What is Yoga? Integration

Sally Om Shanti



Yoga is the integration of one’s thoughts, words and deeds, or the integration of the head, heart and hands according to Swami Sivananda. (pictured below)


To make this clearer- “If you are thinking one thing, and saying another, you are not in a state of yoga; there is disharmony that may wreak havoc at some point or another, and which is internally unsettling. If our work or our actions are not in harmony with our deeply held intuitions and beliefs, again, we are not living in a state of yoag, and this fundamental disconnectedness will cayse a sense of dis-ease, often manifesting in the body as disease.” – Yogi Vishvketu and Chetana Panwar, Langara YTT Student Manual

All human beings have a sense of inner knowing, our Dharma. Our Dharma is what we are meant to be doing on this beautiful planet, you could call this our…

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What is Yoga ? Union

Sally Om Shanti

Namaste and Happy Sunday

What is Yoga ? 



Yoga is usually translated from Sanskrit as meaning ‘union’. This implies the union of the mind, body and spirit as well as the union of the individual psyche with the transcendental Self. (Atman with Brahman) In simpler terms, “Yoga is the unification of the web of dualities” – Yoga Bija. 

To be in a state of yoga requires letting go and going beyond binary thinking to acknowledge certain things.

For example; the ability to acknowledge and accept  that the opposition between mind and heart is illusory.

It is easy to see the interconnection between the body and mind- notice how your thoughts charged with a certain emotion cause the breath to become shortened, agitating the heart rate.

This leaves me thinking what does union of the body, mind, and spirit really mean? It can be quite a lot to wrap the…

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Sunday Scribbles- I am my Mother’s Daughter

Today is a beautiful Sunday in Vancouver- yes the sky is grey, but there are no raindrops darkening the driveway and as I glance out the kitchen window- I observe a neighbourhood cat trek through the front garden. Most likely picking a nice warm spot to relieve itself.

Listening to CBC this afternoon I am hit smack in the face with some melancholy. Oh how I miss my homeland and family. Even though the flowers are blooming and the grass is green here on the coast, a part of my heart still houses a love of the snowy driveway that trails through the boreal forest to my home, the delayed spring, mom’s tuna casserole… There are so many things I miss- I think that is what is making it easier for me to prepare myself in regards to moving back to Fort St. James for the summer.

Family has been such a important part of my life that it seems that everyday I go without family contact my soul cringes- deep down I thrive on the unconditional love my family shares with me, and I with them.

Soon my mother will be coming to visit me- and I am thrilled.

She is my best friend – we share something so beautiful that living away from her felt strange.

But the distance gave me the space to grow, to find who I was and who I wanted to be, I was able to make mistakes, make gooddecisions, all by myself.

And now, when we get together it seems like nothing has changed but so very much has changed all at the same time. I can’t describe it in words- it’s a feeling. Nobody ever told me that this was a part of growing up.

I am still my mother’s daughter, but I have become my own woman as well.

I am so happy I will be able to celebrate Easter with my best friend.

Yoga, dark chocolate, and good food are in the plans for this easter holiday.

Happy Sunday Lovelies,



Love is all you need; along with some business skills…

Namaste lovely audience

Today was my last sculpture class at Capilano University. 

Even though I am sad that it had to come to an end, it is also one step closer to my journey of being a yoga instructor up in the big wild north. 

Scary really- there are so many little decisions that need to be made- hopefully I make the correct ones, so that I will be coming back to Vancouver in the fall with a happier bank account so I don’t have to eat rice crackers and apricot jam everyday while I attend art school, that is if I even get accepted. 


My brain is full of anxiety. 

a good night’s rest and a morning class of yoga shall help unravel things a bit for me tomorrow. 

I have been in contact with people up north- trying to make the magic happen. 

Sending good vibes to my higher self tonight, no matter what happens, I will make things work… Someway – I am hoping my summer will be prosperous and positive. 

One thing I love about myself tonight is: I am living my dream. 🙂 


Om Shanti, Om Peace 




Asian Salad and Immaturity.

Enough is enough.

I am very disappointed in the hypocrites tonight.

There are days when I miss when I was in highschool… 

Just kidding. 

What I learned whilst becoming a yoga instructor has taught me many things- I won’t go all  preacher on your asses tonight.

(Just letting my inner Peer Counsellor have a few words tonight…)

 I am becoming more and more intolerant of the lack of maturity and just plain rudeness that I come across daily. 

Especially on social media sites.

It makes me cringe at how nasty and cruel people can be- especially those who look down upon someone for “bullying” people. 

Harassment, insults, etc. 

I shake my head at this- for really if you have an issue; there are people to talk too… 

But yet I do know the feeling of being alone and unheard; reaching out to anybody who will support me. But that doesn’t mean I support people bashing others- its amazing many of these people behind these statuses would never utter these words for example in front of a whole soccer team, a teacher, or a coach. 

