My Favorite HELLiday!
I LOVE Halloween because it frees us all to reveal our inner everything. I don't need much permission to show off my inner goofball and this celebration of our inner and outer demons is a great time for me to be oh-so-goofy!
Above, I'm with my dear friend Peter McDowell at the best costume party I've ever been to, Beezlebub. The party was in Chicago's south side in a giant warehouse. GREAT TIME.
I love embracing and embodying my inner instincts and intentions. This is a yogic practice, after all. On Halloween, I can wear these intentions on my sleeve. My costume was a 3 eyed old timey boxer. My 3rd eye of AJNA CHAKRA - the 6th chakra of intuition - revealed! My TAPAS - self discipline - shown through as a determined boxer who will hang in there and fight to do what's right with determination and will power! My SHIVA, my masculine powerful side on my face and chest with all that intense hair. I love it!
I hope you had fun connecting to your inner self this Halloween, as well. Booooooo.
Do please read this in your browser to see the very pretty pictures! Thanks.
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Welcome to Mia Park's
Bright & Beautiful Newsletter
Communicating The Highest Good
October, I love you.
That plate is like the full cycle of the seasons. From egg to chicken to egg sandwhich. Chicago is having a second Indian Summer. And October waits patiently to settle into briskness. Always a good time for gratitude! Always a good time to occupy what you believe!
BOOK RELEASE PARTY! Chicago Cultural Center, Tuesday 10/25, 6:30-8:30PM. This FREE party stars MILT TRENIER! Celebrate with Chic-A-Go-Go producer, Jake Austen and friends at this fun event.
FREE HALLOWEEN PARTY! Saturday, 10/29, noon-3PM. The dance TV show I host throws another great party at Linconl Hall! Pumpkin' carving, dancing, costume contest & all. Booooooo.
COVERS FOR COVER III! Women rockers cover their fave band to provide cover for homeless women. This is such a fun freakin' show! Bands covered: Adam Ant. Pat Benetar. Blondie. The Buzzcocks. The B52's. The Ramones. Britney Spears. AWESOME GOODNESS. Make sure to come.
Chicago School of Thai Massage Go to Thailand in 2012!
I'm so excited to share my yoga teacher's new book with you. Read about it here and get ready for positive and real change.
The cARTwheel Initiative aims to bring the therapeutic and transformative power of the arts to children living in the aftermath of conflict and disaster in order to support them in healing, comprehension, acceptance and transcendence.
The F Word:Bono, George Clooney, Jessica Alba, Idris Elba and more unite behind ONE's new campaign to help focus the world's attention again on the famine and food crisis in the Horn of Africa.
And, as always...
I frikkin' dig Groupons. Lookie here.
Half price theater and spa tickets for everywhere found here.
Micro-lend to hard working folks here. MiaParkYoga.com
Yoga and ParaYoga®
Photo by Mitchell Manz It's a great time to dedicate yourself to a practice. Even if it's sitting quietly with your eyes closed for 5 minutes a day. Commit to this. Generate thetapas (will power, not Spanish cuisine) to practice every day. YOUR CHALLENGE: Practice every day for a week, even if it's short, and email me to tell me how you feel. Deal? Ready? Go!
MiaParkYoga.com hosts my regular-ish yoga blog. Check it.
at Collaboraction: Room 300
1575 N Milwaukee Ave
Flat Iron Building in Chicago, IL
the come-as-you-are basic yoga class
I teach private yoga classes.Go deeper with your personal yoga practice physically, energetically, and mentally. I offer mindful private yoga instruction to individuals and groups. You'll receive a custom catered practice that will benefit you greatly. Group discounts and gift certificates available. Email me for details.
My public yoga classes:
Some Sundays, 11AM-Noon
@ Flat Iron Building
@ Flat Iron Building
@ Moksha Yoga
I also teach at LPAC, LVAC, WAC, Akal Yoga and to private clients. My full teaching schedule ishere. Be my guest to any of my gym classes. Email me.
