Realfoodtraveler.com’s wonderful Vegan/Vegetarian Editor, Teresa Bergen, isn’t just an expert on veggie eating, she’s an accomplished yoga and fitness teacher and she’s just published a new book, Meditations for Gym Yogis: An Easy Intro to Yoga Philosophy.
Anyone who has practiced the stretching and strengthening poses of yoga knows that the regular practice of yoga can help you be more strong and flexible. For those of us who travel a lot, spending hours on cramped planes, trains and cars, yoga poses can be a way to “untangle” those tight muscles after a long journey. But most of us also know there’s more to the practice of yoga than just physical poses. While there are a ton of yoga books on the market, little has been written about the spiritual/ethical underpinnings of yoga and the books that do tend to be weighty tomes. Teresa has come up with a slim little volume that takes the mystery out of yoga philosophy. It’s a great little book for folks who want to understand more about this healthful practice.
Teresa dispels myths about yoga, especially the idea that it’s a religion that may conflict with one’s religious/spiritual beliefs. In fact, she writes, that yoga is “a system of practices by which you can dissolve the fears and self-consciousness that make you feel separate.”
She acknowledges that the benefits of yoga, including having a strong, supple body, take time, commitment and discipline. That means practicing yoga when you’re not in the mood—for instance, when you get off a plane and feel stiff, tired and cranky. A few minutes of easy yoga stretches can make all the difference in whether your trip goes well or you continue to feel tired and pained.
However, Teresa insists regularly practicing yoga can bring so much more than physical benefits. She says yoga can help us be more ethical and honest and move us toward enlightenment. Or, as she writes, “At least bring a little peace, contentment and a more sustained feeling of connection.”
That sounds pretty good to me. If you’re interested in learning more about yoga philosophy in a brief, easy-to-understand book, then Meditations for Gym Yogis: An Easy Intro to Yoga Philosophy may be just what you’re looking for. The book is available from Amazon in soft cover ($12) or Kindle versions ($7.99). Who knows, it may help you become enlightened or at least feel a little happier. And that’s a good thing. – Bobbie Hasselbring, RFT Editor