DNC Yoginis Strike a Pose with Katie Couric
As a yogi, the question is no longer, “What advanced pose can I do?”, but “Can I walk my talk?”
In other words, can you live your yoga?
This is the challenge—and the opportunity. Especially here at the DNC, where wheeling and dealing is the name of the game and the decisions of a few affect many.
Opening the Conversation
At a dinner party two months ago a friend brought a controversial (and important) topic to a table of yogis.
“How is everyone planning on getting involved in the elections this year?” he probed.
Having just moved back to the USA and scrambling to simply find a place to live, I was in full-on survival mode and unsure of how I wanted to answer his question.
I replied (rather lamely, I admit), “I just got my Colorado driver’s license and registered to vote.” I knew I had more to say, but wasn’t quite ready.
This morning on my early morning commute from Boulder to Denver, I was finally able to continue that conversation with myself...
Continuing the Conversation
Out of breath from rushing to catch the bus, I knew that my challenge this week is to stay connected to my heart--not to mention simply trying to stay healthy in such a frenetic environment.
While a spacious daily practice of yoga and meditation is out of the question for now, living my yoga in every moment is not.
Running on adrenaline (and very little sleep), I settled into my bus seat. For the next forty minutes en route to Denver, I closed my eyes, turned away from the buzz of my thoughts, and entered the rhythm of my breath.
Walking the Talk
Now it’s just past lunchtime at the Huffington Post Oasis, where frenzied delegates, media gurus, and curious conventioneers seek solace by slugging live “Monkey Drinks” (dark green, leafy veggies blended with banana and kiwi) and noshing on cacao nibs.
Lots of paparazzi are passing through, some of whom walk the yoga talk, and others who aspire to.
Larry Brilliant (director of Google's philanthropic arm Google.org) and Barbara Marx Hubbard (noted futurist) soaked in the Oasis vibe late yesterday afternoon.
Radiant and perfectly coiffed,
Deidre Hall (that’s Dr. Marlena Evans for all you Days of Our Lives fans), also rejuvenated yesterday with a hand massage.
She touted that “getting a good night’s sleep is life altering” (especially for us women!). Her wellness regime? Staying away from sugar and getting daily exercise.
Deidre Hall with Amrit Khalsa, CEO of Essential Living Foods
This morning Katie Couric strolled through with her camera crew, wowing us all with her cute-ness and her yoga prowess. A yogini for the past two years (under the tutelage of Beryl Bender) she demo-ed (and coached volunteer yoga teachers through!) headstand, praising yoga's ability to clear her busy mind.
Katie Couric (far right ) Demos Headstand
Award-winning PBS journalist Charlie Rose just settled in for a massage. ABC News and USA Today are rolling through with their cameras.
Yesterday evening Lesley Jane Seymour, Editor-in-Chief of More magazine, unplugged during a yoga private with Seane Corn. Lobbyists, journalists, politicians, and A-type personalities have also sought out yoga instruction with Seane (some reluctantly, most at the urging of Arianna Huffington).
Most start out “sarcastic and quippy, reluctant to turn their Blackberry off”, Seane reports. Over the course of a twenty-minute session they do get “quieter and quieter,” ultimately able to make an intention or say a prayer for their time here at the convention.
Meeting the Challenge
The Oasis then is not only a trendy place to chill out, but truly is a yoga sanctuary—a safe space to connect with oneself and others.
“I have seen a lot of tears,” Seane reveals.
“There's a lot of insanity out there," she adds, " I’m introducing a little bit of fairy dust. I know the magic of yoga and I am just trusting it."
Considering how grounded and content Seane seems (even though she didn't follow Deidre's advice and was here when I left last night and arrived this morning), my own present inner calm, and the smiles of everyone who strolls through the Oasis, yoga works. And if it can work here, can it not work anywhere?!
How can you make your whole life your spiritual practice? How can you take yoga to your family, your work, and out into the streets in increasingly creative and collaborative ways?
How can you walk your talk?
For me, for now, that means another shot of green monkey fuel. And a downward dog, if I'm lucky.
Seane Corn Dishing Out Shots of Green Monkey