I co-teach this workshop with the rockin' Janet Walkoe on November 20th. This is a class for more experienced practictioners. Be prepared to meditate longer and be physically challendged, Autmn style. You'll love it!
Janet and Mia's
Autumn Fire Practice
Moksha Yoga Center
11/20/11, Chicago, IL
I'm teaching a Winter Workshop in December in Buffalo Grove, IL !
I'm proud to be a certified ParaYoga Level I teacher. This is the culmination of studying with tantric teacher Rod Stryker for six years. Friend ParaYoga onFacebook.
With Mario Van Peeples, who directed two episodes of BOSS
Watch all of episode 1 here and look for yours truly around 12:30. This is an INCREDIBLE show. I'm so proud to be a part of it. This guy, Rotimi, is a rising star. Keep your eyes out for him.
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“all journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.”
– martin buber
Autumn, Not Fall
I am SO busy! Social media work. Practicing my yoga. Organizing a rock & roll benefit for homeless women in November & producing a play in May. WOAH. I have so many projects to work on...but I refuse to stress.
I'm going to enjoy Autumn this weekend and get away to Michigan. I'm going to bask in the colors and be by the lake, by the water, by more prana. One way to develop prana is to be around nature, to slow down and soak in Mother Nature's offerings, and to feel a linking to the elements of which we are composed.
I'm not going to FALL, I'm going to Autumn it up!
The Poetry of Yoga
This is a GREAT interview with my main yoga man, Rod Stryker, the mighty Sianna Sherman and more. It's nice to hear yoga teachers read their poetry.
Day 7: Cleansing the Cleanse!
Today is the last day of my Autumn Cleanse, inspired by Yoga Journal. The toughest part was day 5. I REALLY wanted gelato. I live around the corner from Black Dog Gelato which makes the BEST gelato in Chicago, hands down. About every other week, I buy a small cup of salty cashew and carmel gelato with whatever flavor there excites me. What also excites me is organic eggs. See the photo of a nice breakfast I enjoy. Gluten free bread that I baked with grilled "cheese bread" and an organic egg on an egg plate named, "Chickie". (Yes, the plate has a name.)
Instead of gelato, I ate yogurt with locally milked honey. It was GOOD. So good, that I'm in love with the food that I have in my home. In love with the mung beans and rice that I've eaten for a week. I'm especially in love with the idea of not having to leave my home and spend money to eat.
The cleanse inspired me to go inwards more to rely on internal resources to be satisfied with the food I had ("No, Mia, you really DON'T need gelato.") The cleanse inspired me to eat more healthy - I don't miss refined white sugar, at all, as long as I have more local honey. I don't miss garlic and onion, surprisingly. I certainly don't miss bread or chocolate. I wasn't even tempted to drink wine. WOW.
I did cheat and have a few french fries this past week and I had some popcorn, but I'm letting myself off the hook. I did a great job of cleansing myself. Now to cleanse the cleanse! Tomorrow, I'll have organic oatmeal with raisons and dates, made with flax milk. I can't wait to get "dirty" after the cleanse!
Cleaning Day 4
Day 4 of the cleanse is going great. I love the tea, as pictured here. Although, my food doesn't look as good as it does on the Yoga Journal website, everything is tasting yummy. I ate a boiled egg today for protein & feel much better. An egg isn't on the cleanse, officially, but i was feeling loopy. Why punish myself? I feel much better after the egg and am eating veggies and avocado.
It's been so easy for me to not drink alcohol. I'm considering to lay off the booze for a while. It's expensive, high in calories and, most importantly, booze really changes energy levels - my vibration levels. The other weekend, my friend had a birthday dinner and we went to a bar afterwards. I don't know why I drank as much as I did - maybe 4 drinks all night. That's a lot for me and I felt low vibrationed the next day or two.
So, this cleanse is encouraging my self reflection, which is a good thing! It's always to evaluate and re-evaluate. The cleanse is officially over 1/2 way done!
