Category Archives: Yoga

5.20 MovingArtExperience

This is a show where Yogis and Artist come together to do what they love most, create! For more information check out MovingArtExperience on IG

Advertisements

Yogi Selects – Tracey Coretta

Now we have been following Tracey on social media outlets for as long as I can remember. I’ve always appreciated the visual aesthetic of what she captures. A very consistent look is easier said than done. Tracey also shares personal insight and helpful tips to living a life of abundance and accomplishment!

“Are you being led by your spirit or your wound…” Can you give an experience where you were guided by your pain but were led to spirit?

Sometimes pain causes us to ask meaningful questions. In my case, the questions I had centered on why living in America as a Black woman was so painful.  My questions led me to pursue a graduate degree in Africana Women’s Studies. In Atlanta I was led to spirit because I ended up taking a Womanism course taught by Dr. Layli Maparyan.  Her class inspired me to teach yoga to students at Clark Atlanta University where I was studying.  And well here we are today!

What is the most difficult test your yoga and meditation practice has confronted you with thus far?

Being patient has never been my forte.  Finding the strength to allow my practice to unfold naturally without wanting to see more progress faster has definitely been one of my biggest challenges.

Describe your self as you would a flower

I’m exquisite

Why is it essential to care for your self through proper nutrition and fitness practice?

Proper nutrition and fitness is paramount to maintain good health.  In order to accomplish your goals, whether its career, school or relationship related, good health needs to be a priority.  You can’t do good work if you’re sick.  Poor health is a recipe for failure.

What do you believe your purpose is in this lifetime and how do you think it will feel for others when you fulfill that purpose?

My purpose is to love myself unconditionally and to encourage others to do the same.  That unconditional love is best practiced with self care and discovering creative ways to promote health and wellness. For others, they will feel a strong commitment to cultivating their wellbeing on a daily basis.

Do you feel there is segregation within the yoga community if so in which ways and does that help or hinder the “appeal for new comers to join and try yoga”?

The yoga community exists within the broader context of US society.  Since we live in a very segregated America it’s not surprising that the yoga community is also segregated by class and race.  Fortunately, social media has been used as a powerful tool to help get the message across that yoga is for everybody.

Can having a vegan diet improve your relationship with Mother Nature?

I think having a vegan diet forces you to become more mindful of what you’re eating. I wouldn’t say that that mindfulness always transfers over to one’s relationship to the environment.  In general, however, I think that any plant based, whole food diet that cuts out processed food will change your relationship to many things including the planet.

Have you had any yoga related dreams or metaphysical experiences that you find hard to explain? If so feel free to share

I’m Caribbean so paying attention to my dreams or metaphysical experiences has always been an important practice even before learning about yoga.  I think getting waves of strong memories filled with multiple sensations while awake has been the strangest experience I’ve ever had.

What are 3 items you must have to set the tone of your space before meditating?

I don’t need much for meditation.  Lately, however, I’ve been revisiting the Headspace app that offers guided meditation exercises.

Does your perspective on yoga affect your practice, if so how?

Yes, absolutely. I don’t just practice “yoga” by doingposes.  Yoga is a pretty flexible practice in that it can touch many areas of your life.  For example, yoga helps cultivate mindfulness.  Mindfulness is extremely important to creating a centered and healthy life.  My existence is rooted in an understanding that my life isn’t ruled by outside occurrences.  I’m not perfect so my day to day practice of mindfulness sometimes falls short.  However, knowing that I have the power of awareness affects what I consider my “yoga practice”.

How can yoga be a tool of empowerment for women?

Practicing yoga helps develop a strong sense of self efficacy.  You try a pose and it’s impossible.  You’re wobbly, weak, and your breathing is labored.  You keep practicing it without judging yourself. Then one day you’re practicing that same yoga pose and you’re nailing it.  Yoga teaches us that you have the ability to achieve your goals.  You can take that confidence in yourself and apply it to other areas of your life.

What book have you picked up and put down but years later found to be a fascinating read?  Also why do you think the message in it didn’t resonate you the first time.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho has a pretty big following.  I wasn’t a fan at first because of how the protagonist’s love interest was written.  Santiago goes on this fantastic adventure while the woman he loves has to sit waiting for him? I thought it was bullshit! I’m not a fan of stories where women wait around.  However, I re-read it and found that the overall message of making moves despite knowing exactly what lies ahead is an extremely valuable lesson.

Is there anything you would like to share with the readers of Infocus247?

My website is  TraceyCoretta.com and I’m starting a YouTube channel this summer at Tracey Coretta.

