iRest

iRest® Yoga Nidra Meditation: A Living Practice of Connection & Belonging

 

s-lopez-web_7By Stephanie Lopez 
This blog was originally published in the Accessible Yoga Conference newsletter in 2016.

In the course of daily life how often do we feel unseen, disconnected, and disempowered? For many this is an all too frequent experience.

People practice yoga and meditation to discover a sense of ease, balance, and purpose. I believe there is a deeper motivation as well; a longing for connection with one’s self and rest of the world. I’ve found this yearning is satisfied through iRest Yoga Nidra. This transformative yet simple practice uncovers an undeniable ground of well-being and interconnectedness. It brings forth a direct sense of wholeness that is unchanging regardless of life’s circumstances.

iRest is a modern adaptation of the ancient practice of yoga nidra and was developed by Richard Miller, a clinical psychologist and researcher, as well as yogic scholar and author. iRest comprises a full path of meditation with 3 core principles: the practice of welcoming, seeing everything as a messenger, and an essential wholeness or ground of being. These principles are woven through the 10 steps of the protocol forming a potent and healing meditation practice.

As we learn iRest we begin by welcoming everything just as it is. To practice welcoming is to abide in nonjudgmental presence and simply allow whatever arises in our mind. We learn that welcoming is not an extra something we do. Rather, it is an essential aspect of being human.

In contrast, struggle is accompanied by tension, contraction, anger, and fear. At its heart is the desire to have things other than what they are. You push away what you don’t want and cling to what you desire. There is no denying this pain and struggle but iRest meditation teaches us to meet these experiences without trying to fix or change them. Imagine the fierce grace of meeting pain as pure physical sensation and gently accepting the emotions and beliefs it engenders. Yet, simply feeling into and allowing pain to emerge can bring a shift in its intensity.

What happens when we let go of the struggle with life? What happens when we simply allow its challenges, heartbreak, and beauty? In my experience there is a release of tension, an opening to freedom, and joy in full presence of all movements of life. At the heart of this welcoming is an ease of being untouched by life’s movements. This is an underlying wholeness that cannot be broken.

In the practice of iRest we meet life fully through this combination of welcoming and ease of being. We navigate difficult emotions, beliefs, and memories with an Inner Resource to rely upon when they become overwhelming. We also come into new insight when our sensations, emotions, and beliefs are seen as messengers. Experiencing them fully develops and deepens a connection with the self. We come into loving and compassionate relationship with ourselves. You’re able to hear your voice and what is being asked for on the deepest levels. It is in this state of iRest meditation that habitual patterns are broken and you develop clear and novel responses to life’s challenges.

Through this compassionate welcoming you develop connection with all parts of yourself and begin to live authentically. There is trust in who you are and what you do -- and this belonging with yourself flows into a connection with others. As you live life fully and with an undefended heart you develop a sense of belonging in the world. This intimacy with yourself and others empowers you to live life to its fullest potential.

At the heart of every person is an ease of being and wholeness that has never been broken. I cherish this practice and its simple ability to shine the healing light of truth of who we are.

Stephanie Lopez is leading iRest Yoga Nidra Level 1 Training at Yoga on High April 19 -- 23.  Learn more about this training here.

Stephanie Lopez, LISW-S, is Director of Operations for the Integrative Restoration Institute (IRI), Senior iRest® Trainer and IRI Retreat Leader. Stephanie’s teachings are informed by over two decades of immersion in the non-dual teachings of yoga as well as her integration of western psychology and the wisdom traditions of eastern spirituality. As a clinical social worker Stephanie weaves self-inquiry and iRest meditation into her clinical practice. Teaching for nearly 15 years, Stephanie’s compassionate presence, depth of knowledge, and ease of being create a welcoming space for insightful learning. She leads workshops, retreats, and trainings in the U.S. and internationally. Stephanie finds joy in her marriage with her husband, Francisco, and their two cats, Juniper & Luna. She is also an avid traveler and hiker.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

April Calendar of Events

Jeremy-9095Schedule Updates:
Friday 6:30a Hot Flow Level 1 & 2 with Nicole Fleming
Monday 9:30a Sekoia Aerial Level 1 with Dale Ann Gray
Saturday 8:30a Hot Flow Level 1 & 2 with Jeremy Grace at Grow Yoga

Announcements:
Studio Closed Easter Sunday, April 16
Michael Murphy is moving to North Carolina.  All Love Michael!
Welcome home Karine Wascher!  Look for her on the schedule staring May. 

Workshops:

April 1 Reiki Share with Marcia Miller
April 1 – 30 Commit, Cleanse and Clear April Challenge
April 14 Ayurveda, Asana and Pranayama for the Seasons: Kapha with Jasmine Grace
April 15 Book Conversations with Marcia Miller (On Being Podcast with John Lewis: The Art of Discipline of Nonviolence)
April 19 -- 24 iRest Yoga Nidra Level 1 Training with Stephanie Lopez
April 29 Ayurveda: Spirituality and Wellness with Dr. Hari Sharma
April 30 Sekoia Spirit Journey: Lioness with Michele Vinbury

