10/31/08

yearbooking me self

Chitta Vritti comes across funny stuff. here is my result from yearbooking myself. except my hair was always wavy. once i lost 5 pounds on Weight Watchers and my mom took me to buy a yellow turtle neck at Sears. i was so proud of that.

the present moment

i intended to practice but was unable to get to the shala. next week, i hope, my schedule will be more normal. A quote sent by Wise Albert follows.
____________________________________________________
The present moment is the most profound and challenging teacher we will ever meet in our lives. It is a compassionate teacher, it extends to us no judgment, no censure, no measurement of success and failure. The present moment is a mirror, in its reflection we learn how to see. Learning how to look into this mirror without deluding ourselves is the source of all wisdom. In this mirror we see what contributes to the confusion and discord in our lives and what contributes to harmony and understanding. We see the relationship between pain and its cause on a moment-to-moment level, we see the bond between love and its source. We see what it is that connects us and what it is that alienates us...

~ Christina Feldman and Jack Kornfield
Stories of the Spirit, Stories of the Heart

10/30/08

meditation

going to one of the monthly meditation paloozas this saturday. the picture is of a bell at San Francisco Zen Center's Green Gulch Farm in Marin. that's a lot of words to describe a location. it was taken by Surharper and posted in Flickr.  the picture below is of the meditation hall at the Hippocrates Spa in The Phillipines, which my friend Jessica R. took. it would not take much to be transported skyward if you were in that setting.

10/29/08

hangbacks

i'm on a deadline, so i did a short practice at home that consisted mainly of hangbacks, as Susananda calls them. it's what my body craves when i'm sitting too many hours hunched forward on a computer. hopefully my practice next week will be more normal.

10/28/08

early design tools

as i sit here using the latest computerized design tools, i look at this drawing i did in 1980 of how we used to do our design work by hand on these big tables and feel that it looks quaint, in a way. the hairstyles are appropriate. consulting with a colleague while designing is useful. those are electrical plugs on the side, by the way. we had radios then, and electrical erasors.

moon day

i'm kind of glad to have read in an email that today is a moonday and i don't have to practice. this morning i slept later than usual and would have had trouble getting to the shala on time. the ceramic was hand painted by Amparo Brown, a ceramic artist friend who "adopted" my great aunt and called her "mami conejita". our family homes were dotted with Amparo's work.

10/27/08

practice prognostication

short shala shinding today. practiced Second to Kapotasana. Om chakka lakka lakka. a lot of attention to triangle pose and to Urdvha Danurasana. this sounds like a horoscope. wouldn't it be funny if we started writing horoscopes of how we thought our practices would turn out each day? Mars is aligned with Jupiter. lots of opportunities for thoracic openings today.

Masskara 08


Masskara 08
Originally uploaded by shemlongakit

Phocholo's comment in my blog entry on the Kadayawan Festival reminds me that Jessica is accompanying talented photographers such as Shem Longakit on these photo journaling events. Here is an interesting composition by Shem from the Masskara event.

10/26/08

how to architect - video


one of my newsgroups alerted me to this; it's great fun to watch - very creative and honest about the design process as applied to a small house.

quiet and busy today

quiet and busy time at home today. practice tomorrow. went to a birthday party last night. unable to get to the shala today. here are so more pictures by Jessica R. of the Masskara Festival in the Phillipines, including one of her. Masskara means mask in Spanish. i don't get tired of looking at these pictures. maybe because they celebrate life.

10/25/08

Masskara Festival, Bacolod City, The Phillipines

my friend Jessica R. shared these beautiful pictures she took of the Masskara Festival in Bacolod City in the Philippines last weekend. as usual, she captures the innocence of children and the colorfulness of the festivals where she is living. Jessica is becoming a great photojournalist.

