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Yoga as a daily practice

on Saturday, 16 November 2013. Posted in Quotes and Lessons

"yoga = to yoke, join "
5.0/5 rating (4 votes)

Yoga as a daily practice

The original purpose of yoga practice is to influence, integrate and harmonise all of the 5 energetic layers of the human being. These koshas (sanskrit name) are energetic layers or sheaths that move from the outermost layer of skin to the deep spiritual core, moving from the more dense physical body to the much lighter spiritual body. These make up the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual or soul bodies. Yoga works on the physical body by alleviating stiffness, removing physical blockages such as tiredness and various diseases by moving the energy around as it was designed to do. It works on the energy body by regenerating the different organs and systems with rejuvenating energy. Yoga influences the mental state by balancing the left and right hemispheres of the brain with regular asanas and breathing techniques. It helps to strengthen the mental concentration, self discipline and therefore helps develop awareness of the spiritual body for meditation and thus leads to a higher sense of self awareness. By following a simple 30 minute daily routine, yoga will help increase not only your quantity, but more importantly your quality of life.

"If you don't take care of your body, where will you live ?"

If you would like to benefit from our 30 minute , safe and simple yoga routine for everyday use, mail us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will send via dropbox.

Next week, we will bring your attention to the 7 chakras, providing you with all the details of each, one chakra at a time.


Ahimsa

Cheryl

Walk gently with Grace and Ease !

on Thursday, 24 October 2013. Posted in General

Flow gracefully move easily
4.8/5 rating (5 votes)

Walk gently with Grace and Ease !

Well here we are again just weeks away from winding down for the year 2013 ! The last 2 months of the year seem to be more pressurised than any others .  There’s  end of year exams,  end of year  targets to be met, end of year  functions to be arranged and of course, the decisions to be made about where and with whom  Christmas will be shared. I would like to take this opportunity to wish my students on the teacher Training course as well as ALL students everywhere, all of the very best in their studies and preparations for finals.

If you have started with short sittings of meditation practice you will most definitely see how you manage the year end pressures with gentle ease and grace. Take just 10-15 minutes a day to enhance your life, it’s that easy ! If you would like to find more information of both yoga classes and meditation techniques e mail me on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I will help wherever I can. It’s never too late to make small changes that have long lasting benefits.

We are leaving for the last yoga/dolphin therapy trip  for 2013 on 24th to 30th November and still have 2 beds left. This is R5900 pp sharing and is inclusive of transport to and from King Shaka airport, dinner, bed and breakfast, x 2 daily yoga asanas, pranayamas and meditations plus  x 2 trips on dolphin boat. It is a wonderful adventure offering a combination of relaxation with dolphin encounters as well as taking your Yoga a little deeper. We stay right on the beach so are able to enjoy sun salutations with nothing between us and the sun we are celebrating except of  course, the Indian ocean !  I look forward to hearing from anyone interested in joining us for this excursion.

In closing I would like to add some food for thought :

The willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own  life is the source from which  self-respect springs. “  Joan Didion

Meditation

on Wednesday, 09 October 2013. Posted in General

How to achieve pure joy
4.4/5 rating (7 votes)

Meditation

“May we bring our full hearted attention to ourselves and each other, that the world around us may flourish in tender care ! “

Greetings to all you wonderful readers, I hope this finds you in great spirits and pure joy ! Staying in the vein of our previous article that our thoughts make what we are, what we manifest and how we experience our lives, the above quote is the thought for this week. If we bring our full awareness to ourselves, then and only then will we realise how we feel when someone is nasty or negative towards us. By placing this focus on how we ourselves respond to this, we will become aware of the power this negativity has upon our own energy. It is only when we learn to let go of the negativity, not rise to it or attach to it, that we are able to live our lives in a more calm and balanced way. Once we achieve this, it is then that we are able to be more mindful of our own actions towards each other.  When we start to treat our friends, family and fellow creatures on this great earth with love and compassion, we can start to truly LIVE and walk our talk.

