Good vibrations at Tadasana

"Sound is powerfully linked to our feelings; it causes our cells and tissue to vibrate..." Russill Paul, The Sound of Yoga.

Above: Elena Brower on stage at the Tadasana Yoga & Music Festival in Santa Monica, Calif., April 20, 2012.

Photo credit:  DK Howe

Below: Artists accompany yoga classes.



Yoga conferences and festivals

by DK Howe


Celebrity chef Yigit Pura on yoga and fitness

Yigit Pura, the winner of season one of Bravo’s “Top Chef: Just Desserts,” practices Buddhism and is known for his zen-like calm in the kitchen. Here, the slim, effervescent chef talks about yoga and fitness.

You meditate.  Do you do yoga asana also?

I do yoga as well.  But the great thing is actually, I actually relate a lot my cooking to Buddhism because in Buddhism they say that the way you find happiness and contentment is by walking the middle line of two extremes.  And that’s kind of actually how I approach my desserts.  I always like to pair things that are so out of range from each other so that when you actually put them together it makes a beautiful marriage.  It’s kind of like opposites attract.

How do you stay fit while working in the culinary industry?

I think there’s this bad stigma that all chefs are fat.  That’s not the case at all.  I think it’s like finding a balance in anything else.   I live on sugar.  Probably about 85% of my diet is sugar so I’m always amazed my pancreas hasn’t given out yet.  I exercise regularly.  I’m living in San Francisco. I bike everywhere. I feel like when I exercise, it’s an hour and a half of alone, me time, quiet time.  It’s something I cherish.

Photo credit Tom Donoghue.
Article by DK Howe 



The Dalai Lama speaks on compassion and Osama bin Laden

Bodhisattva and Compassion (Credit: Tony the Misfit)

On May 3, wrapped in his crimson robe, a red USC cap on his head, the Dalai Lama sat cross-legged in a white chair at the University of Southern California and spoke about Osama bin Laden and reactions to his death.

His Holiness emphasized the need to find a distinction between the action and the actor; that his action must be brought to justice, but with the actor we must have compassion and a sense of concern. The counter measure, no matter what form it takes, has to be compassionate action, he went on to say. Foregiveness, however, does not mean that one should forget what has been done.

Last month at the University of Limerick, the spiritual leader talked about extending our compassion beyond the world of our friends and “neutral people” to our enemies.  “Once your…genuine sense of concern of well-being reaches your enemy then that compassion is genuine trained compassion, unbiased, limitless, infinite.  That we can do because of [our] marvelous intelligence.

He gave as an example a Buddhist monk who had spent close to 20 years in a Chinese gulag.

“He told me during that period…he faced some danger…danger of forgetting compassion or losing compassion,” said His Holiness.

According to the Dalai Lama, the greatest hindrances to compassion are anger and hatred, emotions we must learn to control to find true happiness.

The Dalai Lama will be in Minneapolis, Mn., May 7 and 8. On the 8th his will give a public talk on Peace Through Inner Peace. You can watch a live Web cast of his talks, teachings and lectures on his Web site.

He will be in Fayetteville, Ark., on May 11, and Newark, Nj. on May 13 and 14.


Follow Yoga for Health and Social Transformation online

Watch video, follow events and interviews from the Yoga for Health and Social Transformation conference held January 2 - 5, 2011, at Patanjali Yogpeeth in Haridwar, India, on

Leading international scientists, researchers, academicians, yoga leaders, yoga educators and yoga therapists will be discussing  the underlying mechanisms of yoga and the value of its application for health, medicine, and social transformation.

The conference is sponsored by Patanjali YogaPeeth (PYP) under the direction of Swami Ramdevji and Acharya Balkrishnaji.  Dr. Shirley Telles, Ph.D., renowned yoga researcher, will chair the Scientific Program Committee.

The blog will be operated by Julie Deife, the founder of LA Yoga Ayurveda and Health magazine and the founder of the Southwest Yoga Conference and Bob Belinoff, a multi-award winning documentary filmmaker.

Click  to follow the event on