well as antitumor effects. Additionally, butter has small but nearly equal amounts of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.

Pesticides and other environmental poisons can accumulate in fat, so it is important to look for butter from organic or pasture-raised cows as pasture is usually not sprayed.

Cultured butter is made from fermented, or soured, cream by adding beneficial bacterial cultures which help to break down the trace amounts of lactose sugars before consumption.

Raw butter is not heated and contains active enzymes and a broad spectrum of naturally occurring beneficial bacteria which makes it easy to digest. Besides, raw butter contains the Wulzen Factor which is called the “antistiffness” factor because this substance protects from calcification of the joints and hardening of the arteries.

If you want to read more about the health benefits of butter then go to Dr. Axe’s article about butter or to this article by Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD.

Now, are you convinced about butter, especially raw butter? Then try this great combination of sweetness and cultured abundance, and let me know how you like it!

Guten Appetit!
The Nourishing Yogini

Recipe for baked purple potato dollars 

purple potatoes
coconut oil
raw butter

Wash purple potatoes. If preferred the potatoes can be peeled. Slice potatoes and lay on parchment paper. Depending on thickness bake for 45 – 55 minutes at 375F.  Let cool.

Enjoy with raw cultured butter!


Wash your purple potatoes, especially if you don’t peel them.


  • Peel if preferred and slice them.


Lay on parchment paper and brush with coconut oil.


Bake for 45 – 55 minutes at 375F.


Let cool down a bit, or completely, and enjoy with raw butter!

Bone Broth Basics

Basic Broth Made In A Pressure Cooker

What is more nourishing than a warm cup of broth on a cold day or when you are hungry? What feels better than a healing cup of chicken broth when you have the flu, or you just feel rundown? What smells better than to open the lid of a pot with freshly made broth?

Barely anything I would say. Yes, I love my broth, as you can tell. I use it for cooking soups, stews, rice or just drink it on its own.


Health Benefits 

There is a reason that broth makes us feel good, as the health benefits of broth are numerous! Here are just a few facts about broth:

  • Broth contains a lot of minerals – calcium, magnesium, potassium and trace minerals – although the calcium content is not very high unless you grind some of the leftover bones into the broth. What is more important is that the minerals from broth are highly absorbable and are balanced with a range of other minerals, especially trace minerals.
  • While minerals make bones hard, collagen keeps them resilient. About 28% of a bone is collagen (the rest is 50% minerals and 22% water). Cooking breaks down collagenous protein from bones and cartilage intogelatin. Gelatin contains an amino acid profile which is not only important for building our own strong bones, joints, hair, skin and nails but also for our overall well-being.
  • One of the main amino acids in broth is especially important for the gut, where our immune system is at home. Glutamine is an amino acid that feeds the lining of the gut helping the villi of the small intestine to heal and grow, and therefore improves digestion and nutrient absorption. Many supplements that address leaky gut contain glutamine as a main ingredient. Glutamine stimulates immune cells and helps to protect us against illness and disease. Glutamine also cuts cravings for sugar and carbohydrates!
  • Glysine is the simplest of all amino acids and a main player in many processes in the body, such as detoxification, sugar metabolism, production of bile salts to digest fats, reduction of inflammation, and wound healing.
  • Gelatin has the unusual property of being hydrophilic, even after it has been heated. This means it attracts and holds liquid, in this case digestive juices. This is very important, as it improves the digestion of cooked meals when raw food is missing or limited in a meal.
  • Although gelatin is not a complete protein, it has a meat sparing effectby allowing the body to more fully utilize the complete proteins that are taken in. This makes it economical for the environment by saving meat and using the whole animal, and also for your budget, as bone broth is inexpensive to make.
  • Broth is a staple in many Asian countries where soup is often traditionally served with every meal, including breakfast.
  • If you want to learn more about the many benefits of bone broth then read Nourishing Broth, An Old-Fashioned Remedy for the Modern Worldby Sally Fallon Morell and Kaayla T. Daniel. This book covers the science, the healing power of broth, as well as numerous recipes.
  • Or watch this video  – Bone Broth and Health: A Look at the Science – where Kaayla T. Daniels talks for about 45 minutes about broth.

Practical aspects 

To get a rich flavor and a lot of gelatin my favorite way to make broth is with a pressure cooker. The process is much faster than with a slow cooker and I think the broth results in a better flavor. Besides, when it comes to nutrients the shorter cooking time results in less destruction of heat sensitive vitamins. To read more about pressure cookers go here.

Stock or broth? Traditionally stock is made more from bones and broth more from meaty parts. In my kitchen I just use the term broth no matter whether I use a fresh whole chicken to start with, or the leftover bones from a roasted chicken.

Variety is a good thing. For chicken broth (or chicken stock) any bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs and feet (so much gelatin!) can be used, or as well as a whole chicken. For beef broth knuckle bones make the most gelatin-rich broth while marrow bones give a delicious flavor. Shanks have more meat but sometimes also a good portion of marrow and cartilage. My favorite beef mix contains knuckle bones and shank bones. Broth can also be made with carcasses and/or bones from turkey, duck, lamb, pig’s or calf’s feet, or fish heads and trimmings for fish stock.
Mixing is allowed, too!

