img_0378From the very first class I took (around the time I was finishing my Engineering degree @ McGill) my favourite pose was Savasana (complete relaxation aka Corpse Pose)! My girlfriend at the time brought me to the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Center in Montreal and I loved it. I never ended up working as an engineer (other than a brief stint on a dam project my father got me some work on in China) and yoga stayed with me – even through some very turbulent, unhealthy times. I believe yoga is an everyday experience we intuitively know and a recognition of something we’ve known all along-we are at our best when we are responding to our genuine human longing rather than reacting to clinging (raga) and aversion (dvesha).

I live in East Vancouver with the love of my life Stella and our daughter Mahalia Ocean. When I’m not on the mat I might be singing in City Soul Choir or playing bluegrass, folk and originals in Uncle Joe. Singing is the best pranayama!

I teach hatha and power classes at Open Door Yoga & chair yoga to seniors at the Richmond Kinsmen Adult Day Center. I am also the studio coordinator at our Main & 15th location.

What can you expect from my class:

A mix of pranayama (breathing exercises), vinyasa (sequences of physical movements), chanting and yoga philosophy as perceived through the lens of a science loving musician.

I think the essential learning in power and hatha yoga is the same-our true nature revealed one breath at a time-so you can expect to breathe deeply, be challenged, and relieved in all my classes. Expect to sweat a little in my power class.

These days I hope what I’ve learned from family, friends & strangers (as reflections of my own perceptions of reality), teachers at that 1st Sivananda center in Montreal and the many other studios I’ve attended since -especially Open Door’s great teachers Hogan Poon and Georgina Varveris, Vesna Zdrale, Martina Bell, Stephanie Hodges, Lana Maree and the many others here – will encourage people to practice ahimsa (non-violence) on and off the mat by observing their experience without judging how it should be…

Om Bhur Bhuvaha Suvaha
Tat Savitur Varenyam
Bhargo Devasya Dhimahi
Dhiyo Yo Naha Prachodayat

Everything on the earth in between and above is arising from one effulgent source. May this practice remind me of this complete understanding of unity so that I may be the peace I am seeking in every moment.

Gayatri Mantra translated by Donna Farhi

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