Friday, December 18, 2015

Magic Therapy Ball - Now I'm A Believer!

Magic therapy balls? Dafuq!?!

This was what went through my mind the first time I came to know about this brand spanking-new therapeutic approach to health & wellness. Plus, true to the perverted mind of yours truly here, the mere mention of the word 'balls' invokes an internal snigger...so imagine having the word 'magic' added to it! Hahahahahah!

At that time I was newly initiated into the Kuala Lumpur yoga scene, & was secretly proud to label myself a 'yoga prude'. To me, yoga was nothing short of a God-send & everything else was not worth the doing.

How wrong I was! Bahahahah!

There has always been a strong following of 'Magic Ball-ers' - at any of Zhen's or Deep's workshops or classes there will definitely be a handful of them happily using these balls on their limbs! & when I substitute at Zhen's classes, there will always be someone who asks, 'Today using magic ball ah?', hahahahahah! I thought to myself, there must be something really special about these strange balls, even if I can't see it for myself!



Magic Therapy Balls work based on the principles of acupressure & the Chinese Meridian Points. In layman terms, it's sort of like foot reflexology, where for example if pressure is applied on your second toe, your sinuses will benefit. Similarly, if even a small amount of pressure hurts like hell, it means your sinuses are out of whack!

Which is true!

I've always been one to avoid those reflexology foot paths that are popular at recreational parks. It hurt like hell! & I never could understand how some people could just easily walk, or even run across such torture devices! Nevermind walking on water, walking on a reflexology foot path seemed miraculous enough to me!

There was a time when my eyes turned red for a few days. Surprisingly, the redness would often disappear when I was awake, yet return when I went to sleep or lay down, even for a few minutes. One day at one of the workshops, I told Zhen about this & she just said simply, 'Your eyes are tired,' & immediately brought a knuckle to the back of my ear & I let out a loud, 'GAAAHHH!!!' Bahahahahahah! It did not immediately clear up my problem (which actually turned out to be conjunctivitis), but it did make sense in the following days when I found out that the area behind the ears are also meridian points for acne & pimples, because I'd been struggling with these for some time.

The second time I came into contact with this therapy was during our trip to Rishikesh, India. One day, they organized a day trip up the mountains - more than half a day going up & down the mountains! For the carsick-prone person like me, it was a death sentence! Hahahahah! Yet I did not want to miss out on the experience! So there I was, at the front row of the van, looking straight ahead, focusing on my breathing, calming my mind; yet at one of our stops I almost succumbed to the nauseating sensation, so I had to sit down for a while. I felt bad for making the others wait, so I was trying my bestest to get better soon. Zhen came & massaged the point between my thumb & index finger. It was not an unbearable pain, just a slightly uncomfortable one. After about one minute, I was good to go! If that ain't miraculous, I don't know what is!

Upon returning to Malaysia, I immediately signed up for a Magic Therapy Ball Workshop. Throughout the day, everything was explained to us in detail, & we had the chance to experience the effects of the spiky balls on different parts of the body. Surprisingly, it was not as torturous as I thought it would be. The total opposite, in fact! There were some parts where it was so soothing that I fell asleep, or even if I did not fall asleep, my body & mind were so relaxed that I wished there were a 'snooze' button for the instructions to change positions: 'Five more minutes, just five more minutes...', bahahahahahah!




Even the parts which were painful were not dreadful. The atmosphere of the whole workshop was light & playful. The other participants were friendly & even we often laughed together at our pain, because it made sense to us, our physical issues always corresponded with whichever meridian point was hurting! We also worked according to our current abilities - if a certain position was too much to bear, we would either be given a lighter variation, or told to reduce pressure. Similarly to yoga, we always work within that space of comfortable discomfort...does that make sense?


 'Teacher, you got use deodorant or not woh, today?' :P

Zhen's method of delivery is always humble & sincere, with a very strong intention to heal others. If you approach her with an issue, in a mere nanosecond, you can almost hear the inner mechanisms of her mind turning & grinding as she figures out what can be done. & her answers are always clear, precise, & to the point. There is no beating around the bush with this woman!

& her methods work. They always do, as long as you have the perseverance to practice & do it daily.

When all is said & done, a helping hand can be found at the end of one's own arm. If you want to be healed, you will have to take the necessary steps towards healing by yourself. & with knowledge of Zhen's Magic Therapy Balls & their application, you will be well equipped to heal yourself & those around you!

'Magic Balls'...bahahahahahah! :P :P :P

Friday, December 11, 2015

What I Resist, Persists.


Spiritual people can be some of the most violent people you will ever meet. Mostly, they are violent to themselves. They violently try to control their minds, their emotions, & their bodies. They become upset with themselves & beat themselves up for not rising up to the conditioned mind's idea of what it believes enlightenment to be. No one ever became free through such violence. Why is it that so few people are truly free? Because they try to conform to ideas, concepts & beliefs in their heads. They try to concentrate their way to heaven. But freedom is about a natural state, the spontaneous & un-self-conscious expression of beingness.

If you want to find it, see that the very idea of 'a someone who is in control' is a concept created by the mind. Take a step backward into the unknown.

- Adyashanti -


This paragraph had been sitting in my phone for a good few weeks now. I love it when people put words to my thoughts. I like having 'Oh my God, yes!' moments! :)

Sometimes I have students who ask me, 'Do I have to be vegetarian to be a yogi?', 'Do I have to do x amount of yoga every day?', 'Do I have to do this & not do that?'

These questions are often accompanied by feelings of guilt, remorse or embarrassment, as though they've committed some grave sin against themselves & humanity.

Does the phrase 'ignorance is bliss' ring a bell? :P

This is one of the problems of knowing too much - one begins to over-think, wondering should I do this, should I do that? Before we did not hold any prejudices towards certain things, now we are being told that this is good, that is bad; & we start to question our actions; whereas before we just did whatever the hell we felt like doing!

Take for example, the hours of Brahmamuhurta, which is between the hours of 4 - 6am. It is said that this is the best time for asana & meditation practice. As we start going deeper into yoga, our minds start questioning, 'I do not practice during the Brahmamuhurta, does that mean I am a bad yogi? Do I have to observe Brahmamuhurta to advance in my physical & spiritual practices?'

Now, this is all well & good. Questioning & challenging one's thoughts & beliefs is always good, because in that same space, there is room for growth & evolution.

The problem starts when one is not a morning person. Or one's lifestyle or social obligations prevent one from rising early. Then the epic Heart VS Mind battle begins again!

You set the alarm for 4am, only to snooze it 5 times before completely turning it off & going back to sleep. Then when you actually wake up at 8am you feel guilty for not being disciplined enough to wake up earlier! Why to put yourself through such hardship? It would be good enough if you did your practice, regardless of the time, no?

So is not ignorance bliss?

Before this, everything was fine & chicken tasted good & the world went on spinning as it does. But now, even the simplest of things makes us disturbed! How to be happy & present in the moment?

I am not condoning the consumption of meat. What I am trying to portray here is that we need to stay true to ourselves, at any given moment in time; & not force ourselves to live up to some image we have of ourselves in our minds.

'Buddha sat under a tree for 40 days to gain enlightenment. I should start a regular meditation practice too........but I really want to go play football right now!'

'I should not be so attached to my spouse, yet I find it makes me very sad to actively deattach myself from them!'

'The best time for asana practice is between 4 - 6am, but damnit I can't for the life of me wake up at that God-forsaken hour!'

Why to torture ourselves with the burden of what we think is right? Something could be right for a few, yet wrong for others; regardless of how much scientific study has been done to confirm the benefits of a certain thing, if it is not for us, why force ourselves to go against our true selves?

It is good to aspire to better ourselves. But it is also too much to forgo our present selves for our future selves! At the same time, this is a very grey area we are talking about. Decisions are always a very personal matter, & not everyone is always ready to change their habits & do whatever the hell is supposedly 'good'. I don't mean that if you like strangling people, you can continue on with your habit, but you of course take steps to changing yourself, right?

Habits are very difficult to change, especially life-long ones. So don't be too hard on yourself! Not everyone is capable of going cold turkey; the key is to take baby steps towards your goal. Slowly but surely, you will reach it! Keep persevering!

That being said, our thoughts are energies. Even when we are thinking about something we don't want, we are feeding it energy. Therefore, the more you think about 'not wanting' something, you are in fact doing the very opposite of what you actually intend to do - you are feeding this resistance in you! Have you ever observed yourself? The more you focus on something, the more it disturbs & lingers in your mind. If you just accept the fact of the matter & be like, 'okey lah'...it goes away ridiculously easily, doesn't it?

So don't feel bad about yourself! We are all trying our best here, & there is no right or wrong!

Above all, remember to be happy! Live every moment of your life without guilt! Spirituality is a very personal thing, & there are no hard & fast rules to it. To enjoy each moment as they come, that is the goal! Happy practising, everybody! :)

Friday, December 4, 2015

Plan The Party Of Your Life, & I Will Bring The Cake!

