Thursday, December 1, 2011

Iyengar Yoga Course Retreat in Rishikesh, India

I have just gone for a residential Iyengar Yoga Course in Rishikesh, India.  This is a 10 Days course.  This residential iyengar yoga course is held at the enchanting bank of river Ganga, Arsha Vidya Pitham (Swami Dayananda Ashram) Rishikesh from October 30-November 7, 2011.

Rishikesh, revered by countless millions, has been a home to many spiritual seekers, teachers and ascetics for several thousand years. The ashram, on the banks of the famous Ganga River, is the home and school of our beloved H.H. Swami Dayananada Saraswati. This ashram has been invoked and blessed by many thousands of incredible minds and hearts from all over the world that have come to seek the traditional teaching of the Vedas.

I would like to share some photos of the Ashram, Ganga River and the village of Rishikesh with all of you.  Enjoy!

Temple inside the Ashram

Inside the Ashram

Inside the Ashram

Inside the Ashram

Canteen in the Ashram

Canteen in the Ashram

Yoga hall in the Ashram

Gate to the ganga river from Ashram

View of ganga river from the Ashram

Ganga river outside the Ashram

Ganga river outside the Ashram

Me posing at the Ganga river

View of the Ashram from the Ganga river

Rishikesh, India

Rishikesh, India

Rishikesh, India

Ganga river in Rishikesh, India

One of the bridge over Ganga river in Rishikesh, India

Ganga river in Rishikesh, India

Sunset by the Ganga river of Rishikesh, India

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Yoga Posture: The Warrior III (Virabhadrasana III)

This posture is an intensified continuation of Virabhadrasana I. 

The illustration conveys the harmony, balance, poise and power attained by practising this asana.  It helps to contract and tone the abdomnal organs and makes the leg muscles more shapely and sturdy.  It is recommended for runners, as it gives vigour and agility.

All the movements of this asana improve one's bearing and carriage.  When we stand badly, by throwing  the weight on the heels, we retard symmetrical growth and hamper spinal elasticity.  Standing with the weight on the heels causes the stomach to protrude and lessens bodily and mental agility.  This asana helps one to stand firmly on the soles of the feet, keeps the stomach muscles in and gives agility to the body and the mind.

Note: Please perform the yoga under the guide of a certified yoga teacher especially for beginner. You are at your own risk and responsible if you perform on your own. Whatever provided here is just act as an information.

Source from Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Recipe: Burfi

This is a traditional Indian milk pudding, often served on festive occasions.

  • 285ml (8fl oz) honey
  • 240g (8oz) butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 55ml (2fl oz) milk
  • 110g (4oz) ground nuts: eg. almonds, walnuts, or pistachios
  • 275g (10oz) milk powder

In a saucepan, heat the honey, butter, ground cardamom, and milk over a low heat, stirring to avoid burning, until well blended.  Add the ground nuts, stir to combine, then remove the pan from the heat.  Add the powdered milk slowly, stirring until completely dissolved.  The mixture will gradually thicken.  When it is very stiff, spread in a shallow pan and place in the refrigerator to set.  Cut into diamond shapes, and serve at room temperature.
Makes 30-36 squares

Source from Yoga Mind & Body by Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Yoga Posture: The Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II)

This pose is named after Virabhadra, a legendary warrior.  His story is told by the famous Sanskrit playwright, Kalidasa, in the epic, Kumarasambhava.  Regular practice of this asana helps to develop your strength and endurance.  The steps exercise your limbs and torso vigorously, reducing stiffness in your neck and shoulders.  It also makes your knee and hip joints more flexible.

This pose improves breathing capacity by expanding the chest.  It helps in the treatment of a prolapsed or slipped disc.  It alleviates the condition of a broken, fused or deviated tailbone.  It reduces fat around the hips and relieves lower backache.

This pose helps you build strength, confidence and a feeling of power.  It also tones your legs, hips and thighs.  Through this pose the leg muscles become shapely and stronger.  It relieves cramp in the calf and thigh muscles, brings elasticity to the leg and back muscles and also tones the abdominal organs.

Do not allow the torso to either move right or left or tilt forward.  To guard against this, make sure that your right armpit and your right hip are in a straight line.

Note: Please perform the yoga under the guide of a certified yoga teacher especially for beginner. You are at your own risk and responsible if you perform on your own. Whatever provided here is just act as an information.

Source from Yoga The Path to Holistic Health by B.K.S. Iyengar
                      Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar
                     The Woman's Book of Yoga & Health by Sparrowe Walden

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Yoga Bags Available Now!

These OM series yoga mat bags are expertly crafted with soft comfortable carry straps and roomy zippered pockets.  Quality fabrics and reinforced interior seams add durability to an elegant and practical way to carry your own yoga mat.

Classic Size (72 x 16.5 dia)

Slim profile: fits a regular size yoga mat, hand-towel, wallet and keys.

