December 2021 Holiday Season – Asteya (Non-Stealing): Day 1 – Saturnalia

Good Morning Yogis! We are in the middle of our special Holiday Yamas Practices! December is the holiday season for many worldwide nations, cultures, and religions, so this ties in with most other holiday seasons our Yogis may celebrate. I will continue my research through the month and tie in our practices with world holidays if they tie in with our daily practices… please contact me if you have any requests or suggestions!

alpine valley with darkened green pine trees in snowy epic mountain valley under clear purple blue twilight sky -  asteya non-stealing giving balance Quote: People who care about each other enjoy doing things for one another. They don't consider it servitude. - Ann Landers
People who care about each other enjoy doing things for one another. They don’t consider it servitude. – Ann Landers

Holiday Yamas Practice Schedule

We are on our tenth day counting down the 5 Yamas with 5 days of Ahimsa (non-harming), 4 days of Satya (truthfulness), and 3 days of Asteya (non-stealing) before we have a full week of Brahmacharya for the week of Christmas in the United States.. a time that I will enjoy the focus on moderation! We will focus on a different way to practice each of these Yamas each day.

Holiday Season – Saturnalia

Today is the first day of our Asteya (non-stealing) practices. Today is also the start of Saturnalia, a week-long ancient Roman agricultural festival honoring Saturn or Cronus from Greek mythology. I minored in Classics and loved Greek and Roman language and mythology, so am excited to share this random Roman holiday! PS I also am particularly interested in Celtic mythology from my own heritage, and we will cover Yule in the North in a couple of days! Saturnalia was primarily a carnival-like atmosphere about feasting, gambling, and gift-giving. The most interesting part about Saturnalia is that slaves were served a banquet by their masters for this holiday! So, inspired by Saturnalia‘s role reversal, we will do one of my favorite Asteya practices of balance and non-stealing in our relationships.

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is to practice Asteya / Non-Stealing in our relationships! I am sure no Yogis nowadays treat loved ones like slaves! However, we should consider who in our life gives and cares most for us, and make sure to both show appreciation and give back. Check out this past practice if you need more ideas.

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Please comment and share how your Asteya practice went today. How did it make you feel? Always remember, be kind!

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Asanas (Poses): Malasana (Garland Pose) – December 2021 Holiday Season: Krampusnacht

Happy Sunday Yogis! We just wrapped up practices focused on the Niyamas, and we are now on to Asanas, the 3rd Limb of Yoga. Today is the first of the holidays we will discuss for our special Holiday month, and we will cover a festive Asana Malasana or Garland Pose, often referred to as a “yoga squat.”

Holiday Yamas Practice Schedule

We will start soon by counting down the 5 Yamas with 5 days of Ahimsa (non-harming), 4 days of Satya (truthfulness), and 3 days of Asteya (non-stealing). Then we will have a full week of Brahmacharya for the week of Christmas in the United States.. a time that I will enjoy the focus on moderation! We will focus on a different way to practice each of these Yamas each day.

Holiday Season – Krampusnacht

Krampus!

We are celebrating a special Yamas / Interpersonal Ethics focused month. December is the holiday season for many worldwide nations, cultures, and religions, so this ties in with most other holiday seasons our Yogis may celebrate. I will continue my research through the month and tie in our practices with world holidays if they tie in with our daily practices… please contact me if you have any requests or suggestions!

Today is the first holiday for this season I am going to share – Krampusnacht! I have been into world history and traditions for many years, and Krampusnacht is the most amusing December holiday to me.. partly because of the name “Krampus” which makes me giggle. This holiday is seriously like the Nightmare before Christmas!

Krampusnacht is celebrated primarily in Bavarian mountain towns the evening before St. Nicholas Day. This is a different European Christmas tradition than we are familiar with in the United States. St. Nicholas Day, celebrated earlier in December, is the day for gifts from St. Nicholas or Father Christmas – for only good children. The bad children do not get coal… they were either stolen, eaten, or scared straight by the monstrous Krampus the evening before!

I am guessing with this terrifying holiday, areas celebrating Krampusnacht have the best-behaved children in the world. I tried to make one Malasana picture a bit scary today for the Krampus theme!

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is to try today’s Asana – Malasana or Garland Pose. This pose is great to counter sitting at a desk all day!

Malasana - garland pose - yoga pose girl wearing tie dye shirt with trippy yellow holiday lights on black dark background
Malasana – Garland Pose

Malasana – Garland Pose

This is a deep hip opener – make sure to practice a bit before attempting this pose! This seemingly simple pose is a journey pose, and you will begin to move your torso forward as your chest and hips open with practice!

