Eoin my global yoga teaching, surf-mad husband and I have been returning to Bali for the last thirteen years; and you might say that Bali is not unfamiliar to us. Yet, we are still surprised by the changes, development and increasing hipster-ness that continues to grow exponentially where we hang out in Canggu.
You know those days when everything comes together in a cohesive, integrated way and you begin to trust that there are no coincidences in life, simply events that align, once we open up to the possibility of alignment?
For the past three months, we have lived a few minutes walk from the beach in a quiet village in Bali. I can’t quite describe how simple life is here, and how luxurious that feels. We awake with the early dawn light, and try to “sand-ify” our feet before the sun is high as it gets hot here in the tropics, quickly.
I am thrilled to be presenting once again at this big hearted, soul-stirring festival that coalesces annually in Bali!!! The current line up of workshops with me is:
Urban Ayurveda: Friday April 6 at 12:15 p.m.
We live in a world of 24/7 stimulation. The impact of our current pace of living has resulted in disconnect, stress and chronic health imbalances. How can we stay healthy, grounded, present and not burn out? What is true freedom and how can we experience it? Join Insiya for an exciting conversation grounded in the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda, yet peppered with practical modern insights on how to find balance, ease, purpose and presence in a world that is moving so fast we can scarcely keep up. We will end our discussion with a healing meditation to gain balance and presence.
The Yoga of Conscious Parenting: Sunday April 8 at 1 p.m.
We all seek to parent with presence, compassion and love and yet real life often gets in the way. Join yogini, ayurvedic counsellor and mama Insiya Rasiwala-Finn in this stimulating workshop where she will share tangible insights from yoga’s sister science of Ayurveda to bring more balance, space, health, ease and love for our children and ourselves in the fast pace of modern life.
YOGA ECOLOGY SURF RETREAT
March 11 – 18, 2017
Retreat to the surfing soul of Bali with global Yogis, Blissologists and Ocean Activists Eoin Finn and Insiya Rasiwala-Finn for a life changing, healing and happiness inducing journey into BLISS and sunshine. Surf in the warm, tropical ocean, practice yoga in a gorgeous recycled wood yoga shala and enjoy delicious, organic food.
We will flow deep into our yoga and meditation practice; and learn key Blissology yoga strategies on how to live life in an Upward Spiral. Whether you are a beginner yogi or surfer; or if you have been practicing yoga or surfing for a while, this retreat is for YOU.
Join Eoin and Insiya for an incredible, joyful, inspiring week. Reset your body, mind and heart and open up to your true nature: Bliss. 🙂
- Accommodation in gorgeous javanese joglos 200 m from the white sand beaches of Padang Padang and Uluwatu waves.
- 2x daily yoga practices with Eoin and Insiya.
- All meals, featuring delicious, organic mostly plant based food with local and global flavours.
- Use of infrared sauna and a salt water pool.
- Unlimited bliss.
Let’s get real. Life is amazing, beautiful and so over-stimulating.
How can we stay healthy, vital, happy and find BALANCE, when all we are trying to do is tick off the boxes on our daily to-do lists? Are you tired of ricocheting from one extreme in your life to another? Do you want to take your health and attitude from a place of being “just ok” to feeling amazing, nourished and revitalized from the inside out? It’s time for a RADICAL RESET. Blissology founder Eoin Finn and his wife Insiya Rasiwala-Finn know the travails of navigating through both the bliss and the challenges of life all too well. Over years of yoga and life practice they’ve discovered that there are essential daily rituals we need to do every day in order to feel inspired, whole, balanced and happy. Join Eoin and Insiya in Bali, Indonesia for the Radical Reset Blissology Detox Retreat in April 2015. The retreat will include the 5 Blissology Essential Daily Practices for health and vitality; delicious, plant-based, organic cuisine, most of it grown locally at Desa Seni, an eco village retreat center in beautiful Bali where we will host this retreat; 2 detox yoga classes daily, meditation, a Blissology gratitude journal as well as 1 traditional healing Balinese massage. Expect to feel nourished, supported and loved as you transition into a place of feeling amazing, joyful and vital and radiant. We cannot wait for you to join us. NAMASTE, Eoin + Insiya Finn Dates: April 18 – 25, 2015 Location: At Desa Seni, an eco-village retreat centre in Canggu, Bali. Retreat Includes:
- All organic, vegan and vegetarian meals + detox juices, fresh coconut water and herbal teas.
- 2 daily yoga classes: Morning invigorating and evening restorative Blissology Flows.
- A Gratitude Journal
- 1 Traditional Balinese Healing Massage
- Balinese Cleansing Ceremony
- 7 nights accommodation at eco luxe retreat centre Desa Seni, Bali
- Airport pick up from and drop off.
- Accommodation ranges from triple share to single Javanese bungalows.
From$1,845 US (*Early Bird Triple Room Share) email retreats (at) blissology.com for more information *The retreat does not include travel to and from Bali.
You could say that the paradox of modern travel is that while the soul travels at the pace of a camel, our bodies travel at the speed of a jet plane. Since March of this year, I have flown to Bali, Indonesia; from Bali to Sydney, then to Perth and Margaret River in Australia; to Singapore; back to Bali, then Hong Kong, then Vancouver and finally our coastal paradise of Ucluelet / Tofino; which is currently home.
