Monthly Archives: August 2009

Harvest Season

…Is just around the corner in the mountains of sunny California.  What the NY Times did not mention in their recent article on the big bad Mexican drug cartel firestarters is that it ain’t just the “illegals” enjoying the fertile soil and sunshine for growing purple sticky punge.  Year round, but mostly during harvest season, scores of people from all walks of life head to the hills to work on both LEGAL and ILLEGAL farms.  It is so common that it’ll be mentioned on the radio (“hey trimmers, this one’s for you”) and local businesses stock up on supplies (use your imagination).  There is a sense of community, with pilgrims returning year after year, some staying on to help grow the next season’s crops or maybe starting farms of their own.  Sure, the money is a factor (it beats most desk jobs in more ways than one), but also the many gatherings, the return to nature, and the meeting of like-minded individuals lend to what many would call a “lifestyle”.

No doubt things can go wrong as in any situation.  In this case, a campfire lit by those “believed to be low-level workers for a Mexican drug cartel” sparked a 90,000-acre wildfire.  Yikes!

-ebeans

Surviving PMS

The Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) affects 80% of women according to some sources. Here’s a little hilarious video to help the dudes out there deal with the challenge. Women are more obviously connected with Nature’s rythms, so I guess my advice is: be aware of the cycles, don’t get caught up in the moods and stay cool & supportive, cause as soon as aunt Flo comes the symptoms will go away like magic! What do you girls (and guys) say?

According to Ayurveda eminence Dr David Frawley, PMS can be caused by an imbalance in any of the three doshas, although as a psychological/nervous condition, it is mainly a vata disorder. Contributing factors include poor nutrition, stress, overwork, travelling, difficulties in relationships and suppressed emotions.

In Ayurvedic Healing: a comprehensive guide, Dr Frawley explains we can distinguish three types of PMS (note that your current state doesn’t necessarily correspond with your ayurvedic constitution).
The three types of PMS are characterized by:

Vata PMS:

Anxiety, depression, insomnia, constipation, headache, severe cramping pain. Nervousness, agitation, feeling spaced out, dizziness, vertigo, possibly with ringing in the ears. Moods may shift rapidly, the person will be very hard to please and may have feelings of abandonment. The individual will complain of feeling cold, with thirst and dry skin. She may even feel like she’s dying. The period may be irregular or delayed and the flow tends to be scanty, brown or black in colour.

Pitta PMS:

Anger, irritability, proneness to argument, temper, possible violent outbursts.
Diarrhea, thirst, sweating, fever, the individual tends to feel hot (particularly in the upper part of the body). Acne or skin rashes often appear. The flow tends to come early, it is typically abundant and may have clots.

Kapha PMS:
Tiredness, feeling heavy, crying, feeling sentimental or needing to be loved. Emotional changes not as severe as in the other types. Susceptibility to colds and flu, mucus discharges will increase. Lack of appetite and possible nausea. Swelling of the breasts or accumulation of fluids beneath the skin. The period tends to be late and whitish.

If you don’t have a definite pattern, aloe gel seems to be effective for all three types of PMS (aloe is pure magic and reduces pitta, kapha and vata, whereas it doesn’t aggravate either of them!), although for a comprehensive treatment we strongly recommend that you check out this ayurvedic bible (You can read some excerpts on Amazon).

How to thread your own eyebrows

This is amazingly simple!

Back-to-(Yoga) School

This September, Boomerang Yoga, a non-profit organization geared towards raising mullah for children, is hosting a Sun Salute-a-thon, 108 sun salutations over a 3-hour asana, with the concept of sponsored mats for participating yogis. Stephanie Culen, the founder and executive director of the organization is hoping to raise $500 per mat.  All donations made will go to the continuation of Bent on Learning, an ah-mazing non-profit who has been the forerunner in getting yoga classes into NYC’s public school curriculum.

The event will be held on Sunday, September 20th from 3-6pm at NYC’s SoHo Equinox, visit the Boomerang Yoga Events page to learn how you can participate yourself.  (Attendees are also said to get some goodies for showing up too!)

Or if you prefer, freebean is offering to be your surrogate yogini on that mat day – so donate here – a little or lot – all is much appreciated.