It may sound difficult to be non-attached, but just like everything else, it requires training. The best way to do this is to start meditating. I have sometimes found that the very word “meditation” conjures images of eastern religions, idol worship and other such disturbing ideas. This is in fact not true. To meditate actually means the art of focusing 100% of your attention to one area. The benefits on health alone is a reason to start this practice. If you take a few minutes each day, sit in a comfortable position, either on the floor, or even on a chair, keep the spine erect, relax the neck and shoulders, lightly close the eyes and gently bring attention to your breath, you have started the process.  Become fully aware of the breath going in the nostrils and the slightly warmer air going out the nostrils. This is indeed a difficult thing as the mind jumps around from this to that and to the next thing. Try to keep bringing the attention back to the breath, you might need to do this a hundred times during the 3-5 minutes of sitting, but with practice you will be able to hold attention on the breath for longer each time.  Just as the physical body needs to practice being still, so will the mind learn what you want from it. Over a few weeks you can build this sitting up to about 15-20 minutes. The health benefits alone are worth making this time for practice. Try it, be sure to let me know of any improvements in health, stress levels, concentration and emotions.

With much love, joy and ahimsa

Cheryl

Ahimsa

on Wednesday, 25 September 2013.

Avoidance of harm
4.7/5 rating (7 votes)

Ahimsa

In our yogic philosophy we adhere to the idea of the word AHIMSA, this is a Sanskrit word (ancient Indian language) and basically means “no harm to any living thing through thought, action or deed.” Now I am always on about this branch of the Yogic philosophy because I can only imagine the peace, harmony and love we could experience on this Earth if we all tried to adhere to this rule. Allow yourself  a few moments to take in these words, “avoidance of harm to any living creature” . That has to include yourself, this  then implies  such things as healthy eating to avoid harm, living a healthy lifestyle, for same reason. Being kind, considerate and compassionate to yourself and all other beings. Avoiding  the uneccesary killing of creatures merely  to satisfy your tastebuds. Taking this rule to its deepest, avoiding harmful thoughts or intentions ! That is by far the hardest to achieve, as thoughts occur before we have even realized what we are doing. If you truly try to adhere to this, it certainly helps to be mindful of each and every moment, each thought even before it manifests itself and totally aware of the toxic effect on our mind and bodies with harmful ideas and thoughts. We have about 70 000 thoughts on average per day. So many of these are dwelling on things we’ve said, maybe even things unsaid, rehashing mistakes from past and planning strategies for the future. The result is that we waste valuable energy and fill our minds with harmful and negative thoughts. These thoughts arise as a frequency, a vibration of energy and get held in our cells, in our joints and internal organs. This frequency , influences every cell in our bodies, Make enough negative thoughts and eventually the very cells will all be vibrating in the same negative frequency. I’m sure we have all experienced a sad or emotional time in our lives. We dwell on this and it’s a downward spiral from emotional sadness to depression and eventually dis-ease. This is an example of exactly just how we can create our own health. Of course it’s not quite as simple as only our thoughts, but they play an enormous role in the way our cells operate and function. Will we intentionally harm ourselves, I think not. So all you need to do is rethink the way you think. Be aware of the thoughts you have, limit yourself to the exposure of negative feedback (ie. News media etc.), make a point of verbally “patting yourself on the back each and every day” re-enforce the beauty and joy that life IS. Limit or restrict your actions that you know cause harm to others and take notice of how your health and joy is influenced. Being well is so much more than the absence of disease. It is moving beyond the point of being free of illness to experiencing optimal health. Wellness is not a static state, our levels of wellness change all the time. By taking responsibility of our physical health as well as the mental health, we can improve our level of wellness. This will have a profound influence of not just yourself, but flow over to all of those around you as well as  throughout your community. If we can achieve this then the entire health of the planet will improve. It’s the 100 monkey’s effect. Try living just a little bit of Ahimsa for a week and see the results, feel the outcome and be filled with your natural right to experience a life filled with joy.

Ahimsa

Cheryl

Weekend of Self Reflection

on Monday, 09 September 2013. Posted in Quotes and Lessons

Going inwards
4.6/5 rating (8 votes)

Weekend of Self Reflection

I hope the short article on patience and perseverance struck a chord last week and that you all managed to go gently, "flow with grace and hold with ease. " This applies to all aspects of our daily lives. We rush around like headless chickens, with very little consideration as to why, how and where it's all going. I am hosting a weekend 13-15th Sept (fully booked) and again 18-20th Oct in Magaliesberg, to try and gain the upper hand on self reflection. This is a weekend of yoga postures, conscious breathing and special time set aside for the pondering on carefully chosen questions which will lead you to a deeper understanding of yourself and where you are in the grand scheme of things. It is designed to help bring you back homewards, to your essence and thereafter it will be easier to maintain the practice on your own. It is vital to make quiet time for yourself. This helps with the management of stress, health of the mental, emotional  and physical and keeps the body in a good, well balanced state. In perfect equilibrium, the way we were designed to be.Come join us and learn how to maintain a well balanced lifestyle, manage stress on all levels and to just enjoy life on a deeper more meaningful  level.