If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. & guess what they have planned for you? Not much.
- Jim Rohn -

Recently this question was brought to my attention: 'What do you have planned for me?'

It took my Pentium 1 brain a few extra seconds to process it. It was somewhat shocking, because more often than not, I find it is an ongoing internal battle to stop myself from creating ideas about what/how someone is; so I don't really plan for other people nowadays.

Not too long ago, I was someone who had certain ideals of another, & try my very best to 'help' them into becoming what I thought was 'the best version of themselves'. & boy did I try, even at the expense of my own well-being!

We can all agree that we each have our own purpose in life, yes? Even not having a purpose is a purpose - does that make sense? & who is to know, what another's purpose is? Shit, I don't even know what my purpose in life is, how the hell am I supposed to know what your purpose is??? & who am I to fit you into my idea of what you're supposed to be???

Recently I've become an even bigger fan of 'listening to oneself' as well as 'accepting others as they are'.

When we really appreciate the importance of listening to one's self, we can also begin to accept when others listen to themselves instead of us. We give them space to grow in their own time & at their own pace. We drop any preconceptions about them. Heck, sometimes we even drop what we do know about them.

You see, every human being essentially has free will. So this also means that he/she has the liberty to choose what she/he wants, regardless of what we think about the matter.

So, back to the main topic. I think this 'planning' thing happens (& often goes wrong) especially in the parent-child relationship. Especially in certain parts of the world where the parents decide the career path of their child the moment the poor child is born! :P

It's like the child comes whoosh out of the womb, & the parents cradle the tiny infant in their arms, 'My little doctor/lawyer/*insert career of choice here*!'...which is absolutely ridiculous!

What if the child grew up & wanted to be a farmer, an artist, heck what if he/she wanted to be something other than what the parent had planned for them?

'Son, by so-&-so year, you will graduate from high school with flying colours. Then you'll enter so-&-so college, graduate & do your internship with Company X, then go on to work for them for twenty & a half years before you start up your own company.'

'Dad, I want to drive a school bus when I grow up.'

Bahahahahah! How do you expect someone else to totally comply with what you have planned for them???

So...what do I have planned for you?

I do not have anything planned for you. You are a free, unique individual; & the greatest gift I can give to you is the space that we share, with as little restriction as possible.

I do not have anything planned for you. But I will support you in all your endeavours, whatever they may be.

I do have something planned for you. I am striving to be the best human I can be, so that I will not be a burden to you. So that you can do your thing, without having to worry about me.

I do have something planned for you. I plan to be present in every interaction I have with you. I plan to not hold you up to the sometimes false ideals I have about you. I plan to share that space with you when you are finally doing something you've always wanted to do & you say, 'Hell yeah, this is it!'

& this applies to everyone else too.

My precious friends & family, I want you all to have the freedom to be yourselves, to be comfortable enough to be 120% real around me. & I will support your dreams & goals, whatever they may be. As long as you are not hurting yourself, anyone or anything else.

I may see greatness in you, but that is my own interpretation of the person you are. It is up to you to determine what you want to do in this lifetime. You do not have to live up my ideals of what kind of person you can be.

We can also liken life to a party. So you're going to host the party of your life, & of course it would make things a whole lot easier for you if I did not get drunk, argue with the other guests, & wreck your house, right? It would, however, be helpful & add to the enjoyment of all if I brought cake, lent a hand in the kitchen, & basically not make a nuisance of myself!

So, plan that gotdang party already! I'd probably cause more trouble than anything in the kitchen, but I enjoy doing the dishes & cleaning up! 'Will do the dishes & clean up in exchange for food!' Bahahahahah!


Friday, November 27, 2015

It Is More Than Okey To Not Recover From Savasana. In Fact, It Is Fantastic!

This week I unlocked an achievement - having the most number of people who did not recover from Savasana! Bahahahahah! It was very surprising, considering there was music blaring its lungs out from outside the studio!

I am only now, as I am writing this, realizing that what I intended to talk about today was already covered last week! Dafuq! Change plan, change plan!

As a yoga teacher, I believe in creating a space where everyone can tune into their inner selves & freely express themselves in a healthy way, without fear of being judged, & without the burden of judging others either!  So I would definitely take it as a very big compliment if someone fell asleep in my class! Of course, ideally one is not supposed to fall asleep during Savasana, but how not to, when we are leading such hectic lives in today's modern age? & one of the reasons we come to yoga is to relax, so how not to fall asleep when we are relaxed??? :P

I never had trouble falling asleep - in fact, I think I sleep more than the average person...bahahahahah! When I told Gobuyan I wanted to be the Namaste Otter, he hinted at my spirit animal being a sloth. Meh. Can't really argue with that! All this changed, however, when I had hyperthyroidism a few years back. Before I got diagnosed, I started feeling jittery, nervous & anxious all the time, & during the nights, I could not for the life of me go to sleep. I would lie awake in bed for God-knows how long, tired yet heart palpitating & simply laying there in limbo between the Real World & Lalaland. It had a spiral effect: no sleep = tired = still can't gotdang sleep = more tired-er = bloody hell someone punch me unconscious already! = walking zombie! It was only then that I appreciated the ability to fall asleep. It also really had me experience the phenomenon of how one's emotions & physical body inter-relate.

Basically, hyperthyroidism causes the body to be in a hyped up state all the time, hence the heart palpitations & nervousness etc. This means that the 'off' button was broken, so even when it was time to wind down & relax, I could not, because my hormones wouldn't allow me to! So when the mind & body is not relaxed, how to sleep woh? :(

Thank God I made a full recovery. Yay! & besides that, my hyperthyroidism was the thing that brought me to yoga, so double yay! *confetti in the air!*


I also totally believe in the phenomena of 'sleep debt' - when we do not allocate enough time for sleep during the week, we have to 'pay off' our sleep debt over the weekend by sleeping in or having siestas.

I myself experienced this when I attended the 10-day Vipassana meditation course in Pahang earlier this year. During the first three days, it was a real struggle to stay awake. & I noticed many other students nodding off in the hall too. This was kind of surprising, as I've always considered myself lucky enough to have never held a nine to five job, therefore I never had to struggle with the stresses of common city folk. My job at the horse stables was easy, & considerably short hours, on top of that we worked odd hours, so rush hour traffic was never an issue.

Nevertheless, I still had sleep debt to pay off! However, after I'd paid off my debts, it was impossible to fall asleep during the day, even for a die-hard siesta fan like myself! So I would take walks round the compound, wash clothes (even including the ones which didn't really need washing!), anything to burn off some energy! Hahahahah! Makes me wonder if life back in the day was really that simple!

Looking back, I realize that gadgets, books, & other distractions are also things that can cause sleep debt! It's like, we voluntarily force ourselves to stay awake to 'layan' these things, at the expense of our rest time! Geez! Guilty as charged!

Yes, I am guilty of being too attached to my phone, especially since The Other Half lives in it. It was actually nice to have this 'tech detox' & period of enforced rest - not only from the world & its people but also from my environment. It really showed me how distracted I really am - before Vipassana I was already aware of how uncomfortable I can sometimes get when I have nothing to do - have you ever noticed how fidgety your mind can get, even when eating? Most of the time I can't eat my meal in solitary silence - I am either watching something on YouTube or reading an article!

So, other than learning the Vipassana technique, it was amazing to have those few days all to myself, although half of it was spent thinking about the outside world. :P *smack on the wrist!* Bad meditator! Bad! Bahahahahah!

It made me realize the value of doing nothing. Which, I was already doing from a long time ago, but at the same time, my 'nothing' was just an 'unproductive something' rather than a complete 'nothing'. Make sense?

To really spend time with yourself, getting to know yourself, without any expectations, any distractions, any obligations...how absolutely wonderful!

I prefer not to talk much in my classes, other than giving alignment cues & mentioning quickly the benefits of the poses. & especially in my Yin yoga classes, I like to emphasis at the beginning of the class that my students take the one hour of class to really come back to themselves. 24 hours, 7 days a week, one month, one year, we are listening to others, we are focusing on things outside of ourselves. Would it be unreasonable for us to spend just one hour with ourselves, appreciating our bodies & minds, loving ourselves, learning more about ourselves?

I don't even want my students to listen to me all the time. If a pose doesn't feel right for you, immediately come out of it, or if your body is telling you to move a certain way, then do it, regardless of what else is going on in class at that moment. Just don't be a nuisance to others, & don't start dancing the Macarena. The non-classical Harlem Shake would be acceptable, though. Bahahahahah! 'Do the Harlem Shake!' :P Just kidding..!

So yes, please do come to my class, even if it is just for the Savasnana!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Abhyasa - Practice & All Is Coming.

