Tag Archives: Jennifer Miller

“Lighting Candles, Hanging Lights And Letting Things Be With Words By Paul Ferrini”

By Jennifer Miller
.
Jennifer Miller Dvi-Pada-Sirsasana Pose 2012Fire up the Pavoni.
Morning coffee, so good.
Lighting candles and incense as
I start my morning yoga practice.
Arriving on the mat is like coming home again.
.
Beautiful morning walking the dogs, aka “the babies”.
Breathing in the coves of Laguna ahhh!!

Breakfast at the local cafe; cool people, artist types.

Walking out, a homeless woman under a blanket.
All I can see is one foot.
My heart sinks and I want to ask her what she needs?
I know she is probably an addict.
.
Back home to make homemade granola.
A yum yum Christmas tradition.
Looking through the mail and
a child support check arrives.
It’s been a while.
.
My mind goes to the last 5 years.
No father in these kid’s lives.
No anger… only hope.
Could this man possibly change?
.
I let it go to the Spirit and check my heart.
It’s in a good place.
Forgiveness is there.
.
My beloved hangs Christmas lights.
So many years without lights.
They symbolize healing for my family.
.
I look around….
No lights in the small neighborhood.
We have been judged here.
A single mom and trouble with her son.
.
Interesting.
We are the ones with lights.
.
A big lesson in my journey: do not judge by the outside.
.
Open up a new book.

Click on book to purchase and benefit the Heart Based Healing Foundation.

Click on book to purchase and benefit the Heart Based Healing Foundation.

A favorite thing to do.
Reading,  deep reflections come to me.
.
The poetic words of Paul Ferrini:
.
Life is constantly asking us to make adjustments,
to give up our agenda.
It is asking us to give up the conceit that we know the way things are supposed to be.
Letting things be is a way of saying to God
“I’m willing to dance with you.”
From “Dancing With The Beloved”.
.
Namaste, Jennifer Miller
Contact Jennifer Miller at yogagoddesslaguna@yahoo.com

Contact Jennifer Miller at yogagoddesslaguna@yahoo.com

Advertisements

The Importance Of Always Listening For The Inner Voice Of Guidance Within Ourselves

By Jennifer Miller

Jennifer Miller YogaGoddess 2012Its seems so simple to always listen to Divine Guidance. We hear it as a small whisper, and it sounds different from our normal brain chatter. But, in truth, this voice is always with us, as Caroline Myss states below:

“Do not assume that divine guidance flows only when you are in need of help. Guidance continues to flow whether or not you have problems…Whether guidance comes during times of tranquility or trauma, however, it is up to you to have the courage to acknowledge it”

It could be just a word, for example, while grocery shopping, as to what I need. I will often ignore it and when I get home, sure enough, that is something I needed. It’s happened so often that I know it’s “TRUE”.

Before getting married, there were warning signs, all of which I ignored. When we are young and innocent, we don’t listen much to anyone. I remember, as a small girl, hearing the voice that I now know as guidance. Entering the teen years, I no longer listened to its counsel. Now, as a mother and wiser woman, I not only hear, but feel this guidance with my body. When something is truly right, my body sings with joy. I breathe freely and my heart feels alive while my spirit sores.

I now listen to my heart, which is like having your best friend inside of you. It knows me like no one else, offering unconditional love while wanting the best for me and my family. As I navigate life, I am now constantly listening for that small voice within. Like a soft caress, it has a smooth and loving feeling.

Click on the book to purchase at Heart Based Healing Foundation Store.

Click on the book to purchase and benefit the Heart Based Healing Foundation.

A great way to complete this connection is through controlled breathing, which helps to circulate the positive benefits throughout our body. Breathing in, I feel a soothing calm that is pulled upward from my feet until it reaches my head. Tensions melt as I close my eyes. Breathing out, negative thoughts and worries are expelled, leaving a feeling of contentment that comes with releasing, letting go, and not remaining attached to things and events.

So many good things happen when we maintain a healthy mind-body-spirit connection…

Namaste, Jennifer Miller

“A Life Of Dharma Is Exactly Like A Great Yoga Posture…An Experience So Far Beyond Any Pleasure You’ve Ever Had…” – Stephen Cope

Dharma: Knowledge of or duty to undertake conduct set forth by the Buddha as a way to enlightenment.

…A Life of dharma is exactly like a great yoga posture. Everything must be aligned around the spine. The dharma is a strict taskmaster. It will require you to reach — to work at your maximum potential.

In order to do this, you will have to learn to take better care of yourself. You will have to sleep and eat properly…You will probably have to create a regular schedule. And one day you’ll realize you’re in training like an Olympic athlete.  But not any old training– a particular kind of training, the particular kind of training that will support your dharma and no one else’s.

