I have something to say before I become a yoga teacher…

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I rarely have anything bad to say about anything anymore. I know that allowing negativity into your life only attracts more negativity. This time, however, I just need to vent. First, some background to the story.

I decided close to a year ago that I was no longer happy with what I did for a living. I spent a lot of time in meditation, and praying for guidance because I knew I couldn’t carry on much longer with the status quo that had become my life. I decided to try to find something that I enjoyed to do with the rest my life. I began creating, and woodworking, and writing. I started to notice that things around me were becoming more clear. I began to have faith that I was not put here to work for big pharma, doing a job that I knew was wrong. I began to ask for signs in my meditations that would direct me, and to keep me on this path that I was giving more faith to everyday. Well, they came, they came in droves. It is true that the more you look, the more you find. As 2015 wore on I decided that if I really wanted things to change that I would have to leave my comfort zone and go see the world. How I was going to do this, I had no idea.

I had just gotten done reading “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne and over and over in the book the author kept saying to create what you want that you should act like you already had it, and to be thankful for it ahead of time. I wanted more than anything to travel. The first thing I did was change my last name on Facebook to Kerouac after one of my favorite authors and world travellers. I decided that everytime I logged in and saw that, that it would remind me of that goal. Next I decided that I wanted to strengthen my yoga practice because yoga and meditation, I believe, unequivocally, were the reasons I was able to heal and overcome addiction and depression, and also grow my awareness allowing all the signs I kept receiving, and why I felt so much more faith in things. I began looking for places that offered yoga teacher training. There were tons of places around my hometown that offered it, and I reached out to many of them for information.

By now 2015 was winding down. I was as unhappy as ever in my job, and knew it was almost time to move on. I took vacation from work, and travelled to North Carolina to visit my cousin. While I was there I took some time to familiarize myself with the area because I felt like this may be a good place to start the rest of my life. I visited some yoga studios and looked at classifieds. I even dropped off a few resumes. When I returned home I decided that by the following winter I was moving to North Carolina hell or high water. Within the next couple of days I had decided that I was going to sign up for yoga teacher training at a school in my hometown. On the day that I finally decided to sign up at a school close to home, (I had the website open ready to make my payment) I saw an ad on Facebook for a place called Vinyasa Arts LKN. LKN, LKN, I thought, received_10210128786245530where have I heard of that before? I looked it up and realized it stood for Lake Norman which is the lake that is a few minutes drive from my cousins house in North Carolina. I began researching Vinyasa Arts. I was impressed to say the least. They were a married couple, Andy and Tamara, with 25 years of combined experience. They had a studio in San Diego, and were relocating to North Carolina to open a studio there. I watched a couple of videos that they had made, and I was sold. Not only did they have the experience I wanted in teachers, but they seemed like genuinely good people. Their classes began in July which gave me some time to situate my life and quit my job. Best of all it came out of nowhere, my favorite place. A sign if you will.

It has been a whirlwind adventure since then to say the least. I really didn’t know what to expect. I am not the most stretchy guy, and my poses all need a ton of work. I spent the few days prior to my first class worrying over things like; would I be the only guy, would I be too old, or not in shape enough. Well the first class came. I realized at that moment how tough these next three months would be. This was real yoga, hardly any resemblance of the yoga I had taken for the three years prior. I sweated more in that first 75 minute class than I did running cross country all through high school. I did however realize that this was exactly what I needed to strengthen my practice. My classmates were all amazing people of all different ages and backgrounds, and we all came together like family almost immediately. We pushed each other to work hard, and be better in our practice. When one of us struggled with something there was no laughing, we simply helped each other through. In times of real life pain we all came together to try and make each other feel better. It was truly a family, or a tribe maybe. Everyone working toward a common goal, and helping each other over the hurdles it took to get there. I was amazed at the abilities and wisdom of our teachers, yet equally amazed at the comradary of my classmates. I know I could never have gotten this far without them. I am blessed that they were all thrown into my life.img_20160924_172439973_hdr

Ok now back to the rant… In one of our first class lectures we were talking about healing and yoga. During this talk our teachers told us that the yoga alliance has said that we cannot equate our yoga practice with healing when we advertise our classes without getting in trouble with the powers that be. This irks me to no end. So before I do become a yoga teacher and get in trouble for saying it let me tell you… Yoga IS healing for the mind body and spirit. Without any references to studies or lab tests etc. I myself can tell you, from my very own experience, that yoga is, if you put the effort into it, one of the most effective healing things you can do for your mind body and spirit. I will never tell you that my way is better than yours, because I know that people heal in their own ways. Anything you put a healing light toward can become a form of healing. Healing is truly about the effort you put into it. Yoga, meditation, religion, Tae Kwon Do, whatever brings you inward to find that spirit of healing inside of you can be your spark.