I enjoy creating non-existent words to express myself - it's 'allowed' in Manglish! - words like nicer-er (so much nicer), or ter-confuse (accidentally confused, hahahahah!), etc. I'm sure the language prudes out there would disagree with my speaking methods, but it's all just for a bit of fun, really. PLUS, sometimes it can really shorten a sentence!

Just a few basic examples of how Manglish can shorten sentences:

Can you or can you not do it?
Can or cannot woh? (This is one of my Aussie friend, Amy's favourites!)

Why are you crying/laughing/singing/doing-whatever-the-hell-you're-doing?
Why woh?

Why do you want me to do this for you?
Why ah?

You see! Saves time & energy! Hahahahahahah!

The other day in class, I unintentionally created a new word. I said, '...feel the spine lengthening & stretchening,' bahahahahahah! This was the first time I'd ever caught myself off guard, & at least the students who got it had a good laugh! Hahahahah! I myself had to struggle to suppress giggles for the next ten minutes, especially since it was a yin yoga class!

Besides the physical aspect of asana, what do you value about your yoga practice?

If I attend a yoga class (as a student), I am prone to laughing for no apparent reason. Yes, don't worry, I think I'm a very strange one too! :P

I feel that sometimes yoga is taken too seriously. You go to a class & everybody's stone-faced from either self-pressure or pressure from the teacher to 'perform' well. Or that might just be their 'inner bliss face', I don't know. Who am I to judge anyways, because I myself have what they call a 'bitchy resting face', hahahahah! :P

But it is quite shocking to me how some people are so serious about their asana practice that they can't even smile or laugh with others! If you can't smile or laugh, how relaxed are you to begin with?

Earlier this year I was recommended to start an Ashtanga practice, so I skipped over to the nearest Mysore centre, not really sure what to expect. & as most of you will know, Asthanga is famous for its ultra-sweaty vinyasa flow, which for me meant lots of chaturangas! *horror face*

I was doing fine in the standing asanas. When it came to the seated asanas, however...hooo! NOW, the laughter begins! In the practice, you have to take a vinyasa between forward bends on either leg (so for example Janu Sirsasana A with right leg bent, then one vinyasa before you go to the pose with left leg bent), & in my mind I was like, 'Homaigot! Teacher, you mad or what, why you do die me, noooooooo! Why you don't say do both sides then only vinyasaaa!'...LMAO! I did not expect to be doing vinyasas that many times!

That was the very first time I was a newbie in a new place, & not taking myself too seriously.

Asana practice can be empowering, yet it can also be a very humbling experience. I personally feel that the challenge in Ashtanga yoga is to accept the totality of yourself: your uniqueness & limitations - the latter being the more difficult to accept. Receiving adjustments & help from the teacher to go into a pose is all well & good, but at the same time we need to honour our bodies too - would it be too much to use a strap or towel to connect the hands in  Marichyasana? Or does it make more sense to have someone pull on your joints & soft tissues to 'help' you into the pose?

I really appreciate what Simon Borg-Olivier's idea about yoga. To him, yoga should get the blood is flowing freely throughout the body, whilst maintaining a normal heart rate. Therefore, if the limbs do not move naturally into a pose, if you need external assistance (in the form of another another person or even your own hand), if you are straining & exerting yourself into a pose, then yoga is not happening, & you may as well just call it 'exercise' instead of 'yoga'.

Dear friends, I'm not condemning any school of yoga. What I am trying to convey is that we need to practice humility & patience on the mat. Cannot bind the arms today - so what? Cannot do 238 chaturagas in a session - so what? Is it more worthwhile to risk your body for a moment's worth of satisfaction?

Me, I just laugh. Hahahahah... :P :P :P

I think sometimes it does annoy some teachers, but I try my best, & if after that I still can't do it, or it is too difficult for me, I ease off the pose a little & try not to laugh.

As Ashtanga founder, Shri K. Pattabhi Jois said, 'Practice, & all is coming.'

& as Deep once said, 'Be sincere, but not serious in your practice.'

Of course, there are times when seriousness has to come into play, but if things already are a certain way, then why put up a fight, why struggle unnecessarily?

To my beloved students, if you sometimes see me laughing in class, I am not laughing at you. I am laughing because I am remembering all the times when I could not do a pose. I am laughing because it makes me happy that you have allowed me to share this space in your yoga journey. I am laughing because I know you are trying your darnest best.

All the better if you start laughing on your own, or join me in laughter!

There is no 'should be' or 'must do' in class...if your mind & body are not up to it, then don't listen to anyone else, not even me.

No one else is responsible for you, except you.

So please come to class to practice sincerely! Bahahahahahah! :D :D :D

& also come to class to feel lengthening & stretchening of your body! Hahahahahah...LMAO!






Friday, November 6, 2015

Be Present With Those 'Around' You.



Is technology really a bad thing?

I know that many people see me liking & posting stuff on Facebook & Instagram throughout the day, & many wonder, 'Does she not have a life outside of social media?'...bahahahahah!

As with all things, I think it depends how you use technology/social media. Are you using it to learn more about the things you are interested in, to reach out to people, to share & grow?

I've had a very hard time discerning between having an 'actual life' & having an 'active social media life'. Yeah sure, there are always comics about children sitting hunched over their gadgets while a beautiful day goes on outdoors, but I have come to see that situations matter.

Now, one has to understand that social media is a way to connect to people. You can get in touch with someone on the other side of the globe with just a few taps on your phone screen. Amazing, no? You may find others who are on your same wavelength, something which you may not have been able to find in your immediate surroundings.

Information is always readily available, connections are always waiting to be built...only if we are open enough to them.

Things start going downhill when too much emphasis is placed on interaction through technology. When you'd rather talk with your friends through Facebook comments instead of across the table. Strange, isn't it; how two people can be sitting across each other yet choose to communicate through a tiny screen which sends signals to a satellite God-knows how far away which then sends the signal back to the other person's phone (who is sitting less than a meter away from the first person, hahahahahah!)...

However! I don't think it is wrong to want to spend time online with your friends & family who are living far away from you. It does not mean that one is sacrificing his/her life that is happening before their eyes, just because they choose to give a part of their day to another person through technology.

I have many friends & dear ones who live miles away. But we still keep in touch with each other, even if not regularly but once in a while.

Why? Why does this happen? One can easily say that we should live in the moment, we should focus on those around us, & all sorts of other philosophical quotes.

But my question to you is: How much do you value this other person? What do they bring to your life that no one else around you can?

You see, dear friends; times have changed. It is not like back in the days of Buddha when your brother had to take 5 weeks to go to the nearest village & you are sitting beside the window looking out into the distance every day, waiting for him to come home...hahahahah...

The very definition of 'those around you' has changed with the revolution of technology.

You can still go around your daily life, just devoting maybe 5, 10 minutes or however much you want to, in communication with your brother who is away from home.

I don't think that wanting to connect to your nearest & dearest is a crime.

Even if it's not your brother, say, your best friend has moved across the country. People will definitely tell you to find a new best friend, one with whom you can actually 'do things' together with.

What if you've searched, & you couldn't find another like them? Does that still make it wrong to reach out to them through technology? Does that mean you should still continue searching, knowing that this person who totally gets you is just right there 'in front' of you (so to say).

Again, don't take my word for it. Priorities. Priorities weigh heavily in this matter, & everybody's priorities are different. It is impossible to find someone whose priorities match ours 110% all the time.

'Those around you' - the definition of this has changed, but the phrase 'be present' has not. Another factor that is important is how present are you when you are using or not using your gadgets. I found this on Facebook a few days ago:

When you are washing the dishes, washing the dishes must be the most important thing in your life. Just as when you are drinking tea, drinking tea must be the most important thing in your life. Drink your tea slowly & reverently, as if it is the axis on which the whole world revolves - slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future. Live the actual moment. Only this actual moment is Life.

Similarly, when you choose to devote a piece of your day to someone, give that piece fully. Instead, we are hesitant when cutting the cake, so that the piece is bigger on top & tapers down towards the bottom, because whilst cutting we are continuously second-guessing ourselves, 'No, I'm giving too much, I should cut down a bit', & so instead of cutting straight down, the knife cuts inward a bit; & then when handing the piece of cake over, again second-guessing, & the piece is crumbling to the ground slowly but surely; & what is left when it actually reaches the hands of the other? Only bits & pieces, tiny crumbs.

So much wasted in doubt & over-thinking.

What & who is important to you, right in this moment of time. Everything else is secondary. To hell with the idea that gadgets take you away from 'real life', that gadgets are a distraction, that the Internet is a waste of time! Tell me, what do you do with a book? You read it, don't you? What do you do when you surf the Internet? You can also read, can't you? The only difference is the reading material you choose. The message can be the same, but the medium different.

Of course, you can't have a proper relationship or build a family with someone who lives miles away from you; but that is another story. What I am trying to highlight here is that sometimes we can get techno-phobia. We are so afraid of being sucked into technology & letting life pass us by.