10/24/08

firmly gracious suryanamaskaras

practice today was a longee, full Primary. i started my practice a little dizzy but I managed to do it rather well. i said hello to Snow White, Surfer Guy, Orange Lily, and saw Tommy Telomere and Dale Carnegie. OK. At Marichyasana C, Teacher pointed out that the inner thigh muscles of the extended leg need to rotate downward and the leg needs to extend firmly. the arm that is wrapping around the knee needs to work at pushing downwards. it helps with the rotation motion. 

i remembered today a comment from Snow White, something she learned from a training L.N. is doing with a teacher of the lineage of Krishnamacharya at an ancient yoga school in SF. OK, this is the new world, so i'm being a tad dramatic with the set up. it's regarding the Suryanamaskara B, Sun Salutations. sometimes, one is studying the mechanics of the different parts of the movements and one will awkwardly go from downward dog, set up the bent leg, square the hips, look up, then lift the arms. L.N. told her that the teacher she's studying with stresses that this all needs to be a continuous flow coordinated with the breath. No stopping to square the hips, to see where you are, but lifting the arms as you are planting the leg on the floor, all in one gracious flow. i tried that. it made me feel a good dizzy. some dizziness is good, such as that one you feel when coming out of the Prasaritta Paddotanasanas.  

the gracious Anna is somewhere north of the city, enjoying the wine country.

10/23/08

yin setu bandhasana

it's yin yoga at home this morning because i have a meeting early today. maybe i'll do a Boodie and make up later in the evening, though judging from the amount of work i have, probably not. tomorrow, though, i think i'll resume my regular shala shindings.
the image is of Caroline Klebl doing setu bandhasana. she gave away some old calendars with beautiful photos. i think her background is ashtanga and i've seen her name in talleres offered outside the continental US, so she seems to travel a lot. i hear she's quite nice as well.

10/22/08

shala heartwarming blue

i returned to practicing at the shala this morning after a hiatus of one week, due to personal circumstances. receiving Teacher's smile and welcome today was heartwarming.  she's in one of the pictures of this month's YJ, in the article on "Ways of the Warrior". however, the graphic artist who put the pictures together changed all of the colors. in her page all the colors are blue, which turned her blond hair black. "don't it make your brown eyes blue?"-Crystal Gayle

Finding Nemo

Finding Nemo at the Anilao - Portulano Resort in the Phillipines. My friend Jessica went scuba diving at this resort. Her friend, Dave S. took the underwater pictures of the fish and turtle, and Jessica took the other ones. I'm blessed with having talented friends.

10/21/08

creating a stair

video 
the stair at Allegria Spa, at the Park Hyatt in Beaver Creek Colorado. design by Hornberger + Worstell Architects. design team: John Davis, Coby Everdell, Arturo Veve, Howard Chan, Michelle Liu. modeled in Rhino, detailed in AutoCad.

10/19/08

Old San Juan

howdy. i'm really busy working on creative stuff. will resume yoga most probably tuesday morning, although i've kept up with meditation. here's a picture i took of the end of Fortaleza Street in Old San Juan during Christmas last year. that's the guv's mansion. the pavement of the historic city, with adoquines, is a great part of what gives it its charm, plus the colonial architecture meticulously restored and brightly painted.

cellphone cooked

do cell phones do this to the brain? (thanks Nick for sending that)
----------------
update-
according to Joy Suzanne, whose brother looked it up in Snopes,
it's all fake - viral marketing for bluetooth technologies. if I may
quote her, "cell phones are bad for us, but not cook-your-brain-
in-7-seconds bad."

10/18/08

nice pin

something happened on the way to the grocery store, where I went to get soy cream for my coffee. i stopped by the Obama campaign headquarters and obtained a nice lapel pin. he's a moral man. i hope he's elected. am i being subtle? it's hard to photograph the pin because it acts like a mirror. that said, i must admit that i like jibjab's humor. no side is sacred when they get to doing their satire on the election.