I know I’m exhausted just writing this. But, the trip lasted 3 months and we traveled with our 3 year old son. And if you want your soul to linger longer in one spot, hang out with a child who demands your full presence.
I love almond milk.
I find it to be the perfect base for smoothies, to pour over home made granola and to use as a base in raw desserts and soups. However, I decided a few years ago that store bought almond milk just wasn’t cutting it. It was bland; when you drank it just by itself you realised that it didn’t even taste like almonds; plus the “original” or “vanilla” flavours are super high in sugar. All this made sense when I looked at the ingredient list and saw that actual almonds amounted to less than 8% of the “almond milk,” while a bunch of unpronounceable preservatives and added synthetic vitamins constituted the rest.
I recently read Toronto based yoga teacher Matthew Remski’s essay on how modern yoga needs to offer “real” support and connection to its community at the yoga studio level – he calls it the “soup kitchen”-ing of yoga studios. It’s a brilliant, thought provoking essay and you can find it in the book 21st Century Yoga Politics and Practice; I admire Remski as he brings a critical lens to our yoga bubble world and his writing and his work is concerned with growing the yoga practice far beyond just doing asanas to tone your tush. It is about creating a space much like the churches and mosques and synagogues have done for centuries, that offers community, a space to share the sorrows and joys of life that make us humans on a spiritual search, yet not disengaged with daily living.
Yet, in the essay, he critiques yoga retreats as one of the offerings at yoga studios that have just become a marketing ploy to take people to beautiful places and earn revenue.
That may be.
Yet, I write this post from Bali, where I have just arrived from the wet Canadian winter of Vancouver. My mornings here begin with a surreptitious escape from our “family bed” so as not to awaken our toddler, who climbs in every night. I spend my first few moments walking barefoot onto dewy grass and looking up at the night sky – blushing toward first dawn. It is warm and my body feels none of the sting of the winter winds I have left behind. Instead, I am here taking in a simple connection to soil, to earth and to the ocean air scented with plumeria.
Sounds magical? It is. This time in Bali where we arrive each winter after the many airplane flights, the incessant travails of travel – especially with a child – is my manna. After my first dip into the ocean, I feel reborn and a flowering of my yoga practice – with a little bit of help. I’m no longer as concerned with the daily tasks of being a “householder” – we eat simple, delicious food that the retreat centre cooks, or at a local restaurant or warung, or I cook breakfast. I am not folding laundry, one of the many local laundries is happy to have our business and I have a little bit of help with my son.
As a mom, my yoga practice at home is all about squeezing in a few moments here and there within my day – always flowing with the rhythm of my child, the demands of work and family – and justifying the compression of my daily practice with the statement: “this is my yoga right now.”
Here, all of a sudden, I don’t need to justify anything. With just a little bit of space and time I can go a little deeper. I used to think this was a luxury, something that I shouldn’t celebrate as it seemed so elitist, but especially if you are a woman and a mother and on a spiritual path – if you can manage it – a few moments of time stretched offer everything. It makes me think about a famous female poet who said, “I write poetry as it is the only thing i can do in between the demands of my children. Writing fiction would take so much longer.”
Ultimately, what I am looking for is quiet. The yogis write that the yoga practice is about training our mind to be quiet so that we can feel that “quietness” in the midst of chaos, yet to get there, there’s nothing quite like experiencing external quiet: the pause from the daily-ness of space/time. Sometimes you need to check out, to check in.
The recent “trend” in the yoga world is that “retreats” are not as popular as teacher trainings and immersions in exotic locations. That maybe so, but the truth is, that going on retreat can be a deep ride that offers as much as you are ready to take. It can help to create new habits – like a daily yoga practice; it can offer a respite with time to journal, to think, to even lay in a hammock especially if that is not your natural inclination. Mostly, it can be a sure-fire way to take your awareness to another plane, a transfusion of spirit and a re-building of the “you.”
I often end my yoga classes with the statement that taking this “time” is not a selfish thing, because the time we spend on renewing ourself helps us to be kinder, more compassionate and present in all our relationships. I know that I am a better partner, a mother and a friend when I do.
Traveling to Bali may not be in your cards this year, or in this lifetime, but you can go on retreat, for an hour, a day, a weekend or longer to a place not so far from the immediate recesses of your life.
So tell me, have you been on a yoga retreat or aspire to going on one? Do you see it as something frivolous or wuwu? I’d love to know.
And stay tuned next week for some Ayurvedic Travel tips and how to choose the ideal retreat for you.
Thanks for reading, I’d love your comments and questions and also your feedback on the new YOGUE site.
Namaste + gracias.
I still remember my first visit to Bali. Here was a land made for tourist postcards, with lush landscapes, rice fields, frangipani and azure ocean. There was also lots of colourful patterned batik, the fabric that women and men wore on ceremonial days – of which there were plenty. And a constant stream of offerings that women carried in little woven leaf baskets, called canang (pr. chanaang). These offerings were everywhere, They made busy crossroads – even those replete with the buzz of a hundred scooters – a sacred space.
I asked what they symbolized, and learnt that these offerings were one of the ways the Balinese prayed. The Balinese love rituals and this was how they remembered their ancestors, spirits and Gods.