I say, everything in moderation. 'Be present with those around you'. Hahahahahahah!

Coincidentally, a few days ago, teen model Essena O'Neill came out with a lengthy video  (which is no longer available on YouTube because she has deleted her account) on why she is quitting social media: AND! even more recently, Rachel Brathen's TEDxAruba talk was posted on YouTube! So much excitement for one week! So next post will be my opinion on these two very opposing perspectives of social media! Stay tuned!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Celebrate Your Mortality!



A friend passed away over the weekend. He was only 39YO. He was found motionless in the bathroom of his rented unit.

It came as quite a shock, especially because two weeks before that, he had insisted that his family make the trip down to Singapore to celebrate his birthday with him.

It is easy to philosophize & talk about impermanence, de-attachment etc when we are not directly involved in a situation. The real test of our state of mind & beliefs is when things happen to us. Are we able to emotionally de-attach & look at the situation as it is?

Our time as human beings on this earth is limited. Essentially we are all just ships passing in the night. Even when we say 'forever', what does that really mean? 'Forever' is a term that is under-rated in our limited understanding.

Sometimes, I wonder - what are we actually mourning for? Are what we mourning for that person, or for ourselves? Are we sad because of a situation that we ourselves created in our minds?

When we remove our feelings from the equation - what is left?

I've come to realize that, instead of grieving, we should also celebrate a person's life. Yes, celebration can happen even after a person's passing! If you look at our time as human beings as just another level in a video game, you'll get what I mean.

Who ever said that we humans are immortal? We all have it in the backs of our minds that sooner or later, we will have to leave this body & this earth. Whether we return in another form is another matter lah... :P

So yeah, to me, a person's passing can be viewed as a 'level up'. This person has done what he has needed to do, learned what he has needed to learn, & experienced what he has needed to experience in this lifetime. He is ready to move on to other things. Is this not cause for celebration? Would it not be boring if we were all immortal? I mean, it is an interesting concept, but...really? If we all knew that we could eat & do whatever the hell we wanted to, if we knew that we could procrastinate on & on because time will never run out...we won't ever get anything done, there would be no reason to get excited when we wake up every morning!

When we put aside our own feelings, the what-ifs & should-haves - what if I had done this, I should have done that...& look past our own attachments towards this person...what is left?

Mostly we get upset because we miss them. Of course there will be an empty space where they once were. It may take a long time for that space to be filled again. Heck, there are chances that nothing else can replace that empty space. But there are many many things out there to be happy for. This may sound cheesy, but be happy that the both of you crossed paths, even for a short moment in time.

It is always an honour to cross paths with people. Indeed, with humans being gregarious beings, interacting with people is an inevitable thing in life. Time is all we really have to give, so it was a blessing when people cross paths. Be grateful for what you have learned from this person, for the experiences you both shared. These are unique to the both of you.

Deep always says, 'You never know, this may be the last dance!', & I believe that too. People always say that it is dangerous to work with horses. I think so too. But the truth of the matter is, you don't know when your time will be up. Your time can end just at any moment, in the blink of an eye.

& please, take care of each other. Even the ones who seem to be doing great all the time. Because sometimes those are the most 'dangerous' people. They have learnt to hide their sadness & troubles so well that we are sometimes incapable of detecting their true feelings.

Life is too damn short & unpredictable. Do whatever the hell you want to, while you still have time. There is no time for rubbish thoughts & actions. Everything can change in a blink of an eye. Cherish those who matter to you, treat everyone & everything with respect. Be aware of your mortality. Your
time as a human being is so limited, make the best of it.

I was not very close to my friend who passed on, if it came down to it I would regard us as just acquaintances. There was a time when I regularly tumpang-ed his car up & down the country to the races. He was a genuinely nice guy, very humble & always with a smile on his face regardless of his situation. Even his jokes & sarcasm, although could be considered offensive & lewd to some, were never said with ulterior motives, bad intentions or anything other than just a pure sharing of laughter.


You always used to sing this song in your own made-up language, because you didn't know the lyrics; hahahahah!

Thank you. See you on the other side.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Are You Holding Yourself Back?

This morning I woke up to the quote:

An average American spends $15 a day eating out. That's $450 a month. Include drinks about $600 - $750 a month.
In two months you can buy a ticket anywhere in the world.
You can afford to travel.
You're just too lazy to cook.

Another great read:


Now I'm not saying that only Americans are guilty of this. This can happen to anyone, anywhere in the world where commercialism exists. It applies to all of us, & not only on food but also clothes, shoes, etc. etc. It's never about not having enough money - it's a matter of priorities. A little amounts to a lot. If you want something, you'll have to give up something else, but you won't consider it a sacrifice. When it comes to success, there is no such thing as sacrifice. You simply do what is needed to make your dreams come true.

You want that dress from H&M?
Walking round the mall, want a juice?
Buying flowers every week to brighten up your room? (Ooops, guilty! Bahahahah!)

Hell yeah, by all means, do whatever your heart desires. But just bear in mind that each expenditure sets you back *that much further* from that bigger dream you have in life.

Please, dear reader, upon reading the above statement, do not create the aversion towards spending on the little things in life. Sometimes you really have to let loose & succumb to instant gratification.

The great Tao of life:

'You are free to choose what you want to do - but you are not free of the consequences of your actions'. But at the same time, 'you only live once' & 'there is no future, no past, only Now'. LMAO!

I think the article in the link says it all:


It isn't uncommon for you to struggle against the internal tide that is trying to turn deep within you in order that you can maintain the illusion of 'knowing what you are doing', feeling or being seen to be 'taking charge' or 'in control'.

And from this place of deep inner resistance and fear, you latch rigidly on to what seems to be perfectly legitimate justifications that you should continue doing whatever it is you've already been doing.


This can sound like any one of all of the following:
  • I can't afford it right now.
  • I don't have the time.
  • It would be best for me to revisit this opportunity next year.
  • My kids are too little.
  • My parents, partner, or spouse wouldn't approve.
  • After x or y happens, it will be a much better time.
  • I feel like I need to see what I've got on my own.
  • I will come up against too much resistance, judgement, and even rejection if I do.


Any of these sound familiar?

You see, my dear friends...fear manifests itself in many forms. It is one thing to know what you want & what you love in life. But it is another thing to know if you are sabotaging yourself.

We are all capable of great things, & we all deserve to have the things that we deem best for ourselves. But we all come with our own bullshit. Intense past experiences are very much capable of moulding fear into us. & we can go on denying as much as we want to, or polish it over with other distractions; the truth of the matter is that it will never go away if we do not have the guts to look at our fear in the eyeballs.

It is uber easy to be brave from a distance. It is easy to say, 'I want to be the CEO of a company', 'I want to have a fulfilling relationship', 'If I were this sort of person, in this sort of situation, I would do this this this', 'I want to do x, y, z'. It's all the same thing, just different objects of desire. To live in imagination & yearning is often times easier than actually living it.

We go on creating excuses, 'I want to do x, but...*insert 'legit' reason here*'. We keep feeding ourselves the same old story as to why we can't live the way we want to, all along failing to realize that sometimes we are blocking our own path!

Sometimes those excuses can also manifest in the form of laziness, procrastination - I'll do it tomorrow. Yep, guilty as charged! Bahahahahahah!

Even when the perfect opportunity is right in front of us, just like a gift being handed over; we still retract our hands & again the same excuses which all amount to the fear of actually living out one's dreams.

Dafuq? Why would living one's dreams be scary???

Well for starters, it is not called a dream for nothing. Usually a dream is something or some-way that is completely different from what you are experiencing now. It is something out of your grasp, a brand new world so to say. Bottom line: it is beyond your comfort zone.

To go beyond one's comfort zone involves a lot of discomfort (no joke, Captain Obvious!).

Which also means a lot of risk.

Risk means there is a potential for failure.

Failure means loss (material or emotional).

Why would this fear of loss weigh so heavily on our minds?

First of all in today's society we've been conditioned to think that losing is a bad thing. Even in discussion there has to be a win-win situation, hahahahah...

Secondly, the more personal one - past experiences. When I say past experiences, I mean past experiences in which similar opportunities were taken up, but eventually did not work out the way we wanted them to; or, events/second hand experiences that indirectly affect our feelings towards certain things.

Dafuq is this woman talking about!

To simplify things, imagine a situation where you've had the dream of starting your own business. Suddenly, someone comes along & offers to help you to start up your company. But as a child, you witnessed your father's own company crumble to the ground, & how this subsequently affected your familial life.

Fear. It is a very paralyzing emotion. Not always one which is easy to overcome.

To get to the root of our fear, we need to identify the reason(s) & cause(s) behind them. Again, dig down deep. Remove those goddamn roots that have been & are blocking you from living the life you want.

Again - awareness. Never lose the awareness. Question. Question everything, even yourself. In fact, most importantly, yourself.