This, to me, reeks of big pharma sticking their nose in to stop from losing profits, and being more worried about selling more of their temporary solutions to the masses who are sold by their fancy advertisements, than actually ever helping someone. I worked in big pharma, I know how they operate, I know that from top to bottom it is all a lie.

It’s sad to me that people are so easily sold on treatments and medications, rather than diet and exercise. I have had so many people tell me “oh I’ve tried everything to help” this or that, but then when I ask them if they have tried yoga, it’s usually “yea I went once”. Well once is not what it takes to help with anything or change bad habits. Yoga is not a miracle cure, but if you put some dedication into it I can bet you will feel better in a month of regular practice than you do now. The best part of Yoga, practiced safely, with a good instructor, is that there are no side effects like the medicines you are sold by big pharma with lists of them so long it will make your head spin. Yes there are medicines we all need, but in many cases, especially, in my opinion, of cases of trauma, depression, anxiety, and many times incurable disease, you are being sold drugs that create no healing whatsoever, only a temporary relief from symptoms with very real risks from disastrous side effects.

Those of you who know me know that if something is wrong I will say it, like I did to big pharma. I see something wrong here. I obviously can’t tell the yoga alliance what to do, but if I could, I would tell them to let people know in every way possible that yoga surely can help you heal, because it does. The stories of healing are endless. If not for its healing light I would still be where I was 4 years ago. Mired in a downward spiral, and depressed that life was not getting any better for me and wondering why. I took the reigns and righted the ship with yoga and meditation. You can too with dedication. For we may not be able to change our fate, yet we can all choose our destiny.

Peace, love, and light. ~ p4th3tic

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Signs, signs, everywhere a sign…

I’m always looking for signs. Sometimes they are tiny things like a song on the radio at the exact right moment, or when you figure out that gut feeling you had was exactly right. But sometimes they’re so prodigious that they can’t be ignored. Today I spent 2nd-guessing quitting my job. I had prepared myself for that, second-guessing is a very natural human reaction when making any important life-changing decision. Still it ate away at my psyche a bit, and muddled up my mood.

I took a short afternoon nap, and decided to go see the sunset when I awoke, as I do most days that I am DSC02224awake for them. I decided to change it up a bit and go somewhere different, maybe for a different perspective that might lighten my mood. Almost without thinking about it I decided on Chestnut Ridge. I had never been there for a sunset, and had read that the sunsets there were amazing. There are swings that you can sit on and stare out over the ridge. You can see almost the entire shoreline all the way to downtown Buffalo from this vantage point. When I arrived, to my dismay, the swings had been taken out for the winter. I sat in my car for a few minutes debating on whether I would just sit on the ground. Then I remembered I had a couple of folding chairs stowed under the floor in the back of the truck.

I grabbed my phone and my camera, and as I was getting out of the truck I saw a beautiful red tail hawk soaring above the hill. I hurried to grab my chair hoping to get a good picture of the bird. Sadly by the IMG_20160316_191258811_HDRtime I got the chair, the bird had flown elsewhere. I walked over to the top of the hill and chose a good spot near where one of the swings had been, in order to watch the sunset. As I pulled the chair from the bag, I looked over and saw young man with dreadlocks sitting on a wicker throne some 10 yards from me. I sat in silence taking in the view for a few minutes, and readying my camera for what was sure to be a breathtaking sunset. As I looked over at the young man, he was unpacking something from his own bag, it looked to be some sort of drum.

