The Road Less Traveled
They say, "If you open yourself up to
grace, miracles happen." A few months ago, I
borrowed a book from my friend Jackie
entitled, The Road Less Traveled: A New
Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and
Spiritual Growth, by M. Scott Peck, MD,
published in 1978. Just recently, the book
caught my eye and I took it with me on my
long plane ride to Massachusetts.
The first sentence rings true in this
point of my life. "Life is difficult." Peck
goes on to say "It is a great truth because
once we truly see this truth, we transcend
it." Perhaps many of us believe that life is
supposed to be easy. Why else would we
complain and become resentful when
challenges arise or things don't turn out as
we expect? When Peck says, "Life is a series
of problems," I am relieved. Because once I
accept it, the fact that life is difficult
no longer matters, and I can choose to solve
those problems, instead of asking, "Why
can't my life be easier?"
I especially found valuable his
definition of love: "The will to extend
one's self for the purpose of nurturing
one's own or another's spiritual growth."
Since love requires the expansion of
ourselves, love is either work or courage.
No exceptions. And again, not easy.
These days, I have chosen to focus on
svadyaya (self-study) and satya (truth) and
miraculously tools and teachers have
appeared to move me along my spiritual path.
Whether it is a book that falls off the
shelf, a detour that takes us out of our
routine, or a choice to take a chance, grace
is always present, just by simply being
aware. Practicing love as courageous action
at each cross road opens us up to vibrant
new landscapes along the way.
What truth have you transcended today?
our yama & niyama cards...
This monthly newsletter is created to
provide you with resources to nourish
your practice and inspire your spirit.
Please send an e-mail if there is
anything you would like to see featured
for our yoga community. Because I
skipped October's issue, this one is
chock-full; grab a cup of tea.
Have a very happy Thanksgiving. I am
thankful for you all.
- Peace and Light, Monica Paredes
Special Heart Practice Yoga
Desiree Rumbaugh's workshop
in September was an uplifting
experience with over 60
attendees from around the US.
Many of San Antonio's most
influential yoga teachers came
to enhance their own practices
and teachings and left the event
feeling highly motivated.
Many thanks to Cecelia Norman
who donated her studio and
provided cozy accommodations.
Thank you also to Stephanie
Norman, the macrobiotic chef who
prepared nutritious and
satisfying lunches as well as
gave an informative talk on the
benefits of a macrobiotic diet.
Donnabelle Casis', artistic
and meaningful yoga jewelry made
their debut at the workshop and
were quickly snapped up by
attendees for themselves or
special friends. From the
colorful Italian yarn, to the
silver fittings and pewter
heart, each piece is made with
loving attention to detail.
These necklaces harness the
healing and energetic qualities
of semi-precious stones. The
colors correspond to a
The jewelry is festively
packaged and includes a card
with a personalized description.
A sample of necklace designs
include "Clarity & Self-Expression" for the writers on
your list, "Friendship &
Commitment," for your gal pal;
and even "Optimism & Inner
Peace" for someone experiencing
tough times. Due to popular
demand, Donnabelle will be
making a limited number for the
holidays, so place your orders
early. Great for mindful
There are also a a few
remaining boxes of Revolution
Teas available. They were served
at the event to a thirsty crowd.
These are the teas the Four
Seasons serve their guests, and
are not easy to find locally.
Flavors are: Early Grey
Lavender, Sweet Ginger Peach,
Royal Plum (decaf), Bombay Chai,
and Honeybush Caramel (decaf).
You can purchase any of these
items from my Web site or by
Authentic Freedom: November 2,
2004, 7 pm
Heart and Soul Yoga is
hosting a meditation gathering
with Vanessa Stone from the
Foundation for Divine
Consciousness. After you vote,
come for a meditation sitting
for healing ourselves and our
Nation. Gentle yoga stretch for
meditation offered from
Heart and Soul Yoga Studio,
28060 FM 3009, Garden Ridge
Fee: suggested donation: $10
For more information on
Vanessa or The Foundation for
Divine Consciousness please see
their Web site:
divineconsciousness.org. Call or
e-mail if attending:
830-438-8585, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please enter in silence.
Deep Emotions You Can Hear: Mis
I have to thank David
Gallegos for getting me to dust
off my Cordoba Spanish classical
guitar and begin playing again.
Practicing is a form of creative
meditation for me as I focus on
the notes and rhythms and
release the accumulated events
of the day. David is my guitar
teacher who specializes in Latin
and Flamenco styles, where the
most important thing is to
express from deep within the
Just last month, David
finished recording his first
solo CD. Upon hearing the demo,
I was immediately mesmerized by
the pure emotion of each song.
Whenever I play the CD during my
yoga classes, students have such
great responses. This CD is a
self-funded project and I am
inspired by his vision and hard
work in sharing his gift of
"David Gallegos' self-release
debut CD, Mis Recuerdos
combines Latin & Flamenco flare
with a New Age feel, painting
relaxing sonic textures that
will ease the mind and sooth the
soul. Current Release date:
11/23/04." For more information
and sound clips, please visit:
Music for Little Ones (and Big
Ok, I admit it. I am crazy
about my tiny nephews and can't
stop featuring them in my
newsletter. What can I say?
Their mom engages them in so
many cool things; I have to
share them with my
On my last visit to
Northampton, I accompanied
Mathieu and Stefan to their
first music class, provided by
Music Together®, a program of
music and movement classes for
children from birth to age four
and their parents or other
caregivers. The kids sang songs,
clapped their hands, made music
with shakers, and danced with
billowing scarves. The hour flew
by and we were given CDs and
workbooks to continue the songs
and play activities at home.
If you are considering an
activity for your child, see if
there is a Music Together
program in your neighborhood.
And if you have some musical
background, consider obtaining
certification to teach this
terrific program in your
"How do people learn music?
How do infants learn? Toddlers?
Four-year-olds? Early childhood
experts believe that each child
learns from a rich and varied
music experience and that, given
a variety of engaging
activities, each child will
learn the things she is ready to
learn at any given moment.
This approach, which is often
Appropriate Practice,' allows
each child to be responsible for
his own learning and helps
adults view children's growth
through stages of development,
not ages." - Music Together LLC
For local San Antonians,
contact Fiesta Music Together,
5902 Lost Creek, San Antonio,
Texas 78247, (210) 862-9276,
I have not yet restarted my
prenatal classes due to some
scheduling conflicts. In the
meantime, if your group would
like to schedule a prenatal yoga
workshop, please call. Workshops
generally last two hours and
include tea, yoga, meditation,
visualization, breath work,
relaxation and discussion.
Husbands are also welcome and we
can tailor the workshop to
include natural labor and
delivery techniques for
partners. Workshops are also
available to address the needs
of postnatal students.
As the holidays approach, one
of the best things you can do
with friends or family is to
take a yoga class. If you are
unable to get to a studio,
consider hosting a yoga
gathering to reduce stress,
promote creativity or simply to
spend time practicing self-care
with those you love. Please call
for available dates.
"Ask for what you want and be
prepared to get it." - Maya
Angelou. No matter who your
candidate is, please become
informed and then get out there