But shockingly, I come across many hurtful people who wouldn’t even think twice about shouting it out over the radio. 

As I became more comfortable with my journey in connecting my values with Ashtanga Yoga values- I became more and more sensitive to the negativity that suffocates my life. I became over stimulated with society, and all the hatred and hypocrites. 

But I also found compassion for the humans behind the hateful words and actions. 

It really makes my head spin when I see the battles that take part over twitter, facebook, blogs, etc. 

During my journey in becoming a Yoga Instructor I have also learned about letting go of the need for defence. 

I highly respect someone who stands up for their values- But I do not support “fighting fire with fire”

To put a fire out- you simply give it no fuel to survive. 

No oxygen. 

Fire Blanket. 

No response to the hatred. 

You get what I mean. 

The people who read this blog will probably not be the ones who I am so disappointed in. 

But that’s okay- 

The people who find themselves constantly defending themselves, their decisions, or people they respect….

Those are the people that I am hoping will read this blog. 

As hard as it is- let this sour taste wash away like the hawaiian surf. 

Let the hard done by be hard done by, for if they really wanted to make change they live in a country where you can speak your mind and make change. 

and for pete’s sakes don’t even dare say you don’t know how. If you have a beating heart you know how to make change, for better or for worse. 

I understand your frustration- but spouting out on facebook, creating an army of negative energy will get you no farther than before the thought was conceived in your mind. 

Tap into love, tap into gratitude for what you have already, and make plans to reach the goals you want to accomplish. 

I am not trying to smack every negative nelly on the wrist with a ruler- I am just writing a blog post about what I have observed tonight, and how thankful I am that I am not swimming in the pool of acid that I once called high school anymore, that I do not have to face these people, that I have a choice to socialize with healthy people with healthy values, and no need to bring others down to make a point. 

Tell me if I am correct here: Is it bullying when you make fun of someone’s disabilities? 


Is it bullying when you post a status- targeting a sports team, coach, or specific teacher just because you are unhappy you did not get something that maybe they got? 

I believe so. 

I witnessed on my facebook tonight as I scrolled down- Someone had posted “I wish [Specific gym teacher/coach] would let us go to Hawaii instead of being so god damn weird.”

-This is the kerosene that many people decided to soak facebook with. 

This may be a harmless little temper tantrum- but what it gives birth too I strongly think is bullying. 

This opens up a cesspool- if one person opens up a wound, everyone else begins tearing off their deepest, crustiest scabs…

Including this comment: “or maybe if [gym teacher/coach] wasnt half jew”

The firewood. 

and there are many other comments to follow that make this into a whole forest of negativity. 

I’m sorry. Did this facebook user just use the term “Jew” as a put down? 

So disgusted in humanity right now, and I am not even Jewish. 

Let’s hope you will not become a member of parliament, or even worse, the Prime Minister in our future.

So what if the faculty member in question is Jewish. ( I don’t know, neither do you, it’s really none of our business ) 

We don’t diss people by calling them Christians do we? 

How about Catholics, 





remind me what century we are in? 

Maybe this is the feminist in me- but this was also targeting a soccer team of talented young women. 

Majority of the hateful comments were from young men. 

Jealously perhaps? 

Of course. They have something that the very angry young man doesn’t. 

What I find highly frustrating, especially in the teenage culture is that when something is out of reach- many decide to bitch and complain. While the few who are above that decide to make things happen, sidestepping the need for venting on Facebook. 

So unhappy young man- if you so happen to come across this here is what I propose to you. 

Sure you stand up for some people. 

Sure you are not playing soccer in Hawaii right now. 

Here is what you could be doing. 

Creating, brainstorming, stepping up to the plate, and if this is your graduating year, then creating a legacy for ones younger than you. 

Go talk to the principal. 

Got funding issues? 

Hold a meeting with PAC. 

Hold a meeting with District of Fort St. James. 

Be mature, and be open to the most likely possibility of working your knuckles to the god damn bone to get what you are fighting for. 

Sure the senior girl’s team went on an extravagant trip this year. 


I am sure they did not sit on their butts, just waiting for someone else to pick up the pieces and fly them all to the land of sunshine. I would love to interview the coach, interview the team captains, interview the parents. They worked hard. 

I was also on sports teams that worked their asses off fundraising- including other groups, not just sports….

Is it the lazy male teenager personality to blame? 

Who knows. 

But I do know it makes me very unsettled when I see shit like this on my timeline.


  • (Soccer Player) Maybe if you guys could keep a team and win a few games you could go to an actual tournament?
    Okay- you’re defending your team and coach and everything you have worked for. 
    (Fellow soccer players liked this comment)
    (Facebook User who started this all with the status) Or he didn’t cancel our teams and actually put an effort towards help funding. (Really? You are going to blame the gym teacher, when the reason you cancel a team is when there is lack of commitment coming from the players… P.S. hmm funding comes from the community- not the gym teacher/head of athletic dept….)
    (yet another young man) HA because you guys win games. We all know why you’re in hawii.
    (Oh tell me, facebook user, why are the girls in Hawaii?, maybe because they want to be… right? Because they are young, and having fun… I could be completely wrong. But I do know this isn’t the Fifa world cup mister. Who cares if they win or lose a few games. Remember this is high school… I don’t see anyone calling the travel club a bunch of Jews… the kids paid their way. End of story.)