Amounts vary. In general I try to fill the pot at least half with bones and vegetables, often more. Then I add water up to the 2/3 line, the maximum recommended level on most pressure cookers. If your broth ends up too thick you can always add more water afterwards, or if it is too thin, you can boil it down.

Quality is key, as always when it comes to food. Choose organic or grass-fed bones, organic or pasture-raised chicken. Chicken stock made from non-organic chicken parts might not gel.

Reusing bones and making another batch also makes very good broth although the flavor of the first batch is usually the best.

If broth simmers for many hours, typically in a slow cooker, then it is critical to skim the broth when foam appears in the beginning of the cooking process. This foam contains impurities which can cause an off flavor if cooked for too long. For basic broth in a pressure cooker I often omit this step because first, the overall cooking time is often less than an hour and second, the pressure cooker tends to let these impurities sink to the bottom of the broth and stick to the pot. Sometimes I skim beef broth when I plan to cook the broth for many hours, but I barely ever skim chicken broth. I have never had this bad flavor using a pressure cooker.

After straining the broth and letting it cool down to room temperature it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for many months. Another way to store broth is the following: If the broth has a nice layer of fat on it and the jar top of a mason jar is sealed when the broth is very warm, and then cooled down, it will keep for several weeks in the fridge.

No space in your refrigerator to store the broth? Sometimes I have a pressure cooker going on my stove all week long. I am continually taking broth out, and adding more good stuff in, like new beef bones, carcasses from roasted chickens or more vegetables. As long as the broth is brought to a boil once a day in summer and every other day in winter it will be fine. In case you forget about it on the stove and worry whether your good broth has gone bad, trust your nose. It will smell bad. Especially when you heat it up again. It will smell really bad!

If no pressure cooker is available then a regular stock pot or a slow cooker are alternatives. Usual cooking times are 8 to 12, and up to 24 hours for the slow cooker on a low setting. If you use a stockpot on the stove then let simmer for a minimum of 2 hours, or longer if you are able to watch the pot. Check from time to time and add more water if needed. Keep it on a low simmer.

I always make my broth in a pressure cooker because the flavor is so superb. I even brought a new one over from Germany this summer. A big one, just for making broth. It took quite a bit of space in my luggage. But well, don’t we have to do whatever it takes to make us happy in the kitchen?

Guten Appetit!
The Nourishing Yogini

Recipe for making broth with a pressure cooker

1 whole chicken, or various chicken parts, or
a mix of beef bones (knuckle bones, marrow bones and/or shanks)
or any bones/carcasses of your choice

2 – 4 tbsp lemon juice or vinegar

1 onion
2 carrots
2- 3 celery sticks
1/4 celery root (optional for extra flavor)
1 leek (optional)

1 – 2 tsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 small piece of lemon rind
1/2 – 1 inch long ginger root piece

Making Chicken Broth:


Place whole chicken, or chicken pieces and all other ingredients in a pressure cooker. Make sure to add lemon juice or vinegar which helps to leach minerals from the bones. Cover with cold filtered water and let sit for about an hour.


Close the lid, turn on heat and bring the pressure cooker to high pressure according to its instructions. Keep pressure cooker on high pressure for about 15 minutes. Switch off the heat and allow the pot to release pressure naturally, that takes about 20 minutes.


Come back after half an hour, or the next morning, and voila, here is your delicious chicken broth! That wonderful smell when you open the lid just brings you right to heaven!


Once the chicken has cooled down take it apart and save the meat for later. Strain the broth.

You also can just eat parts of the chicken and veggies as is, together with the broth. With sea salt that’s a quick and nourishing meal.


Making Beef Broth


Place beef bones and all other ingredients, except black peppercorns and bay leave in a pressure cooker. Make sure to add lemon juice or vinegar which helps to leach minerals from the bones. Cover with cold filtered water and let sit for about an hour.


Bring everything to a boil.


Skim the foam.


After skimming the foam add black peppercorns and bay leaves if desired. Bring the pressure cooker to high pressure according to its instructions. Keep pressure cooker on high pressure for about 15 – 30 minutes. Switch off the heat and allow the pot to release pressure naturally, that takes about 20 minutes.


Come back after half an hour, or the next morning, and voila, here is your delicious bone broth!

What now?


After removing the bigger bones and pieces from the pot with tongs strain the broth. If you want to use the broth right away a fat separator is very handy to get the clear broth and fat separated.

If you don’t have a fat separator let the broth cool down to room temperature and put it in the fridge. The fat on the top will get hard and will be easy to remove if you prefer to do so.


Save the fat for cooking, especially when it comes from grass-fed beef bones. It will have a fine flavor, too, depending on the ingredients you have used for your broth.

Erika Abrahamian – How has Yoga changed my life?