All meals  on this weekend are vegan and it gives a great idea of just how easy this discipline can actually be. Simple, nutritious conscience free meals are provided for you to enjoy. Lessons in healthy meal plans are also available on request. Weekends for weight loss are an option for those wishing to kick off on a new eating plan for the start of Spring.

Inquiries for any of these, or to request weekends in your areas, can be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0840902083

Perseverance

on Monday, 02 September 2013. Posted in General

Patience
4.4/5 rating (8 votes)

Perseverance

Well I have had to display many of the qualities I find most difficult of late. Firstly I was busy with my affiliation documents with Yoga Alliance and for some reason their e mail address and mine, would just not communicate. Everything bounced back from both sides ! Very strange indeed. Secondly we tried working via dropbox and with me being on a safari, signal was fluctuating and so that proved to be useless as well. I then had to have the patience to wait until I returned then we set up via skype, this proved satisfactory. After much debate and re sending of necessary documents, all was approved and so the perseverance was well worth the inconvenience. By bringing my yogic breath into play, as well as the mental discipline received from my yoga class, I was able to manage my frustrations and stress levels remained low and not ALL consuming. We have gotten so used to instant gratification that it was out of the ordinary to come upon these type of communication hiccups. It just goes to show that we do need to be eternally grateful for the good old land line. What I experienced over the past 3 weeks reminded me of our need as teachers, to emphasise the art of patience ! It is all bound into the Yama of Ahimsa.(one of the branches of the yogic philosophy)  If we are fully aware of avoidance of harm,  even to ourselves, we will not rush our progress along the physical posture path. Thereby avoiding injury and potentially slowing down the advance of progress. Sthira and Sukah ! Steady and COMFORTABLE ! That is the key. We should not take postures to 100 % of effort, drop down to around 80-85% and in doing so keep  sight of the benefits of being intelligent and gentle with ourselves ! Yoga is a journey for life, don't rush through it, enjoy it and let it happen as it wants to unfold, as and when it sees fit to do so for you as an individual.

Well done to my Teachers Training students in Ballito, 2 big workshops (16 hrs) under our mats and so we embrace the upcoming adventures into the study of the self.

A very big thank you to Guy Bower for lending us his spine ! (ha ha I called him Guy all weekend) it was most helpful.

Have a wonderful week everyone and enjoy skipping lightly into Spring !

Ahimsa

Cheryl

Star of David

on Wednesday, 07 August 2013. Posted in General

6 Planets line up uniquely
4.6/5 rating (8 votes)

Star of David

It seems that everywhere I turn I see more information about the planets and their alignment in the Star of David. While I am definitely a novice when it comes to Astrology, I cannot deny my intuitive emotional responses to this particular event. The symbols of  the heart Chakra are  the 2 triangles pointing one upward and one downward, reflecting the connection of the base chakras with the higher intuitive chakras. With the extra alignment of the planets , reflecting the same inner connections, one can feel the pull at the very depths of your soul. Yearning for the higher wisdom and knowledge, the innate sense of “knowing” we have all experienced maybe many times albeit it briefly. This Star of David appeared on 29th July and is referred to as the Grand Sextile. It is formed by 6 planets lining up at 60 degree angles to each other around the Earth forming a giant 6 pointed Star ! Saturn, Neptune and Jupiter make up one of the triangles and Pluto, Venus and the Moon make up the other. This formation is only in place very briefly due to the transition of the moon. The line up of these planets is described as a “tool for the evolution of humankind”. This event has been referred to as the “tree of life” or the “flower of life”, the “twin flames’ or the” Chariot of the Gods” to name only a few. So let’s open our hearts to the unity of the global consciousness and collectively take the next step in the evolution of the human race, towards a peaceful energy. This is a time of great  Personal  Transformation , meditate on the heart centre, be aware and embrace the changes.  Exciting times indeed.