10/15/08

do spontaneous vinyasas happen to you?

i'm curious about other ashtangis.

do you get like a spontaneous vinyasa
happening in the middle of the day
while seated at work?

i find that happening sometimes,
like my body, tired from forward
bending in seating, wants to do a
dropback or a suryanamaskara.
I sometimes give in to the feeling,
doing mini dropbacks on the chair,
with some good sounding crackles
in the ligaments as i reach back.
does this happen to you?

i also find i need a yoga martini
around 4:00 pm, going somewhere
near a wall to do an inversion such
as a handstand or headstand, to
get blood to the controlling glands
in the cerebellum.

torso banda hero

i practiced 2nd to Kapotasana today. we tried a Pasasana variation on the wall to help get better twist and lift in the torso while the feet are flat on the floor and the wall helps to hold the hips. it was a workout.  

in Kapo, Teacher emphasized lifting the torso when bending. i asked her why my shoulders where shrugging, since it didn't seem to help. it's our instinct to shrug them here, but they don't help the pose. 

i practiced in between Banda Girl and Regina Fleur. At one point, Banda Girl fell flat on her behind while doing tic tocs, which made Legacy Rose, who was next to her, look in her direction an start laughing. then i started laughing and Banda Girl joined us in laughing. it's nice to keep things light.

at another point, i sat in Hero's Pose because i wanted to see how Orange Lily did Kapotasana. Teacher asked me if i was waiting for an assist from her, but i just wanted to observe. i don't do the pose in it's full expression. she sets up really well, holding her Pincha Mayurasana base, and can get her Padmasana while aloft. when she started descending, she lost it. i think, from looking at pictures of masters doing this pose, that there needs to be like a scorpion pose in the thoracic, with the weight of the legs migrating towards the head, so that there is lift as you descend. otherwise there is no counterbalance to help bring the lotus bound feet back up. it's probably unfair to say this as a bystander, since i haven't nailed the pose myself - i do it from a triangle headstand base.

the orange lily picture is from nature-and-flower-pictures.com.

nice donkeys

i love this and the blog it comes from. i'm not political but i'm guess i'm being subtle.

my grandfather was a senator 8 years in Puerto Rico during the 1960s. he cofounded a party, partido estadista republicano, that was the forerunner of one of the current republican one, partido nuevo progresista. in the island back then being republican meant you were in favor of Puerto Rico becoming a state. this was during the Eisenhower years. i just hope for unity during the coming elections.

10/14/08

zen practicing yogi

i sometimes blab about interesting things i receive in my inbox, such as this from Boston's Back Bay yoga - a yoga workshop by a teacher who is also a Zen practitioner. Nice cross-pollination of influences between Berkeley and Boston. Trance vinyasa workshop is a catchy name.

10/12/08

wise centenarian

i like stories about wise centenarians. here is a 106 year old nun who registered to vote for the first time in 56 years. she intends to vote for Obama. here is the link

our sutra reading group brought us a lot of peace today. where blessed with a teacher who understands Patanjali's yoga sutras from a practice perspective. while it would be nice to be smiling monks living in caves in the Himalayas, we're not and we need some structure in our lives, which includes 401ks. so we worry. but worries are just thoughts, and they don't represent the entire cosmos. i'll leave it at that for now. 

i was thinking of my first ashtanga teacher, R., and he called today. i also received today a facebook request by L., who teaches and used to practice with us in Orlando, and one from R. i haven't used facebook extensively, but it's nice to connect through it. i'm blabbing; it's late; goodnight. om shanti.

learning to do purvottanasana correctly

i had a schedule creep which resulted in another short practice today, this time in Berkeley. i did Primary to Marichyasana A. in adjusting for Purvottanasana, teacher gently pushed with a foot so that i went up somewhat as in Urdva Danurasana. he didn't let my neck drop back, which makes me think that I tend to drop the head back in this one and it's more comfortable not to do so. it probably is the correct way to do it, not to roll the neck back, and concentrate on lifting the pelvis upwards. looking at the picture of Matthew Sweeney, he doesn't roll the neck back, but keeps it in line with the torso and looking upwards. it's neat to learn a correction to a fundamental asana. I think i got the arms gently pushed to the floor in Prasaritta Paddotasanana D also. you can gain more cooperation from the shoulders with consistent practice. Teacher will be off to India to practice with his teachers for two months. his girlfriend Rayito de Sol will sub for him while he's away. i practiced near Fanny Ardhat and The Agent today. i don't know if TheKid reads my blog. if he does i hope he sees my name for him as expressing his youthfulness, something which we all hope to have. 

