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Become a Yoga Instructor in Portland, OR


How does one keep their “Magic About Them” in a world turned hostile and chaotic? How do we maintain our “Lightness of Being” in a world where so many suffer? These are questions I ask myself every day.

One of the first things my teacher told me when I began my studies in Ayurveda & Yoga was to “Protect My Light”. I remember sitting there feeling confused as I mentally scrolled through what that might possibly look like. As I started to immerse in the ancient science of Ayurveda, I understood that to “protect my light” meant to protect my Tejas.

Who has a lot of Tejas? Have you ever noticed the awesome power of a Black Panther or a Jaguar moving with such perfect synchronicity that they have a GLOW and “Je ne said quoi”. “Je ne said quoi” is French for an inexpressible something, that special something.

What is that special something? It is Tejas!

Tejas is a concept in Ayurveda that is analogous to Spirit. It is also described as cellular intelligence on a metaphorical level. This looks like mental clarity and perfect health as well as a glowing aura. This glow is the result of such a high level of cellular intelligence that you shine divinity through all your cells and through your heart. There is no struggle or toiling in this process. Look at flowers, they are oozing with light and with Tejas. They are so luminous and special. Eckhart Tolle calls flowers the “enlightenment of plants”. They are particularly good at shining divinity through their cells.

How can you be the flower you were born to be, filled with light and divinity?

Feed your cells with light in all its forms;

  1. To build Tejas, FEEL into what is the right thing for YOU. Move past what you THINK is “the right thing to do”. No forcing or pushing. This means setting the intention to TRUST THE WISDOM OF THE BODY.
  2. Move towards a sense of relief as you EMBRACE ALL THAT YOU ARE! Healthy Tejas comes from self-awareness but you cannot truly cultivate self-awareness unless you are comfortable sitting with the TRUTH of “who you are”.
  3. LIVE IN THE PRESENT MOMENT! Let go of all the stories you have about yourself. The Black Panther does not walk around saying to himself that he is “not enough” or that “he shouldn’t have had this or that for lunch”. He is one with “WHAT IS” and there is not much internal commentary about it. He is not burning off his Tejas with excess time in his head fretting, worrying or over analyzing things.
  4. MEDITATING ON THE NIGHT SKY, CHILD’S POSE as well as BRAHMARI PRANAYAMA will often help move someone out of overthinking.
  5. NASYA - Brahmi Ghee Nasya (nasal oiling) is one of my favorite Ayurvedic practices to cool and calm the mind.
  6. MARMA THERAPY - a little Brahmi oil on the Nasa Mula (point between the eyebrows) is a gentle way to calm and soothe the mind.
  7. KAPALABHATI aka skull shining breath – wonderful pranayama for increasing Tejas in all your cells and tissues.
  8. TURMERIC - If you feel dull and cold then a warming blood invigorator like Turmeric is like a shot of Tejas.
  9. TRATAKA, aka Ghee Lamp Gazing, is wonderful for bringing back that mental spark. It is said to flower the pineal gland (the third eye/Ajna)
  10. SUNSHINE - Prana from the sun is one of the best ways to nourish Tejas. 20 minutes a day is all that is necessary for many people.
  11. Spend time around NOURISHING PEOPLE. You will pick up energy from those around you, be sure it is energy you want!
  12. Eat FRESH FOOD (food filled with prana/life-force) – please no microwaved, frozen, processed or old food 
  13. Cultivate DAILY ROUTINES THAT CONNECT YOU TO NATURE (early to bed, early to rise, eat seasonally, largest meal midday, daily walking in nature)
  14. Daily practice of SENDING BLESSINGS TO ALL OF LIFE, including to yourself! YOU deserve blessings too!
  15. PLAY, DREAM & HOLD ONTO HOPE! We are all in this together. When you play, dream and hope you give others permission to do so too!

    All these years later, I have discovered that the way you protect your light is you feed it with more light. Then you have more light to share! Shanti, Susan

    *Please remember that Ayurveda and Yoga are meant to be practiced with a teacher, a trusted guide. Work with a professional to develop your Tejas balancing protocol.