Durga: The Destroyer of The Nonpure. I dig her.
So, this morning at 6 AM, I went to the lovely Sivananda Yoga Center on Chicago's Northside for a puja, a ceremony, honoring the Maternal aspect of the divine. This is the end of the Navaratri celebration! I grew up thinking that God was a big white guy in a chair with a beard. Goodness, I now think this image is damaging to the human psyche.
It's good to embrace the feminine aspect of the Eternal, as well. Here's what we did this AM, from the Sivananda Chicago website: "The tenth day commemorates the victory of knowledge over ignorance, or goodness over evil. Aspirants are initiated on this day. On this day the carpenter, the tailor, the mason, the artist, the songster, the typist and all technical workers do puja for their instruments and implements. This is Ayudha Puja. They behold and recognise the Sakti or Power behind those instruments and worship the Devi for their success, prosperity and peace."
It was a lovely service that inspired me to be in touch with my mother, today. My birth mother. We haven't spoken much since we had a falling out last Christmas and today's her birthday. I have the internal strength to call her and have taken care of myself to create my own space, so when she goes into "push-my-buttons-really-hard" mode, I'll be ready.
Today is also Day 3 of my Autumn Detox cleanse (see previous post). It's going great! I had popcorn last night because I was feeling queasy and didn't have my food with me, but that's ok. I'm letting myself off the hook. Day 3 begins in a great way!
7 Day Autumn Detox: Day 1
Ya know, I'm not one to promote anything unless I really believe in it. I'm doing Yoga Journal's "7 Day Fall Detox" because I believe in detoxing to maintain my spirit-in-physical form. I'm fine with the program coming from Yoga Journal, even though I don't agree with everything they print. They have a stellar line up behind this detox, though.
Scott Blossom I studied with 5 years ago and he's amazing - a real student of Robert Svoboda. Chase Bossart I'm about to study with and he's a student of Desikichar. There are other teachers but those are the ones that I already knew and respected.
OK, so day one. My kitchari doesn't look like this:
My kitchari is still yummy, though. I had three bowls today with my too salty chutney, but they taste good together.
I'm a bit loopy, my vata is feeling high. This may be because I'm detoxing my brain. Also, I've been gassy after eating, lately. I thought I was drinking too much home made water kefir (YUM). I haven't had any kefir today and was still gassy after dinner. Hopefully this detox will clear out the ama that's making me burpy & farty.
I wanted protein, but my good pal Lela Beem suggested more lemon, more salt and more honey. Three flavors I love. Great! They seemed to do the trick.
We'll see how I feel tomorrow after day 2. For now - sleeeep. I'm also doing the asana and meditation that go along with the cleanse, too. Why not? I'm in it, I'll try.
And, for the record, I prefer saying AUTUMN instead of FALL. Fall? Oh, no. Get up!
Woah, I really rejuvenated myself yesterday at this event:
Allowing for Autumn: A Lakeside Yoga and Meditation Retreat - Sunday, Oct 2, 9a-5p at the Lakeview Center in Gillson Park, Wilmette. Settle into silence and self-inquiry in a beautiful setting. Explore your relationship to Nature both within and without.
This amazing day was hosted by Nick & Lela Beem from Grateful Yoga in Evanston, IL. We didn't speak all day and, besides the two times I caught myself singing, I didn't speak that morning, either. I really needed the permission to do yoga all day, to meditate all day, to just feel happy being quiet with myself al day. I hope to continue this tradition with them in six months at their next event.
Meanwhile, I'm starting a cleanse tomorrow for 7 days. It's a safe, ayurvedic cleanse. I've done that crazy 10 days w/o food cleanse & I'll never do that again. The middle path is nice. Read about the cleanse here.
Autumn: time to cleanse & renew!
Mia Park is a ParaYoga teacher in Chicago, IL, specializing in teaching Basic Yoga for Advanced Misfits, as well as teaching people how to cut through the junk to shine on.