The dharma itself will prescribe this training, and you will know it when you stumble onto it through trial and error.  You’ll know it by its results, because in moments when you’re in proper training, you will feel yourself a channel…You will have stepped aside somehow (and let it come through you)…And this is an experience so far beyond any pleasure you’ve ever had that you will most definitely want more of it. And so you will henceforth be increasingly careful about your training regimen…You want to be clear…”

From: “The Great Work of Your Life: A Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling” By Stephen Cope

If We Are Conscious That Our Mind Makes Excuses, We Can Overcome Negative Attachments In Life

By Jennifer Miller

My yoga practice continues to teach me about my inner self. Working through advanced postures, I am conscious of how my mind makes “excuses” during periods where I struggle: too many babies, weak bandhas, arms and legs that are too long (very creative). But through discipline and focusing my mind, I am able to block out these thoughts and “distractions”.

This past Thursday at the Ashtanga Yoga Center in Encinitas, CA,  I finally nailed the difficult Urdhva Kukkutasana B pose (a lifting lotus) in the advanced series. But this short-term success highlighted a major theme in my overall practice: that difficult transitions in my life had reduced the desire to “push forward”.

As mothers, we must be able to “detach” from the emotions and negative energy that arise as we watch our children grow older and naturally struggle with life’s journey. We need to remain objective with the strength to make the tough calls that do not enable a continuation of poor decisions and actions.

My yoga practice and personal life both thrive when I maintain a healthy mind-body connection. My teacher noticed from across the room when I succeeded with the difficult pose. I quickly do the pose again to confirm it in my muscle memory. My mind has thoughts of “I CAN” running through it and the body responds.

I remember with a smile back to a day when I worked with girls at the Recovery Home and demonstrated this same pose. The purpose was to show them that a yoga practice mirrors our daily lives. We can feel stifled and stuck in life, but we need to have the strength to push through the barriers holding us back.

One of the girls had said “…you’re so strong you could probably take us all out”. We all laughed.  They had reacted to the positive energy I demonstrated when facing a seemingly impossible situation.

We must maintain the ability to focus our minds on the positive things we can accomplish each day in order to push through even the most difficult of times in our lives.

Namaste, Jennifer Miller

“The Deepest Desire Within Each Of Us Is To Be Liberated From…Our Own Psychic Madness Or Patterns Of Fear” – Caroline Myss

Full Quote:  “I am convinced that the deepest desire within each of us is to be liberated from the controlling influences of our own psychic madness or patterns of fear. All other things—the disdain of ordinary life, the need to control others rather than be controlled, the craving for material goods as a means of security and protection against the winds of chaos—are external props that serve as substitutes for the real battle, which is the one waged within the individual soul.”

Image

“Developing Trust In Relationships Is Like Putting Marbles In A Jar…” – Martha Beck Reviews “Daring Greatly: How The Courage To Be Vulnerable Transforms The Way We Live” By Brene Brown

Feeling The Deep Sorrows Of Being Human Allows Us To Experience The True Joy Of Healing

By Jennifer Miller

Should we strive to be TAO (Transparent, Authentic and Open) at all times? I have always been open and honest with who I am as it has been an important part of my journey.

But are there times when we should refrain from opening our souls to others?

I have been reflecting on this and feel that so much of happiness in life is  dependent on relationships that nourish our body and soul. We must seek out positive energy to maintain our life force and vitality. This is why we must spend as much time as possible with members our tribe, people who support us emotionally and give us love and comfort. The “emotional vampires” , selfish and self-absorbed people who can drain our happiness and vitality, must be avoided.
.
But there are events and situations, when we are a part of a group that is either unknown or possibly hostile to us, that we should make an exception. It was at one such event that I found myself this weekend. I was invited to attend a Bridal Shower for a friend that I have exercised with for many years, who was getting married for the first time. One of the women in the room mentioned to the group that I had gone through one of the worst divorces she had ever seen.
.
I naturally shared with the ladies many intimate details of the my married life and how traumatic my separation and divorce were. I have thoroughly processed my anger and grief and feel true forgiveness now. In keeping with TAO, I opened up hoping that my story might inspire and/or give hope to someone in the room.
.
But at the end of the event, my body was very stressed and I knew that my openness had taken a huge toll on me both emotionally and spiritually. The fact that many of these women might use what I had said as a source of gossip and not as a source of enlightenment represented the risk I took by being authentic.
.
This represents an inner struggle I have within me. Whether to live by TAO at all times or be guarded when meeting with others that I do not have either an immediate or established connection. When we live our lives in fear of the unfamiliar or unknown, we risk shutting down emotionally and spiritually.
I choose to remain dedicated to TAO, realizing that there are risks to being authentic and true to myself and journey, but the rewards are so much greater.
.

