Mondays with Mary

Daily Kundalini Yoga- Week of Aug 31st

If you happen to have read a book on the topic of kindness, you undoubtedly learned that “being nice is not the same as being kind”. 

Nice doesn’t require much effort. One can easily be nice without investing too much of oneself or expending too much energy. Nice can mean holding the door open for someone, being polite. 

In contrast, being kind means caring, making an effort, reaching out, taking a risk.  Kindness usually involves jumping in without being asked, asking how we can help, extending ourselves, with no expectation of something in return. We all need more kindness in our lives.

Author Henry James says that kindness is the most important gift we can offer to others. 

Pranayam: Breath of Fire (or long deep breath) to charge the body

  1. Sit in easy pose, hands in guyan mudra on the knees. Begin a steady Breath of Fire.
  2. Next, extend both arms straight out to the sides horizontally, with the palms up. Continue with Breath of Fire.
  3. Bring palms together in Prayer Pose at the Heart. Continue Breath of Fire.

To end: Inhale deeply, press palms together, exhale and relax. 

Postures: (1-2 mins.)

  • Spinal Flex– Sitting on heels with hands on thighs (or in Easy Pose with hands on shins). Inhale as you flex the spine forward, Exhale as you flex back.

 

  • Head turns– Remain on heels (or Easy Pose). Inhale and turn head to look over right shoulder, Exhale and look over left shoulder. To end: Inhale and bring right ear to shoulder to stretch left side of neck. Hold briefly. Exhale and do same on other side. Come to Standing.

 

  • Standing hula hoops to Torso Circles– Begin making smalls circles with the torso, as if holding up a hula hoop. Reverse. Then place hands on hips and make bigger torso circles in both directions.

 

  • Windmill– Feet fairly wide apart, arms outstretched at shoulder level palms down. Inhale at centre, exhale and reach left hand towards right foot, inhale back up to centre, exhale as you change sides. Excellent for digestion and elimination.

 

  • Side Bends– Still standing, bring right arm up in an arc curved over the head, keeping left hand down along side. Bend gently sideways to the left. Inhale to centre, exhale and bend right. Be sure to inhale to centre each time before exhaling as you bend to each side.

 

  • Forward Bends– Feet shoulder width apart. Tighten core muscles. Inhale and stretch up, adding a backbend if available. Exhale and bend forward from the hips keeping legs straight, knees soft. Inhale back up and continue the motion.

 

  • Frogs– See how many you can do- try to work up to 26. Come to squat. Hands on floor in front of body, balance on balls of feet, heels touch and lift. Inhale, buttocks up, head towards knees. Exhale down with head looking slightly up. To end, hang loose like a rag doll and come up slowly to standing, head up last. 

 

  • Mountain Pose– Stand quietly in mountain pose, shoulders down and back, arms by your side, palms facing forward. Feel rooted to the ground- feel powerful yet peaceful.  Take a few deep breaths.

 

  • To end: Inhale and reach up towards the sky, coming up on tip toes and hold briefly. Stretch!! Exhale down. Repeat 3x.

 

Relax on Back- Start by stretching everything. Take a few deep inhales through the nose, sigh it out through the mouth.  Then allow gravity to take over, relax fully and let your body integrate and heal.  

Finish with a long Sat Nam.

Love to all,

Mary

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