It is never about external situations or influences. It is what goes on inside that matters.

Even if your business or relationship flops, at least learn something from it, so that you can make better & more conscious choices in the future.

Why did I do the things I did?
What could I have done differently?
What can I do to change my thought & behavioural patterns?

See how this piece went from a seemingly superficial matter to a deeper one?
Things are not always as they seem, my loves. Things are not always as they seem. ;)

Friday, October 16, 2015

The Answers Are Within, Do Not Look Without.

There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter & bleed.
- Ernest Hemingway -

LMAO so true!

It's not a matter of wanting to sound God-like & self-righteous. It's not even about wanting to help others. I used to have that mindset about my writing, even now sometimes. But when I further question this feeling, not only about writing, but also teaching, conversing, etc., I find that, nowadays it isn't so much about the wanting to help others anymore.

I write for the pure joy of it. Helping others is just a by-product. At the risk of sounding mean, it doesn't concern me what you do with the information you gather from here. If you resonate with it, & find my personal experiences beneficial towards your life & growth, then good on you; if not, then what am I to do about it?

During one of the philosophy lectures, it was said that in making it our main objective to help others, we are indirectly building up our ego. Now I'm not saying all the Mother Theresas in the world are egoists. No - again it is a very personal matter. Question, always question everything, including your own thoughts & motives. Dig down to the very bottom of everything. Are you doing it for your own enjoyment, regardless of outcome; or are you doing it for the applause? Hahahahah sorry Lady Gaga, ter-copyright kejap! :P :P :P

Something that needs doing, deep within you, requires no outside validation, no external reward - these are secondary compared to the joy that you get from doing what you love best.

& you know you have found something you truly love doing, when the opinions of others do not faze you. If someone says something about your passion that disturbs you, again, question - why am I feeling this way? What has this person's comments reflected on my own feelings about myself & the things I do?

If someone gets worked up because of your actions, & you start getting worked up as well - ask! Not the other person, but yourself! Ask yourself, what is it about this person's feelings towards my actions that make me feel disturbed? Am I truly at peace with my actions & choices?

Another story. This time from Deep.

I was walking & was approached by this man who started berating me & putting down the name of my master, Osho: 'Why do you follow him, he is a playboy, he does this, that, this that...' & on & on. After the man finished, I just looked at him, laughed & said, 'Yes, he is a playboy & this & that...so what? I just love him!'

Bahahahahahah...you get what I'm trying to say, dear readers?

When you are certain of your truth, nothing can disturb you. Even if it initially does, wait for a while, question yourself, repeat process if necessary & then see how you feel. Even if it takes hours or days, do it. Question. It is so important to get down to the root of things. Everything is reflecting something back about yourself. It is never always an easy process. It can be the toughest thing to do. But the results will be so worth it.

Another beautiful thing about this process is that you don't make an enemy of the person whose thoughts & opinions differ from yours. You respect that the other person is merely acting out of their own level of consciousness/awareness, as well as their own unique individual collective experiences. & who is to say who is right or wrong?

I would break my back for the ones I love...
But how many would be willing to push the wheelchair for me after?

I came across this quote on Facebook a few minutes ago & it quite tickled me, because I am prone to wallow in self-pity & think such thoughts...hahahahah...but that again is just the ego at work!

It is not anyone's job to help anybody. It is not even anyone's obligation to 'push your wheelchair' for you after. You are responsible for your own goddamn back & well-being. Even if nobody pushes your wheelchair, are you just going to sit there & rot to death, or use your own arms to get yourself moving?

Better yet, get a motorized wheelchair & travel the world! Woohooo!!!

On the outside, a yogi looks like he/she is just sitting there doing nothing. Even in their actions & interactions, it seems like everything is zip-a-dee-doo-dah for them. I feel like this is possible, but only after a lot of practice. Practice in building awareness & fully accepting oneself. After a while, this process of questioning happens in a mere moment. You get a knack for it. It's okey if initially you are not able to answer your own questions, the very first thing that is needed is the awareness. If you do not know that there is a mango seed planted in your garden, would you water it daily?

On the surface, there seems to be nothing going on. But internally, the struggle can be real. If you are at peace with yourself, you can be at peace with others.

& just to add one more thing to all this mindfuckery - it's okey to be not okey. If all this questioning gets you exasperated, take rest. Rumi had to spin for 3 days straight without stopping, Buddha sat under that tree for 40 days; sometimes great things take time! Hahahahahah! :D :D :D

So don't be discouraged. The answers are always within you.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

I Am Who I Am, Not Who You Want Me To Be.

Dear brothers & sisters. Once again I would like to ask of you all - please don't look at me as an enlightened being or healer or what-not.

I don't possess any supernatural powers; so don't put me on a pedestal, no matter how low or high that pedestal is.

Don't harbour any pre-conceptions about me. Just like everybody else, I bleed when cut. Just unlike everybody else, I get diarrhoea when I drink coffee, & I get motion sickness when travelling. I excel in certain areas of life, & of course I don't do well at all in other areas.

I am a student of life, just like anyone else. I just want to share my experiences, be it through social media platforms or daily interactions. I don't want anybody to look up to me or even look at me through rose-coloured glasses.

I don't need anybody looking up to me or looking at me through rose-coloured glasses.

Because at the end of the day, what that does is it fucks up our connectivity. It just plain fucks everything up when after a while you realize that I don't (& most probably can't!) live up to the standard that you have created in your mind for me.

I have my own life, my own share of issues. I have my good days & bad days, & I'm not one who easily puts on masks to hide my truth, especially in front of my nearest & dearest.

I'm not perfect & I don't intend to be.

The cure for infatuation: get to know them better.
- Alain de Botton -

One of the laws of life - the closer you get to someone, the clearer you see them for what they are (which also is a reflection of yourself but that's beside the point here).

So please, don't stand from afar & build up notions about me or tell yourself fairy tales about who & what I am, because when you come closer, you will be sorely disappointed.

In fact, I'd rather you throw me into the mud. Then I will always exceed your expectations of me, easy peasy. Which makes things all the better for everybody.


Would you?


I know it would be outrageous,
To come on all courageous,
& offer you my hand,
To pull you up onto dry land,
When all I got is sinking sand.
The tricky word, the time it buys,
I'm sick of hearing my own lies.
& love's a raven when it flies.

See you on the other side.

From tomorrow onwards, new posts will be published every Friday (Malaysian time). Namaste.

Monday, October 12, 2015

The Eureka Evolution!

I have been an avid follower of this motivational speaker on social media for about more than a year now, but somehow their videos just slipped off my radar for the past few months. I just continued seeing the images they posted, along with whatever little bits of writings they would include with them.

Today one of their videos appeared in my Facebook news feed, & I thought, hey let me have a look at what this person has to say about things, instead of just listening to Sadhguru, Mooji & what-not all the time. I think it is logical to always question everything, even what a teacher says. To go searching for your own truth, & not just having blind faith.

& the very second that person started talking, I was like, 'Hooomaigottt!!! *horror face*'! It was such a mindfuck moment! Their energy & aura was totally different to what I remembered it to be, it really quite shocked me! Bahahahahah!

The message was good, what they spoke about still resonated with me. But the way it was being delivered. Something about the person itself just didn't feel right to me.

I'm not sure if I'm really turning out to be a Megalomaniac. I sincerely hope not. I appreciate that everybody has their own individual paths & truths, & what is right for me isn't necessarily right for the next person. I hope we all get what we want out of life, & have no regrets on our deathbeds.

& the funny thing is, there were tiny tiny clues that this person inadvertently gave that helped me understand the reason & cause behind everything. But what to do?

Whooooooooa...it can be a heckuva trip when you don't set any expectations on someone - then you see them for who & what they truly are. Images can only be reflected on still water, not moving water. The stiller the water, the more accurate the reflection.

& every moment matters. It was just a few seconds, yet everything happened so quickly & clearly. Every time we have expectations & ideas about people or things, we are already setting an image of them in our minds, which may affect the reality of things.

I still appreciate this person's intentions, but...wow, just...wow. This kind of disturbs me but at the same time it has shown me how I have evolved. Now when I saw evolve, or even grow, it doesn't necessarily mean I am now better than this person. No, in my books evolution is just a fancy word for change. Bahahahahah..!

I had already written another piece but that will be posted later in the week. Enjoy, errrbodeh! :D

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Dance. Sing. Love Yourself. Celebrate Yourself.



So much to write, so little time! The trouble with being a writer is, there are times when the creative juices are running wild like an unbridled mustang, but there are other times when that damn mustang just won't go forward because he spotted an extra blade of grass on the trail! Horse people, you know what I mean! :P

The minute I feel passionate about a topic, I just have to get it out of my system, otherwise it simply escapes me. & I'm not sure if it's a good or bad thing that my writing is so dependent on my passion towards something. If I am even the slightest bit indifferent about it, I find it very difficult to write about it.