Contact Jennifer Miller at yogagoddesslaguna@yahoo.com

I have been through the dark night of the soul and have come back into the light of life. It is only through feeling the deep sorrows of being human that we can experience the true joy of healing, which leads to self-realization and ultimately inner peace.

.
If I could help just one woman in that room to better deal with the pain and suffering that can affect any one of us in life, then the stress of being truly authentic and open would have been worth it.
.
Namaste, Jennifer Miller

The Importance Of Surrounding Ourselves With Positive People As We Clean Our Spiritual House

By Jennifer Miller

My weekend morning walks with the babies (my two small dogs) have been so enjoyable and nurturing for my soul and spirit. As we walked into a small cafe in downtown Laguna and stood in line to order, two women, who appeared to be in their mid-50’s, walked in behind us. I could immediately sense that both of them were comfortable with who they were, and their confidence and grace added to the positive energy I usually feel when I come here.

And it gave me an opportunity to reflect on my life and the lives of so many women. Middle-age is a time to examine the health of our “inner selves” and honor the journey that has brought us to this point. For many of us, the proceeding 20-25 years required us to be “GIVERS”, sacrificing for our children and husbands. As our role changes, we must seek out relationships and activities that nourish our body and soul. So it is very important that our support group of family and friends be sources of positive energy, and not drain us of our vitality.

 Who is on Team Jen? Who is there to support and root for me?

I have been cleaning my home recently in a way that is very healthy and life-enhancing. I believe this reflects my desire to “clean house” in my emotional life as well. I am present and in the moment, sorting through physical and mental “attachments”, seeing what are necessary and which should be discarded. As I sat in the crowded cafe patio, eating a wonderful breakfast, I am deeply connected with positive and calming sounds.

I hear birds chirping. Surrounded by people talking, I am one with birds chirping…and peace fills my body.

The day before while grocery shopping at “Trader Joes”, I sensed a woman looking at me and my daughter. She looked to be about 70 and I smiled and made room for her, thinking that she needed to get by. She came up to me and grabbed my hand and said:

“If I could come back in my next life and be you for 10 seconds I would be the happiest woman in the world.  You and your daughter are so beautiful.”

Contact Jennifer Miller at yogagoddesslaguna@yahoo.com

This was one of kindest compliments I have ever received. I told her thank you and that true beauty lies within all of us. She responded by saying that she knew I would say that, and if she felt otherwise, she would never have said it.

My daughter and I smiled at each other and thought that this lady was a truly beautiful person. I asked her If I could take her home with me. She represented to me the beauty of aging with grace.

Namaste, Jennifer Miller

Image

“Love, Without Desire To Possess…This Is The Highest Love.” – Love Or Loving-Kindness (Metta), One Of The Four Basic Sublime States In Buddhism

A Generous Gift Of Yoga Mats That Will Transform The Lives Of Women At The Recovery House

By Jennifer Miller

Jennifer Miller with gift of 20 yoga mats from the “lululemon athletica” store in Newport Beach, CA.

I had exciting news to share with “The Girls” at the Recovery House this week. Mats are a very important part of a yoga practice and I have been working hard to find a store or company to donate new mats to the program.

Several weeks ago I approached the “lululemon athletica” store in Newport Beach and spoke with the lady in charge of their “Giving Program”. I shared with her my vision of bringing young women at risk the beautiful and healthy benefits of yoga and she was quickly in agreement with the importance of a quality mat.

After numerous emails, the store agreed to donate 20 MATS! I was so grateful and I made the announcement Monday that I would be bringing them to the Recovery Home next week.

My new goal is to get the girls their own personal yoga mat. I will be seeking a store or supplier to share the vision of health and transformation that yoga has brought these amazing young women and mothers.

Thank you again lululemon for your very generous gift. You have made a difference in women’s lives.

We at lululemon have a vision of elevating the world and we do this through the relationships we establish, support and grow in all of our global communities. These relationships are currently grown through our store events, our supplier partnerships and other outreach. The Giving program acts as one of our tools for outreach and for elevating our communities.

“Adopt The Pace Of Nature. Her Secret Is Patience.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A Morning In The Life Of A Yogini” By Jennifer Miller, Published In SunGoddessMagazine.com

“Worrying…Empties Today Of Its Strength” – Corrie Ten Boom, German Death Camp Survivor

“Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength- carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.”

.

CorneliaCorrieten Boom, Dutch woman who survived the German Ravensbruck concentration camp in World War II

Reflections On “A Course In Miracles”: Choosing to Live In A Place Of Love And Not Fear

“No matter what is going on in my body, I strive to remain in a quiet place of peace.” Jennifer Miller

By Jennifer Miller

Marianne Williamson’s “A Course in Miracles” teaches that most of us live in a place of love or fear. We have a choice of how we want to be and act in any given situation.I have been reflecting recently that I am at a point in my life where I am aware of how am feeling and, if I am reacting to these feelings, I know it. I am striving to limit these “reactions”, and remain in the moment, a state of peaceful quietude where nothing can “rock my world”.

