September 14, 2013 |
Walking into one of the studios at Hot 8 Yoga in Santa Monica, I feel like I've crossed into a different latitude. The temperature is 100 degrees, and the moisture in the air is palpable - think tropical rain forest or Southern bayou. Everyone is lying on mats, eyes closed. The instructor, Carmen Guerrero, a striking woman with floral tattoos that curl up her arm, encourages us to feel our breath throughout our bodies, preparing us to "awaken the fire within. " Though I've practiced yoga for several years, this is my first foray into a heated studio.
August 15, 1995 |
Imagine you're part of a scientific experiment. You've been asked to be part of a healing process--but not with chicken soup or get-well cards. Your job is to pray. Weird science? Just wait. The project director says the prayers are for fungus cultures. The object is to slow their growth, as if they were an unwelcome infection. In the end, the cultures that received the spiritual attention actually grew slower.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 10, 1999 |
Vita Barron stepped carefully on the labyrinth's narrow path, at times teetering on the turns, at other times gliding smoothly as if on Easy Street. A labyrinth is a lot like life, she said. Dating back at least to 1800 BC, labyrinths are an ancient meditation tool.
January 11, 1999 |
You're on a team with a colleague you consider an incompetent boor. She leaves her half-empty coffee cups around until mold starts to form and lets her paperwork slop over onto your desk. Because of her disorganization, a report you both worked on was late, tarnishing your image as well as hers. You feel your chest tightening and your rage swelling. There are two options, right? You can confront her directly and run the risk of an ugly scene. Or you can simmer in a stew of resentment, grumbling to co-workers or being obsessed about what you should have said to her face and run the risk of poisoning your job and compromising your work.
April 17, 2000 |
When Joannie Parker developed breast cancer, her doctors eradicated the disease with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. But the rigors of battling cancer left the 66-year-old Westwood woman feeling as many patients do: stressed out. To deal with her anxiety, Parker enrolled in an eight-week meditation class at UCLA's Rhonda Fleming Mann Resource Center for Women with Cancer.
April 5, 1996 |
Deborah Barrett's life is startlingly simple. And startlingly complex. She is a Zen monk, a Catholic nun, a lawyer and a psychologist. In her sparely furnished office there is a futon and a computer. There are books on religion, Zen and psychology, a poster of Catholic scholar St. Teresa of Avila and wood block prints of a Zen garden, a church and Janice Joplin. All the pieces exist separately and--somehow--together, much like the seemingly disparate experiences in Barrett's life.
April 25, 2014 |
Workouts don't always have to be sweaty, and my mind and spirit needed some attention after a recent long week. We can all meditate or downward our dogs at home, but sometimes it helps to have a little guidance. Reset: 8254 Melrose Ave., www.ToResetClickHere.com Aura: Seems like miles from the hullabaloo just outside; dimmed lights, electric candles and cushiony mats. Effort: Laid-back, for sure. But there's no payoff if you just drop off and don't try to follow the teacher.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 2, 2010 |
Molecular biologist and author Jon Kabat-Zinn was a pioneer in applying the Buddhist concept of mindfulness to Western medicine and secular society. But he doesn't consider himself a Buddhist. "Mindfulness, the heart of Buddhist meditation, is at the core of being able to live life as if it really matters. It has nothing to do with Buddhism. It has to do with freedom," Kabat-Zinn said in a telephone interview from Lexington, Mass. "Mindfulness is so powerful that the fact that it comes out of Buddhism is irrelevant.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 10, 2009 |
As the lights dimmed over a hotel ballroom in downtown Los Angeles, 2,000 people closed their eyes and commenced their morning kirtan, or devotional chanting. "Oh, God beautiful, at thy feet, oh I do bow," they sang as monks played tiny cymbals and other instruments. "To the yogi, thou art bliss." The visitors were attempting to establish a spiritual tone for the weeklong world convocation of the Self-Realization Fellowship, a religious and spiritual organization whose devotees practice yoga and meditation while honoring underlying principles of truth in the world's great religions.
January 8, 2011 |
Of all fields of medicine, psychology seems especially prone to fads. Freudian dream analysis, recovered memory therapy, eye movement desensitization for trauma ? lots of once-hot psychological theories and treatments eventually fizzled. Now along comes mindfulness therapy, a meditation-based treatment with foundations in Buddhism and yoga that's taking off in private practices and university psychology departments across the country. "Mindfulness has become a buzzword, especially with younger therapists," said Stefan Hofmann, a professor of psychology at Boston University's Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders.