by Bhavani Lorraine Nelson

The word yoga, for most of us, conjures up an image of a room full of people in intricate poses. That might be a valid picture, but it’s not the whole picture. In fact, hatha yoga (the yoga of asana, or postures) is only one of [...}

by Bhavani Lorraine Nelson

There’s nothing lovelier than a walk in the warm summer air, with green all around and the flowers blossoming. But there’s another kind of walking that can be equally delicious: walking meditation, an opportunity to slow down and luxuriate in the smallest detail of a process we usually take for granted. […]

by Bhavani Lorraine Nelson

If you were to ask someone on the street, “What is yoga?,” you’d probably get a description of hatha yoga, the yoga of asanas, or physical postures. But yoga is an immense field of study with a broad spectrum of practices, enabling us to explore the full potential of human development […]


Ommm. It’s often the first and last sound in your ears in a yoga class. But what does it mean? [...]

“When we sound om together, we’re aligning body/mind/spirit; we’re aligning with one another; we’re aligning with the universe because it’s the sound of the universe and we’re referencing something real,” says Bhavani Lorraine Nelson, who leads workshops around the world on the power of the voice and is the creator of the CD series Meditation Made Possible. “It’s a very grounding and peaceful sound. […]


As yoga becomes increasingly popular in the United States, the ancient practice of kirtan (KEER-tahn), or yogic chanting, is gaining interest. Bhavani Lorraine Nelson, who leads chanting and meditation workshops at Kripalu says, “The most important thing when chanting is to have an intention, perhaps a personal intention of what you want to let go of in your life…if not, chant for the world.” […]


In this edition of Ask the Expert, meditation teacher and senior Kripalu faculty member Bhavani Lorraine Nelson answers questions from readers like you.

My mind races when I sit. Can mantras help?

The reason I cover five or six different techniques in my Introduction to Meditation program is because not every type of meditation is effective for everyone. Some people thrive on simply sitting with the breath; for others, the breath is very ephemeral, so the mind has free rein to wander. Some concentration practices can be more engaging for the mind and help it to quiet down. Mantra is one of those—it can be helpful for people who find it difficult to sit simply with the breath.

Recent scientific research on mantra practice shows that it is very soothing to the nervous system because of the repetition. Setting an intention when repeating a mantra adds to the power of the practice. There are different mantras for different goals; practitioners can create a “family” of mantras to use at specific times and for specific purposes. It’s important, though, to have a primary mantra, just as you have a primary yoga practice. To find one, you might start with Thomas Ashley-Farrand’s book Healing Mantras. Choose a mantra that you’re drawn to and can imagine wanting to repeat often.

Is it “cheating” to visualize pretty patterns and concentrate on those, to stop “thinking”? [...]

Kripalu Turning Point Interview with Bhavani Lorraine Nelson

In this interview with Tresca Weinstein, Freelance writer and editor for numerous regional and national organizations and publications, Bhavani is asked to describe a "turning point" in her life and ... 

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  • Dec 22
    Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health,  Stockbridge
     

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Quote of the Week

Breathing in, I calm my body;
Breathing out, I smile;
Dwelling in the present moment
I know this is a wonderful moment.
- Thich Nhat Hanh, Peace is Every Step

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