As he began to play I was awed by the sound of what he later told me was called a hang drum. I had seenDSC02225 them online in videos but never live. The sound of it was amazing. It was inspiring and soothing and created a very meditative mood. I snapped a couple pictures of him, but after listening for a few minutes I forgot all about my camera. He played nonstop for a good 10 minutes. I was hoping for him to take a break for a minute so that I could tell him how amazing it was. I finally decided I had to stop him myself and tell him. I walked up to him and I said, “I’m sorry man, I don’t want to break your groove but I had to thank you for playing for me.” He shook my hand and thanked me. He asked me my name, and told me his name was Nate. I asked him if I could record him for a few mins. He said, “Yea man record away.” I stood next to him and crouched down. It was the perfect vantage point as I could see the sun setting behind him. I took a couple of minute-and-a-half videos. When he finished we both looked at each other and kind of laughed, I think we both realized what a perfect moment it was.

We chatted for a few minutes afterward about politics, the state of the world, and what each of us did for a living. It was refreshing to hear someone so young with such wisdom. It turns out we both had a pretty crummy day, and we had both come to cleanse the day away. Experiencing his music definitely did the trick for me. I told him my name on Facebook so that he could see the video after I uploaded it.

When I got home I viewed the video and I was in awe. The second video I took had a beautiful fade in as the sun overexposed the lens of the camera, and just as he was finishing up that same overexposure of the lens happened again. You can hear my giddy laugh as he finishes up. Yep that was exactly what I needed for the day thanks Nate. I hope you enjoy this video as much as I enjoyed it live!

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Deep in thought…

12009842_1010929048971496_1783212286881627438_n     For the last three days I have been deep in thought. I disconnected from everything and everyone, well except my best dog buddy, and just took some time to think. I didn’t plan the future or even think further ahead than the moment I was in. I just took some time to feel everything in my life. I have been very drained from the constant struggle between what I truly believe, and the thing that I have done for a living for the last, almost 4 years. As I have awakened to truths, and see how terribly misguided and lied to we all are through advertising, mainstream media, government, and even our own doctors, it has become more and more clear to me that I can no longer tolerate the sadness, and guilt I feel everyday when I walk through those doors, under the guise that I am “saving lives”. The pharmaceutical industry cares nothing for you or your loved ones, they care only for the billions of dollars that they can make off of you. They need you sick, the doctors need you sick, every single person that is employed there, needs you sick. They want customers, it makes very little business sense for them to actually help you. This is a fact that I have witnessed everyday for almost 4 years. You can argue with me if you’d like, but I have no argument to give you back, it is no longer worth my breath. I’ve seen and participated in the lies daily, I’ve seen “the waving of the magic wand” over and over.

I know in my heart the way to health, and it has nothing to do with pills or medicine. Health comes from6e3e1105ad1342889f1c8f92ec648685 inside you. The vessel your spirit lives in is piloted by a mind with almost limitless power. We are creators, everything we have, we create, good or bad. That which you give power to, has power over you. Our intuition, that little voice inside our head that chatters all day, knows what’s best for us, yet we are trained almost from birth to ignore it. We follow the leader and keep up with the Jones’. We watch TV and stare at our phones more than we pay attention to the 3 lb god that lives inside of our vessel.

I am utterly convinced that I am on a path in a direction that I have very little control over. Every step I take brings me new revelations about life, love, loss, and learning. I see little signs everywhere. Just a tiny example, I have read three books this year, on three completely different topics, suggested by three different people. Yet each one has mentioned the book that I had just previously finished. I am being guided by something much larger. I used to think asking for signs was tempting fate. I ask for signs nearly daily now, and almost unfailingly they come to me.

The one lesson that has shined through all the others to me throughout these last 4 years of my life, loves, and work is truth. Honesty is the most important part of our existence and the ground level of d032d0f3c0c2775d231e90de878e06e0every type of relationship we ever have. Truth is not always easy, it is not always what we want to hear, sometimes it beats the living crap out of us, and sometimes it angers others, but in the end it is the most important part of our existence. I would rather be hurt by the truth, than ever lied to. And I would rather be honest than anything else. In my line of work that is, I have found, impossible.

I’ve spent my whole life not even being true to myself. Poisoning my body and ignoring my mind. I finally realized that just about the same time I began working at this job. I believe that was also a part of a path toward clarity for me. If I couldn’t be true to myself, how could I ever be true to others? How many of you reading this are being true to yourself? I mean really deep down inside. Are you searching for the gift you are supposed to share with the world, or are you, like I have mostly always been, just doing what you were taught was right? Are you trying to adult your way to the next moment, or living life for a paycheck because you are taught you have to? Are you staying with a partner for the simple fact that it is easier to suck it up and just deal with it, rather than put the work in and be true to your own spirit, your own voice inside your head? Are you taking medications daily or giving them to your children because, some guy in a white coat, paid by a billion dollar corporation, tells you that it will help. You are likely taking years off of your life, and time away from your loved ones every time you swallow a pill.

