As the New Year approaches resolutions are made. New Year’s is like moving into a new house, with fresh walls, new paint, and empty rooms to fill. It inspires the imagination. Stuff is packed and unpacked. It can feel completely new, or it can feel familiar yet different. New cabinets, same dishes, new walls, same pictures, unaccustomed rooms and windows all make for new feng shui and a different vibe. Take pause to focus on some basic “here and now” details, the drive to work or what room picks up the best wireless.
Metaphorically, we can pack our mental “stuff” and decide what to bring with us into 2012 and what not too. The New Year can set the intention for what relationship to start or end, what behaviors or thoughts need letting go of, what positive and healthy objectives can be set. Which parts of “who are you” will sing Auld Lang Syne?
Each day is a first day. Jan.1, 2012 will be the first time that day appears on a check, in a newspaper, or on a birth certificate. Then it is gone. Welcome Jan. 2. We count the days of our lives numerically. Follow a formula to unwrap each day optimistically while going about life’s routines. The “ah’s” and not the “un’s” should accompany each day if possible, and if not, the next day is another first day. Live kindly and bring no grudge into the following day.
Whether it’s a laundry list of New Year’s resolutions or one small thing to contemplate, each person has a key to house 2012. What will fill those rooms this leap year?
In the yoga community it is customary to welcome the New Year attending a Kirtan celebration. Kirtan is the traditional Indian call-and-response chanting performed in devotional yoga practices. The names of the Hindu gods are chanted with a harmonium and tablas as background music.
Kirtan can be likened to a musical meditation where the music soothes and quiets the mind. The purpose of all music is for enjoyment and uplifting of spirits. The Hindu chants need not be religious and in the Western Hemisphere have a New Age quality.
One yoga studio in Santa Monica greets the New Year with a twelve hour kirtan celebration. Bhakti Yoga Shala is a donation based yoga studio dedicated to the path of Bhakti Yoga.
Bakti is the devotional path, or “limb”, of the many aspects to a yoga practice. Bhakti Yoga signifies an attitude of nurturing and devotion to one’s highest self and to others. Characteristics of gratitude, service, and emotional fulfillment are the foundations of the devotional path.
The 2012 New Year’s Eve celebration features a number of musical artists and begins at 8 p.m. to 8 a.m., Sat, Dec. 31 to Sun., Jan. 1.
For the early bird and energetic there will be a ritualistic Yoga Mala Sun-Salutation class at 10 a.m., Sun., Jan. 1. In a Yoga Mala one hundred and eight Sun-Salutations are performed as a means of transformation. Physically the Sun-Salutes are a series of poses that improve strength, flexibility, endurance, and tone.
Bhakti Yoga Shala is located at:
207 Arizona Ave.
Santa Monica, Ca 90401