  • Start standing in Tadasana / Mountain Pose.
  • Step your feet out a bit wider than hip-distance, and turn your toes out 45 degrees.
  • Bend your knees and slowly come into a full low squat.
  • Bring your arms forward between your knees, and bring palms together into a prayer position, pressing elbows into thighs.
  • Press gently into thighs and bring your chest forward.
    • Take note of your head and neck – keep in line with your torso
    • Take note of where your weight is in your feet, both front to back and side to side. Keep even side to side, and keep most weight in your heels.
  • Hold this pose for as long as comfortable while taking deep breaths into any tension you feel in your hips. Begin with holding 30-60 seconds, and work up to 3-5 minutes!

If you have tight hips and knees, or have trouble balancing here, you may want to sit on a block for support.

Malasana - garland pose - yoga pose girl wearing tie dye shirt and black pants with holiday winter white bare aspen tree forest background
Malasana – Garland Pose

Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself, and all opinions expressed here are our own. This page contains affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, may earn me a small commission. Read full privacy policy here.

PS If you are comfortable with variations of these poses, please tag us with your pictures on Instagram!

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Please comment to share your experience! Have you tried this Asana before? Is this your first time learning about Krampusnacht? Always remember, be kind!

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Ahimsa (Non-Harming) – October 2021 – International Day of Non-Violence

international day of non-violence october 10.01 blue and white world infographic

Good Morning Yogis! We are restarting the Limbs of Yoga for our daily positive practices with Ahimsa or non-harming. Today is also the International Day of Non-Violence, created by the United Nations honoring Ghandi’s birthday.

chichen itza mexico aztec temple across green lawn under partly cloudy sky - ahimsa nonviolence kindness Quote: Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough. - Franklin D. Roosevelt
Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough. – Franklin D. Roosevelt

bONUS dAILY mEDITATION cHALLENGE

We are in the middle of a bonus Daily Meditation Challenge for October! For Ahimsa day today, my meditation for the day is a Loving Kindness Guided Meditation.

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is a random act of kindness for today’s Ahimsa / Non-Harming Day and International Day of Non-Violence. Need ideas? Here is what we used for inspiration for our intro Ahimsa Day!

  • Bring home a favorite meal or treat for a loved one.
  • Be extra friendly driving in the car, giving someone the right of way.
  • If you can, pay for the order for the person behind you in a drive through. Has that ever happened to you? It happened to my sister, it made her day!
  • If we are no longer in the days of social distancing or you are in your household, hold the door open for the person behind you, or help someone who is struggling to reach or carry something.
  • Volunteer.
  • Give to charity.
  • Plant a tree.
  • Whatever feels like the right way for you to actively practice kindness and compassion, or to do your small part to make someone else smile, or make the world better today than it was yesterday.

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Please comment and share how you decided to practice Ahimsa today. How did it make you feel? Always remember, be kind!

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July Anti-Boredom Month – Mindfulness & Flow – Day 4 – 4th of July & Clean Beach Week – 2021

Good Morning Yogis! For those of you in the United States, it is Independence Day – Happy 4th of July! We are in the middle of a special Santosha and Mindfulness Summer Fun Month to align with July’s Anti-Boredom Month. I have heard if we focus on the past we will be depressed, if we focus on the future we will be anxious, and the key to joy is living in the present moment. A couple of the Yamas and Niyamas reflect this secret of happiness hidden in the “now”.

Mindfulness is central to a number of eastern religions and philosophies, and is becoming a common theme in western therapy, psychology, and self-help. We have also focused on mindfulness in some of our past daily practices, especially on past Santosha Days and with some focused meditation practices. Mindfulness and losing oneself in the current moment is my idea of “finding flow” that we most commonly experience during “getting in the zone” during particular athletic, work, and artistic activities. Zen Buddhism takes this concept further with Zen Arts such as Tea Ceremony, Archery, Painting, and Flower Arrangement. So, we will focus this month on trying different practices and activities to at minimum beat boredom for Anti-Boredom Month, and hopefully help you experience a flow state.

cool shot of green bursting firework with yellow shooting sparks - 4th of July Fireworks original work -https://unsplash.com/photos/PKJnzFlvR2w
Fireworks

I learned that plastic is not truly recyclable, and often ends up on our beaches. We are often doing better by throwing plastic in the trash than the recycle bin! Recycle IS last in “Reduce Reuse Recycle” so see if there are other ways you can reduce or reuse your plastics, since they often are not actually recycled.