Series Classes:
April 3 -- June 12 Mondays 4:00p MS Yoga Mondays at Yoga on High with Jennifer Gebhart
April 3 -- June 12 Mondays 6:00p Prenatal at Step by Step Wellness – Westerville with Julie Carpenter
April 4 -- May 16 Tuesdays 7:30p 6-week Ashtanga Foundations at Yoga on High with Tom Griffith
April 5 -- May 31 Wednesdays 5:45p Hatha Basic New Beginners at Yoga on High with Cindy Houpt
April 6 -- June 15 Thursdays 5:45p Prenatal Yoga at Yoga on High with Mary Sinclair
April 7 -- May 12 Fridays 9:30a 6-week Sekoia Series at All Life Center – Powell with Alissa Jackson
April 8 -- May 20 Saturdays 10:15a Introduction to QiGong at Yoga on High with Kevin Eigel
April 8 -- June 10 Saturdays 12:00p MS Yoga Weekend Class at Yoga on High with Jennifer Gebhart
April 9 -- June 1 Sundays 2:00p 9-Week Hatha Beginner Series at Grow Yoga with Holly Moretti
April 9 -- May 21 Sundays 10:30a 6-week Kids Yoga (Ages 6-11) at Yoga on High with Julie Standish
April 9 -- May 21 Sundays 3:00p 6-week Ashtanga Foundations at Yoga on High with Correna Starbuck
April 10 -- June 12 Mondays 5:45p Hatha Dynamic New Beginners at TTI with Marcia Miller
April 10 -- May 15 Monday’s 7:30p 6-week Advanced Vinyasa at TTI with Lara Falberg
April 10 -- June 19 Monday’s 7:30p Prenatal Yoga at TTI with Jennifer Gebhart
April 11 -- May 16 Tuesdays 9:30a 6-Week Vinyasa Beginner Series at Grow Yoga with Alissa Jackson
April 13 -- May 18 Thursdays 4:30p 6-week Slow Burn Vinyasa Level 1 & 2 at All Life Center – Powell with Marcy Freed
April 18 -- May 23 Tuesdays 11:15a Mommy & Baby at Step by Step Wellness -- Westerville with Janet Braden
April 26 -- May 31 Wednesdays 6:00p EMBER at Yoga on High with Marybeth Hamilton
April 30 -- June 4 Sundays 3p 6-week Foundations of Kundalini Yoga at Yoga on High with Sada Nam
Click here to enroll in series classes.

Upcoming Teacher Trainings:
Ayurvedic Health Educator (AHE Part 1) -- 11 Month Weekend Program (equivalent to NAMA’s Ayurvedic Health Counselor)
May 20 -- 21, 2017 Kick-off Weekend
Free Ayurvedic Health Educator Info Sessions:
Sunday, April 2nd from 5:30p to 6:30p with Marina Zahran & Marisa Barsotti at Yoga on High Teacher Training Institute
Saturday, April 15th from 12:30p to 1:30p with Jasmine Grace at Yoga on High Teacher Training Institute
Saturday, May 13th from 12:30p to 1:30p with Jasmine Grace at Yoga on High Teacher Training Institute

300 Hour Teacher Training – 1 to 3 Year Customizable Program
Rolling Enrollment
Contact: linda@yogaonhigh.com

UZIT (Urban Zen Integrative Therapy) – 11 Month Program
Wednesday, August 23 through Sunday, August 27 First Onsite
Contact urbanzen@yogaonhigh.com
Free UZIT Info Sessions:
Saturday, May 13th from 1:30p to 2:30p at Yoga on High Teacher Training Institute with Marcia Miller

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

August Calender of Events

Partners-1499eWorkshops:
August 12 Ayurveda: Calming Anxiety with Jasmine Grace
August 13 – 14 Reiki Level 2 Training & Attunement with Marcia Miller and Linda Oshins
August 18 Sekoia Hike with Michele Vinbury
August 20 Meditation Teacher Training with Jasmine Grace
August 26 Potluck and Talent Show
August 27 Sekoia Chakra Journey with Michele Vinbury

August Reiki Shares: 1, 8, 15 & 29

Series Classes:
7:30p Tuesdays August 2 6-Week Ashtanga Foundations with Tom Griffith
10:30a Sundays August 7 6-Week Kids Yoga (ages 6-11) with Julie Standish
6:00p Wednesdays August 10 iRest Yoga Nidra with Michele Vinbury
5:45p Mondays August 15 Inversions from the Ground Up with Marcia Miller
4:00p Mondays August 10-Week Hatha Level 1 with Melanie Miller @ALC Powell

Upcoming Teacher Trainings:
200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training -- Begins September 9, 2016
Free Info Sessions:
Thursday, August 11 from 6:00p to 6:45p at the Teacher Training Institute
Sunday, August 28 from 12:00p to 12:45p at the Teacher Training Institute

UZIT (Urban Zen Integrative Therapy) -- Begins October 27, 2016
Free Info Sessions:
Thursday, August 18 from 7:30p to 8:30p ET- Conference Call
Saturday, August 27 from 4:00p to 5:00p at Yoga on High

Ayurvedic Heath Counselor (A.H.C.) -- Begins November 5, 2016
Free Info Session:
Friday, August 12 from 5:15p to 6:00p at the Teacher Training Institute

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Meditation

linda-3829_0_0The following is a page taken from Kim Stafford’s The Muses among Us: Eloquent Listening and Other Pleasures of the Writer’s Craft.

There was a physicist who played the violin. One morning he took his fiddle to the lab, wrapped it green with felt, clamped it gently in a vise, and trained the electron microscope close on the spruce belly, just beside the sound hole, where a steel peg was humming at a high frequency. Through the microscope, once he got it focused right, he saw the molecular surface of the wood begin to pucker and ripple outward like rings on a pond, the ripples rising gradually into waves, and the steel peg a blur at the heart of play.

When he drew the peg away, the ripples did not stop. In twenty-four hours, the ripples had not stopped. He saw, still, a concentric tremor on the molecular quilt of the wood. The violin, in the firm embrace of the vise, had a song, a thing to say.

In another twelve hours, the ripples flattened and the wood lay inert. Read More…

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
 Scroll to top