THE GREAT DEBATE – Are Yoga and Meat-Eating Mutually Exclusive?

Back in June, Sadie Nardini, the edgy NYC core strength yogini, served up some food for thought on yoga and what’s on your plate in her Huffington Post flesh-eating confessional, in which many shared their ops.  Among the comments, there were some lovers and some haters, and now word on the street has it that Nardini and Gannon (of the animal-loving Jivamukti school) are laying down their mats for a duke ‘em out debate  (in that peaceful yoga way, of course) via live video on the Huffington Post this Wednesday, 8/19.   Stay tuned for the official time to watch it live…

-freebean

John Scott practicing blindfolded

Clip of John Scott practicing blindfolded and teaching @ Ashtanga Yoga Oslo, July 09.

Smoke Screen (Munchilicious Marijuana Movies)

posted by ebean

Okay boys and girls, grab some tasty crunchy snacks, refreshing drinks, and a comfy pillow as we unfold all films “purple-sticky-punge”.  The criteria?  Adventure, good times, chronic.  In other words, the film must involve a mission, marijuana, and a non-downer theme/happy ending.  Thus, the above clip from Bio Dome did not make the cut, but the films listed below did…

Cheech and Chong
Up in Smoke came first, but you don’t have to end the journey there, as they just keep on truckin’…

Pineapple Express

Friday
…and then the Friday After Next

Half Baked

Harold and Kumar
White Castle and Guantanamo are both hilarious.

Human Traffic


…got a fave that should be mentioned?

Inhale or not, everybody smokes pot

Spied these vids over at Elephant Journal.  Fascinating/immensely disturbing how much people do not know about why things are the way they are and how we just let stupid things happen.  Weed.  Really?  Illegal?  Give me a fucking break!

posted by ebean

Oh, Baby!

And we all the thought the advent of the “staycation” would create more babies.  Guess all that DTC birth control marketing really does work…

“Stats Suggest Recession Prevented Over 70K Babies From Being Born”

more about “Idiocracy – Opening Sequence – Video“, posted with vodpod

Yoga Ouch! Whose fault is it?

posted by ebean

Sarah Miller of Elephant Journal recently began the discussion about “whose fault is it?” when a student is injured in a yoga class.  A reader comments:

“I was injured after a well-meaning teacher decided to push my sacrum when I was in downward dog – took me three painful weeks to recover – my advice to any teacher is to always ask before touching or physically correcting and to always request students to listen to their bodies and to create space within themselves, especially when pushing the envelope.”

The Elephantbeans response:

It is impossible to avoid injury because guess what?  We are mortal.  We can break, tear, bleed, fall, die, etc.   Miraculously, we get up everyday and face a scary world that could mortally wound us at any given second.  Nothing is truly safe.  Reading a book?  You could get a paper cut that gets infected and then you die.  Eating a peanut butter sandwich?  You could get e. coli poisoning and die.  You get the picture.  We manage to forget the danger in the world around us as we unconsciously navigate day to day situations.  However, instead of hiding under our beds (that might crush us!), over time we realize that certain actions minimize injury and that the risk of injury in most things is not as prominent as the benefit of the thing.

So when it comes to yoga, as in everything else, there is a bit of risk.  As with any situation, first you must decide if the risk of injury is worth doing the action.  If it is, then you must minimize the risk involved.

1.  It is the student’s responsibility to do the research and find a teacher that really knows what they are doing in general and with your body in particular.
-Speak to the teacher before every class about any injuries or bodily concerns.
-Commit to one or two teachers.  They will know your body and how to handle it.  A huge part of being in a yoga class is being able to let go and trust.  Doing the research and committing to those individuals will allow you to be present in class rather than in fear of injury.

2. It is the teacher’s responsibility to pursue ongoing training to ensure that they will have the smallest possible chance of hurting someone.
-Figure out what you are teaching.
-Be honest with yourself about your motivations.
-Know your limitations.

3.  A teacher asking students each time before making physical adjustments is silly.  While this request makes sense out of context, in the classroom it is not practical for the following reasons:
-It disturbs other students.
-It disturbs the flow of the class.
-It assumes that the student actually has a command of human anatomy and the teaching of yoga.

We are human and accidents happen.  This is just the risk you take.