Zentangle: A Fun, Creative, Meditative Art Form

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A Zentangle is meant to be a surprise that unfolds before the creator’s eyes, one stroke at a time. Zentangle is one of the few art forms that you intentionally do not plan out. There are no expectations of planned goals of accomplishment to worry about attaining or disappointment stemming from unattainable expectations. There is no plan to follow, there is nothing to detract the stroke being drawn. The lack of planning and the tangles allow the unexpected to occur.

~ Beckah Krahula; One Zentangle a Day

A Meditative Art Form

With the brand New Year in full swing, my partner and I are feeling happy and refreshed from having enjoyed a wonderful holiday season. We planned a quiet, restorative and relaxing holiday and opted not to travel anywhere this year, choosing instead to stay home and enjoy some time together. In the mornings, we slept in and lazed about, reading and relaxing. We cooked together, sipped wine and feasted on simple but delicious food. We laced up our skates and glided around the lagoon at Prince’s Island Park. We took many beautiful walks out in the fresh air and enjoyed the frosted evergreens and snow-covered paths. In the evenings, we snuggled in next to each other to read or watch some of our favourite feel-good movies. We also did something new, something fun I recently discovered, called Zentangling.

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A Simple, Powerful Breathing Technique: 4-7-8 Breathing

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When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady.
But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still,
and the yogi achieves long life.
Therefore, one should learn to control the breath.

~ Svatmarama; The Hatha Yoga Pradipika

Breath Work

I was totally smitten with yoga after taking my very first class many, many moons ago, and I’ve been a regular practitioner ever since. I loved it so much, I became a certified yoga teacher and taught for a few years. I haven’t taught for a long time now, but yoga will always be part of my daily life.

Most people think of yoga as simply stretching exercises, but the true practice of yoga is so much more than that. While the physical yoga postures make up what most people call yoga, pranayama, or breath work, is as important and as beneficial to any yoga practice as the yoga poses.

While breath work is a big part of yoga, it is not unique to yoga practice. Historically, many cultures and disciplines have recognized the value of the breath as the interface between the body and the spirit and many have integrated the concept into the language and fabric of their cultures.

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