So there were quite a few which escaped me today. But I thought I'd take some time to write about one which I have been feeling very strongly about the past few days.

Although I attended a 10 day Vipassana course earlier this year, I never fully appreciated the practical aspect of the technique. I acknowledged that it is a very high form of meditation, & the most direct, straightforward way to enlightenment, or rather, towards the realization of the impermanence of everything. But it was always too difficult for me. I would either fall asleep in my room or allow my mind to wander off in the meditation hall. 'Bad meditator! *slap on the wrist!*' Bahahahahah!

Only during these past few weeks have I come to fully realize just how much of information that was passed onto me during those 10 days had subconsciouly sunk into me.

Not sure if I've mentioned it before or not, but there was a time in my life where I forgot myself - I allowed the actions of others to control my thoughts & feelings. I allowed myself to be beaten down to the ground, to the extent that even after months of cutting off ties with that person, I couldn't really take a compliment while believing it deep in my heart, much less look at myself in the mirror for more than a few seconds.

Many of you would have read/heard this story many times. I don't mean to dwell upon this period of time. My point is to let others who are going through tough times know that there is a way out & that they are not alone in their struggle.

But that's besides the topic.

Impermanence.

To realize that the very nature of life is based on the fact that everything is impermanent - every second, each cell in your body is changing without you even realizing it - & you want to get back one particular moment that happened x months ago??? Is that pure madness or what?

Whether I like it or not, impermanence is being shoved in my face, sometimes violently. The last time I was this shaken, I completely lost it. There were moments when I did not want to live anymore. Some people turn to external substances to escape from reality. Me, I turned to alcohol to avoid going numb. Somehow, to have some sort of feeling within me, even if it was negative, was much more preferable than not feeling anything.

It was a difficult time. Yet I learned so much from it.

& so it is now.

As Osho said, 'You create your problems.' Even that which we consider to be a problem at that time, is actually not a problem; it is an experience which is teaching & benefiting us.

To many, the yogi is a crazy little fella - he does whatever the hell he feels like doing, however he feels like doing it. The even crazier thing about the bugger is, he sometimes willingly puts himself in situations which test his inner state.

Not that I'm that type of yogi yet, hahahahahah but I am happy to say that I have built up enough awareness to pull myself out of my own shithole. Although I speak about things in a light manner, things are not always all fun & games. There are times when I question, curse & get upset. The only difference between now & then is that I can get out of that shithole much faster.

You only have one life - so many beautiful things around you; so many miracles happening without you needing to do anything; so many things you have, that someone else would kill for; so many blessings which someone else has never even imagined of even wishing for; & you want to get upset & stay in your shithole because of something someone said/did to you? Because of something which was beyond your control happened? You going to give up on enjoying all these other things just because of one shitty thing that happened? :P :P :P

When I think back on my past self, sometimes I tear up, but mostly I laugh. :P

What use is there in being upset about something that I have no control over? No matter how much I want things to go according to my liking, sometimes it will never happen! & the ironic thing is, who knows what the hell will happen in the future? Just because I don't get what I want now, doesn't mean I won't get it in the future! & even if I don't get it in the future, what can I do about it now? Hahahahah!

All there is, is Now.


No use lamenting for the past, whether it be things that could have done differently, or situations where a stroke of bad luck changed everything.

But there is a catch to this though. Sometimes people hide behind philosophies (Ooops, guilty as charged, bahahahah!).

To recognize the truth of impermanence does not remove one's obligation from fully living his/her truth. It does not mean that one can just relax 110%. Even though people often liken surrendering to the universe with being a baby in the womb; if we want to get really literal about the whole thing, just bear in mind that that the cells in that baby's body had to keep working in order for him to grow. He had to have the soul of a fighter to want to continue living, even though he was fully protected, fully provided for. Get the idea? Even a jellyfish is fully surrendered to the motions of the ocean, yet there is, to the best of its capability, that desire to live to its fullest potential as a jellyfish! Hahahahahah dafuq, I just came up with that! :P

So one cannot just 'lepas tangan' (a Malay slang for relieving oneself of responsibility), especially when it concerns things that truly matter to you. You still do your best at every moment. You still put in time & effort, because you enjoy it, because you just have to, regardless of what the future has in store.

My latest source of information who I really resonate with is Sadhguru, & I really appreciate what he says in this clip:


There is no such thing as sacrifice, not when you know what your priorities are. It would be masochistic to think, 'Woe is me, I had to sacrifice this because I wanted that'.

& simply because I myself have always wonderehed about the other end of the spectrum:


Bahahahahah..!

Meeting with the Baul people last month really helped deepen my understanding of being present & enjoying each & every moment. These people live veeery simple lives. They sing when they want to sing, even at the dinner table & halfway through their meal, if they feel like getting up & singing, by Jove they goddamn will! To them, there is nothing more important than doing what your heart tells you to. Everything is in God's hands, just enjoy the moment - Hari Bol! Hahahahahah!

This is what Tantra Yoga is about - appreciating & enjoying everything at every moment. Even the 'bad'. Being in love with everything. Now I truly understand what Rumi meant when he wrote:

Dance, when you're broken open. Dance, if you've torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you're perfectly free.

You have to build up the awareness, that consciousness in you that realizes that all this is your own choosing. Even the parts which you think you did not choose, enjoy them! Enjoy the full spectrum of what this Earthly life has to offer you! Enjoy your laughter! Enjoy your sorrows! When you get angry, make sure you get well & angry, when you laugh, make you laugh hard - who knows when any of these moments will come again???

In the next minute, your life as you know it may end - are you still going to hold on to the past?

Or, would you rather celebrate your life? Do your best in the things that really matter to you, even if the results are not immediately visible?

There is a song which Guruji wrote, which more or less revolves around the words 'The bliss is in the journey'. It's a very lovely song, I used to sing along, though I'm not sure of the proper pronunciation of the words. Hahahahah! Tembak aje lah! When that song was played during our last musical gathering, even Maa teared up. Indeed, it is sometimes very difficult to accept the fact that everything changes; we always want to cling on to the good times.

It's been exactly a week since I've been back in KL, & I've only today started taking active action on beginning my Tantric journey (Don't get nasty thoughts, you bastards! Hahahahah!) - sorting things to sell or give away so that I can first of all make more space for new things (Or even, nothing! I still hope to go minimalist one day!), & secondly so that I can create my own little sacred space. If I can't stay in India, India will damn well stay with me!

At the moment I'm practising Tantra by loving myself. You always hear relationship & motivational speakers saying, 'Date yourself!', well that is the basis of all yoga, especially Tantra. Every movement, every thought, every action or inaction, is done in complete love & devotion. & who is more deserving of your love than you?

Bring on the candles & flowers! I hope to make it big enough in life to one day afford candles that don't emit harmful shiz though! :P :P :P

Random search on YouTube brought me to this, which is the song of the moment:

Kundalini Mantra - Adi Shakti

Going to read my Tantra book now. Goodnight peoples. <3 <3 <3




Saturday, October 10, 2015

What Is Yoga To You?

Sadhguru on The Dangers Of Improper Yoga.

I've never really fully paid attention to this crazy-looking person, but the past few days he's really come to the forefront! & this video in particular really resonates with me!

Dear brothers & sisters, I know I may sometimes come across as a naggy woman, but believe me I do not want to take even the slightest risk of people getting injured in my classes. No, not on my watch.

I have had knee pain on my left leg since God-knows-when, I started noticing it a few years ago, way before I started yoga - nothing during movement, instead when I sit in cramped spaces like in public transport, that knee gets a bit funny. & even till now, if I get too carried away with certain dance movements, or lose awareness of my leg alignments, the knee will definitely cry out in rebellion again, hahahahah!

So forgive me when I say, 'press the outer edge of your back foot firm onto the ground' for the 250th time in the hour! I know what it is like to have a chronic injury, & I would not wish it on anyone.

Similarly, I always go on about the importance of practising proper yoga. Alignment, alignment, alignment. Although recently I've been exposed to traditional hatha yoga as taught by Gurumukh-ji, where how your body feels is more important than alignment, I still believe that importance should be more on right alignment. The reason being sometimes we don't even know what is good for ourselves (bahahahah getting philosophical again!) - sometimes we are only comfortable doing things a certain way because that's how we've always been doing it - & the way in which we are accustomed to doing it may not always be the best way to go about it!

A good example that Deep used to give in class: if you were to pick up a bucket of water with your right hand, do you walk up to the bucket, stand next to it, mentally telling yourself while going for the bucket, 'Tadasana! Bend knees! Lengthen spine! Extend right arm! No hyper-extension of elbow! Grab bucket! Use leg & core muscles! Straighten legs!', or do you merely go & pick up the bloody bucket however you damn well wish to??? Hahahahahah!