10/11/08

roller coaster weight in past

people who meet me personally react with surprise when i tell them that for most of my life i was overweight. sometimes i was as in this picture at age 19, sometimes heavier. then i would take up swimming, watch my diet and look as in this picture.  so my weight was a roller coaster. swimming had the influence of slimming me at those earlier times, as does yoga these days. this other picture was taken at a time not so distant as the first picture. 
i'm glad to follow calorie restriction because it allows me to have a continued balance in my nutrition.  The CR Way book has been my most recent help. i find that preparing food the way that the authors Paul and Meredith suggest give me a lot of flexibility and makes cooking fun and easy. my favorite suggestion of theirs is to prepare a soup with veggies, take out most of the veggies after they are cooked and eat them with pearl barley during the week. the soups become my dinners. you can make an easy soup by throwing turnip, squash, carrots and mushrooms with a vegetable bouillon cube and spices. then you have vegetables to eat with hummus and lentils as a hearty lunch. but don't take it from me. i suggest you find the book and read it. OK, i'm done blabbing for today.

vegans in relationship to calorie restriction

One of my fave dietitians, Jeff Novick (there is a link on the side bar under CRONies) recently wrote a sensitive few words about the nutrition of vegans in relationship to calorie restriction. Let me paraphrase it, since I find it useful. 

Tony was wondering if there were any vegan centenarians. Jeff responded that to vegans, there are issues of needing to find nutritional sources of B12, Vit D, calcium, iron, zinc, and essential fats. But veganism is not a dietary philosophy or a way to optimal health. It doesn't have to do with health and longevity, but with compassion for animals. Some sects of Greek Orthodox monks, who follow a vegetarian diet have low incidences of cancer and longer lives, as do 7th day Adventists, whose diet is also vegetarian. Their health could be attributed in part to the austerity of their diets. Among the Japanese and Chinese centenarians  some of the members of their groups consume a plant based diet, where 90% of their calories come from plants.

Jeff concludes that it is misleading to discuss statistics of health and longevity for vegans or vegetarians in relation to calorie restriction. If someone follows a calorie restrictive diet that is vegetarian, it is as much an experiment as someone whose diet is not primarily plant-based.

10/10/08

my first visit to SF

when i was 20 years old i accompanied my parents and godparents on a trip across the US by car. let's call it the grand tour since we covered about 36 states or more. this picture was taken, appropriately, in San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf. despite following CRON for longevity and health, the picture is not from 1890.  i'm not currently 110 years old. my recollection is that my family was attending a conference while in the city and the participants where staying in the tower portion of the St. Francis Hotel. curious that i have been working three years across from the hotel. one night during our stay, i felt a tinge rebellious and decided to escape the room after my parents had gone to sleep. i took the trolley at Powell and Post and went all the way to the wharf, returning an hour later. despite that I was a young adult and had just graduated from college, my mom was upset that i skedaddled out of the room without announcing my plans or asking permission. i was organizing the back of my storage area and came across the picture, hence the storytelling. those attempts at acting while in school must have helped my assuming a 1800's pose.

primary transportation sells

it was Primary to Marichyasana A today. Teacher says that doing triangle pose in the standing sequence really well prepares you for Third Series. she suggested i hold the pose for a few more breaths. Kool Keds joined us for practice today after a hiatus. the bus back home was crowded, but people's politeness towards each other under the circumstances was exemplary. you have to admire good behavior on public transportation. 

overheard in a open-window tourist trolley on Union Square - "the Apple store sells everything Apple makes." was that statement necessary, or was the driver required to say it? i hope the Gucci store sells everything Gucci makes, and that Noe Valley Bakery sells everything Noe Valley Bakery bakes. no room for counterfeits.

more on the Cathedral of Light

this week i had signed up for a tour of the new Cathedral of Light by Craig Hartman of SOM. unfortunately, i had an urgent deadline to attend to and was not able to go. well, i can always go as a worshiper some other time and experience the building by myself. i spent maybe 9 months of my life collaborating on the design of a glass-enclosed place of worship in the Middle East. it also had an interior wood screen. so i find some kinship with this new facility. maybe in the future i will get to visit the one i worked when it's completed and post pictures of it. in the meantime, here are pictures of the Cathedral of Light from the architects as published in World Architecture News.