  • Top draw-string closure
  • Fits up to 8mm yoga mat
  • Roomy exterior pockets
  • 100% cotton fabric, internal lining
  • Lightweight

Large Size (72.5 x 19 dia)
Generous size: fits a regular size yoga mat, mat towel, block, strap and personal belongings.

  • Side zipper closure
  • Interior & exterior pockets
  • 100% cotton fabric, internal lining
  • Lightweight

There are various colour available.  For more details, you may like to check it out at my website.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Yoga Posture: The Proud Warrior (Virabhadrasana I)

The Proud Warrior pose is also known as Warrior I. 

Daksa once celebrated a great sacrifice, but he did not invite his daughter Sati nor her husband Siva, the chief of the gods.  Sati, however, went to the sacrifice, but being greatly humiliated and insulted threw herself into the fire and perished.  When Siva heard this he was gravely provoked, tore a hair from his matted locks and threw it to the ground.  A powerful hero named Virabhadra rose up and awaited his orders.  He was told to lead Siva's army against Daksa and destroy his sacrifice.  Virabhadra and his army appeared in the midst of Daksa's assembly like a hurricane and destroyed the sacrifice, routed the other gods and priests and beheaded Daksa.  Siva in grief for Sati withdrew to Kailas and plunged into meditation.  Sati was born again as Uma in the house of Himalaya.  She strove once more for the love of Siva and ultimately won his heart.  The story is told by Kalidasa in his great poem Kumara sambhava (The Birth of the War-Lord).

This asana is dedicated to the powerful hero created by Siva from his matted hair.

In this pose the chest is fully expanded and this helps deep breathing.  It relieves stiffness in shoulders and back, tones up the ankles and knees and cures stiffness of the neck.  It also reduces fat round the hips.

It relieves backache, lumbago and sciatica.  It strengthens the back muscles, tones the abdominal muscles, relieves acidity and improves digestion.  It strengthens the bladder and corrects a displaced uterus.  It relieves mentrual pain and reduces heavy menstruation.

Note: Please perform the yoga under the guide of a certified yoga teacher especially for beginner. You are at your own risk and responsible if you perform on your own. Whatever provided here is just act as an information.

Source from Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar
                      Yoga - The Path to Holistic Health by B.K.S. Iyengar

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Yogic Power

The entire universe is operating in a very organized manner. The energy that is operating the universe is the basic energy from which all types of energies are derived. That energy is called the Pranic energy. The Pranic energy is keeping the universe and all its animate and inanimate objects "alive". All organic and inorganic cycles are operating based on this subtle energy. All living things are also operating using this subtle energy.

The real secret of using this Pranic energy rests in the Master who is empowering you with this energy through the discipline of Yoga. The Master must have the power to give you the ability to hold Pranic energy over and above the normal level that is needed to sustain life. Only then, will a person be able to utilize this excess Pranic energy to perform miraculous psychic feats like healing and protecting oneself. This power works in everyone regardless of race, religion or nationality. 

Writing Acticle Source from Rajayoga Power Transcendental Meditation Centre

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Earth-Friendly Yoga Related Products

Are you a earth-conscious yoga practitioner?  If you are, I would like to introduce a new range of yoga related products which are made with earth-friendly materials at a cheaper price as compare with the outside market in Singapore.

Eco Flex Earth-Friendly Yoga Mat

These Eco-Flex yoga mats are made from a newly developed and patented TPE (Thermal Plastic Elastomer) foam.  They contain no latex or PVC and they use no toxic materials in production.  Its patterned soft surface provides superb traction to help achieve a grounded feeling in your postures without slipping.  The closed cell construction of these mats prevents absorption of fluids, making it also easy to keep clean.

TPE is a leading earth conscious choice for yoga practitioners. This earth-friendly material is designed to decompose in landfills, leaving behind only water and biodegradable components.

Grip Flex Earth-Friendly Yoga Mat Towel 
This Grip-Flex Yoga Towel is specially designed to prevent slipping when sweat and is especially light and compact for travel.

Lightweight, super-absorbent, with tiny clear silicone eco nubs that grip the yoga mat, the yoga towel enables you a steadier and more energetic practice. It has the added benefits of putting a hygienic layer between you and your yoga mat, and heightens your awareness of weight distribution between hands, fingers, feet, and toes.

For more details, you may like to refer to my website.
Practice well and feel good about yourself.  Namaste.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Spicy Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

  • Vegetable oil for coating the pan
  • 225g (8oz) digestive biscuit crumbs
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup
  • 350g (12oz) tofu, pureed
  • 225g (8oz) cream cheese
  • 225g (8oz) tinned pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 225g (8oz) unrefined cane sugar
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp light molasses
  • Pinch of salt

For this recipe you will need a 23 or 25 cm (9 or 10in) round springform tin or flan tin.  Serves 8-10.
  1. Position a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat to gas mark 4, 180C (350F).  Coat the tin with some vegetable oil.
  2. Mix the digestive biscuit crumbs, vegetable oil, and maple syrup together, then press the mixture into the greased tin.  Puree the remaining ingredients in a food processor and pour the mixture into the tin.
  3. Bake for 50 minutes.  Leave to cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate for 5-6 hours or overnight before serving.

