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Monday, June 27, 2011

July Sangha

July is just around the corner and so is our next Sangha. We are very excited to have two highly qualified Ayurvedic practitioners coming to share their wisdom of Ayurveda. It is bound to be another great evening!

Our first speaker is  Farida Irani an Ayurvedic practitioner and clinical Aromatherapist.  She is also the founder of Subtle Energies the most beautiful Ayurveda Aromatherapy range of skin, body and therapeutic products. She will be talking about “The Magic of Ayurveda Aromatherapy and how to use it in your daily life”.

Our second guest is Doctor Kajal Khadadiya who found our Sangah through this blog! She is an Ayurvedic Doctor has recently moved to Australia from India. She will be talking to us about “Chyavanprasha- THE KING OF RASAYANA,  a premium winter tonic and how we can keep healthy this winter the Ayurvedic way”.

As usual the night will start with meditation and there will be lots of yummy teas and snacks for everyone to nibble on as they unwind and arrive and again at the end of the night.

To keep it simple our Sanghas are held on the second Wednesday of each month so the July Sangah will be on the 13th. It starts at 7pm and if you would like the address then please send me a message, text or give me a call and I will give you the details - antheasayurveda@gmail.com 0431297010

Hope to see you there.

ps - We would like to know what you would like to see us discuss in future Sangahs, so if there is something you are interested in our would like to know more about get in contact and we will do our best to make it a toipc of one of our future evenings.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Grounding in a Vata World

Life today is busy, busy, busy!  We push ourselves more then any time in the history of the planet. We juggle time to fit in as much as possible. Often our idea of resting and relaxing is watching TV and using the internet at the same time. Multi-tasking has taken on a whole new meaning. We jump from one web page to another, have multiple applications open on our computers and live with our phones in our hands. Stillness, peace and tranquility are things that we long for but often what we don't have time for.

Such a lifestyle can lead to vata imbalances, regardless of your dosha. If you live a life that has little down time and you are constantly on the go then you could end up with excess vata. Some of the more common signs that you have become imbalanced are; constipation, insomnia, anxiety, fluctuations in weight, restlessness, dryness of skin, joints or hair and digestive problems.

So what can we do? How can we stop constantly running around? It's not that hard when you stop and think about it, but therein lies the problem - stopping! We find it so hard to stop. And when we do, we are rarely present. For some reason we find it unacceptable to stop and do nothing. We must fill up every waking moment with some task. How often have you watched something on TV that you weren't interested in or whiled away the hours on the Internet doing nothing in particular? Quite a lot I'd say for most people. Or how often do you make your break a real break where you don't do anything? How often do you truly do nothing? When did it become so hard to treat yourself to some time out? It really is some of the most enjoyable medicine you will ever have the pleasure of taking. And once you get a taste of it and discover how beneficial such simple pleasures are, you will find that all your stresses are not so big. They may still be there but the stress in your body will have reduced making life a whole lot easier to deal with.

So here are some ideas for you to ground yourself in the busy, rajasic world we live in.
  • Stop and do nothing.  This does not mean watching TV or surfing the net, this means doing nothing! See what stillness really is. Go sit in a park, in the forest, at the beach and just be still. Your mind will probably fight you at first but over time you will learn to tame it.
  • This leads to meditation. Once you are able to stop and your mind gets comfortable with the idea of not having to do something then you can try meditation. It's a great way to give your mind a rest and let it have some time out from the constant thinking it is subjected to day after day. 
  • Baths. Fill up the tub with warm water, add some oils (check here for some oils especially for anxiety and worry), light some candles, put on some music (or not) and put a do not disturb sign on the door! Lay back and let the warmth and aroma do the work.
  • Do something that puts you in a reflective mood. Journal, write down your thoughts. Draw, paint or whatever works for you.
  • Go for a walk in nature.
  • Do yoga, tai chi or some form of slow meditative activity that will help you to slow down and come into your body and ground.
  • Learn pranayama and use your breath to bring stillness to your mind and nervous system.
  • Treat yourself to a massage and make self massage a part of your life.
  • Eat food that is grounding. This means warm and moist. Grains, legumes, root vegetables and dairy are all good. Stay away from cold, dry, light food. If you want a more specific list of vata pacifying foods check here
  • Do things that keep in in once place and do not require a lot of effort.
  • And always be gentle with yourself.
Pay attention to what you are doing and when you find yourself rushing around make the effort to take a break. Over time you will notice more often when you are not taking time out and it will become second nature.