10/9/08

mayurasana, gomukasana & structure of my practice

today the room was less crowded and Teacher was able to spend more time with everyone. it's amazing what you learn. in the standing sequence lunge type poses, the back leg needs to be engaged, planted, lifting. all that.

mayurasana - wow, i was transitioning wrongly into and out of it. when you conclude the downward dog of the previous pose, you arrive to standing, hand on the side, then you place them on the floor, palms facing backwards. she explained the breathing that accompanies the movement, but i already forgot. the part that is challenging is that when you're coming back up, you do a downward dog with the arms still bent with the palms facing backwards, elbows together and you somehow find space in between the arms to put your head down gazing towards the navel; then you jump to standing. i'll have to check a Swenson video for reference.

in gomukasana, it's important once you're perched, set up and hand-bound, to lift the chest up, and lift the elbows up and back. doing that felt right, like the pictures by advanced yogis. Teacher also gave me a tip for setting up for parighasana, by using the hand that is not lifting/arching to pull your upper body down and then assist with the twisting of the torso, as the other arm lifts and arches towards the feet to grab the toes. then the first arm can reach for the foot afterwards.

Teacher was curious as to how i'm structuring my practice and whether someone had given this to me. my practice is short and i've described it here indirectly a few weeks back. on Sundays it's half Primary, half Second. during the week i do warm ups, then the first five of standing sequence, followed by half of intermediate poses, then closing sequence. this week the "sandwich" was (1) pasasana to ardha matsyendrasana, (2) bakasana to tittibasana C, (3) tittibasana C to the seven head stands. sometimes the sandwich is the first four or five of Third Series. Teacher mentioned that these days in Mysore, people doing Third Series start after the full standing poses sequence. so i might try that, rather than starting right after half of the standing sequence. so far my practice if going well this week and i'm managing to stay on my proper diet and go on five hours of sleep rather than seven hours of sleep.

10/8/08

napa lilac

Napa Lilac assisted Seven Petal Lotus today. this is getting florid. after a hug she asked me if i was coming back to the group; i nodded. i was wrong yesterday, ElCrucero is still practicing at the shala; he was in today.

i practiced Second Series, Bakasana to Tittibasana C, next to Snow White, from whom i also received a hug. The Writer and Roy Rogers were across from me, next to Legacy Rose. Napa Lilac assisted me in Dwi Pada. then i forgot Yoginidrasana and Teacher asked me about it, so i went back to do it. then i went to Tittibasana B, realizing i forgot Titti A. i forgive myself. during sirsasana, NL commented that I needed to lift up higher, pressing the back muscles inwards to transfer the stress of keeping me in shoulder stand to the stomach muscles. I tend to hunch the back, so I have to make the effort to lift the body higher and press the back muscles towards the chest. 

the lilac flower picture is from an aptly named blog, the squeakywheel at motime. we all need to manage that time to have mo' time.

who is 212 la-di-da

yesterday i noticed in my cell phone there was a missed call. i recognized the area code as being from NY city. i tried something i had never tried before. i typed [who is] and the number into google to see what came up. the number was from Sotheby's Realty in Manhattan. ha! how funny that misdial is. hey, maybe you would want us to design a condo for you, perhaps in the new tower planned by Rem Koolhas. seriously, this is a string of funny occurrences. this morning, these pictures arrived in an email, of Rem's new condo design for NY, a cantilevering residential building. i'm sure prices start at $4 mil, plus or minus one. or maybe the realtor thinks i could afford to pre-purchase a condo in this new tower. ha! images by OMA. 

at the risk of making this blog entry starchitect top heavy, i'll mention the name of another famous architect, Danniel Libeskind. i've been thinking a lot about his words on how architecture is about maintaining a positive mind. the words surrounding the industry include, building, establishing a horizon line, building, enveloping, cladding, edifying, structuring. it's all about being positive. those are good words for these difficult times. when the financial markets wobble, it affects us who practice this art on a grand scale.
uhm, i wonder why the comments sections in my blog have been quiet. have i been too introspective regarding my yoga practice? is my photo at the top right a bit much? it was taken at one of those POPOS, privately owned publicly used spaces - garden spaces in our financial district that are created by developers as a gift to the public in exchange for increasing the floor area of the buildings that they are designing in a site. NY is a model for that.