And if that means a soccer team for boys well then- you better look back at your teammates, and put some of your time spent on calling the coach a weird jew into more productive things. 

Have you thought about why you goal has been difficult to reach? 

Do you have to be reminded that even with lots of money spent- if no one shows up to practice- the way some teams contemplate skipping their own prom and graduation for provincials, then there will be no team. 

Fort St. James is dominated by male hockey players. 

Boy’s soccer season clashes with Boy’s hockey season. 

So really- you needed to target your fellow teammates rather than pinning your hatred and negative energy on the opposite sex – who’s soccer season is the opposite of hockey season. 

Need I say more? 

And for the young women defending their territory on facebook. 

You are simply the match to this Forest Fire- and I am sure I am not the only Smokey Bear rolling their eyes and counting my lucky stars that I survived high school and made it out alive only with a few scars and a couple months of therapy. 

Let this go. 

Both of you. 

For this will resolve NOTHING. 


Om Shanti Om Peace- show each other compassion and love. 

Have empathy for the ones who have less than you, and have gratitude for the things you have. 

If you did this in the first place, my blog post would of been about how my favourite meal is Asian Salad at the moment. 

Did I mention how glad I am that I survived my time in hell? 

So much nicer being graduated. 

It’s like being taken off the butcher hook and put back out into the green pasture- to find new friends to frolic with that won’t destroy me and my self respect, values, or brain cells… 

Love is all you need. 



One thing I love about myself: My sense of empathy and compassion, but also my intolerance to bullshit. 


Goodnight lovelies 









Charlie Horses and Yogis. (Or Yoginis, in my case)

Sorry my dear audience. For I have not made your mailbox ‘ding’ in the past few days… 


Let me catch up..

One thing I love about myself today is: (March 14, 2013) I can’t really remember if anything really stuck out for me- Oh yes actually… I gave my bank account a good right hook at Opus. I fed my Silkscreen curiosity by buying special inks. Now I am one step closer to turning my bedroom/studio into a SILKSCREEN GENIUS FACTORY. 

One thing I love about myself today is: (March 15, 2013) Totally love how my butt looks in my blue yoga capris. I truly do feel beautiful working up a sweat at the yoga studio. I must remind myself that leggings are more flattering than sweatpants… Daily. 

One thing I love about myself today is: (March 16, 2013) I survived a morning Hot Core Yoga class… the instructor had abs you grate cheese off of, and chose to play Led Zepplin. Not sure if she noticed my lack of ab strength as I drowned in my sweat. Every time I looked between my legs whilst in  downward facing dog I got a glimpse of this middle aged man just rocking every asana as if it was peanuts; he then added a headstand or two, because you know, that’s what people do on Saturday mornings. Almost did a face plant during downward facing dog from all the sweat I was producing. (ahem, any man who is cringing- women have sweat glands too) BUT I DID NOT GIVE UP.


Happy St. Patty’s day – as a ginger- I actually did not get pigeoned-holed into irish jokes- first time in a long time I must say. I even wore green to my yoga class- nobody knew it was my sleep shirt… it wasn’t that obvious. 

All my other green clothing- including the green underwear I usually save for this specific day- was in the laundry basket. 

Today was Vinyasa Flow class- and lets just say- these past few days of yoga are catching up to my quads. The class started out pretty strong- I was confident- until it came to the deep warrior two lunge. I usually do these no problem but today – I exhaled going deeper into the lunge then all of the sudden. 


not just a “he he he I just punched you in the leg” 


it was a 



I was frozen in pain, trying not to fall over and swear while rolling into a ball. 

I slowly came out of the pose- trying to look all composed while really inside all that I could process was…



really it was FUCK. 

But if you imagine a ginger screaming “JESUS MURPHY” in an irish accent; it really is entertaining. 

it was a series of asanas- so from the lunge we then bent even deeper, resting our upper bodies on the floor while in the lunge- then slipped arm under leg and then do this twisty thing and become a magical pretzel.

I should know the sanskrit term- but I was so focused on the silent screams my legs where emulating my mind was not functioning correctly. 

I recovered


the class went well- though my left quad reminded me throughout the rest of the session to not push it. 

Even as I sit on my bed typing on my laptop- my quad is growling at me. 

like a very very very pissed off cat. 

Tomorrow is my last class of Silkscreen at ECUAD. *sad face* 

One thing I love about myself today is: I love how I feel when I take care of my body and mind. IBS and Depression side effects seem to go away when I step onto my yoga mat. The studio has now become my Oasis. 


Goodnight Lovelies xx