Yogi Selects – LittleYogiJay

Another brave yogi stepped up to the challenge of selects! LittleyogiJay tossed her friend in the water by volunteering him. Soon after she decided to jump into the deep end with focus!

Screen Shot 2017-04-06 at 10.44.36 AM

Is movement of energy important? What are some of the methods you use to get it circulating?

Movement of energy is very important because it plays a part in how you connect with your spiritual self. Just like when you’re at the gym you warm-up prior to delving into your workout routine it is the same concept for me prior to delving into my yoga practice. I will usually set-up my crystals around my yoga mat along with my Buddha statue and then light an incense. After a few long deep breaths I will kind of just allow my body to flow however it sees fit until I feel at ease. I look at it as getting out any excess energy that will not serve my practice and keep me from getting to a calm state. If I’m having a particularly rough day I will play some music to amp me up and get me ready to practice. It’s all about listening to yourself and knowing what works best for you.

How would you live life knowing it is merely an experience you will wake up from? Similar to a dream.

Knowing what I know now as far as how I look at the human experience I don’t feel as though I would do anything different. I believe life itself is all about finding your true self and while on that path learn as much as possible about what makes you uniquely you. I look at life as a never-ending lesson that you must take away something positive from in order to elevate to the next realm otherwise you will continue to come back to the same physical plane until you have gained the understanding that you were meant to as the ancestors see fit.


Do you use mantras? Share an interesting experience from chanting….Let me know your experience when you use the mantra FA RA ON…

I honestly don’t really make a habit of using mantras that much. I have a general breathing technique that I do use when I am having a really bad day or feeling overwhelmed in general that does help to calm my thoughts. When I did sit and meditate and repeated the mantra “FA RA ON” over and over I did feel a sense of relief come over me. The usual pulsing that I experience when I meditate didn’t happen as intensely as it normally does. I felt more in sync with my breathing and was so focused on that one sequence that when I did stop I felt like I had just woken up from a dream-like experience.

How do you confront a challenge or block that you may reach physically and mentally during your yoga practice?

During my yoga practice when I’m dealing with a physical and mental block I will usually just stop and lay in child’s pose and slowly just talk to myself. I will reflect on my day and the things that took place that led to the unbalance I am currently experiencing. A lot of the time when I have these blocks I’ve realized that it is because I may have reacted to a situation unfairly or I allowed the negative energy to take refuge within me too long causing a block. I find I usually have these blocks in my yoga practice during moments of great stress in my life. I have had to learn to separate my stress from my yoga practice in order to remain present in my thoughts. I acknowledge the fact that yes, Jennette, you’re feeling overwhelmed right now, but how can I react in a way that will allow my energy to calm and my thoughts to slow? These are things that I do to try and bring myself back to a better sense of center.


What was your first memory?

The very first memory I have is when I first moved to Atlanta. I was probably like 3 years old and it was the very first time I ever saw snow. If you’ve lived in Atlanta your whole life then you know how rare snow of any real significance is, and it was literally damn near a blizzard. My dad was very excited about the opportunity to have me embark on my first snowball fight with one of our neighbors in the apartment above us. This is probably one of my favorite memories because I felt just like that kid in the book The Snowy Day by Ezra Keats. I did it all that day, snow angels, snowball fights, a snowman. By the end of the day I was completely exhausted, but cuddled up with some hot chocolate and marshmallows. I couldn’t by any happier in that moment.


How has yoga improved your mental flexibility?

Yoga really has become a total lifestyle change for me. It is about way more than just being able to hold myself up in a handstand or do a middle split. I entered into a spiritual journey of self and during the almost 3 years that I’ve been practicing I realized there were a lot of things about myself that I had to change immediately in order to grow fully. Yoga balances my thoughts in a way that allows for a lot of self-reflection. I’ve learned the most about what I want, my goals, and the people I want to interact with all through setting aside that consistent time on my yoga mat.

Have you ever had any yoga related dreams or hard to explain experiences during meditation?

I actually don’t have too many yoga-related dreams aside from events that I may be attending or working on myself. I think that would be normal of anyone who is excited about a project that they are doing. When I meditate however, I realize that I tend to do the same thing when I meditate. The longer that I stay within my thoughts the more aware I become of what my body is doing. I tend to feel a pulse and then various colors. Depending on the day that I’m having the colors change or become brighter.


What crystal do you find yourself drawn to the most?

The crystal that I am very drawn to is the rose quartz. I love how at peace I always feel when I have this crystal around me. It speaks to my heart chakra which makes sense as I look to gain better balance in that area of my life. The energy that I have gained from this particular stone I feel has helped me to evaluate my personal relationships in a way that is healthier.