Take the time for them and for yourself and work at your health, and your life, it will bring much larger rewards. The cells in your body regenerate an almost completely new you every few months. This is where the now countless stories of people given a few days to live with terminal disease who are now cured, come from. The stories are all nearly the same. These people simply decided they were going to heal. In your life, find the things that little voice is telling you, that your conscience is telling you are wrongd08004a2c32523c03c88413d32012aa1 and turn them around. Stop ignoring what you know is right because of what someone else tells you. Look within for the answers because every single one of them is there for you. The medicines you take will never help you find them, and in all likelihood, as it undoubtedly says on the packaging, are doing more harm than good. There are stories of people addicted to Xanax that have been trying unsuccessfully for years to wean off of it. While they may bring temporary relief for your symptoms, provided they are what they profess to be, they will never cure you of anything.

     I know I am here in some respect to heal people. I am still searching for the how. The best way I know to help someone heal right now is through sharing what I have learned and read about while on this path. The stories are endless, whether it be debilitating trauma, cancer, AIDS, mental disorders, addiction, etc. Mine is one of them. The way to true healing comes from within.

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This is the book I am reading now. If you have any kind of trauma, that you have suffered in your life this book will give you a very real healing path, and also better help you understand the effects that trauma has in your life, and the ways our body deals with it. It will help you better recognize the signs our body gives us, what they mean, and how to better deal with triggers. This man has spent his lifetime working with trauma patients.

Top 5 A Perfect Circle songs…

I have been mulling a top ten list of my favorite songs for a while now. I realize that this would be impossible to do. I couldn’t even do a top 10 favorite bands list, top ten albums might be attainable, but even that would be hard. I have a quite unique taste in music. First let me say that almost all of my day is spent listening to it, save for when I sleep. I almost can’t function without it. I listen to nearly every type of music there is; metal, rock, punk, hardcore, alternative, Irish, meditative drumming and the like, classical, jazz, blues, name it, I love it. Except country lol. I have no real reason other than it just never hit me, maybe that is a yet, I don’t know… I have thousands of favorite songs, and ordering them would take years. Therefore I have decided to take some of my favorite artists and maybe once a week or more give you my 5 favorite songs from that particular artist.

I have many many favorite artists too! Although I do have one who is my very favorite, Maynard James Keenan. There are some artists whose voice I love (Chris Cornell, Ben Howard, Pink, Dallas Green), or lyrics that are thought provoking (Dave Mathews, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, John Hiatt). There’s the shredders, amazing drummers, the guys with groove you can just feel… I could go on and on… Now you see why I can’t just do a top ten songs list.

So there are all these amazing artists, but very few of them put it all together. MJK does that. It was hard enough to pick between his 3 bands as to which one I like best. A Perfect Circle to me just has a little bit more. One of my favorite things to do is watch people do acoustic covers of my favorite songs, and there are so many good APC covers, that is what nudged them out front of Tool and Puscifer for me. His lyrics are amazing, the music is full of texture, there are many different time signatures in every song (something you rarely ever see in any kind of mainstream music), even the videos and art attached to these 3 bands are thought provoking and, well… Art.

Without further ado, here they are. 🙂

5. Orestes

“Orestes”

Metaphor for a missing moment
Pull me into your perfect circle

One womb
One shape
One resolve

Liberate this will
To release us all

Gotta cut away, clear away
Snip away and sever this
Umbilical residue that’s
Keeping me from killing you

And from pulling you down with me in here
I can almost hear you scream

Give me
One more medicated peaceful moment
One more medicated peaceful moment

And I don’t wanna feel this overwhelming
Hostility

4. Passive

“Passive”

