March Theme: Gratitude
“Who, being loved, is poor?”
Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), Irish Writer
This week’s Task:
Cherish your loved ones: being grateful for those we love and those who love us can sometimes get lost in the busyness of every day. Not this week! On three of these seven days, set aside some time to do something special for someone you love – cook their favourite meal, write them a caring note or offer to do a chore for them to lighten their load.
Taken from Every Day Matters Diary by Dani DiPirro
TODAY'S RECORDING TO USE ANYTIME THIS WEEK
28.3.21 Stretch & Flow Yoga Recording
75 minute class with option for longer savasana (Dru deep relaxation going through each part of the body twice: physical and subtle) for those who want it. Today’s class celebrates the full moon, the colourful spring festival of Holi and the start of Holy Week for Christians with Palm Sunday. We practise the hissing breath with Akash Mudra to lift our mood, Moon Salutation (Chandra Namaskar) to honour the full moon, lively activations with virtual colour throwing for Holi and a modified Triangle (Trikonasana) releasing tension in the hips and energising our emotions for spring. Plus elements from EBR2. Today’s affirmation is: I am in control of my life!
With the full March moon comes the celebration of Holi celebrating the arrival of spring, the end of winter and the blossoming of love. It is a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and repair broken relationships. The festival also celebrates the beginning of a good spring harvest season. It lasts for a night and a day, starting on the evening of the Purnima(Full Moon day) falling around middle of March in the Gregorian calendar.
It is known variously as the Festival of Love/Spring/Colours and especially known for the tradition of throwing brightly coloured paint over each other. I believe water can also be involved in this colourful free for all of hope, joy, gaiety and silly pranks chasing away evil. This celebration is much loved by everyone so today we joined in throwing virtual colours, washing and blending them with water and marvelling at the colourful display.
Food and drink play their part in this festival including thandai and bhang which are similar but different in that thandai is a nutritious, cooling, milk based drink while bhang has the additional ingredient of marijuana leaves, likely to result in a massive hangover the next day, oversleeping and hallucinations if taken to excess. Apparently, Bhang has been consumed for thousands of years (dating back as far as 2000BC) and is reputedly used by Shiva for its calming qualities.
For Thandai (without the bhang) you'll need:
Almonds, peppercorns, poppy seeds, cardamom, fennel seeds and water melon seeds
Sugar, saffron, rose water, whole milk (or alternative)
Mix the spices and nuts with milk along with sugar, saffron and rose water.
Allow the mixture to absorb the flavours for one hour in the fridge.
Then strain using a fine sieve and serve with rose petals and chopped pistachios scattered on top.
Thandai should be served chilled (it doesn't taste as good at room temperature) and it's best to use whole milk. However, you can experiment with fat free or milk substitutes if you prefer.
Thanks to my friend Madhu for this recipe. For exact measures and more background about Thandai and Bhang plus delicious Holi food check out: https://www.cookwithmanali.com/thandai/
Today is also Palm Sunday and marks the beginning of Holy Week leading up to the events of Good Friday and Easter Sunday. It is celebrated in churches with the giving of palm crosses remembering Jesus' triumphant entry to Jerusalem, cheered by the crowds who only days later would be calling for his death. Jesus could have written into the city like a king but he chose to enter on a humble donkey.
Please let me know how you celebrate Holi or Holy Easter Week in the comments. All contributions appreciated and welcome!
Difference between Thandai and Bhang https://www.inuth.com/lifestyle/food/planning-to-get-high-on-bhang-and-thandai-this-holi-know-the-difference-before-mixing-them/
I qualified to teach in 2015 but my yoga journey started much earlier, way back in the 1970s. Here I share my experiences and passion about everything yoga.