Tag Archive: bellingham yoga

For those planning ahead for Autumn, here is our flyer announcing the next retreat at Turtle Haven with Ravi.We’re especially excited for this theme! There will as always also be a public talk on Friday of the retreat. Let me know if you have any questions; other announcements will be forthcoming.

Spring Yoga classes

Here is the Spring flyer for classes that begin next week! Contact Elizabeth with any questions.


Yoga for easing symptoms of anxiety and depression

Yoga for easing symptoms of anxiety and depression

The first class in the Yoga Sadhana series begins NEXT Monday; please be aware that the first three sessions may be taken as individual classes, and the Anxiety and Depression series that starts in April must be taken as a 5 session series. Please contact Elizabeth with any questions.

New Yoga Sadhana classes offered

New Yoga Sadhana classes offered

More about 8 Petals Yoga Studio

Autumn Yoga Classes

Elizabeth Kerwin - Autumn 2013 Yoga Classes

Elizabeth’s summer classes continue into the first two weeks of September, after Labor Day. The autumn schedule can be viewed in the flyer here (and above). Please contact Elizabeth if you have questions or wish to register!

This Friday, Oct 18th, at 7:30PM, Ravi Ravindra will be giving a public talk at 8 Petals Yoga Studio.  Please come – the public is welcome to participate!


As the glorious summer days continue to grace us with sun and abundance, a few subtle signs of waning light and the transition towards autumn gradually reveal themselves. We notice the invitation towards more inner reflection as we move into a new cycle of harvest, then quiet, and the revitalization of our spiritual exploration which comes with Ravi Ravindra’s wisdom, heart and presence. He returns October 18th through 20th, in the usual format, with a Friday public talk in Bellingham at 8Petals Yoga Studio and a Saturday and Sunday weekend retreat in Deming. Our theme this time will be “Journey of the Soul: Self Knowledge and Self Transformation.” Weather permitting, we also plan for time to walk the labyrinth, and to enjoy the forest and river trails, and the ever evolving land and shrines of Turtle Haven (retreat site).

Ravi Ravindra Fall 2013 Retreat Flier Image

To get a pdf of the flyer, click on the image above.

Summer Yoga Classes!


I will soon send out the email announcing summer classes; here is the flyer for this round (or click on image above). As always in summer, you may sign up for classes that will fit for your summer schedule, and the tuition structure is different than that of the other seasons and quarters! Remeber that Spring Quarter is still in session, and there will be no classes this Monday, Memorial Day. Hope you are enjoying your holiday week-end!

Film about Mr. Iyengar

Below is a link to a film was shown twice at the Convention, introduced by its maker, Lindsay Clennel. It may help you to understand the expanse of BKS Iyengar and his work and influence. The young woman in headstand and a full backbend being assisted with multiple props, is BKS Iyengar’s beloved grandaughter, Abijata who taught at the Convention three years ago— she is a beautiful, clear, powerful and nonetheless humble teacher in her own right. Let me know your thoughts and reflections in watching this film. If it moves you, there is a campaign to raise the remaining funds needed to complete the film.


Dear Friends,
I write to you from the National Iyengar Convention, where I have been deeply moved by the classes, the community and cultural events, and the sense of depth and longevity in our tradition. A special guest teacher, Birjoo Mehta, who is a Senior Iyengar teacher from Mumbai has come from India for this Convention. I am struck by the combination of stucture and continuity in our form, and the wisdom, maturity and new flowering I experience within this trustworthy vessel over time—  especially as experienced through Birjoo’s teaching.  I look forward to the seeds of these current teachings I am experiencing sifting through my body and being in my own practice, and finding their way into my teaching as well.
On May 18th, THIS COMING SATURDAY, I will offer the last opportunity of the season for gathering with others in community to explore deeper aspects of yoga, this time at Turtle Haven! Please come and join in for any, or all of the following:

9:30 to 11 am:  Gait of Freedom: Hips that Hike, Dance, Garden and Meditate! Hip openers for all our two legged activities! Sliding Fee: $10 to $20

11:15 to 12:30 pm:  Sitting Meditation followed by Community Reading of the Yoga Sutras. This will be a wonderful moment to simply read aloud this profound text, and let it flow through us without analysis, but to have exposure to the work as a whole. I will present a very brief orientation, and we will read taking turns.   No Charge!
12:45 pm until 2:30 pm:  Community Potluck Lunch and Meanderings
It will be possible to walk the trails, visit the Patanjali shrine, and any other shrine areas which call to you. You may also draw nourishment from the river, and peaceful atmosphere of Turtle Haven… 
Please do let me know by Tuesday the 14th if you plan to attend, so I may organize accordingly, with the hopes of organizing some carpooling! 