What is the most neglected aspect of your practice and how do you plan on turning your weakness into a strength?

The most neglected aspect of my practice would be arm balances. I’ve only recently began to really work on handstands because I feel like it’s important not to avoid something based on fear. You will never truly grow and move forward if fear leads all of your decisions. Once I came to this realization I began to slowly improve in all areas of my practice.

Is there anything you would like to say to the readers of infocus247.com

Thank you for taking the time to get to know me and my practice a little better. I will be moving to New York this summer and I will be hosting pop-up yoga classes’ very soon so check out my website www.littleyogijay.com and my IG “littleyogijay” as well for upcoming events. Love and Light Omies!

Women of Color Healing Retreats

Women of Color Healing Retreats is a space dedicated to connecting black women with nature, wellness, spirituality and self care. . It is located outside of the United States so that black women from everywhere can connect with nature, as nature is our original home. WCHR has created a space to get back to her. WCHR is also a space to unwind and disconnect from the psychological trauma of systemic racism. In a world that teaches us not to take care of ourselves, it is revolutionary and healing when we do.

From daily de-colonized yoga and meditation classes. to surf or swim lessons. to zip lining across the majestic jungle, to beautiful group time on the beautiful beaches of Costa Rica. WCHR also engages our guests in the adventure side of life. We provide the opportunity to go hiking and exploring throughout Puerto Viejo. Our ultimate goal is to open the mind and heart, so WCHR provides workshops on colorism, self-love/self-care, healing circles and much more.

Check out the website for full details!
http://www.womenofcolorhealingretreats.com

 

We are interested in exchanging or providing video coverage of the movement! Stay tuned they may be interested in working with Infocus247

Focus

I know we have been on hiatus for a week or so. Due to travels and things of that nature the focused faded but we are back and have returned to bring you more information everyday! Travel, Yoga, Meditation, Eating tips, Recipes, Photography, videos and useful knowledge as always!

Yogi Selects up next with LittleYogiJay & Black3Dahlia … creating the featured images riiiight now.

Introducing the cube is still in progress, working on getting all the elements ( workshops, classes, gatherings) in order before we being recording!

Videography and Photography services are available. We have updated our rates and guidelines and look forward to bringing your ideas to life.

Why we do Yoga II ? I think its time we reach out to different Yogis and get a different perspective on why they do yoga. This time around I want to focus on the business side of why people do yoga. Its often taboo to talk about business so I think the challenge of getting people to reveal their authentic truth in a world of namaste, love bubbles and open heart chakras. CURRENTLY IN NEW YORK   looking for trill yogis living life!

 

Yogi Selects – LittleMsDaisha

Finally got it done! I couldn’t stand to be called out again lol….  –LittleMsDaisha 

Yes we will call you out occasionally at Infocus247, persistence is a element we definitely value over here! So if your taking a few months to answer some question we want to know why! Today Littlemsdaisha climbed her way out of the Questionnnaire sucken place lol… she was struggling to get the answers but Im glad she was able to pull through. We always run into each other at the movingartshows, she is one of the people I will look for to feel like ah.. everything is how it should be. …  Check out what she had to share about her practice!

If you could of started yoga earlier in life at what age and why? 

Hmmm… at first I was thinking I’d love to have started yoga as a toddler. Mainly because I’m thinking of how far along I’d be in my journey if I would have stuck with it from then until now. However, I honestly feel like I started my journey at the right time, when I was 25. I think now, as an adult with life experience (lol) I have a better appreciation of the practice and the journey.

Seriousness is a sin… What do you often take too serious about your yoga practice?

Seriousness is a sin! I agree with that completely. I like to take my practice as lightly as possible. I think that’s why I love to practice at home listening to whatever my playlist delivers. This way if I am stressing over something I can take a dance break or I can just stop. I usually get serious when I’m doing a challenge, then I find myself stressing about getting into the pose and getting a perfect (enough) shot of it. I actually went to school for photography so I’m my biggest critic when it comes to composition, lighting, etc. Yoga is hard when you force yourself to think about doing it “right”.

How has your yoga practice changed your thinking? And what problems has that change solved?

You usually hear yogis saying that yoga has changed their lives, I can say that is so true. Yoga turns you inward. I’m not sure how that happens..yoga magic I guess, but it happens to all the yogi’s I’ve seen. Once you notice that you hold emotions and stuff in certain areas of your body you naturally want to release them. When I learned to release things physically I then wanted to learn how to release them mentally and emotionally. So far from my practice, I’ve learned the importance of letting go and how to flow with the universe. This change has helped me start to view my life as if it were a movie, each scene as a lesson.