But aha, now the catch! If when you pick up the bucket, your back is rounded, your legs straight, & you are using your back muscles; don't be surprised if you begin to develop back aches!

You see what I'm trying to say? It is well & good to be natural, to be organic, but at the same time we need to maintain awareness on how we are doing things.

But enough of physical concerns. Let's talk about the effects of yoga on our energetic body.

I've always been going on & on (again, hahahahah!) about how the type of exercise you do affects your energetic body. In all types of physical exercise, but especially when it comes to yoga, we need to make sure that we are doing the poses in the right way, in the right amount. Balance is key to everything, & so it is with asana. This is also one of the reasons most of my classes don't incorporate fancy asana. Yang practices must be balanced with equal proportions of yin, & vice versa. Always maintain awareness of how your physical activities are affecting your energetic body. How has it affected you & how you relate to the world? Is it benefiting you?

The aim of yoga asana is not to achieve acrobat status. It is a tool to bring us back to the present, to bring awareness back to ourselves, to look deeper within ourselves. That being said, it is only the fourth limb of yoga. Why did Patanjali put asana as the fourth out of eight steps towards Samadhi (Union)? Simple - because if you were having diarrhoea, would you be able to sit quietly on your yoga mat for even ten minutes? :P :P :P

A healthy body is a vital component towards meditation!

I acknowledge that there are so many yoga asanas for us to play around with, simply because different people have different physicalities. Some have more energy to burn, some less - this is a fact of life. I can't run without feeling like a fish out of water after the first one minute, but there was this one time Gobuyan & I were having a conversation over the phone & after about a minute I hear his footsteps on the other side & I'm like, 'Fuck me, you running ah??? How the hell do you do that???' Bahahahahah! That being said, there's no point forcing yourself to achieve fancy poses if your body is not ready or not meant to, or if it is negatively affecting your energetic body. Honour your body & your capabilities, do not try to live up to unrealistic ideals of how your body should or should not be.

I love what Sadhguru says, 'Normal means like this *fingers down*. Yoga means like this *fingers up*, for most people. To stand on your feet, that is not yoga. You must stand on your head, that is yoga!' Bahahahahahah!

Friday, October 9, 2015

This Life Is 100% Your Responsibility.




Don't have much time to write today because I have an early evening class, but like I always say, the urge is sometimes too much! Bahahahahah!

I used to enjoy the reaction people give me when I say I teach yoga. They either re-state what I said, 'you teach yoga!?!' or go like, 'wow!'...hahahahah! Talk about an ego-boost! Bahahahahah!

I've talked about this in my previous post, but I'm going to blab on about it again - I don't want to be put on that pedestal! Hahahahah really truly understand now what Deep was talking about...hahahahah! Mindfuck again! :P :P :P

I'm not some God-send, here to fix all your problems. I will share with you my experiences, by experiences I mean which philosophical, motivational, inspirational, yadda yadda yadda concepts as well as what action I myself took to get me through those situations. I can only do so much on my part, the rest is up to you.

I'm not a yoga goddess! I have my own set of faults & shortcomings, some of which could be even 'worse' than yours! As per previous post, I believe the healer - healed equation is a dynamic one. Until I achieve Mooji or Mother Theresa status, there will be times when I am the one in the gutter & need to be pulled out. Similarly, there is only so much you can do for me, the rest is up to me!

It is not my job to present a perfect image of my life to anyone, not in class nor out of class. It is my prerogative to be real. It is my choice to let people in on the real me, the human that I am, someone who experiences the highs & lows of life just as the next person. & to let people know that it is okey to allow yourself the space to go through the motions, instead of repressing them. Just because I teach yoga, it doesn't mean that I am automatically a saint, I am a practitioner just like anybody else, & some days I do well, some days I don't do well.

I'm starting to get fed up of reading articles etc on Spirit Science, Elephant Journal, etc etc. Sometimes these articles cause the mind to over-think too much. They do more harm than anything, even if the intention was good. & we all know what over-thinking does to us, bahahahahahah!

But I quite like this one. Regardless of whether it's bloody Mercury Retrograde or not, I think it is uber important to practice self-reflection, or in yogic terms Svadhyaya (self-study).

How does this situation make me feel? Why?

How did the things he/she say to me affect me? Why?

How? Why?

These are very important questions to ask ourselves. But first, we need to cultivate the awareness of our thoughts & emotions. Are we just letting our emotions sweep us off our feet, or are we able to watch them & evaluate before taking further action? The world is not how it is, it is as we see it, it merely triggers in us reactions & feelings.

I know this is not always easy. It's a very difficult matter in which running away from it can often look easier than facing it head-on. But have courage. It is for the best. Get to the root of the matter, don't just pull up the sprouts.

So forgive me, dear ones, if I have ever caused harm to you intentionally or unintentionally. I have my own BS to dig through, & my own battles to fight. Don't place me on a pedestal, for you will be sorely disappointed. I am what I am. Like the song says, 'when I'm fucked up that's the real me'.

This song pops to mind now:


I know it would be outrageous
To come on all courageous
& offer you my hand
To pull you up onto dry land
When all I got is sinking sand

I'm not God. I don't pretend to be. I don't intend to be. I am me.

Everyone is responsible for their own life. Today's the day - in this moment, you are alive & breathing. What more could you ask for? Sing, dance, celebrate! Who knows how long this will last! So many things to be grateful for, to enjoy, even sadness is something to be grateful for - you can experience sadness & be grateful while enjoying that sadness! LMAO it sounds strange doesn't it! Hahahahah! Much love & gratitude peoples, past few days I've somewhat lost the plot...heheheh...

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Sharing Is Caring.



Heyo peoples! Couldn't really find the perfect song, but this one is good enough I think! Today's topic is - sharing!

A conversation involves speaking & listening. It takes a minimum of two people to participate in conversation. If there is no balance between speaking & listening, either party would eventually get bored. Doesn't matter if one enjoys speaking more, or the other enjoys listening more; when we talk about balance, I am talking about the balance that exists between those two people. Because what is considered balanced for some, could be considered unbalanced for others. Once again there are no hard & fast rules.

But back to our main purpose of today's topic. Once the other has removed their garbage, what else is there to do? Is he/she open to receiving your ideas or thoughts about the matter? Or are they just happy that they've found someone to talk to, & they've actually known in their hearts all along what they had to do to remedy their situation?

You see, human beings are a very very strange specie! & I think I've mentioned this numerous times, hahahahah! Especially us ladies - sometimes we just need to express our emotions. Deep down inside, we know what needs doing. Me myself I sometimes feel bad for doing this, because to others, especially men, it seems as though I'm wallowing in self-pity & refusing to jump off the pity wagon. But I've come to accept this as my nature. I try not to do it often but sometimes it just happens - so what? I refuse to beat myself up for being who & what I  am, not anymore!

Sometimes though, I do need to hear the solutions spoken out loud to me. Or even new ideas that I've never ever thought of before. Like the mountain parable in the previous post, the function of communication is to share light. Communication connects us to one another, so that thoughts & ideas can be exchanged, & we can both move forward together. Without communication, nothing can be achieved.

Just one tiny thing though! The amount of electricity you deliver to your friend matters too! Too much & the light bulb might just blow up, too little & nothing will happen! So how you present your thoughts & ideas matters a whole lot too. Basically it is a matter of yin & yang. If the other is too enraged, or upset, obviously you can't raise your voice too, in hopes of making them shrink back into silent acceptance! This is what usually happens nowadays. People very rarely understand the need to keep quiet & listen, & provide gentle support.

The whole world has become manly, even the women. We are told to be go-getters, to be active achievers, everything has to be done now now now; people become control freaks, trying to control everything, even the feelings of others. Nobody really gives each other the space to grow & learn in their own time. Unsurety in another makes them anxious, maybe because they themselves do not know how to deal with their own unsureties (Is this even a legit word! Bahahahah!).

But that's besides the point.

Sharing.

My yoga teacher trainer, Deep, has always insisted that no one call him 'teacher'. & I could not understand this until earlier this year. I always called him Teacher Deep as a sign of respect. But he always said that he does not want to be called teacher because the word itself carries certain obligations & responsibilities. It is a burden to be regarded as a teacher. He just wants to be as he is, & all that goes on in the classroom is just a mere sharing between friends.

I slowly started to see his point of view & stopped calling him 'teacher'. At first it was weird but now being a yoga teacher myself I really see what he means by not wanting to be called 'teacher'! Hahahahahah!!! FML! :P :P :P

As he always says, when someone calls you 'teacher', they already have a certain image of you in their mind - you have to behave this way, not that; you have to do/say this, not that. & the higher the pedestal on which you place someone, the harder they fall! So if they see you doing something which is in their minds 'inappropriate', they start berating you. What a life to live, the life of a teacher!

