Archive for September, 2009

Global Mala NYC–It’s Happening

Apologies to readers outside of the city, but I was complaining about New York’s meagre showing for Global Mala earlier this week, so I feel the need to amend. Last night I got notice that we’re not as lame as it seems.

Jivamukti and Integral Yoga Institute have taken on the challenge, and will present NYC Metro Area Global Mala Yoga for Peace Event (a mouthful–and a concert/kirtan) at Baruch College’s Mason Hall, Sunday, September 20th, 6 – 10pm.

Your $15 donation goes to Animal Mukti, a spay and neuter program established by Sharon Gannon at the New York Humane Society.  (This event is looking for volunteers, hint hint.)

Earlier in the day, Yoga for Peace will host an outdoor mala from noon til 3pm—that’s right, 108 sun salutations at Battery Park. You need to pre-register and send in your $20 (see the website).

The evening event is a concert and kirtan featuring some key Jiva figures such as Shyamdas (who appeared in the yoga movie, Enlighten Up!) and Sharon Gannon. Swami Ramananda, president of the Integral Yoga Institute, will speak and so will  Sri Dharma Mittra.

All big vegans and vegetarians.

So, there you go folks! Global Mala NYC is on.

Celebrity Yoga Teachers–Problem?

Late in August, YogaCityNYC, a New York yoga blog, sent me to Omega for their Being Yoga conference.

There, I interviewed a lot of high-profile yoga teachers-–Shiva Rea, Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa, Dharma Mittra, Sharon Gannon and David Life, Tias Little—about what they thought of their status in the yoga world. (Rodney Yee was there, too, but he wasn’t giving interviews.)

Rodney Yee and Colleen Saidman
Rodney Yee and Colleen Saidmain, photographed by Michael O’Neill for Vanity Fair, June 2007

I also interviewed Glen Black who has taught and practiced for 38 years but in contrast to everyone else, has actually avoided the spotlight.

The result of my weekend in Rhinebeck, NY? An article on celebrity yoga teachers. What do we do with them? What do we think about them?

Is a media-friendly yoga teacher a natural outcome of yoga’s presence in America’s consumer culture? Turns out the peaceful yoga crowd at Omega had a lot to say, as well…

Read the article and send in your thoughts…. had any experiences with”celebrity” yogis?

Global Mala–Not Just an LA Event (though you gotta hand it to them….)

The Global Mala event—108 sun salutations, done in public, with a lot of other people, to live music—will happen next weekend, Sept 19 & 20.

The LA crowd—particularly the sun-dosed teachers and musicians working out of the Santa Monica/Venice mothership—have really got their act together for it. Their event is *huge*.

And no wonder, since it was conceived of by Shiva Rea, who teaches out of the Exhale Center for Movement in Venice, and has the backing of her local folks such as Hala Khouri, Saul David Raye, and Govindas and Rhada.

Nonetheless, there will be Global Mala events all over—not just in the US but in Canada, Japan, and South Africa.

From the press release: “On September 19 and 20, the Global Mala Yoga for Peace Project, whose purpose is to unite the global yoga community, will implement events throughout the world in honor of the United Nations International Day of Peace.

Forming a “mala around the earth” through collective practices based upon the sacred cycle of 108, the mission of the Global Mala Project is to raise both funds and consciousness for some of the most pressing issues facing the world today.”

In New York, the event is organized by Exhale Spa, too, and will take place at 150 Central Park South (212-249-3000).

But it looks like a *much* smaller affair. The LA extravaganza is described as “a 4-hour ritual with 108 sun salutations and kirtan music.” For a mere twenty bucks you can get a premium seat (seat?) in front of the stage with goodies thrown in.

New York, what are we doing here?

September is Yoga Month…. Move Your Asana

So, I realize September is already flying by (ack!), but….. September is also the National Yoga Awareness Month and this year that means you can get free classes somewhere near you.

Thanks to the Yoga Health Foundation you can get a free week of yoga (at participating studios) from Sept 1 until Nov 30, 2009. See

(Teachers and studios–you can also sign up to offer a free class.)

 Sept 09 Yoga Month

Free is a great price—and a great way to check out new studios. New York studios are having several events—check out the New York calendar here.

September is Here! Ack!

Summer is my season. When the weather turned over the weekend, and the sting of September was in the air, I admit I felt heartsick. My season was so short, and so weird this year. I didn’t quite get enough. Never even made it to the beach!

But, September is here and yoga nation is back. My impromptu dog-days hiatus from blogging is over (you can even need a vacation from blogging and from Twitter), and I’m ready for a fall season of yoga news, yoga quirks, and yoga love

Watch for my upcoming piece on YogaCityNYC about celebrity yogis! Up next week. In this space, I’ll have news from the American Viniyoga Institute (where I’ll be over Labor Day), plus a video of John Friend trying slackline yoga, an interview with the makers of the next yoga film—and more, folks, and more, and coming your way….