Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The tendency of mind is ....

Back in December, one of the parents from my daughter's playschool started the initiative about kids soccer. They said they were enrolling their kid to soccer camp starting in April, a 8 week camp played one weekend every week, they suggested if all kids could join in it would be lot of fun. We all got excited with the idea and jumped on it right away. Majority of the kids in the class enrolled with the camp.

Since we were all enrolling we requested all the kids to be together in the same team. The wonderful folks at the camp people honored our request and even better some of the dads became the coaches for the team. Keep in mind the whole idea behind was to let kids have fun outside school and some socializing for us too. The kids are truly having fun, specially since the soccer practice ends with donuts and drinks (snacks provided by different parent each week).

It's been 5 weeks, the kids are enjoying the games and having fun. I would definitely say, they have been improving every week, but our team hasn't won a single match. To put it bluntly we get our butts kicked by the opposing team. We would be lucky if our team makes 1 or 2 goals in the process and we don’t self goal during the match.

I think the reason is simple, each team that we have played against so far has 2 to 3 kids who are much older than the kids in our team and also have played multiple years of soccer. If only we hadn’t made the request during enrollment, may be our team would have gotten couple of older kids too and we would be tough competitor too but if that had happened it no longer would have been team “Kangaroos”, would it be?.

Now, the real point of this blog post, I realized I am going away from the original intent of the whole exercise "having fun" and getting to the mode of winning and analyzing why our team isn't doing as good as others.

I think this is called awareness which my good friends were trying to drill into me a decade ago. Of course life is such "aha" moments and that's what makes it fun.The secret is simple, to breath, want more information visit

Friday, April 03, 2015

Relevance of Yoga in Modern Life

What is the relevance of yoga in modern life?  First off, what is yoga?  What is the meaning of modern life?
Yoga comes from the ancient Sanskrit word Yuj, which simply means union / to join.  Yoga ultimately means uniting the mind, body, breath, and spirit…and for modern life, I would add to that statement, “in the present moment.”  At a much deeper level, which may not be applicable here in this modern worldly life, yoga gives us the realization of truth, or the ultimate reality of consciousness and non-duality.  We are so often caught up in the duality of life seeing nearly everything as separate from us.  This keeps us chasing after material worldly desires, things, people, pleasures, status, and other “things” that ultimately keep us away from waking up to the reality, to our own self, to the realization of the belongingness, to the dharma or purpose of why we are actually here on this planet.  If we deeply realize our dharma or purpose in life, then a much larger view of the universe opens up to us; but let’s keep with the inquiry regarding yoga in modern life.
What is modern life?  Modern life, or the worldly life we live, often involves raising children, focusing on our career, managing a home, filling that home, and keeping our relationships going.  Modern life often also involves many hours in front of electronics like cell phones, sitting in front of a computer (which I am doing now) and the TV.  One of the most significant aspects of modern life is the feeling of multi-tasking and being very busy…always prioritizing what to do and when to do it.  We spend so much time worrying about the future or dwelling on the past.  We are rarely in the present moment.  That’s where Yoga comes in.
There are many aspects of yoga.  There are also many different levels of utilizing yoga.  One who fully dwells in yoga could be called a Yogi.  One who also manages both the worldly life, but with non-attachment and contentment might also be called a Yogi.  So both possibilities exist.  The key here is utilizing the breath and being present to each and every moment.  This present-mindedness while being established in the self is the ultimate formula for yoga in modern life.  I would also argue that the simple journey of becoming present to each moment and taking care of your mind, body, breath, and spirit can all be tools to integrating yoga in modern life. 
There are several ways to incorporate the yogic sciences into your modern daily life.  Some broad ways to incorporate yoga into modern life include paying attention to what we eat, how much we sleep, how we breathe, and being more aware of our thoughts, words, and actions.  The major yogic techniques also include satkarmas, asanas, kriya, pranayamas, and meditation.  Through lifestyle changes, one can realize a happy and fulfilling modern lifestyle while still being in the world.
Even 20 to 30 minutes a day of yoga practices combined with conscious choices like getting six to eight hours of sleep each night, keeping the mind in a calm and meditative state of awareness, keeping a healthy and sattvic vegetarian diet while drinking plenty of water, and helping others through selfless service, can have a tremendous impact on our ability to live a happy and fulfilling modern life.