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is to try today’s Anti-Boredom / mindfulness/flow Activity: get outside and enjoy some time by the water, and do some beach cleanup to honor Clean Beach Week or another form of outdoor clean-up. You can consider this a practice of selfless Saucha. Many of us will be heading to a beach, or another outdoor location for the holiday or to enjoy this summer weekend. Make sure to pack in and pack out all your trash and belongings, and pick up any trash you see along the way for Clean Beach Week! I also find the beach is a perfect place to relax and let everything else slip away, so perhaps you can find your Zen state today by the water!

Environmentalism and Mindfulness

I find the water is a great place to help my thoughts quiet. Try to calmly take notice when your thoughts drift back to the past or forward to the future. Try to bring yourself back to and fully immerse yourself in the present moment by focusing on the sight, sounds, smells, taste, or feel of your surroundings.

Make sure to practice mindfulness and try to enjoy each day’s practice with all five senses.

  • If you are one of the many people heading to the beach this weekend, make sure to pick up after yourself!
  • Maybe bring gloves and trash bags and do some extra clean-up in honor of Clean Beach Week since you’re already there.
  • If you are not near any beaches or have other plans, keep an eye out for litter while you are out and do a little clean up when the opportunity presents itself.
  • If you do not have holiday plans, perhaps find and participate in an organized clean-up.. these events are usually great for maintaining social distancing!
  • Perhaps plant a tree.
  • Or, keep your holiday plans and support beach and ocean cleanup efforts by purchasing a 4Ocean sea plastic bracelet.
  • Or, if none of these suggestions resonate with you, find another way to practice some environmentalism!

We started this month with a deep dive of the Zen Tea Ceremony, but today is a more simple activity. Tea and other beverage recommendations from our intro had enough varieties to suit nearly everyone, but some of our practices this month will not be a good fit for you.. that’s okay! If today’s practice is not for you, try to get outside near another body of water of your choice, or go back and try another personal Tea Ceremony today!

waves crashing on the beach with clear blue skies
Pacific Ocean, California

Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself, and all opinions expressed here are our own. This page contains affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, may earn me a small commission. Read full privacy policy here.

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Please comment and share your experience with today’s practice. Were you able to find flow or contentment in the now? Always remember, be kind!

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4th of July and Clean Beach Week – 2020

Good morning Yogis! For those of you in the United States, it is Independence Day – Happy 4th of July! In honor of the holiday, we will take a break from focusing on self-improvement, and focus on making the world a bit brighter today!

Yesterday was the start of Clean Beach Week. 4th of July is the number one day for beach attendance, but also the number one day for beach littering! I think everyone can agree that litter on beaches or anywhere in nature is quite undesirable.

I learned that plastic is not truly recyclable, and often ends up on our beaches. We are often doing better by throwing plastic in the trash than the recycle bin! Recycle IS last in “Reduce Reuse Recycle” so see if there are other ways you can reduce or reuse your plastics, since they often are not actually recycled.

We also have a special announcement to make! Our Daily Yogi App is now available for both Apple and Android devices! If reminders and notifications are helpful for you, please use the App and allow notifications, to see new daily posts and to help stay up to date with our daily practices! We also moved our morning posts to an earlier time for those across the US who prefer email notifications – check new sign-up on right sidebar or click here to subscribe.

Today’s Daily Yogi Practice is to participate in Clean Beach Week, or another form of outdoor clean-up. You can consider this a practice of selfless Saucha.

  • If you are one of the many people heading to the beach this weekend, make sure to pick up after yourself!
  • Maybe bring gloves and trash bags and do some extra clean-up in honor of Clean Beach Week since you’re already there.
  • If you are not near any beaches or have other plans, keep an eye out for litter while you are out and do a little clean up when the opportunity presents itself.
  • If you do not have holiday plans, perhaps find and participate in an organized clean-up.. these events are usually great for maintaining social distancing!
  • Perhaps plant a tree.
  • Or, keep your holiday plans and support beach and ocean cleanup efforts by purchasing a 4Ocean sea plastic bracelet.
  • Or, if none of these suggestions resonate with you, find another way to practice some environmentalism!
waves crashing on the beach with clear blue skies
Pacific Ocean, California

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Please comment and share how you helped brighten up the world a bit today. How did this make you feel? Always remember, be kind!

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