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Yoga Beyond Fitness Blog


About Karin

Yoga teacher, practicing yoga since 1997, teaching since 2003, writer/translator, global soul, world traveller (and sometimes beyond), passionate about eastern philosophy and western psychology, especially its application in mind-body practices such as yoga and somatic movement therapy, deeply in love with life, knows that our greatest teacher lies within, also sometimes a total mess - it's part of the package!

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    Recent Entries

    Happy Earth Day!

    Thursday, April 22. 2010

    Today, April 22, we celebrate Earth Day in the northern hemisphere, a day in which the world unites to inspire appreciation for the Earth's environment.

    Earth Day was founded in 1970 by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson. Its main purpose is to raise public awareness of our fragile environment and to protect our planet. Celebrated in over 175 countries, Earth Day is considered the largest secular holiday in the world according to Earth Day Network. It is celebrated by more than a half billion people every year.

    What you can do?
       - Make your home Earth friendly
       - Appreciate < respect the Earth's environment
       - Plant a tree
       - Walk, bike, or carpool to reduce emissions
       - Know your carbon footprint

    Make a change! Make every day Earth Day!

    For more information visit the Earth Day Network.

    Gudi Padwa - Start of the Hindu New Year

    Tuesday, March 16. 2010

    Today, 16th of March 2010, is Gudi Padwa, the first day of the Marathi calendar and the beginning of the Hindu New Year. It also marks he beginning of Spring ... well almost, only 4 days to go, then winter is officially over. The word padwa is derived from pratipada, the first day of a lunar month or the first day after no-moon day (Amavasya).

    Gudi Padwa is primarily celebrated in Maharashtra. It is a joyous festival, the origins of which can be traced back to various legends embedded in Hindu scriptures.

    The Brahma Purana holds that it was on a Gudi Padwa day that Lord Brahma created the world again after a devastating deluge and time started ticking henceforth. Gudi Padwa is therefore specially dedicated to the worship of Lord Brahma. Special flags known as Gudhis or Brahmadhvaj, which means "the flag of Brahma", are raised by Maharashtrians outside the house in honour of Lord Brahma.

    A Gudhi is usually made of a long bamboo or wooden stick. A piece of silk or cotton cloth is wrapped around one end of the stick like a flag, and a pot is placed on top with a garland of flowers. Raising of the Gudhi symbolizes hope, happiness, joy, and glory. It wards off evil and invites prosperity and good luck into the house.

    According to the Indian lunar calendar, there are three and half days in a year whose every moment is auspicious. Gudhi Padwa is one of those three days. Every moment tomorrow is considered auspicious to start new ventures.

    More info about Gudi Padwa can be found on Wiki.

    Happy Holi!

    Monday, March 1. 2010

    Today, 1st of March, on the Full Moon day, we celebrate Holi in India - the Festival of Colours!

    Holi is the Spring festival to enjoy and strengthen the relationship with our family, friends, and loved ones. Holi is a very popular and fun-filled festival. People all over India throw coloured water or coloured powder in celebration, and exchange gifts and sweets as a symbol of affection.

    In some parts of India, Holi is dedicated to Krishna, the God of the Gods. In other parts, it is dedicated to Kamadeva, the God of Love.

    The Legend of Radha and Krishna:
    The story goes that, as a child, Krishna was extremely jealous of Radha's fair complexion since he himself was very dark. One day, Krishna complained to his mother about nature's injustice which made Radha so fair and him so dark. To console him his devoted mother asked him to go and colour Radha's face in any colour he wanted. So, playful and mischievous Krishna followed his mother's advice and applied colour to Radha's face, making her look like him. Somehow over time, this legend about Krishna's lovable gag gained acceptance and popularity. So much so, that it evolved into a tradition, and later into a festival, where people apply colour to each other or go as far as using coloured water jets - the Holi Pichkaris - all in the name of love and to express their affection for each other.

    The Legend of Kamadeva:
    Another legend associated with Holi is related to Kamadeva, the God of Love. To help Parvati in getting married to Lord Shiva, Kamadeva tried to disrupt Shiva's meditation by shooting his weapon at the Lord. Enraged by this act, Shiva opened his third eye. The gaze that fell on Kamadeva was so powerful that Kamadeva got burnt to ashes. Moved by the pain of Rati (wife of Kamadeva), Lord Shiva brought him back to life, but only as a mental image, representing the true emotional and mental state of love rather than physical lust. Since it is believed that Lord Shiva burned Kamadeva on the day of Holi, people in India light a bonfire on Holi (or the evening before).

    Happy Holi everyone - add a little colour to someone's life.
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