In 1974, at the age of 20, I was diagnosed with a stomach ulcer. Intuitively, I KNEW it was stress related and a doctor put me on tranquilizers to “solve my problem.” I realized I didn’t want to live my life taking pills and began to explore other ways I could manage my overactive mind. I was then living in a conservative, semi-rural community and didn’t know how to find alternatives to the traditional medicine that was practiced here, but I did find a paperback book: "Yoga, Youth and Reincarnation." I read it cover to cover, and began to practice asanas through study of photos and text descriptions. I loved the changes this new practice began in me, got rid of the pills AND the stomach ulcer, and was hooked on this new possibility. A few years later, I also began to practice vegetarianism, which I also continue to this day. Over the past 34 years, living many different places around the States, I’ve had the good fortune to find an important handful of hadtha yoga teachers and came to embrace the Iyengar tradition, in particular. I continue to take classes 2 x per week to this day and am firmly convinced it helps me physically, mentally and spiritually. In October, I will go on a retreat with one of my teachers in order to immerse myself in my annual “booster.” I also practice alone but I find working with a teacher helps me to go “further” as lazy me will basically just coast without external input—plus I love to “touch base” with the community of other yogis and yoginnis that meet for these classes. I’m convinced that yoga isn’t just a central part of my life and how I’m living it, but as a practicing fine artist, it has in real, but subtle, ways, influenced my entire career path and body of work.
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