Good luck

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Self Massage

Self massage is one of the joys of the Ayurvedic Daily Routine. Now that winter is here we need to be extra careful with our skin as cold air, winds and heating are terribly drying. We need to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

One of the best ways to do hydrate is with an oil massage. The oil penetrates the skin and forms a protective layer over the skin which helps it to remain hydrated, smooth and soft. Another less known benefit is that all the thousands of tiny pores all over the skin are like little roads that take the oil through the skin into the tissues, organs and even the cells, so an oil massage is a great way to feed your body loads of goodies. A lot more goes on than pure relaxation when you get up on that massages table. By adding essential oils to your base oil you are able to feed and nurture yourself internally through your pores.

Unfortunately most of us do not have a live in massage therapists or can afford to go and have a massage every day to keep our skin silky soft and our tissues nourished, but we all can find 5 - 10 minutes a day, week to give ourselves an oil massage. It's super easy and so, so beneficial. Choose a time that suits you and add it to your routine. After or before a shower at night works well. On the weekend before brunch is good too. Use your imagination, and follow your intuition.  Light candles, put on some lovely music and make it something truly nourishing. But don't let a lack of time stop you either a few minutes is all you really need so if it's 5 minutes before bed then that's what it is. You will still get the benefits.

So what do you do?  Just follow these simple steps:
  •  Mix the sesame oil with whatever essential oils are best for your present state of mind and dosha
  • Place the bottle in a container of hot water and wait until the oil has warmed up. 
  • Starting either with your feet or head  and gently massage the oil  into your skin. Use long strokes along your limbs and circular movements around your joints.
  • If something feels tight then spend time there. If something feels good keep doing it!
  • Vatas should  massage themselves slowly as they want to bring balance by avoiding excess movement. Pittas would do well with a slower massage as well as they tend to push themselves and are probably overdoing it and experiencing stress. Kaphas can do with a more vigorous massage as they tend to be the ones that need stimulation. As always listen to your body and give yourself the massage that suits you and your circumstances that day. IF your feeling stressed then give yourself a slow gentle massage with lots of calming oils, and if you are feeling sluggish then a more vigorous massage will help to get you moving.
  • After you have finished sit for a while and let your body soak up the oil. 
  • I usually leave it on over night and wash it off in the morning but if you are going to wash it off once you have finished use a gentle soap and be very careful not to fall over as your feet will be very slippery. 
 So there you go, one of the easiest ways to bring some balance and harmony to your life. Give it a go and see how much you benefit.
Happy massaging

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Weekend Meditations


Meditation has changed my life. It has made me stronger, calmer and clearer. I worry less and have a more positive outlook on life.  It is a practice that has come in and out of my life over the years and I am very grateful that I have gotten to a place where it is part of my daily routine.  Those moments in the morning and again in the evening are what keep be balanced and grounded and what help me to bring peace into my life and those around me. I can't express how grateful I am for the changes.

Over the last few months I have started to lead some of my clients through meditations as part their treatment. Within a very short amount of time they are able to move to a deeper, more peaceful level of consciousness. Like most of the people I speak to say they are interested in meditation and are aware of its benefits but don't know how to do it. This got me thinking; why don't I set up a meditation group?  I could help people by leading them through a meditation each week. So now I am offering individual and group meditations (up to 4 people) at my clinic in Balmain. I am very excited!

I know lots of people think it's difficult to meditate or that many don't really know what to do or they don't have the discipline to keep to a practice, so having the opportunity to meet with somebody who can led them through the process might be just what they need. Another benefit is the power created by meditating with other people as the energy is much stronger then when you meditate alone. But don't worry if you have never meditated before you don't need any experience all you need is the desire to do it. You also don't need to be able to sit in any fancy yogic posture, you can sit on a chair.

We will have a check in to see where everyone is to begin with, then we will do some pranayama (breathing exercises) to help still the mind, and then there will be the meditation. It should take about 30 - 40 minutes in total. You will be feeling pretty relaxed and blissy after so there will be time for tea, reflection and chatting after to help you ground if you are interested. I am hoping to create a nice little groups where people feel comfortable and feel they are part of a community.

So what do you think? Does it sound like something you would like to try? I feel really positive about it and can see it growing with more groups of different time frames and variations. But for now I will start with this and see where it takes me and hopefully you.

Each session will be $12 or you can get a 5 session pass for $50. Individual meditations are $35.
Hope to see you there.

Balmain Centre for Holistic Health
50 Beattie Street