2010-06-07

Rumi


There is a life-force within your soul,
seek that life.

There is a gem in the mountain of your body,
seek that mine.

O traveler, if you are in search of That
Don't look outside,

Look inside yourself and seek That.

This aloneness is worth more than a thousand lives.
This freedom is worth more than all the lands on earth.

To be one with the truth for just a moment,
Is worth more than the world and life itself.




Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad, but known to the world as Rumi was a Perisan poet and Sufi Mystic. He was born in 1207 and died in 1273. His name 'Rumi' is described as meaning "The Roman"....as he lived most of his life in an area called "Rum" which was ruled by the Eastern Roman Empire.

Rumi's work is profound, deep and moving. He weaves the events of daily life into a tapestry of moving images, feelings and thoughts. Much of his work is based on tawhid. That is, the union with the beloved (one's lover) with whom/which he has been cut off and his desires to restore the bond.

He believed that art, music and poetry were the paths that lead to God. While Buddhists may understand that the path leads to God through meditation, Rumi encouraged sama; listening to music and dancing. Sivanada, the Master of the Sivananda system of yoga, as well as a great Swami and medical doctor, also taught that there were many paths. He called this a synthesis in which you follow the path that suits or strikes your inner nature.

Yoga, while today somehow limited to the forms and exercises that many equate as being yoga, also embraces more than one path. Yoga can take the form of Bhaki-yoga (devotional yoga in chanting, praying), Karma-yoga (selfless service) or Jnana-yoga (the yoga of knowledge). From each of these entry points the journey begins. The packaging and the actions may appear differently and diversely, but the direction in reaching toward the divine (blissfulness) is the same.

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The Journey So Far

Life is an adventure and yoga is the greatest one of all. Here I share my love of Yoga, travel, practice and becoming a part-time cook. My life adventures have taken me from growing up in Toronto to living and working in South Korea to studying in India, marriage and finally closing my Yoga school of 15 years.

What I can say so far is that I truly believe that it is necessary in life to let go of one dream in order for another to be born. This might be painful to do so but it is the only way to move forward. We often believe that if our original plan does not succeed it is the recipe for failure. But what if it is the door to something new and great? The horizon is wide and life is not a straight line. This is the way I see it and my journey so far. Having also recently given birth to my first child and at 43, it is another new beginning.


ME

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Heather Morton
is a perennial teacher and devoted student of yoga. Having made 18 extended trips to India she studies with her teachers annually. In 1997 she founded and directed The Yoga Way (TYW), Toronto's only school for 6-week yoga programs and not drop-in classes. For 15 years, TYW was a part of the growing Toronto yoga community and supported many charities by offering karma classes. As a teacher she holds many academic degrees including a BFA (Fine Arts in Theatre) and a Masters of Education. With a published thesis on Yoga for Children in School, her post-graduate work was a 2-year ethnographic project in the Indian school system. Heather has produced 2 dvds, meditation cds, a backbending manual and podcasts. Freedom of the Body DVD is the first of its kind as an instructional practice to the backbends of yoga. Heather has been featured in the Toronto Life magazine, The Globe & Mail, Yoga4Everybody and other on-line sources. She contributes to MindBodyGreen, Hello Yoga in Japan and Elephant Journal. She writes to inspire and share her experiences with others on yoga as a life's practice.
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