“Dead as dead can be,” my doctor tells me
But I just can’t believe him, never the optimistic one
I’m sure of your ability to become my perfect enemy
Wake up and face me, don’t play dead cause maybe
Someday I will walk away and say, “You disappoint me,”
Maybe you’re better off this way
Leaning over you here, cold and catatonic
I catch a brief reflection of what you could and might have been
It’s your right and your ability
To become…my perfect enemy…Wake up (why can’t you) and face me (come one now),
Don’t play dead (don’t play dead)
Cause maybe (because maybe)
Someday I’ll (someday I’ll) walk away and say, “You disappoint me,”
Maybe you’re better off this way
Maybe you’re better off this way
Maybe you’re better off this way
Maybe you’re better off this way
You’re better of this; you’re better off this;
Maybe you’re better off!
Wake up (can’t you) and face me (come on now),
Don’t play dead (don’t play dead)
Cause maybe (because maybe)
Someday I’ll (someday I’ll) walk away and say, “You fucking disappoint me!”
Maybe you’re better off this wayGo ahead and play dead
I know that you can hear this
Go ahead and play dead
Why can’t you turn and face me?
Why can’t you turn and face me?
Why can’t you turn and face me?
Why can’t you turn and face me?
You fucking disappoint me!

Passive aggressive bullshit

3. Sleeping Beauty

“Sleeping Beauty”

Delusional
I believe I can cure it all for you, dear
Coax or trick or drive or
drag the demons from you
Make it right for you sleeping beauty
Truly thought
I can magically heal you
You’re far beyond a visible sign of your awakening
Failing miserably to rescue
Sleeping BeautyDrunk on ego
Truly thought I could make it right
If I kissed you one more time to
Help you face the nightmare
But you’re far too poisoned for me
Such a fool to think that I can wake you from your slumber
That I could actually heal you..Sleeping Beauty
Poisoned and hopeless
You’re far beyond a visible sign of your awakening
Failing miserably to find a way to comfort youFar beyond a visible sign of your awakening
And hiding from some poisoned memory

Poisoned and hopeless
Sleeping Beauty

2. The Outsider

“The Outsider”

Help me if you can
It’s just that this, this is not the way I’m wired
So could you please,
Help me understand why
You’ve given in to all these
Reckless dark desires
You’re lying to yourself again
Suicidal imbecile
Think about it, you’re pounding on the fault line
What’ll it take to get it through to you precious
I’m over this. Why do you wanna throw it away like this?
Such a mess. Why would I want to watch you,
Disconnect and self destruct one bullet at a time?
What’s your rush now, everyone will have his day to dieMedicated, drama queen, picture perfect, numb belligerence
Narcissistic, drama queen, craving fame and all its decadence

Lying through your teeth again
Suicidal imbecile
Think about it, you’re pounding on the fault line
What’ll it take to get it through to you precious
Go with this, why do you wanna throw it away like this
Such a mess.

Why would I wanna watch you…
Disconnect and self destruct one bullet at a time?
What’s your rush now, everyone will have his day to die

They were right about you
They were right about you

Lying to my face again
Suicidal imbecile
Think about, you’re pounding on the fault line
What’ll it take to get it through to you precious
I’m over this. Why do you wanna throw it away like this
Such a mess, over this, over this!

Disconnect and self destruct, one bullet at a time
What’s your hurry, everyone will have his day to die
If you choose to pull the trigger, should your drama prove sincere,
Do it somewhere far away from here

1. 3 Libras

“3 Libras”

Threw you the obvious and you flew with it on your back,
A name in your recollection, down among a million same.
Difficult not to feel a little bit disappointed, and passed over
When I’ve looked right through, see you naked but oblivious.

And you don’t see me.

But I threw you the obvious, just to see if there’s more behind the
Eyes of a fallen angel, eyes of a tragedy.
Here I am expecting just a little bit too much from the wounded
But I see, see through it all, see through, see you.

‘Cause I threw you the obvious, to see what occurs behind the
Eyes of a fallen angel, eyes of a tragedy, oh well.

Oh well, apparently nothing.
Apparently nothing, at all.

You don’t, you don’t, you don’t, see me.
You don’t, you don’t, you don’t, see me.
You don’t, you don’t, you don’t, see me.
You don’t see me.
You don’t, you don’t, you don’t see me at all.

Finally if you love amazing guitar arrangements like I do. Check out this guy, he is one of the best at covering and arranging guitar covers…

Peace, Music, Love, and Light ~ ❤ p4th3TiC