Erika Abrahamian – Tehran, Iran

Yoga shifted my life when I realized that most of what I perceived as reality was in fact a colorful fiction that my mind projected onto everything and everyone. Practice methodically strips away the falseness, so that I may be in dynamic relationship moment to moment. Through practice, I have come to appreciate and be fascinated by the multiple facets of my mind. Rather than indulging in the extreme manifestation of desire and aversion to certain states of mind, I know enough through practice to know that as Rilke said ‘no feeling is final’. Yoga asana teaches me continuously that embodiment is essential if one is to be in true, authentic relationship, and, Yoga happens in relationship. The practice has given me a context to explore my sharp edges and boundaries, shadows and blindspots, weaknesses of heart, perceived limitations, self-inflicted wounds, fabricated dramas that run on a loop, ancient and outdated anxieties, existential and mundane fears, so that I can be less reactive and more responsive to the present moment. Practice teaches me to be softer, vulnerable, and fiercely honest; it requires that I be courageous on a regular basis. It has gifted me with radiant teachers and has put me in relationship with sincere students who break my heart open often with their willingness to drop in and explore. It has reinforced the importance of resilience and independence all the while underscoring the importance of a vibrant and compassionate community of inherently interconnected practitioners. It has taught me to trust the process, to trust my center, and has taught me that what matters is showing up wholeheartedly. It continues to fine-tune my capacity to shift and change all the while settling deeper into a self that is authentic and not based on any preconceived notions of who I think I ought to be. Practice has opened doors I did not know existed, so that I may be of service to others.

Katie Hoover – How has Yoga changed my life?

Katie Hoover – Fairfax County, Virginia

When it became obvious to me that yoga had changed my life, I wrote a poem:

Dearest Peace.

Dearest Peace, I have seen you written as prayer,

as symbols graffiti’d on walls.  I have heard choirs

sing of you and I have chanted your name

in languages I do not otherwise understand.

Dearest Peace, I have been your spokesperson, held your sign,

called on you to visit homes, hearts, bellies, countries,

but today, looking back, I realized, neither did I truly believe you existed

nor did I believe, if you did exist, that I would be worthy to receive you.

 Dearest Peace, lately, at the strangest flickering moments,

like being caught in traffic, or walking in to clean the kitchen,

a sweet sensation seeps into my shoulder joints,

a bubbling up, a smoothing over, a spontaneous giggling giddiness,

it’s a warmth that comes from the inside of my own bones,

luxuriates for a moment and then slips away like one wave receding the shoreline.

I think this sensation is you.

I spent my young life trying to get away from myself, looking up at the clouds, wishing to be somewhere, someone or something else. Around the agitated age of ten, I ran everywhere I went.  I was afraid to waste time or miss something important.  When running from place to place became socially unacceptable, I danced for hours to get the terrible feelings out.

About 20 years ago, I found yoga, meditation and energy movement.  I began to settle into the space behind my eyes, move into the quiet refuge of my body and, with lots of practice, greet the shadows lurking there with curiosity and compassion.  Grounded in the body, connected to earth and open to uncertainty, yoga practice has helped me experience life with more clarity and less fear.  Maintaining a well-rounded practice gives me a steady connection to the divine pulse of life including gentle waves of peace.

Sina Siar – How Has Yoga Changed My Life?

“Yoga has saved my life. It has enabled me to learn about my body energetics and be able to operate fully as a human being. It has enabled me to connect to the Mother Earth energy and harness the Divine Kundalini Shakti. Around this time in 2012, I was disabled due to severe lower back pain and was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at 275 pounds. I remember the very exact moment when I told myself – THATS IT!!! I no longer want to live in his way. I prayed for a method and the universe answered. Practicing Kundalini, Ashtanga, and Body Temple Yoga has been so integral in my evolution as a human being, especially with eliminating physical pain. I am glad to have been able to experience this transformation at a studio like Breathe, Los Gatos, the ultimate human playground for growth, wisdom, and consciousness. As one of my beloved teachers said “There’s nothing which can be more precious in you than your own relationship with your own consciousness.” My intention is to share this knowledge with whoever is seeking it. Sat Nam & Namaste.”

Larry Munoz – How has Yoga changed my life?

Larry Munoz – San Jose, CA
Connection!  Early on my practice was mostly a physical thing, trying to find flexibility while positioning my body in ways I’d never experienced.  Then I found mindful breath and realized balance of ease, softness and strength would best serve not only the asanas but life in general.  Here began the opening of the gates to further exploration of the other Limbs.  Time on the mat, each experience, is different.  Some days, the body moves easily.  Other days, wild thoughts of finding a new knee or other unhappy body parts appear.  The emotions, the voice of the ego, the divine, the body, the soul, all have this way of teaching me things about myself i hadn’t learned any other way. This daily journey on our own personal rectangular playground, with all of its lessons, magically spills over to life and in the most beautiful way goes beyond connection with the true self, touching others all around us.  Each and every day begins with a clean slate.  Showing up daily, with whatever I have to give and riding the waves moment by moment with laughter or tears or somewhere in between.  Life.