And I continue to make progress. There have been many situations in the past year that might have “taken me out”. I now strive to find that place of acceptance and often, detachment, which allows me to step back and say to myself “I see what is going on here…game over”.

Every one of us can chose to live in fear or love at that very moment. I recently watched Marianne Williamson speaking to Oprah about how our life’s blueprint is designed to achieve our highest purpose.

Anyone can “download” their life plan but if it is not synchronized with our emotions, we have little chance of fulfilling our highest purpose.

In yoga, we are trained to stay with our breath. Whatever asana or posture we are in, no matter what is going on in my body, I strive to remain in a quiet place of peace. Our body and mind follow our breath. I strive daily to remain conscious of this and come back to this “place of peace” when I feel rattled or off in some way.

Ahhhh… that beautiful connection to our soul is all through the discipline of BREATH…

Namaste, Jennifer Miller

“Countless Words Count Less Than The Silent Balance Between Yin And Yang” – Lao Tzu

“When You Move Amidst The World Of Sense, Free From Attachment And Aversion Alike…You Live In The Wisdom Of The Self” – Bhagavad Gita

“Breathing In The Benefits Of Yoga To Achieve Happiness In The Moment” – By Jennifer Miller, “SunGoddess Magazine” In July 30 Issue

The Importance Of “Letting Go” To Allow Others The Freedom To Make Their Own Choices In Life

By Jennifer Miller

Life is for many of us a journey that involves “letting go”, releasing harmful or negative things, desires, thoughts, visions, and people. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali describe this state of “non-attachment” as follows:

When the mind loses desire even for objects seen or described in a tradition or in scriptures, it acquires a state of utter (vashikara) desirelessness that is called non-attachment (vairagya).

The path to “utter desirelessness” or non-attachment is combined with asana practice to make up the core principles of yoga. But letting go has also been important to me as I have moved through challenging times in my life. Quieting my mind allows me to rise above drama and negative issues during my day, like an impartial witness floating above the scene in a movie.

This is increasingly important as a mother raising children during their teen years. It is only natural to want to teach them about life, to save them from making mistakes or experiencing failures. By practice the art of letting go, I know that they are on their own personal journey and have the freedom to make choices that enhance their life or not. I will not take their “negative” choices personally. It is their life and I cannot expect to control what is clearly their own free will.

Freedom and peace has filled my soul when only a few years ago I agonized and could be paralyzed with pain. And it will remain a process for me, a practice devoted to letting go. By giving others the freedom make their own decisions without judgment or emotion, I have increased my sense of inner peace and freedom as well.

Namaste, Jennifer Miller

“Dwelling In The Present Moment, I Know This Is A Wonderful Moment” – Thich Nhat Hanh

“Yoga Tones The Bodies And Nourishes The Souls Of The Women At The Recovery House”

By Jennifer Miller
.
Walking through the doors at the Recovery House, the ladies came up to me with a request: they wanted to see a picture of me before I started yoga. “I bet you always looked like this” said one. The group’s interest turned into a discussion of one of the big benefits of yoga: getting in shape after having a baby. These questions and others are all very honest and touching, reflecting how concerned they are with their appearance and bodies.
.
A question then came up about whether my yoga practice excited my husband when I was married, again showing the physical and sexual interest the poses had in their minds. I then told them about very painful parts of my life, where yoga helped me to process my grief, to the point where I am now able to laugh at many of these traumatic times.
.
I could feel, and see in their eyes, that my words were very comforting to these women, all of whom were dealing with trauma and change in their lives. One of the young ladies asked me why I volunteered here.
.

 I told her that presenting the gift of yoga allowed my soul to give back some of the beautiful calm and peace I felt during times of great pain…

They were all very moved and I knew some were true believers. I felt my heart sing with joy that they could understand. I began to work on some individual asanas with a few of the girls. At first they are scared in trying something new, but three of the girls all nail the “crow” pose. I was cheering and clapping and didn’t know who was more excited.
.
A girl in the back of the room asked me what poses would help her tighten her stomach and lose weight. I told her that yoga connects our minds and bodies, and that by maintaining the connection while eating, she could learn to eat only until feeling full. This honors the body as it is the temple for our soul.
.
Nearing the end of our time together, I hear that one of the girls is cleaning a yoga mat to take to her room to practice, while another one is listening to a yoga tape. I can see the slow progress we are making, and know in my heart that if you can touch one life you’ve made a difference in the world. On my way out they bring their babies over…the beauty of connecting with the human spirit.
.
Namaste, Jennifer Miller