One Tuesday not long ago, the Turtle Haven morning yoga class was about to begin, and I was on my way out of the housephoto-10 when I grabbed a card with a hand scribed poem from our friend and fellow yogi, Bill Baroch. Bill is also, by the way, Turtle Haven’s trails and grounds landscape artist. I read the poem in class, and was asked by a wonderful student and friend to post the poem on this blog! I thought I would add a few more thoughts, and some of the story behind the wheel….

We have  on the land, near the labyrinth, this poetic prayer wheel which was created by Chris Moench in collaboration with me, to honor Jillian’s birthday a year and a half ago, the same year she was ordained as an Interfaith Minister. Aaron Westgate and his friend Andy Phillips created a beautiful pagoda-like, earthy and elegant structure to hold the beautiful vessel. I include a photograph of it in this post (above).

In recent days, we had a very intimate, small gathering to initiate this blessed addition to Turtle Haven, and Bill brought a poem he had written for the occasion. Since the Tuesday class SEES the wheel, and some go out and visit it, I thought to bring the poem into class— and as I recall, it had to do also with the notion I wanted to speak about that morning, that we need places to go with our our prayers, intentions, joys and sorrows, to bring them out from our own hearts and minds, into some outer form. To speak, mutter, write, or sing them and offer them out…. in this way, a different relationship arises with what we were formerly holding within. In the Gospel of Thomas, as Elaine Pagels and others have pointed out, Jesus is said to have brought this teaching: “If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.” These are powerful words that tell us in a larger sense something of the teachings of the Niyama, and Svadyaya, self reflection, and then bringing ourselves forward into the world, in whatever way is healing and contributes.

Part of our “bringing oursleves forward” includes being aware of places where we hold questions, grief, emotional stirrings, desires for inner change, or for shifts on the outer plane, and all the many inner mysteries of existence in human form. I have always loved the ritual in church of lighting candles with prayer and intention, and have let that expand into the same form in a broader array of places. To have specific places to visit and revisit creates a potency and a remembrance that can bring a deepening in our connection with the Innermost Mystery, however we name that in a particular way, according to our own experience and beliefs. Some of the Tuesday morning yoga practitioners have also created a Patanjali yoga shrine area, that started with a beautiful rock engraved with the second yoga Sutra: “And then the Seer Dwells in his own True Splendor,” a sutra that speaks to our ultimate yogic realization of our deep oneness with the Supreme Intelligence. This rock was a gift for another long time student and community member Frances, a few years back. Now the shrine has a Patanjali figure housed in a hand built by Bill sort of small, beautiful “cathedral in the woods” structure which was dreamt up by Maureen, Frances, Bill and me last year. We had a blessing for it as the culmination of last Spring’s retreat with Ravi; Felicity Green was here as well at that time! So there has been a rich flowering here at Turtle Haven for which Jillian and I feel so much gratitude, as we steward a place that reflects our desire to listen deeply and hold this place on the Nooksack as a haven for our community to come and remember what is most important. Here is Bill’s poem:

Watch the Earth turning!
In her lovely round dance—
Witness the turning!
She sets the sun
Fills the sky with stars shimmering
Spins out the night
Returns to light….
Breathes out clouds
Feathering, sun mitten
In rhythm with the turning.
Brown leaves settle into damp Earth.
New green leaves seek the Sun.
Sleepers rise. Risers dream.
Dreamers dance…
In rhythm with the turning.
From the center turning.
All is one turning.

The Earth is a Prayer Wheel.
The Earth is Prayer Wheel.

The Earth is a wheel
Full of Prayers.
Each Being a Benediction.
A veneration. A Holy Communion.

Robin. River. Rain.
Redlegged Frog.
The silent sound of salamander steps.
You and I.
Our thoughts
For each other
Each heart a prayerful page,
An intention of Mystery.
We are seeds sewn in dark soil.
Delicate leaves unfolding.
We are flowers.
Everything is a flower.
No mistakes.
We are pages and pages of prayer,
Folded and unfolding.
Warm sun.
Moonless night.
Turning without. Turning within.
Turning! Turning!
On this beautiful wheel
Nothing but prayers
Apparent in daylight,
Hidden at night.