Have you had any mysterious or yoga related dreams ? If so feel free to share.

Hmm… I dont think I’ve had any yoga related dreams…. If I did I surely don’t remember them. Haha.

What’s the most important question you could ask yourself? What would you do with the answer ? 

I struggled the most with this question. I mean, there are sooo many questions I could ask myself, what makes one more important than the other? In a strange web of connected events, yoga has lead me to learn about the universal Law of Attraction. Basically explained as like attracts like. Whatever we have & get out of life is attracted to us by our subconscious thoughts. This made me more interested in figuring out what was going on deep down. So I think the most important question that I could ask myself on a daily basis is; “Have you checked in with your subconscious today?” What could I do with the answer? Literally, anything, align my vibration to match the frequency of my desires, or just take a mental note and keep on keepin on.

If you pick a planet to travel to with the intention of spreading yoga throughout the universe which planet would you pick and why? 

I would pick Mercury. Two reasons first because I’m thinking with it being the closest planet to the sun it would create a ripple effect down the solar system spreading yoga to the other planets. Secondly, because hot yoga classes seem to be popular throughout the US, sure it’s probably much hotter than 105 degrees on a typical day on Mercury BUT I think we’re onto something there.

How was your experience getting a chance to do full of body paint in the past movingart show?

Omg it was surreal. I remember the day I found out I was going to be in the show. I was sooo excited! Literally jumping up & down excited. I’m pretty sure I cried too lol. I went to the very first Moving Art show as a yoga newbie, I think I was 4 months into my practice at the time. It was so amazing to see the yogis that I’d been following on Instagram doing their THANG in person. I remember I took a photo with Dara @pintsizenurse & DJ @Dade_2_shelby. I knew I wanted to be in the show from that day. Fast forward to just under 2 years into my journey and I was standing on a platform next to Dara & DJ being painted as a thunderstorm! It’s so crazy how that turned out. Being body painted was also one of my goals and my artist Fenton was very passionate about his work. I represented Oya the Orisha of storms & wind and I surely looked like a dark & stormy night. A flexible one though. 🙂

If you were to look at yoga as an art form what would you express? 

My life theme is freedom, I would want my yoga to express just that. Freedom to transform. Freedom to transcend. Freedom of choice. Freedom to be light, to carry light, to share light. Freedom to just exist. I want my yoga art to have a delicate but strong expression of freedom.

What would you say to anyone thinking of starting yoga but just hasn’t found their way to the mat? 

Remember, I started out just looking at other yogis on social media. If you find yourself inspired by myself and/or other yogis then I invite you to just go ahead and start your journey. Yoga has no prerequisites. Just start without worrying about who, what where, when, and why. No excuses, it’s time 🙂

Is there anything you would like to say to the readers of infocus247.com?

Yes. First, thanks for reading. Second, I’m working on a website. It’s www.littlemsdaisha.com. Pardon, it’s a little unfinished, but it’s in the works to be a great black-owned yoga/meditation shop & funny blog. I want to connect with all of you. Namaste  🙂

Sometimes you have to chase the eagle that stole your Leopards yoga mat and fled to hawaii through the clouds.

Yogi Selects- SereneRadianceYoga

Not many people volunteer for yogi selects believe it or not … when Sabrina’s curiosity led to a comment about participating I instantly went to her Instagram page and let the questions flow as usual.
Do you use any meditation routines or methods that incorporate focusing on the yoni as well as chakras ? If so share your process and expected experience 
Since the yoni is located in the sacral chakra, any meditation that focuses on the yoni will also focus on the sacral chakra. Sometimes the meditations overlap with the heart chakra as well. I teach a three minute womb cleansing which gets the student to focus on the trauma in their yoni which ultimately on blacks the sacral chakra

Imagine a world where everyone agreed on eating only what can be grown from the soil…. Elaborate on some of the changes we would see if that were the world we lived in?

First of all there would be a severe decrease in health issues. Evidence is increasingly showing that a diet rich in meat is the cause of many ailments that Americans face. There would also be a decrease in the carbon footprint that we leave. It is said that the production of meat for consumption creates 40% more greenhouse gases then all that global transportation does. I think people that eat meat would overall experience higher energy levels because they would no longer be ingesting the flash of animals who were traumatized at their time of death. Those traumatized animals’ flesh contains the trauma in them. Then people ingest that flesh. Thus people will experience a lower vibrational energy. Eating high energy foods like produce will create higher energy in those consuming it. I think people would overall have a greater respect for the land as well as a better connection to it and thus there would be less crimes against nature. I also believe that there would be less hunger in the world because with all these people becoming one with the earth we would naturally do better at taking care of people who don’t have the resources to have what we have.
How can learning about yoni steaming be beneficial for women?