Source from K.I.S.S. Guide to Yoga by Shakta Kaur Khalsa

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

What To Do With Tofu

Tofu, one of the most versatile protein foods, has been a staple in parts of Asia for over 2,000 years.  And tofu has been puzzling the Westerners for about 30 years now!  It's no wonder.  More of a texture than a taste, tofu is like a chameleon.  It takes on the taste of whatever is added to it.  So the clue is in knowing what to add, and how to cook tofu.

Also called bean curd, tofu is made by curdling the mild white "milk" of the soya bean.

The wonders of tofu

Tofu is high in protein, low in calories, fats, and carbohydrates, and contains no cholesterol - it's almost a perfect food.  And to top it all, recent medical news shows that soya protein can help prevent heart disease, breast cancer, and prostate cancer, as well as ease menopause symptoms and help in diabetes and digestive disorders.

Whether you want to substitute tofu for the taste and effect of meat or dairy, are lactose intolerant, or want to add soya to your diet because of health benefits, here are some pointers for using tofu:
  • Always rinse tofu before using, and keep any remaining pieces covered and sealed in pure water in the fridge.
  • To minimize any gas-producing qualities, always cook tofu before eating it, and cook it with a dash of lemon juice.
  • Generally, firm tofu is used for slicing and dicing.  Soft tofu is for blending, and used to make sauces and puddings.
  • Taking on the flavour of whatever it is prepared with, tofu is a versatile, as well as healthy, cooking ingredient. 

Source from K.I.S.S. Guide to Yoga by Shakta Kaur Khalsa

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Yoga related product new update in Jan 2011

Yoga Strap


This is a good quality yoga strap at a very affordable price for the same quality you can find in the market.

Visit my website for more details and more other yoga related product too!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

How do I know I'm meditating?

Phew!  This is a hard one.  Meditation means different things to different people.  To a religious person, meditation may mean contemplation of God, in prayer or study.  To a Zen practitioner, it is entering a space of "sacred emptiness".  To a Transcendental meditator, it could be the mental repetition of a sound to the exclusion of all else.  And that's just for starters.  There are infinite roads to that intangible state called meditation, yet there is a commonality running through all its forms.

What the yogis of old tell us about meditation is that, according to the Yoga sutras, meditation is the process of stilling the thought waves of the mind.  This is rather like a Catch-22 because you can't really try to stop your mind by force.  Like a needy child, it will make such a fuss.  The more you try to stop it, the more it clamours for your attention.

Yogic meditation is the disciplining of the mind until it becomes still.  Although it is not something you can learn to do in a day, the feeling of well-being and peace it creates is worth the time and commitment required.

The process of meditation isn't learned in a day, or even a year.  But if you put in a sincere effort every day, and increase the time you spend in meditation as you continue, you will find welcome changes in your mind and your life.

The Stages of Meditation

As you develop your practice of meditation, you will most likely find yourself moving through progressively deeper levels of stillness.

When you first meditate, you will get drawn into the mind's drama,  then you will realize you've been drawn in.  Little by little you begin to watch the mental activity.  As would a benevolent observer, you just watch the mind.  This is the process of the fifth of Patanjali's eight limbs, pratyahara, or inner focus.

With practice, your mind will eventually settle down and behave itself.  By aligning the breath and the inner focus, you experience one-pointed concentration.  You find that you are able to direct your mind with your will and imagination.  This is the realm of dharana.

The last of the eight limbs of yoga is samadhi, the master realm of total identification with the spirit.  You live as one who is grounded in what is often called higher awareness, or your higher nature.

Saying goodbye to good and bad

Assuming we all have a higher nature, whether we know it or not, anyone with a mind can become awakened to that higher nature.  In meditation, you develop a panoramic awareness of yourself, and everything you judge as good or bad about your life.  In fact, you may find that those things that you label as "bad" are the very motivation for you to meditate - and so they actually have done something very good for you.

Then you can gather up all these so-called negative parts, and instead of trying to throw them away, accept them as teachers.  Try to learn from these teachers.  They are your compost, the fertilizer for the new soil in which your higher nature can grow.

The most important thing to realize is that you are your higher nature.  It is not something unattainable, or outside of you.  Your higher nature is not some angelic being - you are your own angelic being!

Every time you act in kindness, shake yourself out of negative thoughts, do what you know is best for all involved - every time you forgive yourself and others, you are in your higher nature.

And what is wrong with judging yourself as good?  Well, nothing at all, if this analysis comes via neutral-minded self-assessment.  But often we pat ourselves on the back one minute, then pound our heads against the wall the next, because critiquing is based on relative circumstances.  Succinctly, if you puff yourself up, one day you're going to let yourself down.

Meditation goes past this seesaw of judgement, opening your mind into a panoramic mental viewpoint that allows you to remain steady through all of its fluctuations.

Source from K.I.S.S. Guide to Yoga by Shakta Kaur Khalsa