I was thinking to myself, 'Oh my God, this person has passed on so much knowledge which has practically changed my life, & in return I'm putting this heavy burden on him???', bahahahahah do you see the madness of the whole situation, dear reader??? :P :P :P

When he gets up to his crazy shenanigans though, that comical voice inside my head still automatically goes, 'aiyoh, why my teacher like this ah? *shakes head*'...LMAO!

From then on I myself didn't want to be considered a teacher anymore either. To some it comes naturally, but to me no, I just want to live my life without having to worry about living up to anyone else's expectations.

I don't want to consider myself a healer either. It is more or less the same thing, & it creates an egotistical mindset when we think that we are the ones responsible for the healing of others. I feel that the healer-healed equation is always changing, it is a dynamic phenomena.

No, I'd like to think of my communication as a sharing rather than giving advice. Sometimes people take it the wrong way, but that's okey. I believe there is always a reason people cross paths, & I am just sharing what I know - if it helps them then it helps, if not then there's only so much I can do! I enjoy light philosophical banter & exchanges on views of life, especially when I get together with someone who challenges my beliefs. I may get a bit ruffled by this exchange but I enjoy it more than talk about fashion, the weather, & other shit. :P :P :P Even as an introvert I cannot deny the benefits of interaction between people. Those light bulb moments can be very addictive!

So yes, back to the topic - sharing. It doesn't mean you have to preach to the poor soul who has just bared his/her soul to you. I feel like it's often more than enough to just state your opinion/thoughts/feelings about the matter, while trying to convey the heart of your message, as best you can. It is up to them how to interpret it. & if they are open to discussing these ideas further, then by all means, do so!

Jnana Yoga - the yoga of enquiry. We all come together to discuss a certain subject. There is no right or wrong, we all come together, leaving ego & judgement at the door, to learn & share together. What is not clear to you, ask - & the other shall answer. Even if you don't agree with what the other has to say, let's discuss; we need not reach a consensus on the matter. Exchanging of knowledge to grow together. Often times what is discussed together doesn't really sink in until days or even months later, so there is no point really in striving to reach a consensus or finding out who is wrong or right! This is another one of the important things that Gurumukh-ji taught us. Just a pure sharing between friends.

Which is one of the reasons I gave up Instagram - it wasn't the right outlet for me with which to share my passions with. I am very fond of photography & all things artistic, but at the end of the day the medium that I am more comfortable with is the written word. & I was saying to Gobuyan about a week ago - most of the time it's not about wanting to help or share; instead it is something that deep within your heart you are bursting to do; you cannot hold it in anymore, you just do it regardless of the outcome. & so it is with my writing. I don't gain anything from this, other than the pure satisfaction & relief of having let off some steam (no nasty thoughts now!), although I am very sure something will pop up very soon!

Even then, I took two notebooks with me to Rishikesh, thinking to write about my experiences & thoughts every day, but I gave up after just about five pages, bahahahahahah...Michelle & Su Yen are going to kill me! I felt that writing on paper was slowing me down, I could not express as fast as I would like to. So much easier typing!

Truth be told, I became lazy to document my journey. :P :P :P I used to want to keep track of everything, especially photos - you know how people post 'before & after' photos of their asana progress on social media? & all sorts of fancy asana poses too! I tried to, but gave up after about two weeks, bahahahahah! For one, it was taking up too much of my time. Set up camera. Turn timer on. Do pose. Examine photo. Take another 230 photos. Choose one. Edit. Include smart ass caption. Post. Track number of likes. Dafuq! LMAO!

& I was initially afraid that I'd forget all the memories I'd created in Rishikesh. I wanted to write everything down, so that I could be able to re-live those memories in my writings. I wanted to hang on to each & every one of them. But I realized that that should not be the way. Gurumukh-ji said, once you eat your meal, you leave the plate. I may regret this one day, but meh, I'll still have the photos & when the rest of the group meet up we'll share our memories again & there'll be some things that I don't remember that they'll remember & we'll all have a good laugh!

Being in Rishikesh, having to socialize face to face & not having decent Internet access has defo brought out the writer's bug in me though! & it is sometimes tough to write because...I don't want to say, hahahahahahah...it's the great Tao of life that sometimes fucks me up, bahahahah! Those who understand it will understand my predicament! :P

I'm not here to be any Guru or Wise Woman - I once read this funny saying on Facebook which I really resonate with lately:

Just because I give a lot of advice doesn't mean I'm smarter than you - it just means I've done more stupid shit in my life!


Bahahahahah true that!

So please dear readers, don't think of me as a teacher or Smarty Pants. Enquiry is always the way to get to the bottom of things. Your opinions & views challenge my opinions & views, which in turn cause me to question my thoughts & beliefs. & if there is never any questioning to begin with, if I blindly go with what I have been taught since Day One, I would never be the person I am today. I would never grow or evolve. Jnana Yoga - I think I love it more than asana...ooops! :P :P :P

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.
The important thing is not to stop questioning.
-Albert Einstein -

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Listen To The Rhythm Of The Falling Rain...




We need people in our lives with whom we can be as open as possible. To have real conversations with people may seem like such a simple, obvious suggestion, but it involves courage & risk.
- Thomas Moore -



It is such a blessing when you find someone with whom you can be yourself completely. Often people only want you to show your good side, they are afraid of your demons. & I'm not saying that you should unleash your hell rats at free will, no, definitely not; you are hugely responsible for your own bloody emotional trauma & baggage (which are the main factors as to how you react & behave in situations), yet as a mere human I myself know how difficult it can be to get out of this sink-hole.

It's like you realize what you are doing, but the awareness, the watcher, is a tiny figure at the back of your mind; he/she cannot reel in the beasts that are galloping out at full speed.

I have found that often times people do not need their problems fixed. Sometimes the healing happens just in the form of listening. & man it can sometimes be bloody hard to just listen!

First of all it is important to have the mindset that the behaviour of others does not reflect who we truly are. If one chooses to use harsh words on you, or accuse you of things you have never done, it is merely a reflection of their state of mind, not your character. Not to say that you should go on receiving verbal abuse from everyone, hahahahah...I guess it depends on the individual. As an empath I've always struggled with this. Very quickly I can locate the point of trauma & reason for that particular behaviour. But this 'gift' very quickly becomes a curse when I use this reason as an excuse for the other's behaviour, & go on accepting what they offer me.

But hang on, recently I've come to realize that this is not always a curse. In fact, I've realized that this is what is known as 'compassion'. Only thing is that sometimes I become too attached to the process & the outcome. I do not have to be a martyr of sorts to benefit another. Just because I can see something, does not mean I have to do anything about it. It is not always my business to heal others at my own expense.

Sometimes, yes, but not all the time. I am only responsible for myself.

To be able to listen without judgement, whilst maintaining a neutral mindset, takes a lot of self-knowledge & awareness. That Bruce Lee quote comes to mind: 'be like water, my friend'. No matter how you karate chop or beat it with a stick, water remains as it is - it is not injured, nor broken, nor torn apart.

& sometimes just by listening, you are practising compassion. At least have some compassion for the speaker who was courageous enough to bare his/her heart to you; at the risk of sounding stupid, at the risk of being judged; he/she put their trust & faith in you. The least you can do is listen.

Even if that listening has to be in the form of shouting or harsh words, if you have enough compassion; that listening can be healing enough. To just allow the other to get rid of all his/her internal garbage, before we plant new & beautiful things. & to not be biased about this person after they have revealed their stories.

I feel honoured when people approach me with their stories, & when they allow me the space to tell mine. It is a very precious, sacred space, even if it exists for just a few moments in time.

To have somebody acknowledge & see the good & bad in you, yet still love & accept you just the same - what else could a girl ask for? It's never about money or materialistic items, it's all about the things that cannot be bought.

A very beautiful parable that I learnt in Rishikesh from our dear teacher Gurumukh-ji:

As we were travelling up the mountain in the van, I noticed the electrical cables in the distance. & I started to think - what amount of effort was needed to build those wires to connect each mountain so that there can be light everywhere! Similarly, we are all mountains, solitary beings. Just like how the electrical wires were put in place to connect the mountains, we need effort to connect to one another. & through this connection, no one is left in darkness.

& what about compassion? (Geez, sorry peeps, his stories are so oshem that I can't help retelling them every chance I get, hahahahahah!)

Say you & your friends are walking a dark pathway & you are holding a torch light. Your friend who walks in front of you cannot see where he/she is going, simply because their shadow is blocking the path. Similarly, your friend who is behind you cannot see either, because your shadow is now blocking their path! So you all have to walk together, so that the path is lit up in front of all of you. Therefore friendship is all about walking together, the person who is more advanced waits for the other who is behind, so that we can all move forward in unison. This is what friendship & compassion is all about. 

Hey, kind of like that phrase from Lilo & Stitch - 'ohana means family, & family means nobody gets left behind, or forgotten'. Bahahahahah!


Tomorrow: the next step - sharing.