10/7/08

how to cope with wavering thoughts

How to cope with wavering thoughts?

Versatile are flying clouds, 

Yet from the sky they’re not apart.

Mighty are the ocean’s waves,

Yet they are not separate from the sea.

Heavy and thick are banks of fog, 

Yet from the air they’re not apart.

Frantic runs the mind in voidness, 

Yet from the Void it never separates.

--Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa

words shared by Wise Albert, photo by V.G.

shala binding moustache

i practiced at the shala, second series up to ardva matsyendrasana. i'm hoping to basically do my practice the way i normally do, which tends lately to be short practices where i might do the first half of one series one day, the second half of the same series the following day. after practice i felt cool, calm and collected.

i lost my arm binding in supta vajrasana this morning. i forgive myself. teacher suggested that during urdvha danurasna for the next few weeks, i do at least three against the wall, with a strap on my arms. I place the hands close to the wall. the elbows stay on the wall as i lift.  the strap keeps the arms close together as i press the chest up and back towards the wall. it feels quite good and one gets a great lift.

Moustache Blanque was surprised to see me after so many months of practicing on my own. it appears that Flaquita and El Crucero have migrated to another shala. those two make a neat yoga couple. we'll miss them.

10/5/08

nice yogis, chocolates, yogarama for obama

the birds were loud on the bus to Berkeley this morning. funny that the louder they are, the deeper i sleep during the ride. today was led class. six of us in the first row, six on the next row. a lady who didn't want to be by herself asked the people on the second row if they would mind squeezing them in. they squoze her in, staggering the mats a little. nice yogis.  someone arrived later. she would not have been alone after all. i practiced next to TheKid. he has  a yoga body. want the head down during the prasaritta paddotanasanas? no problem. his body doesn't talk back to him. i notice, though, that from the places i've practiced  i've picked up some nuances or flourishes in my transitions, such as landing with the foot bent in triang mukkha paschimottanasana, or landing with the feet already bent ready for binding in the janus sirsasanas, which he hasn't picked up yet. 

on the way to coffee i bumped into mountain man. he thought the pace had been quick today. i didn't find it quick. my challenge was insufficient practice last week. but i did everything relatively well and with energy today. after coffee i again did the mini groceries at andronicos. one benefit of shopping there is that they carry joseph schmidt chocolates in the deli. what's nicer than a truffle after practice? another truffle. chocolate - one of the foundations of joy. in the spirit of autumn i've been consuming a pumpkin shaped chocolate every sunday.

a side note on the "Yogarama for Obama" -Teacher said that some enterprising yogis asked the campaign manager of the official Obama website if they could post the flyer in it, and they obtained permission. here is the link. i was hoping to see the photoshopped image of Obama doing Adha Matsyendrasana, but it's not included. i don't have a copy of the flyer, otherwise, I would post the image here. just imagine Obama's face instead of Arjuna's in this photo from Arjuna's site
oh, sorry, there was a link to the website with the flyer. hehe. so floated above is the image, and correction, the senator is not shown doing ardha matsyendrasana after all, but supta urdhva pada vajrasana, so i have corrected this post. the image is from the website announcing the workshop and the link was in the official website post. and by the way, God bless Arjuna. it really is his body.