Ahimsa

Next Teachers training course starting Sat 10th August

on Sunday, 04 August 2013. Posted in Dates and Schedules

Teachers Training
4.1/5 rating (8 votes)

This saturday the 10th August will be the first workshop on the new TTC (teachers training course) . I would like to welcome the students to Southern Africa Yoga Centre and wish them well as they take the next step along their Yogic journey. This course is designed to deepen your own practice, equip students with a solid and internationally accepted level of understanding of Hatha Yoga, the philosophy of Yoga and a basic level of safe and effective teaching at a beginners level (level one) We strive to maintain a high level of education and the  safety for our clients and students are of the utmost importance.

Any late comers wishing to register for this new Hatha Yoga Teachers training course, registration is now open.

I look forward to working with you all !

Ahimsa

Cheryl

 

Om Navah Shivaya

on Wednesday, 31 July 2013. Posted in General

Wherever you go , there you are !
4.6/5 rating (9 votes)

Om Navah Shivaya

By appreciating each moment for exactly what it is, we will shun all the negative thought we could possibly have had about that moment. The lack of negativity will naturally spill over into good health of body and mind !Taking the time on your mat, working on the mental, as well as the physical , energy and spiritual bodies, we will "piece" the puzzle of life together. We find ourselves more able to tap into our innate wisdom, strength and intuition, purely by being more aware. It's always there, we just need to listen for it. This is how Yoga has a way of "spilling over" from the mat into your daily life and one of the main reasons I am so fond of it ! If i miss my practice for 2 days in a row, my diet becomes a little less discilplined, my posture starts to deteriorate and my mind becomes scattered. Thats just in 2 days. In my days of running a fitness centre, we informed our clients that your muscles and fitness levels atrophy at 10% per week away from your training ! Thats a heck of a lot of atrophying to catch up again when you make a come back ! Is it worth the break ? Yoga is so easy to take with you wherever you go, no matter how small a space is available, you will be able to create some form of practice. All you need is you, your mat and the desire ! The benefits are well worth the 15 minutes or so of your time.

So keeping this in mind, keep the faith and practice on !

Ahimsa

Cheryl

Energy body

on Sunday, 28 July 2013. Posted in Quotes and Lessons

energy does matter
4.8/5 rating (8 votes)

Energy body

When i go on my Yoga retreats or trips, I always have a plan or general thought of what I will be offering over the few days. Without fail, the collective energy of the group ends up dictating what we actually end up studying ! While in Mozambique recently, we went to work through healing with a little help from our cetaceans (dolphins), yoga asanas and meditation. The week unfolded into a study of the energy centres of our bodies and how they influence and effect us. At the end of out time together we had formed a close bond of united energy, having collectively spent time discussing, thinking, moving, eating and sleeping. On our first trip out on the dolphin boat, as soon as we sighted the dolphins, everyone present had a huge grin on their faces . They never fail to pass on their "happy, vibrant energy" to us all in their close proximity. It is as if they do this intentionally and with love ! Instinctively we "pick" this vibe up and transfer it into an emotional response. It will never cease to amaze me ! Some people never venture into the ocean to swim with these magical creatures of Neptune's, content to view them from the surface gaining the same benefits ! It has been documented that dolphins gravitate to a pregnant human and show them much attention, as well as those we label "mentally challenged". This could be as simple as depression. The dolphins pick up on our energies and display great interest in certain people. They chatter and click away to us and each other, I'm sure they believe we understand them ! If we allow ourselves a little time of mediation each day, just that time alone in silence, we can tune into the space that allows us to feel the energy bodies of each and everyone. Some of us are already more in tune, while others need to practice and flex their energetic muscles so to speak. Training is all it requires, just like everything else on this Yogic journey, put in the time and you will reap the benefits. One of my teachers compare our minds to a muddy pond. In trying to clear this pond and gain better vision within, he suggests that each day you deposit a cupful of water. Many days of this and the mud will be less as the water becomes more, eventually clearing and visibility will be great ! Take the time spent on your mats as the cup full  of water and see the benefits over time. One step, one day and slowly everything becomes clear.

Courage, faith and love WILL get us where we aspire to be !

Ahimsa

Cheryl

Cheryl Lancellas / Fully-qualified Yoga Teacher
Contact: (+27)(0) 32 586 1219   ~   (+27)(0) 84 090 2083
http://www.sayogasafaris.com   ~   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.