Monday, November 22, 2010

Top Dogs and Their Yoga Humans: A Collective Lesson in Living in the Now

I love my furry friends. They teach me SO much about life and yoga. How to be content, how to love unconditionally, how to be present ... I could go on.. The point is, my animals make my life better.

As you might already know one of my hobbies is stalking--I mean, reading about--other yoga students and teachers on the web to glean as much inspiration as possible. It's obvious that I'm not the only yogi who gets schooled by her pets. So I thought I'd pull some of the best yoga + dog writings I could find online and share them with you in time for Thanksgiving. Maybe it will make you want to give a few extra table scraps to the pup you love!

Image: Gwen Bell
1. Dog: Redford
Human: ElephantJournal.com Founder Waylon Lewis
Breed: Rescue Mutt

Waylon is thankful for: "My puppy, because he’s cute and listens to me most of the time, and because he teaches me more about patience and myself than anyone except my guru, Trungpa Rinpoche, or my guru, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, or whatever girlfriend happens to be putting up with me, or not, at any given time."

Read more here.



2. Dog: Scarlet
Human: Meredith LeBlanc
Breed: Rescue Pug

"Scarlet, our Pug, has been a huge catalyst for change in our home. Her enthusiasm and joie de vivre is contagious. Every moment to her is worth savoring and she is totally right. We'd kind of forgotten that until she moved in with us."

Read more here.



3. Dog: Ashi
Human: Kathryn Budig
Breed: Puggle

"She knows what is important in life: good food, and lots of it. Getting excited about the smallest things like the phone ringing. It means someone interesting is on the other line. Most importantly, good love and the ability to give and recieve it all day long."

Read more here.


Image: cyndisphere
4. Dog: Leroy
Human: Cyndi Lee
Breed: Chocolate Poodle

"Leroy and I went to the park yesterday but when I started turning right to leave, he pulled hard to go left.  He is a stubborn poodle so I said, “Okay, we can walk around the fountain that way today,” and to the left we went. Where there was a huge crowd gathered around and lot of buzzing conversations.  Then I saw what was going on — there were literally hundreds of boxes sitting on the ground under the big famous arch at the end of Fifth Avenue.  Every box was wrapped in a coral colored cloth with a bow on top — a Japanese kind of wrapping thing.  It looked amazing and beautiful.  People were all excited and taking the boxes.  I looked around to see if it was a giveaway from some big company like Revlon or something but, no. No big promotional thing happening.  So I thought, I’ll take a box, too.  I picked one up and then I thought, “No. I don’t want this. I don’t want more stuff.”  So I put it down and started to walk away and then I saw a tiny sign that said:

EMPTY IS NOT EMPTY. FULL IS NOT FULL."

Read more

5. Dog: Schmutzie
Human: Dave Romanelli
Breed: Rescue Toy Poodle

"Schmutzie's training doubled as a personal growth seminar. And Schmutzie was no less than a furry sort of spiritual companion. In order to get to a point where I could walk Schmutzie without a leash, I learned that I needed to practice pulling my mind out of downward spirals of negative thinking; to prevent my mind's foolish foolish scampers into dark, foggy reals; to quell my mind's ADD-driven spastic leaps from thought to thought. Only when my mind stabilized and relaxed would Schmutzie truly respect me."

Excerpted from Yeah Dave's Guide to Living' in the Moment. Click here to read more.

And, of course, I am most inspired by my sweet rescue mutt Penny and cute, deaf kitty Gracey.


5 Things My Dog Taught Me about Yoga

5 Things My Cat Taught Me about Yoga
What lessons have you learned from your furry friends?