10/4/08

retreat and special person

the daylong vipassana retreat was very nice. it was interesting to be in a Zen zendo, but practicing some things from the Vipassana tradition. the teacher, whose name is Arrina, was full of joy and knew how to transmit it. there is a transmission of good things when you go to these meditations in community. one unusual touchy feeling thing that we did was  that at one point we were paired off in twos and guided into looking at the person in front of one, trying to see the goodness in the person, and then closing the eyes, re-opening to see where the person has suffered. i could see that the person i was paired off was very kind. i could sense he had experienced reasons to grieve as well.

during tea i met someone who floored me. i don't mean to be chatty and spew out blatherings but let me see if you've experienced meeting someone like this ever. because we had introduced ourselves earlier after meditation in the zendo, i had found out he was an ordained catholic Jesuit priest. it's not too often that you meet a currently ordained priest at a vipassana meditation in a zen center, although it has happened to me that i have met former priests.  i sat next to him during tea, noticing that his t-shirt read bhatki flow yoga. i mentioned i was once going to be a monk (that was 32 years ago), and that i was passionate about ashtanga. in the conversation i found out that he was a horse trainer in his early years, an expert in show horses. he had trained a breed of horses that are giant animals, for one of the founders of a silicon valley fortune 500 company, an intelligent woman wealthy beyond imagination. he became a jesuit priest while studying at Loyola University, a university which, he told me, always feels a rivarlry with Notre Dame, where i did my undergraduate studies. he is a licensed psychotherapist and runs a therapy program in a hospital. his interest is in combining philosophy with psychotherapy, to achieve an existentialist psychotherapy.  he teaches yoga and continues his studies with Rusty Wells. he is also becoming interested in Anusara, because of its attention to "opening of the heart". Someone who started talking to us, a technical writer for the same Silicon Valley company we were discussing said to him, "what an incredible trajectory your life is." indeed. somehow, now that i have written all that, it seems that it is possible for one person to do all that, although it seems like the careers of five people. he left the gathering as he arrived, in a motorcycle.

10/3/08

SF Intercontinental Hotel

I posted pictures of the new San Francisco Intercontinental Hotel a while back. This image of the exterior appeared in The Registry August/September 2008 issue. The massing of the building appears interesting from the angle in which this picture is taken.

SPL's room

i returned to Seven Petal Lotus' room today. L.N. subbed because SPL is leading a yoga and meditation retreat in Mendocino this weekend. it's a nice setting for a retreat - a farmhouse in the country. so i practiced with Human-growth Hormone (HH), Legacy Rose, Surfer Guy, Mona, QE2, Marin Man, Windmill Captain and a few i haven't named yet. i felt inspired by the slimness of the guys practicing in the room - it validates my calorie restriction practice. it was nice to practice in community. my own practice flowed. being Friday, i practiced Primary Series. i feel a bit sleepy at the moment, 4 hours later. Second Series usually doesn't leave me feeling sleepy. but Primary today apparently did. 

on the way back on the bus i received spontaneous massages on the head, neck, shoulders and feet, courtesy of other travellers in the crowded bus. i signed up for a vipassana daylong retreat tomorrow at Hartford Street Zen Center. i don't think i can stay the whole day and debated whether to sign up, since i'm busy. however, i have been going to one such daylong once a month the entire year, with the exception of last month, so i think i should do this at least once a month.

water yoga

a story i could not resist. in today's odd box at Auntie BBC, there's a segment on water yoga. this reminds me of David William's story that yogis of yore used to worship in a village, then float at night down the Ganges to the next village while sleeping with the body engaged in yoginidrasana.

10/2/08

short practice

I did a short practice at home today, since i need to get to the office early to be ready for a meeting. i noticed that some bacterium seemed to have lodged itself in my upper chest earlier in the week from not having practiced, causing an overall feeling of upper chest congestion. then during practice, because of the breath and heat generated from the practice, i have felt the same congestion abating. (since i didn't mention the Sanskrit name of any asana, no misspellings were found in this post, that is, until i used the word asana in this sentence.) 

following up on the Obama pranayama words, i saw an advert for a yogarama for Obama, where someone photoshopped the senator's face on the body of a yogi doing ardha matsyendrasana, my favorite pose. Oops, I better go, and the misspelling count has gone up.

10/1/08

drawings

I hope to resume practicing tomorrow morning; by the weekend my membership at the SF shala will be effective again, which should  help make the practice more consistent. Above is how a technical drawing looks like when one is working on it with computer aided design. When I first was exposed to this method of creating drawings 23 years ago, I was fascinated by the colors. Today it's only one of the tools we use to communicate drawings, but it's the main one for drafting. Something like that plots like this on paper:

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