Women can benefit greatly from yoni steaming. At the most basic level yoni steaming is good for healing. You can heal physically and emotionally. You can heal things physically like painful periods, fibroids, menopausal symptoms, shed old linings from the womb that have gotten lodged over time, increase fertility, detox the womb, etc. On an emotional level, the steam can help women release stored emotions/trauma stuck in the womb. By healing a woman’s most sacred place, she is allowed to fully step into the goddess she is meant to be.

Energy can be transmitted sexually. If you can, share one first hand example of when you noticed the exchange and some of the signs that led you to know?

After sharing intimate space with someone for a while, I began to notice that I felt a lower energy than I was used to experiencing. I actually began to take on the characteristics of the person. And not in the sense of hanging with someone and picking up on their idiosyncrasies, but more so feeling low, unsatisfied and unfulfilled even when I wasn’t in their presence. And this person very much had an energy that was low and unfulfilled even though I would never say he was depressed. When I began to meditate more in tune in to things going on within myself, I was able to bring my energy back up. I don’t think at the time I realize what was happening, but in hindsight I was able to figure it out.

What is your first memory of this existence?

Ha! I wish I could answer with something really deep and spiritual like I remember being conceived but that is definitely not the case. My first memory was when I was about three or four and I was spinning around in my grandmother’s living room and I hit my head on the corner of the wall. It hurt, I bled a little bit, and it left a huge knot in my hair. I still have the scar today.

Do you think there are some people  that don’t require healing or does everyone require some form of healing? Share your thought process

I think that the very nature of being a human involves some level of pain which needs healing from. Different people experience different levels of pain but we all experience pain in some form or another. You will never have growth if you do not have pain. I can’t imagine that there is any human being that has never experienced pain that they needed to heal from. Pain is generally a perception. Pain occurs when you assign an emotion to an event. It’s human nature to attached feelings to events. But when you get to a place where you recognize that you are attaching feelings to an event, it can be very liberating to be able to redirect that emotional energy.

How do you measure intelligence ? 

Due to my type A personality, I have unfortunately always measured intelligence by societal standards. I’m becoming more open to the idea that any person who has wisdom is intelligent. Being able to recite facts does not make you intelligent. Wisdom creates intelligence because it comes with experience. I have learned that the eastern way of viewing elders makes so much more sense then the western way. In eastern countries, the elderly are revered for their wisdom, while here in America the elderly are seen as a nuisance unfortunately.

Is yoga good for self acceptance of so how has it helped you in that  

Yoga is awesome for self acceptance. If first of all brings you present which is the only space that exist. It allows you to exercise compassion, love, and forgiveness to self. Yoga is a judge-free zone. It accepts you as you are an asks for nothing more. When you slow down your breath and tune in to yourself, you are able to hear the things inside of you that have been vying for your attention. You can then begin to address these needs and thus create a more loving atmosphere within. I kept thinking for many years that I was broken and beyond repair. But yoga has taught me that although I may be broken, I can easily fix myself by injecting self love into all those cracks to make a more fortified version of myself.

Have you had any yoga related dreams or experiences during meditation that are hard to explain? Feel free to share

I had a pretty powerful meditation shortly after Donald Trump was put into office. I was meditating to Frank Ocean’s “Pink Matters” song and I ended up putting it on repeat. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard the song before but listen to it and be aware of the words. As I repeatedly listened to the song as I did my breathing techniques, I quickly realize that earth is just a temporary situation. That all of the years of brainwashing that held me to impossible standards were all bullshit. That I no longer had to define myself by the societal norms that I no longer agreed with. I cried for probably 40 minutes. It was the most liberating experience I’ve ever had. I so look forward to another meditation like that! When you can free yourself from the garbage that tries to permeate your being you can really elevate to a whole other level. It’s sort of a transcendence.

Is there anything you would like to share with the readers of infocus247

After years of therapists, self-help books, and even taking Prozac for a short while in order to “fix” me, yoga has healed me in ways I never imagined. The healing that I felt from doing yoga is what made me want to become a yoga teacher. I want my community to feel the freedom and peace that comes from acceptance and understanding of one’s self. All that I have ever needed has been within me and I am reminded of that daily.

Thank you for the questions! I appreciate the opportunity to be introspective. Be well

Serene Radiance Yoga
facebook/instagram: @sereneradianceyoga